If you could do one thing that would virtually guarantee a massive increase in sales, what would that one thing be? Or, if you could change one thing in your sales processes that you think could dramatically increase your sales, what would that one thing be?
Now, before I share with you what my one idea is, let me ask you another question. When you get ready to buy something, what is the one thing that you want more than anything else when buying that thing?
Whatever that one thing is, chances are, your customers/clients would like that same thing. And therein is one of the major marketing and sales mistakes that most business owners and entrepreneurs make—they stop thinking like a customer/client and instead think like a business owner.
And that one simple mistake, that one simple mindset mistake, costs most businesses massive amounts of money. So, what is that one thing that everyone who’s purchasing something wants?
If you remember that and master this key marketer thought, you’ll be well ahead of your competitors—who are still thinking like business owners.
How Do Business Owners Think
Business owners and entrepreneurs, just like everyone else, like to think about themselves (i.e. we’re all born with a bent for self-interest).
So, how do we think? We think about our costs. We think about our margins. We think about how many widgets or processes we need to sell in order to hit our revenue/income goals. But mostly we think about our profits (i.e. how much we get to keep).
That’s why when we’re figuring out our prices, we do the math. If we want to make a million and our margin is 50% (let’s keep the math simple :-), then we need $2M in sales. If our product is priced at $1,000, then we have to figure out how to get 2,000 people to buy our product.
The last thing we’re thinking about is giving someone a deal. Why? Because in most of our minds, a deal is a loss of revenue—which means more work if we want to get the same result (i.e. if we give a 30% discount over the competition so our product now only costs the customer/client $700 vs. $1,000, then we have to sell an additional 857 units (an increase of 42.9% more sales) to get the same result.
in other words, we’re thinking about us. We’re thinking about what we want and how much work we need to do to get it. But, if you and I were to stop thinking like business owners and started thinking like customers, that could change everything.
How Customers Think
Customers, just like business owners and entrepreneurs, are driven by self-interest (hence the famous Zig Ziglar line that the only radio station that customers listen to is WIIFM – What’s In It For Me).
Now, if customers are motivated by self-interest, what interest do they have concerning our costs, margins, and profits? Exactly! None!
What they want (which is what you and I want when we’re customers/clients) is a deal. More importantly, they want to FEEL like they got the better part of the deal. They want to believe that the value they’re receiving from the thing that they just bought FAR EXCEEDS the value that they just exchanged for it.
Note: This has nothing to do with absolute price. For example, if an art collector could buy a Picasso for $50M, he or she would feel like they just got an incredible deal. Why? Because the last few Picasso’s have sold for over $100M.
So, don’t just think that offering deals is about becoming like Walmart and offering everyday low prices. Think of a deal as something that’s relative to the perceived value of a product/service.
It’s All About Improving Perceived Value
We could do an entire seminar on this subject, but here are a few thoughts for you today. Note: Don’t rush by any of the following three ideas and say, “I know that!” That’s irrelevant. The key question is, “Am I doing that?” And if not, “How can I?”
1. The starting point for increasing the perceived value of any transaction almost always starts with you and your team helping your prospects see the value in what you’re offering (and why it’s better than the competition).
In fact, here’s a great team exercise (if you have one or else you can do this yourself). Take out a sheet of paper and make three columns. In the first column, write out a list of all the features of your product/service. Then, in column two, next to each feature, write out the benefit to the customer/client for each feature. And finally, in the third column, next to the benefits, write out the value to the customer.
Why take the time to do this? Because if you and your team aren’t clear on what the benefits and the value of those benefits are to your prospects, there’s almost no chance your prospects will.
2. Another idea would be to use questions to help your prospects see the value in what you’re offering. For many of us in the consulting world, this is the normal way of selling. “You’ve said that your goal/objective is X. Tell me, if you achieve X, what will that mean for you?”
The reason those of us in the value-based pricing world do this is because it gets a prospect’s eyes off an absolute dollar amount and has them focus on the result they want and the value of that result to them.
For example, if you asked me to do a project and I said, “That will cost $30K,” you might say, “What?” But if you’ve said you want a result (to grow your sales by $600K) and I’ve done my job of helping you see the value of that engagement, you’d be happy to exchange $30K for $600K (a 20X return—i.e. you’d be getting a deal).
3. My final idea for this post would be to add bonuses (or something extra to make the sale FEEL like a deal). If you’ve ever read a sales letter on the internet, you know what I’m talking about.
“If you buy XYZ product for just $27 (normally $197), you’ll get these 14 bonuses worth $2,000.” Even though you and I know what they’re doing, we still get sucked in. Why? Because everyone loves a deal!
Most of the products sold on TV run this way, right? “If you buy right now, you’ll not only get one ABC, we’ll send you two. But wait, there’s more. If you order in the next three minutes we’ll throw in XYZ and DEF and we’ll even pay for shipping and handling.”
And guess what? People buy that stuff by the billions. Why? Because everyone likes a deal.
So, as you look at your business and what you’re offering, how can you adjust your offer or your sales process to make people FEEL like they’re getting a deal?
If the people you’re trying to reach feel like they’re getting a deal (i.e. that they’re getting a lot more value than what they’re paying for), your sales will sky-rocket. Why? Because everyone loves a deal. If you really own that, you’ll find that your sales will take off and you won’t even break out a sweat!
To your accelerated success!
P.S. If you have any other ideas about increasing the perceived value of what you’re offering (for example, increasing the customer experience), make sure you add them to the conversation below in the comments section (or click here >> if you’re reading this by RSS or email)