What is the reaction you want to get after a sales conversation or marketing interaction?
Most salespeople would say they want their prospect to say, “Yes, I totally agree with you! That’s what’s keeping me up at night.” While that’s great, here’s the problem: You have found an issue that resonates but you haven’t actually brought any new ideas to the table that reframe or fix the problem.
In the book, The Challenger Sale, Dixon and Adamson’s research shows that there are five types of sales reps. The most common is the Relational Rep. This person likes to be liked. However, the sales reps that performed high and above all other reps are the Challenger Reps. These are salespeople that challenge clients’ assumptions about their business and bring new ideas to the table.
A Challenger Rep doesn’t look for a warm and fuzzy customer reaction. They don’t want the prospect to “agree” with them necessarily. What they want the prospect to say is, “Huh, I’ve never thought of that before.” In Dixon and Adamson’s words, “The best indicator of a successful reframe isn’t excited agreement but a thoughtful reflection.”
As salespeople or marketers, what are you doing today to bring new ideas into the conversation? How are you challenging your prospect’s assumptions? What data, insights, or ideas are you introducing that help your prospects totally redefine how they think about their businesses?
We talk a lot about solutions and value-added selling. Just getting prospects to say, “I have a problem” is OK. (Look, we all have a long list of problems in our businesses that we have not put a priority on fixing.) What wants to elicit a reaction. We need to be provoking–challenging. We get to be the ones who bring new ideas to the table.
Salespeople: Before you walk into your next appointment ask yourself: What data, information, new idea, or question can you introduce that will get the prospect to say, “Huh, I never thought of that?”
Marketing Professionals: Before you create your next blog, social media post, brochure, lunch-and-learn presentation or web page, sit down with a blank legal pad and ask yourself: What data, information, new idea, or question can I present that gets people to say, “Huh, I never thought about that?”
Originally published on LinkedIn Pulse.