My guest blog this week is from Steve Jessop. Here he discusses the age old debate about the role that price plays in the sales process in No-one Buys on Price.
Hitler's Minister of Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, once infamously said that "a lie repeated often enough will be regarded as the truth". In a business context, on the subject of price, some would say that, in principle, he was on to something......
Some familiar phrases:
It isn't always easy for us to accept, but these and similar phrases camouflage the fact that we didn't sell the customer on the true value of our offering. They are really euphemisms for our inability to sell value....
There has always been a drive to condition us to compromise on our prices and buy into the propaganda.... Some years' ago I found myself in a very pleasant Berkshire hotel coaching a group of sales managers. In the next room was a purchasing managers' training programme being run on behalf of a UK multi-national. Our Minister of Propaganda would have approved of the conversations I heard together with the supporting visual aids:
("Reassuringly transparent" I remember thinking at the time......)
It's important to accept when selling that handling some form of pressure on our prices goes with the territory.... But we don't have to succumb to it..... The antidote is to meticulously fit our 'proposition' with the quantified needs and wants of the customer (which means of course that we must firstly carefully and incisively build a quantified understanding of them). This is the central principle of value-added selling (the clue is in the title...) and it's the key to professionally resisting the pressure to compromise on our prices.
It's worth noting too that if we have sold the business value of our proposition effectively (groundless) price pressure may be the only tool of resistance our customer can reach for.......
Points for you to ponder on:
And finally.......back to our Minister of Propaganda (a.k.a. 'The Master Of The Big Lie') .....
"The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield people from the political economic and / or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension truth is the greatest enemy of the State". Go figure......
Steve Jessop is co-founder of sales improvement consultancy Quantum Sales & Marketing Services Ltd (www.quantum-sales.com) and The Sales Practitioners Group. He acts privately as a sales advisor for several SME sector businesses.
firstname.lastname@example.org | O7973 909648 |Twitter: @stevenjessop1
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