We have been playing an exciting game of Kick The Can this week! But we have also been discussing how we can keep our competition from kicking our cans in the sales process.
Today, we are bringing our Aunt Arlene!
My Aunt Arlene loved me very much. She gave the best hugs in the world! And when we played Kick The Can – her value was immeasurable to me. She was my ally.
When she was “it” and she would “capture” me, she would pick me up into her arms and carry me back to home base – kissing my face and tickling me all the way. I giggled so much it was almost uncontrollable.
I really treasure those memories.
On the other hand, when I was “it”, Aunt Arlene became my ally. She would help me find the other players. She would also keep a lookout for those players who would try to kick the can and set my captives free. I would be around the corner seeking my cousins – and I would hear Aunt Arlene yell, “Allen is coming around the corner!” Then I would race back to protect my home base.
In addition to building the relationships we discussed yesterday, to protect your target prospects from being taken away by your competitors – you need to bring Aunt Arlene with you. Let me explain.
You Need An Ally:
You need someone (or multiple “someones”) in the decision making process that becomes your ally. You must develop great and open relationships with your allies. Be open and honest about the competition that will surely be contacting them. Ask to be kept in the loop when this occurs. Prepare your allies for the questions to ask your competition. Lay the foundation that if a competitor brings something to the table that interests them – you would like to be able to discuss the possibilities with them. Having allies in the decision making process will keep your can from getting kicked!
Bring Unmatched Value:
You should know your competition well. You should know where your similarities and differences lie. Then you must bring value to your prospect that is above and beyond the sales transaction. Your relationship is part of that value. Your ability to be a lookout for your prospect’s business by keeping them abreast of unforeseen issues is part of that value. Referring business to your prospect, if possible, is part of that value. They will normally refer business back to you as well. When products or services are relatively equal – it is the value that you add above and beyond the transaction that will keep your can from getting kicked!
Stay In Touch:
As you are hunting more prospects, you must still keep in contact with your target prospects. Your sales process must include a CRM system that helps you stay organized and doesn’t allow you to lose track of your next move – this keeps you in the forefront of your key contact’s mind. But don’t be fooled by technology. Face to face time – whether in person or via your computer – builds stronger relationships that any electronic substitute. And even when buyers become more and more transactional – they would still rather do those transactions with someone they know, like and trust. Staying in touch will keep your can from getting kicked!
To my Aunt Arlene – moving away has made it difficult for me to keep in touch as much as I would like. But many of my most fond memories are of you. I love you dearly.
What do you need to learn the most at your current level in your sales career? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or post your comment.