Being an expert and selling your expertise can increase sales — until the point that it holds you back, and makes you sound like everyone else.
I was reminded of this when I visited the Degas Gallery yesterday in New Orleans. (I am in town for the N.O. Jazz Festival,) The gallery had an artist that caught my eye, Kelli Kaufman, a self-taught painter of southern coastal marshes.
When you look up close at her art, eyeballing the details, it just looks like splotches of paint, but when you stand back 10 feet you can see the vivid nature of the landscapes come to life. The details were meaningless, but the bigger picture was emotionally riveting.
I have also seen the opposite: A painter who has perfect details, and yet the whole painting lacks originality and emotion.
Sales can be just like that as well.
© Kelli Kaufman 2018
Some salespeople focus on mastering the details, but ultimately that is not what most people are buying. Or more specifically, that is not “why” they are buying.
Buyers want to know that they have made an excellent decision, that they’ve made a friend and that they’re dealing with somebody they trust. Ultimately, people buy products and services to make them feel better about themselves, to bolster their self esteem.
This is equally true for low cost services like lawn care, and for high cost products like paintings.
My challenge to you: Make stronger emotional connections with your clients. Find out their big picture, and the details will fall into place. Gain your clients trust, and sell your passion.
Moreover, you will find that you can increase your margins and sell more in any given month. In a busy season, this is critical.
Jeffrey’s Breakthrough Idea: If you focus on the technical details, you will be seen as a cost-driven commodity.
The proof is in the results. My good friend and consulting client Mark Hutten, co-owner of Hutten & Co., has recently focused on changing his approach, and has been able to make sells double his clients original budget. He has learned important lessons, in his words:
- Some clients think they want technical details, but what they really want is emotional permission.
- The excitement of the entire process can be immediately derailed when losing the emotional focus.
- Maintaining a passionate message in written proposals actually increases client and salesperson energy.
Let me know how it goes in guiding your sales team to increase your sales this year!?.