Every founder is a salesperson.
Every individual within a company who interacts with the customer or client is in effect a salesperson.
Every presentation, email, image, social media post, font and color, and response to a question… it’s all sales.
How can these things sell, then, if they are not laced with intention and emotion?
Sales doesn’t end at the completion of an agreement between parties. That only marks the beginning of a new sales cycle.
Sales doesn’t always have to mean getting people to buy more stuff. It also means selling them on the belief that their decision to buy or to engage with you is the best and smartest of their life. The stronger the belief, the more effortless the sale.
Sales doesn’t start at the inquiry, when someone becomes what we call a “lead.” It happens when the customer first gains awareness of you. This means your sales cycle often begins long before you hear from a prospect.
Sales is the repetition of your actions. Sales is how each one of those actions properly supports the last, and creates a consistent narrative over time.
Think about a time you were prepared to inquire about or purchase something, but backed out. Sales is about understanding why that happens and crafting solutions to minimize it at every point of contact, however small.
When interacting with a prospect, if all you do is respond to their questions about pricing, features, benefits and process, you aren’t selling. You’re answering questions.
Sales is about recognizing the uncomfortable truth that none of us are taught how to be customers. We often ask the wrong questions and focus on the wrong things. Sales is understanding this and asking the customer the questions they should be asking themselves.
The agent who believes that buyers are liars should consider the fact that maybe that happens because he or she failed to ask the buyer the right questions. Sales is listening. Sales is clarity.
The customer journey is usually a long and winding road. It’s filled with speed bumps, potholes, twists and turns. Sales is all about knowing exactly where these moments are in that journey and removing those obstacles wherever possible. Sales is what you do to solve for this.
Sales is about wonderment. It’s about enlightenment. It’s about revelation.
Consider the difference between buying something, paying for it and using it to accomplish an intended goal versus discovering something about yourself as a result of that purchase.
That feeling, that sense of being, is what sales must sell.
If the work of a strong brand is to paint the better world that customers will experience as a result of their interaction with that brand, then sales is the enactment of that work. It requires an ensemble cast and numerous acts that require thought and planning.
I believe you can’t become a true brand without applying a deeper and broader sensibility to sales.
It can’t just be the thing you do to get people in the door; it’s about getting them through the door and to a place that they never want to leave.