Sean is a principal at FitzMartin, and our leading mind and voice on sales and marketing strategy. Sean is particularly adept at applying the science of behavior change to the art of sales and marketing. It’s an approach that he and FitzMartin have developed over thousands of client engagements since 1992.
You might have seen the video. I know you have lived the experience!
Recently in an article "The Only Acceptable Time to Start Your Sales Pitch," written by Michael Hurczyn, I was reminded of this common error made by most salespeople.
He states: "I've known for many years that listening is something I need to work on. Being aware of the problem helps, but it's a difficult discipline when strong emotions are involved.
But what if instead of a conversation between spouses, this was a sales conversation? Let's pretend the woman in the video is a prospect, and the man is a salesperson.
After the prospect expresses a problem, most salespeople will stop listening and start formulating a solution. Then, as soon as they see an opening in the conversation, they'll offer their proposed fix (without being asked for it). What ends up happening is the prospect becomes defensive because no one likes having their problems pointed out to them–even if they are painfully aware of the issues."
My thought is simply to agree BUT also to add that with a good CRM system, and inbound marketing technology and thoughtful salespeople...this is what happens because of the internet's inherent quality of offering anominity. The buyer will only reveal himself or herself when they are ready. The buyer is allready in control.
Marketing, the party typically involved with creating workflows to those newly revealed prospects, is the one who needs to temper enthusiasm. Marketing must keep safety intact. If you have a new lead in your CRM and bombard them with "stuff" then you have violated the trust they gave you. The deal is over before it started.
Marketing, understand where your lead is in the customer decision journey. Respect the trust. Be patient. They will let you know when THEY recognize the "nail in the head."
Do you have a good "nail in the head" sales story?