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3 Lessons Learned About Customer Insight Selling

Posted by Robert Beckerman
Robert Beckerman
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3-lessons-learned-about-customer-insight-selling-jpgIf your sales team is still relying on solution selling to move products, you’ve probably noticed some problems with making targets. While solutions selling was the go-to method for many years, it simply isn’t as effective any more. Customers are doing their own groundwork, and researching solutions long before they start sending out RFPs. They no longer feel like they need advice and guidance, just a great price on their chosen solution. This turns your sales team into little more than estimators. If you continue to rely only on solution selling, you’ll be entering into a constant bidding war with other vendors around the world. If you are striving to be a valuable asset to your clients, then you should learn these three lessons about the Insight Sales Process™.

Customers Want to be Challenged

When customers see a problem and then spend time to identify a solution, it’s not uncommon for them to get tunnel vision. They can become so focused on a single direction that they fail to see much larger associated issues or risks with the solution itself. That’s why they need a salesperson that is knowledgeable about all aspects of the industry, and willing to challenge their assumptions. This approach breaks the solutions-selling roadblock, and allows your sales team to demonstrate real, actionable value to the customer. Adopting a “customer is always right” attitude can set the customer, and your sales team up for failure. If a customer buys your solution, and then experiences unforeseen problems, you and your team are on the hook. With insight selling, it’s the job of your sales team to foresee those problems, and steer customers toward better solutions.

Customers Want More Than a Vendor

Vendors are easy to come by. No matter how obscure the product is that is being looking for, a Google search will typically yield hundreds of potential providers. When a buyer needs a product, they can simply order it from any one of those options, usually at a discount. So, why do customers still engage with salespeople? Because they have doubts. Even after all of their internal research and discussions, they’re still not entirely sure that they fully understand the problem. If they’re a little unsure about all aspects of the solution, they are willing to engage with a sales rep, hoping to validate their conclusions. What they need is a professional that can understand the buyers framework and where needed, they will challenge assumptions, identify risks and opportunities that were not understood or appreciated. . When your sales team can fill that role, they’ll become one of the customer’s most important partners.

The Insight Sales Process™ makes it Possible

Proper implementation of The Insight Sales Process™ requires that your sales reps collect, and leverage your key insights for all customers. Your unique Insight Panel needs to be consistently used to selecting the next best strategy and to align relevant content and value.

By collecting and databasing insights about your customers and prospects, your sales team will start to self-manage the process and immediate gains in sales effectiveness will be created. The insights should be scored in two specific ways to provide a standard process to manage sales productivity.  Measure the completeness of insights gathered and develop an overall Insight Index. You now have a framework to quantify sales effectiveness that you can monitor over time.

The Insight Sales Process™ will also make it possible for your team to consistently deliver experiences of value that will differentiate them and your company and will drive increases in your sales outcomes.

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Topics: Insight Sales Process, Customer Development & Retention