Sometimes we over-engineer these subjects, so I’d often ask myself, What would I want to know before I made a purchase? Or, as I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, I would visualize my dad being the prospective client. (My dad, a mail carrier, had an abundance of common sense.) I’d think, Would I offer this product or service to my dad? Would it really help him? Does he really need it?
Here are some general categories of questions to consider:
- Is the company offering a product or a service to the client? (In this post, I’ll use the word “client,” but please substitute customer, patient, guest, or whatever you call them.)
- Is it an off-the-shelf product or service? Does it need to be modified to fit the client’s situation?
- Is the company offering a professional service?
- Are third-party installers or implementers required?
- Is the client a business or a consumer?
As I thought through those questions, I found I had some follow-up questions:
- How technical/complicated is the product or service? How knowledgeable does the sales rep need to be about the product? Is the sales rep teamed up with a technical support person to assist in explaining and demonstrating the product or service?
- How passionate is the sales rep about the product or service? For example, when I was proposing to a prospective client at Plante Moran, I knew we would really take care of their needs, so I had a degree of confidence (hopefully not cockiness) that the prospective client could sense or feel.
- Do I really understand the prospective client’s business, or should I do some research or ask a colleague to join me on the sales call?
- Will the person I’m talking with pay for the product or service, or are they spending someone else’s money?
Hopefully, you get the point. Do your homework to make sure you understand your prospective client, their business, and their industry.
If you have any additional pointers, please hit reply and share them.