There is little question that sellers who understand and have confidence in the benefits of their product or service do better in negotiation. This is especially try when the seller is able to present these strengths in terms of the customer’s needs and objectify them by putting dollar values on the benefits the customer will receive. The trouble is that too many salespeople do not do so.
Sellers who have to remain firm in the face of strong price pressure will find their effectiveness improved if they take the following three actions:
- Customize Your Benefits. Learn to communicate the benefits of the product or service you sell in terms of the buyer’s customized needs and viewpoint. The seller who describes the benefits of his offering in terms of a generalized customer will find it harder to close the sale.
- Objectify Your Benefits. Do all you can to put a dollar value (calculated in terms of the buyer’s specific needs) on every benefit and added value you offer. Objectifying your benefits will put you ahead of your competition because most salespeople don’t do it or don’t do it well. Why? Because it’s not easy to do.
- Dry Run the Sales Presentation-The Manager’s Role. Customization is the wave of the future. It isn’t enough for us to say that the salesperson should understand the specific customer’s specific needs and customize the product benefits in the buyer’s terms. Manager intervention in the sales presentation is essential.
The sales manager who takes the time to evaluate the sales presentation before talks begin will get better results in holding the price line. Customizing product or service benefits and objectifying their value is hard work. If your salespeople are taught to do it right and if they know you will be present at the dry run, they will do a better job when they meet the buyer.
The seller who is willing to take these actions is certain to be more successful in defending a firm price than one who does not.