10/18/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 10/18/2021 17:06
Ever spent time with a prospect who didn't buy? Of course you have.
Is it fun?
No, it is not.
Selling to people who can't or won't buy is a huge drain on your sales productivity, budget, and team.
Top two-percenters need to spend time only with prospects who need your help, want your help, and are willing to work with you to solve their problems.
Your prospects need to have authority and money, but having business pain trumps both. If your prospects don't have business pain, they have no need. And without need, there's no hope for a sale. It's up to salespeople to ask effective sales questions and uncover business pain as quickly as possible.
Pain points are persistent problems with a product or service that can inconvenience customers and their businesses. Or to simply put it, they're unmet needs waiting to be satisfied. Any type of customer can have pain points, on an individual level or for companies on a large scale. Let's look at some common examples.
We'll break down more specific scenarios further into this article, but for starters, a typical pain point could be something like:
These are all situations that cause "pain" or stifle productivity. The first step in addressing these pains is knowing how to identify and eliminate them, so let's discuss how to do it for your customers.
Whether it's a complaint about customer service, dissatisfaction with a product or service, or an idea for innovation that has yet to be uncovered - your customer can fill you in. There's many different ways to identify and treat customer pain points, and the best way to do it is to hear what they have to say.
And customers, at the end of the day, are your bread and butter. They're a priority whether they are purchasing an end product, or a service to help run their operations. Now let's segway into what it means to have pain points as a business.
Business pain points are problems causing "pain" in an organization in need of a solution. True business pain isn't a problem where the solution is a nice-to-have. It's a budgeted, have-to-get-it-solved, discussed-at-the-board-level kind of problem. Because they affect the bottom line, they must be solved for the organization to function successfully.
Business pain points keep the company from functioning and should be addressed as a priority.
If your prospects say they're experiencing employee dissatisfaction and retention issues that are impacting their productivity and hiring, customer churn that impacts their revenue, or a severe lack of leads that make it impossible to hit their revenue goals, you've hit on business pain points.
Pain is the first thing top salespeople look for in their prospects because pain is what starts them on a buying journey in the first place and is the driving urgency to find a solution. These are some of the most common types of business pain points your prospects might face along with examples of each:
What company doesn't need to acquire more or better business? However, this end goal is easier to set than to achieve. Many businesses may understand - or think they understand - what's holding their marketing and positioning efforts back. Here are some examples of what you might hear from prospects who have positioning pains:
Because acquisition is so closely aligned with revenue, successfully identifying a positioning pain and your solution for it is a great way to prove value.
Money is a big topic in business, and many business pains are caused by lack of it and solved by more of it. Every company benefits from improving their financial standing. Here are some examples of critical financial pain points that require serious solutions:
Your offerings might help businesses who want to reduce spending or better manage cash flow.
People are at the heart of every business, often constituting both the greatest expense and largest asset. If there are people problems such as the following, it can cause problems in other areas of the business:
If your product or service helps organizations manage, incentivize, or delight employees, you'll take the pressure off those at the top and look like a hero to anyone else involved too.
With people problems come operational problems (or maybe the other way around). Your prospects know that the best way to achieve repeatable success is by implementing repeatable processes. The question then is, "how?" They may be facing hurdles such as:
If you unearth process pain points, ask your prospect to envision what a smoothly running company, department, or system would feel like and what kind of difference it would make.
It's the job of managers to remove roadblocks for the team so that things get done, productivity remains high, and profit benefits. That said, it's easy to get stuck in the weeds of the business and fall victim to inefficiencies that waste major time. Here are some examples of productivity pain points in business:
If there's something prohibiting a company and its employees from working efficiently and effectively, you can position your solution as a time, money, and headache saver.
When working in a small business, pain points left unsolved have the potential to halt operations altogether. If your customer is a small business, you need to ask questions that address the many tasks a small team has to complete as opposed to a corporation with more hands on deck. Small business pain points can be across the board such as:
Many of these issues can be addressed with a product or service offering grounded in current technology and consulting. Small businesses could benefit from workflow automation and proper guidance from experienced professionals.
Once you identify pain, you can determine how to solve it for your prospect. This is an incredible tool to leverage as a salesperson since you can become a solution-provider rather than a product-seller. Here are three tips to start positioning in this way:
This is a psychological technique that can go a long way in building trust with your prospect. Instead of trying to appear impressive by relying on jargon only your colleagues would understand, show your prospect you take them seriously by using their language and terminology.
Find the economic buyer as quickly as possible. Ask your prospect whose budget a purchase would come out of and what teams would need to be involved in a buying decision. There's little point in spending hours with a person who can't ink a deal.
If you're selling to multiple teams and one team has completely different priorities than another, you need to know early. If you'll have to go through a two-month legal review process before you can close a deal, you need to know early.
Prospects are sometimes worried they'll appear less authoritative if they tell you they're not the sole decision-maker, so I like to use the following questions to avoid that impression:
As you build trust with the prospect and listen to different perspectives, you have to personalize the solution to their specific needs. If your product serves multiple purposes, tell them which features speak to their problems.
Listen and affirm your prospect's pain points while asking for information, and it'll be easier to make your pitch meet everybody's requirements.
Inbound sales is all about empathy. To close more deals and become as helpful as possible, start asking the right questions to the right prospects.
Originally published Oct 18, 2021 5:00:00 PM, updated October 18 2021