President's Message..


Know the Product, Understand the Customer

There are a million different ways to close a sale. Every customer is different and so is every sales person. Some salespeople are very aggressive and talk circles around a customer; while others get their point across and make the sale by only hitting on one key benefit.

I have a good friend named Luis, he's a pool professional who offers service and has a retail store. Always trying to increase his sales, he relied on his experience and product knowledge. The sales technique he used was explaining all the features of the product to his customer. Since he knows the product inside and out, he didn’t understand why prospects bought from the competition. Luis decides to change his approach, he put in the effort to research ways to get more customers. He discovered that it wasn't enough to be familiar with the product; the key was in how the product was offered. He changed his sales pitch; instead of describing the product in detail he demonstrated the BENEFITS. Doing so with energy and enthusiasm, forgetting about costs, which resulted in increased sales and earnings.

So what is the difference between product features and product benefits? Features are the bells and whistles, but benefits are the value the product provides. Since the product has features the customer will take advantage of, they will ultimately benefit from the purchase. The features tell a story but the benefits actually sell the product. Customers want a solution to their problem not a product. The goal is to present your product as the satisfaction to their need, the drink of water to their thirst. You must answer the customers’ ultimate question "What is in it for me?"

Each benefit will impact various clients differently. Some customers may be price driven, some may be driven by product availability. Regardless of the customer type, be loud and clear about the benefits of doing business with YOU. Show them what sets you apart. Most of your competitors will offer the same products, so be unique. Figure out what your competitive advantage is. What benefit can you offer that your competitor can't? For example, everyone offers a variable speed pump that utilizes less energy consumption but what does this mean to the customer? How many dollars will he be saving per month and how can he put that money to use? These are the specific details you want to provide. Be clear about the importance of the benefit.

Finally, ask your existing customers why they do business with you. You might be surprised by what your customers’ value the most. Knowing why they do business with you will help you market to new prospects and attract more customers. If the value you're selling is unique to your offering and large enough to make it a priority, you will win the business, as long as the customer has money to spend.


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