First, let me be clear that I am NOT suggesting ¬†selling and teaching are the same thing. They’re different. ¬†I am suggesting, however, that a substantial component of selling consists of teaching customers. ¬†Teaching them about the nature of their problems, because they don’t always truly understand their nature or root causes. They’re often unaware they even have a problem.
Even more frequently, they’re oblivious to huge opportunities. ¬†They need to be taught about how you can help them exploit those. ¬†They don’t care about your products and services, so they’re ignorant about them, and therefore need to be taught – this time pretty much against their will.
So what I need to do is create a whole bunch of handout-backed PowerPoint lecture/presentations and repetitively deliver them to (usually disinterested) customers, right? ¬†Not really… ¬†You’ll never get em’ to sit still long enough to listen, much less get them scheduled to attend your “class” in the first place.
But as a sales pro, you still need to teach them.
So why not approach the teaching part of the sales job the way a modern, world-class, professional educator would? ¬†They would not do so with the centuries-old, traditional model:
- Design course
- Deliver lectures
- Assign homework
- Administer tests
- Hand out grades
Here’s what they’ do:
- Understand an issue or opportunity overwhelmingly well
- Develop digital content (a mix of text, image, audio and video) to:
- Frame the issues
- Describe a sample “Before” scenario including it’s cost
- Describe a sample “After” scenario including it’s cost
- Describe a process for getting from before to after including it’s cost
- Make the content available to the universe – For Free
- Be readily available -For Fee this time – to answer questions, provide advice and customize the knowledge to fit the student/customer’s particular circumstances
See the implications?¬† The lecture part – what for centuries was the centerpiece of education – is now homework.¬† Completed before student/customer ever even meets with teacher/sales pro.¬† The actual face-to-face part is all detailed discussion to customize.
Wow!!!¬† Not your father’s classroom.¬† And certainly not your father’s sales process. ¬†Not even close. ¬†Noodle on it for a while though. Put yourself in the shoes of a customer. Which model would you prefer? ¬†That’s not even close either.