10 Errors to Avoid in Sales Part 5: Not Presenting the Benefits to Your Client
A post from our Sales blog
Written by John Boddington
How do I present my benefits to a client?
There is a wonderful restaurant in the town of Hermanus, along South Africa's coast on the Indian Ocean side. A large portion of the restaurant has large windows that are sea facing, and positioned at the top of the coastal cliffs, it affords a spectacular view across the bay.
This particular bay is one in which whales, making their seasonal migrations north and south, stop to frolic in. If you eat at this restaurant, at either of those two periods, and sit at a table at the windows, you can whale watch while you eat. It is an incredible experience.
What is even more incredible though, is just how easy it used to be to get a seat at the window. And the reason for that is that not enough people were aware of this. The entrance to the restaurant was not on the same side of the building, and so if you were in the parking lot, or the road passing by the front of the restaurant, you might not have guessed at the views on offer.
Throughout almost the entire summer holiday period one year, the restaurant had a sign outside that said, "Ocean view seating available!
". The last summer that I holidayed there was one just after I had gone into sales, and had been trained about selling the advantages of your products, not listing the features. Every time I visited the restaurant, and amazed at how easy it was to get a table with this stunning view, it amazed me that they were just listing a feature. Yes, they had ocean view seating. What they should have been putting in the sign was the benefit of that, that you could whale watch while you eat. I bet that would have got far more people through the doors!
Learn to present the benefits to your clients
Over the years, I have met many sales people that made the same mistake. They listed the features of whatever widget they were selling, without explaining the advantages that it gave, and then the benefits this gave to the client. The last motor vehicle I bought, while taking a car for a test drive, the salesperson rattled off an entire list of features, including one about features of the gearbox. Talking to him later, it turned out that he was new to sales, which might have explained it, but he did not list one benefits of these features as the driver. He was lucky, and we liked the car and bought it anyway, because my wife had driven a similar car before. If that was not the case though, he would have had a far better chance of selling the car to us if he had told us what benefits there were, such as the low road tax that I benefit from because of the low emissions. People are far more inclined to buy something if they can see how they will benefit from it.
Or eat at a restaurant if they know that they can watch whales play while they eat.
So, if you are in sales, when was the last time you checked to ensure that for every feature you listed to a client you gave a corresponding benefit to them? If you are a sales manager, when have you listened to see if your sales people are giving the benefits? And are you doing it naturally? Does the conversation flow, or does it sound like you are listing just features and benefits? If it does sound like you are just going through a checklist, you need to practice so that it sounds natural.
If you, or your team, are not successfully explaining the benefits of your product to your clients, make sure that you avoid the mistake that restaurant in Hermanus was making, and learn to explain the benefits of your products to your clients in a natural way
. I guarantee it increases sales.
If you would like to read more about how to present your benefits to the client, why not look at the SPIN Selling Model? The N stands for Need pay-off questions, which is effectively how your benefit solves the client's exact problem. It is a great site to view more details on how to obtain this.
What do you think? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
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