You would be shocked to hear how many times a random wedding professional will tell me that they hate to sell. While I can assure you that most people hate to deal with a pushy salesman, (by the way, I use salesman as that is what is used with me; as opposed to salesperson or saleswoman, even when the person telling me this is a woman) there is more than one level of acting as a salesman other than pushy. So today I wish to share with you some thoughts on selling and its crucial role in your business.
Why is sales viewed as such a messed up profession? Thomas Watson of IBM said, “Nothing happens until something is sold.” With a statement like that, one would think that there is great purpose in sales. Yet the overwhelming opinion of salesmen is that of a boorish, rip-off artist. If you have these thoughts when thinking about a salesman, you’re not alone. I regularly will ask my audience what words they would use to describe a salesman. The replies are: “Rip-off,” “cheesy,” “used-car,” “obnoxious,” and “pushy” to name a few. We need to shift our actions to be contrary to those thoughts.
When you think of the word consultant, what words come to mind? Most people respond with words such as “expert,” “coach,” and “adviser.” Those words are so much more pleasant than the words which describe a “salesman.” The key for you in your business is that shift I mentioned above. Let me explain.
When we are looking to pay the bills, it comes through loud and clear in our presentation. Our tonality, our posture and most importantly our execution comes through with this underlying “necessity” to get the deal solidified. I fully understand that we need to pay the bills, but let me show you the shift: when you have purpose in making the sale, you have a higher likelihood of getting the sale assuming you are the match. Your purpose becomes the key to closing the deal.
Purpose is so much deeper than simply money or making the sale. Purpose gets to providing the absolute best of what you provide to brides to this bride. It becomes protecting the bride from the knuckleheads out there who are only interested in a paycheck. It becomes the pride you have in what you provide to these brides that they may not even know they need or would be missing out of.
When your sales approach is a consultative, purpose driven approach as opposed to what has been trained for years as Go Get The Sale or Always Be Closing (the ABC’s of sales), you will show yourself and your business to be more trustworthy and through that trust get more of the brides you meet with to take the steps of the buying process with confidence and less worry. Perhaps you are not a match with every bride. Heck, you are probably not a match for most of the brides, but you are certainly a match for more than enough brides to keep your business running and running well.
Homework assignment: for the next 4 weeks, take a more consultative approach to your sales meeting by finding out what the brides needs are as opposed to simply presenting your stuff.