Has Selling Really Changed?
Everywhere you look, the narrative is that selling is changing. There's more information available. Buyers go on journeys now. If you virtually hug people through social media channels enough they'll give you their money. The phone is dead... Long live the phone...
The most powerful stories are the ones people tell themselves, and it's easy to get swept away in the compelling arguments that everyone else is making, but is selling really any different "than it used to be?"
Of course, there's more information available, and that's a good thing. More information should mean better decision making. Is your solution the right fit?
Buyers have always gone on journeys, the most complicated of which require guides. This is where you come in...
Social media, email, phone, smoke signals... Does it matter how you get your prospect's attention? The real issue is whether or not you have something worth talking about.
Jeffrey Gitomer, The King of Sales, defines selling like this... "Put yourself in front of people who can say yes to you, and deliver value first." He also said that "People don't like to be sold, but they love to buy." He's been saying that for years. It hasn't changed since he started, and I believe it will remain the same for the next 100 years. This from my favorite of his books... "At a time when the rules are changing, the laws remain constant. You can change the rules. You cannot break the laws."
When you think about it, other than the tools, and maybe the environment, what has really changed? I don't think a whole lot has. Even the changes to the tools and environment are enablers as much as they're inhibitors. The foundational principles and basic concepts are undeniably the same.
Your job is to do the work. Your job is to not be distracted by the narrative.
- What is my differentiator in the market?
- Who best benefits from that?
- What is a compelling story that will get their attention?
- How can I best convey the benefits of the outcomes I can deliver?
- How can I earn my customer's loyalty?
Is there anything more to selling than that? Has there ever been? Will there ever be?
If the most powerful stories are the ones you tell yourself, then remind yourself of what you know to be true, and resist the urge to get too creative. The more things change, the more they stay the same.