A hapless hiker stops to enjoy the view from the top of a high mountain. Suddenly he loses his footing and slips off the cliff.
As he tumbles to a sure death hundreds of feet below, he reaches out and grabs a tree root that’s sticking out of the side of the mountain. Frantically holding on, he looks up and yells, “Help! Is there anyone up there? Save me!”
Suddenly, a voice comes out of the sky: “This is God. I will save you.” Relieved, the man asks, “Thank you Lord, please save me now.” God replies, “Sure, just let go and I will catch you.” The man looks down at the rocky canyon bottom. Then he looks up again and yells, “Is there anyone else up there?”
TRUST HAS RISKS
The toughest times require the most trust. But trust comes with its own risks. And reducing those risks in the mind of your prospect is a key to successfully selling your services.
Selling a service requires the most trust. No matter what your record of success, the result of most services you provide can’t be predicted with 100% accuracy. Something unexpected can come up. Market conditions can change. A competitor may have her own clever strategy. The buyer is often nervous about buying a service — and if she’s honest, the seller is probably a bit nervous also.
But selling a complicated project, or a large/expensive product, requires a risk as well. A product can be returned. A service can’t.
REDUCE THE RISK
To sell more services or high-priced products, you need to demonstrate how you’ve reduced the risks. First, identify the risks to the prospect before they bring them up.
Explain that any service purchase in your category requires risk. Then show how you’ve lowered the customer’s risks by putting in safeguards such as monitoring and tracking. Present contingency and “Plan B” adjustments.
PRESENT THE TRACK RECORD
Instead of presenting just a list of customers, show case history examples of risk reducing. If you’re honest, you’ll probably have situations where you resorted to Plan B or made other adjustments. But if you can put a hard number to how often your service provided a solution, you could have the winning argument. And if you can quantify that number, such as how much money you have saved or earned another customer in a similar situation, you’ll probably sell that piece of business before you leave the meeting.
TRANSLATE TRANSLATE TRANSLATE
The best way to sell a service that involves a substantial amount of risk is to translate your offering and your entire reason for being there, as a way to provide a more risk-free journey to obtaining the service your client wants or needs.
You don’t have to take a leap of faith to demonstrate the above concepts. Just work at developing a dynamic presentation that brings up and reduces the risks instead of ignoring them.
If you need help with this, call or write. Until then…stay tuned. And stay smart. ##