If you’re in the business of selling, and most businesses are, at some stage you’ll need to make an offer to your potential customers.
How your offer is received by a customer will depend on how appealing it is. You’ll need to tell them:
- What it is that you have to offer…features of product or service
- What your offer is going to do for them…the benefits they will enjoy
- What you want from them in return for your offer…the price of your product or cost of service
Sounds pretty simple and straightforward right? Well it is, unless we complicate things.
To use food as an analogy, all too often we get engrossed in how much our customers should want what we are putting on their plate, because we know that its nutritious and good for them. When we get a response like we’ve just served them up steaming, fart-like smelling Brussel Sprouts (you guessed it, I dry-reach just thinking about them), we’re completely surprised that they didn’t like our offer.
Ok, so Brussel Sprouts are nutritious and full of vitamins and minerals, we all know that. But do they taste good?
Well, while writing this blog I did a quick search to see how much of the population actually enjoy them. Surprisingly, more of the population than you might think do, but for those who don’t, they will avoid them like the plague. And for those who don’t, even if you try to dress them up with a tasty sauce, you can’t hide the fact that they are still Brussel Sprouts. I’m sure my aversion to them is based around childhood memories of having them force-fed to me. Ah, negative childhood memories can become strongly etched in your mind, that’s for sure.
So, it’s our job to serve up something that is nutritious, tastes good and appropriate to our customers. If your customers don’t see your offer in the same light, trying to convince them that it’s good for them, or that they need it, you’ll be wasting both your time and theirs, and you won’t make the sale.
How to make your offer appealing to your customers
So, when we’re asking for a sale it’s our job to make the offer attractive.
It’s our customers job to either accept or decline our offer.
An attractive offer needs to be nutritious, taste good, be what the customer wants and must also be fresh.
Also, bear in mind that it’s much easier for your customers to run away, than it is for a child at the kitchen table being served up Brussel Sprouts.
Let me explain,
Make your offer nutritious
Your offer needs to be nutritious, or in other words, beneficial to your customer.
You can decide to sell a product or service to your customer, which doesn’t really do that much for them. You could sell this unsuitable item or service to many customers but you are extremely unlikely to have any of them purchase from you in the future. They will also likely complain, and go from your best ally to your worst enemy in an instant. That’s no way to build a business!
You only ever want your customers to spread positive words about you. Great News spreads fast, Bad News spreads like the Plague.
Make your offer tasty
Some people think Brussel Sprouts taste good and eat them for their nutritional value, but just as many people think, like me, that Brussel Sprouts are the worst thing EVER!
Different markets want different things…so know your market.
It’s way easier to sell what people want than it is to sell what people need. We begrudgingly accept what we need, but will rush towards what we want, and likely stampede over the top of everyone in our way to get to it.
You have a choice:
- Sell what people need, like Brussel sprouts…full of nutrition but smells bad and tastes horrible
- Sell what people want, like a healthy smoothie…full of nutrition, minerals and vitamins (not unlike Brussel sprouts) but also tastes delicious
I know which one looks an easier sell to me.
Deliciously tasty (is the want that gets them excited) and good for you (is the need to help reinforce). Always lead with the customers Want followed by the Need.
Your offer needs to be timely
A cooling ice block or ice cream is great in Summer, but a Hot Chocolate with marshmallows is much more attractive in Winter.
Your offer needs to be what your customer wants today, not last week, not next week. Today! If you understand this, then selling becomes a whole lot easier.
Make sure your offer is fresh
Any tasty meal is much more appealing when it’s come fresh out of the oven, rather than sitting out on the table for hours. Fresh, hot and inviting vs. stale, cold and unappealing. What Sounds Better to you?
Buy this “fancy whatchamacallit for $29.95” is an attractive offer, or buy this “fancy whatchamacallit for $29.95 by Thursday at 5pm before we run out“, both have the same attractive qualities, but setting a time limit creates urgency!
KEEP IT FRESH!!
Know your role in the process
Your job is to create fresh, tasty and nutritious, and also timely offers, to make them as attractive as possible.
Ice creams in Summer, Hot Chocolate in Winter!
Sit back and access how your offer is received.
If it wasn’t received by your customer as well as expected,
Offer a little sweetener for the same price to make it more attractive. Marshmallows!
Make sure you concentrate more on the tastiness, more so than the goodness of your offer.
If your offer still wasn’t accepted as well as you thought, it’s not the end of the world. Go back to the drawing board and try again tomorrow.
Thanks to Copy Blogger for the insights for this blog piece.