Quality has an altered definition in cold call sales

by on February 2, 2010 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: Selling Essentials Info Center

Do you Have the Best Stuff or the Right Stuff for your cold call sales?

To make serious money in cold call sales you need to know everything you can about the quality of your product or service – and remember that “quality” doesn’t mean what you think it does.

Time and again I’ve heard sales reps say, “I can’t sell on quality, ours aren’t really the best.” But quality does not mean “best” in cold call sales. Quality means conforming to standards and expectations –– your prospect’s standards and expectations.

The correct stuff for cold call sales is what your customer needs
Quality means the right stuff –– not the best stuff. Quality is the correct stuff for your prospect’s requirements and needs, not the best stuff made.

Here’s a real-world example. What is a quality tire for your car? The only way to answer that question is to ask another question or a series of them. What are you going to use the car for? Are you going to race it? Or drive to work in the snow? Go out and buy the best racing slicks you can get, put them on your power wheels, and see how fast you can accelerate in six inches of snow. You can buy “the best tires money can buy,” but you’d be disappointed in their performance under those conditions.

Understand expectations in cold call sales
Your goal with every cold call sales prospect should be to find out what his or her standards and expectations are – in short, what “quality” means to them.
Here’s where a lot of well-intentioned sales reps go off track. Because they love their product or service – and know it cold – they may unknowingly focus on features and benefits that don’t matter as much to the prospect as they think.
To continue the automotive analogy, consider a vehicle that has a solid reputation for fuel efficiency and low maintenance.
A sales rep that jumps into a glowing presentation of these features will miss the mark, if a prospect with a family cares more about crash safety for back seat passengers. “Quality” to the buyer in this case means something quite different.

Correct is best
If you don’t have the right stuff for your customer –– the quality of products or services that conform to his or her standards and expectations –– you have a problem. You will never get full price, rate or fee for products or services if you try to sell your prospect the wrong stuff for the specific application he or she needs it for.
Certainly you want to tell prospects your offering is the correct product for them, when it really is. But if your offering is not the right stuff –– if you’re selling furniture-grade walnut and your customer only needs cheap plywood –– you won’t have a satisfied customer, even if you cut your price to the bone to make the sale.
Of course, walnut vs. plywood is an exaggeration for effect. The differences are likely to be far more subtle, even nuanced. But in every case the product or service “fit” needs to be just right, and trying to make it work will come back to haunt you.

Ask questions to unearth what quality means to the buyer. It will set you apart and translate into more cold call sales.
Based on work by Richard Gabriel at www.TheBrooksGroup.com

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