Lets get straight into it this week...
Let's talk about sales...
A funny thing happened to me this morning and it got me thinking...
I've decided to get out and do some more in-person networking and events. There is a business network here in Bath that I have been considering joining. I checked out what they have to offer and how much it costs to be a member and decided I wanted to join.
So I applied to be a member.
This morning I had an email to tell me that my application had been successful and if I signed up before the end of the month they would offer me a 30% discount.
I had already made a decision to sign up and even applied for membership based on the price on the website - so why offer me a discount? They have unnecessarily talked themselves out of 30% of the cost.
Sitting there reading this you probably think this is a mad approach to business, but you would be surprised how many people do this - I actually did it myself recently!
I was approached by a corporate client to deliver training for them. During the call with the client, they said they would prefer the training to be delivered over two days instead of one - so I told them I would charge the same for two days as I would for one day. What was I thinking? I've talked myself out of a days pay - I wasn't even asked to do that!
Discounts can be a great tool to get your ICA to take a particular action. Maybe you would prefer them to pay for your service in full rather than a payment plan, or you need a cash boost by the end of the week.
But offering discounts has to be part of your process - thought through fully before its implemented.
If I am completely honest, I am not a fan of offering discounts because I think it can devalue your offering - and in my experience, people who don't fully invest financially in you rarely invest themselves fully in your process... but other opinions are available!
When I teach sales to my clients, I tell them that the whole point of your sales process is to get your clients to take the action you consider to be the best for them. You take time to speak to them and give them an honest, considered next step to help them achieve their goals - does a discount work with this approach?
If you don't value yourself and your expertise 100% then how can you expect your clients to value you?
This is where I find sales calls incredibly useful. If you pick up the phone and talk to your clients you can find out where they are and what they need right now. It is pretty easy to see on these calls if your ICA needs a bit of help getting over the line.
What is the moral of this story? Never assume that you know what your ideal client needs - as with the examples above you could end up costing yourself thousands of pounds without you realising.