Have you ever been in a situation where a company/individual was trying to sell you something that you knew did not align with what you had in mind? Then, as much as you try to communicate to them that what they’re trying to peddle on you isn’t hitting the sweet spot, the harder they stretch to make it seem as though maybe your sweet spot isn’t in the right place? The answer is yes. We have all been in that situation and none of us like it.
I look at the genesis of a sale as having two different origins. I kind of like to think of it like this:
Origin #1 Customer’s need or desire for a product or service
Origin #2 Businesses’ need for a sale
Neither of these is bad! Businesses need sales, and customers need products and services but, which one is more important?
Max’s vacuum cleaner dies, he needs a new one soon! He hops online and looks at all the different ones available, reads the reviews, looks at warranties, talks to all of his guy friends (Since men are usually in charge of the house vacuum……..Sarcasm will be a regular occurrence on this blog.) He decides on the Turbo Sucker 5000 and heads to the Vacuum Hut to make his purchase. To Max’s dismay the Vacuum Hut has just ran out of the Turbo Sucker 5000 Max wanted, and the next closest Vacuum Hut is 200 miles away; but the Vacuum Hut is a customer centered business, and the sales representative did not want Max to be forced to wait till the next week to get his vacuum cleaner. So the salesman got on the phone and worked out a deal with Turbo Sucker Inc. such that he could offer Max the upgraded Turbo Sucker 5500 for the same price! So Max got an upgraded vacuum that is 15% lighter, and has 25% more sucking power than the one he originally wanted. In this scenario, everybody wins!
Turbo Sucker Inc- Wins favor with Vacuum Hut, and will likely sell Vacuum Hut more units in the future because of their willingness to help meet a customers need.
Vacuum Hut- Wins because word of their effort to meet a customers need will spread through the vacuum world, and drive their sales higher.
Customer- Got more vacuum cleaner for the money and now has enough sucking power to pull the basement furniture up to the ceiling from the main level.
Max, after a long Friday of vacuuming with his new vacuum was looking forward to sleeping in Saturday. He wakes to the sound of his doorbell at 8:05. He drags like a wet bag of hammers on his way to the door while the sound of the doorbell rings twice more. He opens the door, and hears a little squirrely guy in a suit and tie say “GOOD MORNING! This is for YOU!”, and hands Max a scented candle……….”What?” Max says. “That’s right, that’s for YOU!” says squirrely guy. Squirrely guy proceeds to ask if he might come in for just a minute or two to talk to Max about Kirkaby Vacuums. Max, a bit stunned, wasn’t able to answer before squirrely guy slipped by him and into the foyer. Squirrely guy proceeds to talk like an auctioneer about his Kirkaby vacuums, while Max is still trying to figure out if he is dreaming, or if this is really happening. Eventually Max’s morning fog begins to lift and he stops squirrely guy and says “I’m sorry I just bought a new vacuum yesterday, I’m not in the market anymore.” Squirrely guy, acting as though he didn’t even hear what Max said began assembling his sample Kirkaby vacuum, and says, “You won’t mind if I just vacuum your carpet here right? Why don’t you just sit down and take a load off.” Max is growing understandably upset, and this back and forth goes on till Max starts asking himself “Am I going to have to physically remove this guy from my house?” Eventually, squirrely guy senses he is closer to a 911 call than a sale, gets packed up and leaves. In this scenario everybody loses.
Kirkaby- Loses because their product, no matter how good it is, is associated with this process, and it wouldn’t matter if they had the best product on the planet.
Salesman- Loses because he has no sale, wasted his time, and sacrificed his dignity
Customer- Loses because time was wasted, they feel attacked at your own home, and forms resistance to any salesman good or bad.
These stories both illustrate a point. Example #1 illustrates how a sales process might go with a Customer Centered Business. Example #2 (albeit maybe a little extreme) illustrates what it looks like when a business is trying to make a sale regardless of a customers need/desire.
From the very outset we have sought to deliver to the customer exactly what THEY want! We approach the project without any limits on what we can deliver, because we want to be able to take care of the customers need/desire entirely. We don’t have any specific brand loyalties for this reason. We deal with all manufacturers, of all products, because no one manufacturer has all the answers. There will be occasions where we are not the best solution for the customer, and if that is the case we will do our best to point you in the right direction to accomplish your goal.
Our sales philosophy is to put your needs and desires ahead of our own, and provide innovative ideas and solutions to accomplish your project!
*Stories above are based on real life experiences. Names have been changed to protect the innocent.
Have a similar good or bad experience with a sale? Tell us about it in the comments below!