The Art Of Problem Solving To Close More Sales
The most successful salespeople are the most successful problem solvers. It doesn’t matter if your business has the best product or service in the market, if it does not solve a specificproblem for your prospect, then you will not have much luck in closing sales.
The key therefore to closing more sales, is to solve more problems.
Think about selling a car. How many problems does a brand new Mercedes, for example, solve?
Primarily, it will get the buyer from A to B. That’s certainly one problem that it will solve and it could be a legitimate problem that your prospect has… But it’s unlikely that’s the only problem they need solving. There are a thousand other potential problems or buying motivations when it comes to their automobile that your buyer may have, that are not addressed by this one ‘solution’.
However, this is where in sales, it is critical to think outside of the box. What otherproblems does a new car solve for your buyer?
It solves the problem of wanting a safer vehicle.
It solves the problem of wanting better fuel economy.
It solves the problem of wanting admiration from others.
It solves the problem of wanting a more comfortable driving experience.
It solves the problem of wanting more power.
It solves the problem of wanting to have heated seats.
It solves the problem of wanting to have 4 separate cup holders.
The list goes on, and on, and on. There are almost infinite problems or buying motivations that a brand new car might solve for the prospect.
In addition, for each and every unique potential buyer, the car will solve a different set of problems (or in other words, meet the criteria for their buying motivations).
This is where real-time problem-solving skills come into play. Ensuring that your product solves your prospects unique problem will be instrumental in closing the sale. If your product fails to solve that specific problem, then the deal is lost, if it fits the bill to solve the specific set of criteria that your prospect has, then the deal is won.
A skilled salesperson knows that his product or service can be malleable to suit the buyer’s needs. It’s a case of firstly, identifying the unique pain point, and then educating the prospect and building value as to how your product solves that problem.
How Do You Find The Problem That Your Prospect Has?
The process of selling is at first like a game of Guess Who, it’s unlikely that you will make a sale, without first uncovering some vital information. Strategically asking questions in order to identify where your prospects needs lie before presenting customized solutions. Pre-planned and well thought out questions will direct you closer to your prospects pain points until you eventually fall upon the true pain point or set of buying motivations in which you can begin painting a picture of how your product serves those needs.
Essentially once you identify the key pain points during this intelligence gathering phase, you then have the necessary ammo to begin pitching and building value for the solution that your product or service provides.
To go back to the car example, the reasons for purchasing a brand new car could vary wildly. One customer may be looking for increased safety, whereas another buyer might just want to impress their friends, another might be keen for some extra boot space, or leather interior…
Regardless of the particular ‘problem’, the skill lies in drawing it out and offering solutions to it. This is why it’s ridiculous to begin pitching a product or service, without first identifying your prospects needs and how you can help them. Not only is it ineffective and a waste of time to attempt this without the right intelligence on your prospects unique buying motivations, it indicates that you really do not even care about solving your prospects problems in the first place, which is a sure fire way to end the sale before it even begins.
The key is to ask fact-finding questions and lots of them. Primarily, this will help to identify how you can solve your prospects problems. It will also engage you in a dialogue with your prospect which indicates to them that you care about serving their needs. As an added benefit to this process, by encouraging your prospect to speak up about their buying motivations, they will inherently feel more desire to make a purchase that solves their needs by bringing them to the surface verbally.
Dale Carnegie once said, “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
Well, you can also make more sales in two months by becoming more interested in your prospects problems than you can in two years by trying to get them interested in your product!