Dec. 4, 2019

34: Think like a customer - it's harder than we think


Start thinking like a customer - it's so obvious, but few of us do it well ... So says Anthony Iannarino in The Lost Art of Closing

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Transcript
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Start thinking like a customer. It seems so obvious, but few of us do it well. So says Anthony ion Reno in the lost art of closing.

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welcome to the bite sized sales podcast where we believe that sales is the most important team and a B2B company, that the sales team deserves great sales skills training but usually doesn't get it. And that taking bite-size steps each day to get better at your craft is the best way to improve results. I am your host, Andrew Monahan , and I'm using my experiences in B2B sales to bring you simple, actionable ideas every day to help you get better.

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Welcome to episode 34 of bite-size sales podcast, and today's episode is all about thinking like a customer. So have you ever sat in front of a prospect or a customer of yours? And we'd had the conversation and thought, you know, they just know so much more about this department and this function, this topic, this issue that we're talking about than I do. I know I have and like many people, I've been in that situation where I thought I've known more than I really did and sometimes be a little bit embarrassed. I remember back in the day we actually hired a S E from one of our customers. This guy was a really great customer , um , very personable and knew our stuff and knew um , the internal workings of it departments really well. Anyway, he was desperate to come over to a vendor rather than keep working for the, the it team. So he came over and I remember, you know, I was pretty pleased he came, but in the first couple of meetings, you know, he kind of sat back a little bit and then loved the odd question and , and you know, everyone kind of stopped and you know, started gravitating more towards him and I, I started talking to them about what was really going on and he explained to me, you know, here's the inner workings of what was going on. This guy's part of that team and he's concerned about this and they've got this pressure of a year and just from his years of experience operating inside that team or, or teams like that, it wasn't really this, that one team. Um , I was able to learn so much more about how truly these departments worked and it was really eyeopening to me. And you know, if you think about it, you know, the , the companies that we work for, they train us and train us and train us in our products, in the products that we have. They rarely do a great job of training us in the industry to be real experts in the trends and how to have big conversations with people about what's going on. They might throw things at us and say, of course this trends happening and we have to read up on it. But there's very little that goes much further than that. And I think this is a big miss. You know, it'd be able to sit there and, and build the confidence of the people you're working with. To think that, you know , this guy, she knows everything that's going on in his industry. He's asking great questions. You really get into the , uh, the root of it. It wouldn't be good if you knew when you're sitting in front of the teams and the customers exactly the pressures they're facing, the issues they have, what a day in the life looks like. Um , from their perspective. Um, how all these different moving parts are interrelated dimension , how more effective you would be if that was the case. Um, it means that we don't connect well as well with people if we don't have that perspective. And I was reading in a NTI Narinos book, the lost art of closing something about this. And I thought I'd read that to you right now. So here we go. I find that salespeople, sales managers and sales leaders often struggle to take on the perspective of their clients and prospects. We spend so much of our time focused on the challenge of acquiring clients and selling well. That is easy to forget. The clients have their own perspectives. We also tend to underestimate the consequences of the commitments we asked them to make, which may include firing an old friend they'd been buying from for years. The more you can live through your dream clients eyes and see their perspective, the easier it will be for you to help them make the decisions and changes necessary to produce better results. The more other oriented you become, the more your persp perspective clients will feel that you understand their needs and are dedicated serving them. Thus, no part of the sales process can be about you or what you need. Every commitment you asked for must be about what your prospective client needs in order to produce better results, overcome obstacles, and create a better future. I'll repeat this because it's important. No part of the sales process can be about you or what you need. Selling isn't something that you do to someone. It is something you do for someone and with someone. So that's read straight from the book. Um, and highlights to me , uh, in the absence of really good insights, information about our customers. You know , is it just as a human being, you tend to revert back to what you know, and if we've been trained to the nth degree in our products, that's what we go back to, right? That's almost in many respects, our comfort zone. So we want to go back and talking about products and asking product related questions and really try and do that. That whole dance when really we'd be much more , uh , w we'd be much more effective if we had more information and thought about the perspective of our clients a lot more. So my challenge to you from this is that this resonates. Listen to your recent calls, go back and if you have recorded them, go back and listen and, and challenge yourself. Are you, are you being you orientated or are you being customer oriented? Are you trying to drag things back to your situation, your product all the time? Or are you really seeking, understand the perspective of the customer. And uh , and then when you figured that out, what can you do? What actions can you take to learn more about your prospects and more about your customers more, but the industries that are in the challenges they face in general. So you're a lot more effective in these meetings.

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if you liked this episode, please share it wide and far spread the word. I get energy from seeing people download and use this content. So please just take 20 seconds to share with anyone you think would like it to .

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episode is sponsored by unstoppable dot du . Most sales teams are not trained effectively the skills and mindset they deserve, and these are the most important people in the company. It's no wonder that only about 50% of reps make quarter every year. Unstoppable is a service that helps sellers and leaders get great at the skills and mindset they need without taking time out of the field. It exists because if the sales team has the right skills and mindset, they thrive. They are confident and the

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for much better, find out more and even get a free sales book@bitesizesales.com

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and know to wrap up as Steve Pepe VP solution architects that are MIS may or may not have once said, training without implementation is just entertainment and poor entertainment when Monaghan does it. So make sure you take action on what you learn and keep getting better every day. This world does not need more sales BS, so don't create anymore . Be great at the fundamentals. Be honest, be real. Be yourself, just do not BS . And finally, I'm setting off as the great Joe Sexton word by saying, gone to sell

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