#3: How Your Value Proposition Frees You From Pushy Sales with Pat Helmers
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What a privilege to have Pat Helmers on as a guest this week - if you’re struggling to sell, this is the episode for you.
First up, a little bit more about Pat. He is an international business consultant and technology startup coach. His work for Bell Laboratories resulted in two patents for GSM wireless technologies. As a trainer for emerging software Object Oriented methodologies, He’s been active in training thousands of engineers in the United States and Europe.
His became Vice President of Sales for a SaaS startup. During his time there, he created a sales department that led to 8figure revenues. As the author of Selling with Confidence and host of Sales Babble Podcast, his sales insights will revolutionize your sales and marketing process.
Salesmen are made, not born
It’s common to think you’re either born a salesperson or you’re not. But Pat wasn’t born a salesman. He taught himself how to be one. He leaned heavily a book called Cold Calling Secrets which taught him to smile, stand up, and write a script.
The trick to cold calling is to have a reason to call. People understand if you’re calling to follow up on something you sent them or on some connection you made with them on social media. You give yourself an immediate talking point that opens up an opportunity to build trust and relationships.
Listen better and build relationships
Pat said if he could start out again in sales he would tell himself to listen better. Sales is all about relationships so the more you listen, the more you get to know your client’s needs and desires.
Get to know people. Don’t just look at statistics and assume you know what people need. Let them talk and listen carefully.
While the goal of sales is to sell, the goal isn’t to sell to EVERYONE.
As a salesperson, you’re trying to discover if the person you’re talking to needs what you offer.
If they don’t, don’t waste your time trying to convince them to buy. Instead ask them if they know of anyone who does need what you offer.
Both marketing and sales should be about relationships
Pat commented that in his B2B experience sales are directly tied to a relationship. While sales depends on relationships, marketing often doesn’t. But it should.
Recent studies have shown that 60% of sales happen online before a sales person ever talks to the customer. And this is why Pat believes marketing should be relational. Marketing should create a relational funnel that flows naturally into sales relationships.
How good marketing can increase your sales
If you want this funnel to flow well, there are several things you need to do. Start by improving your website. It doesn’t take long to create good SEO and increase your hits. So before you do anything else, make your website work for you.
Understand your value proposition.
A value proposition is a statement that explains…
Who you sell to.
What they need.
What features you provide them.
What benefits they will experience.
Your value proposition will make it clear to you and everyone else what you offer and who you can help. This removes the pressure to sales pitch everyone you meet. Instead you will be qualifying people for your help by asking questions.
Whether you’re at a business conference, talking with friends, or meeting strangers, your value proposition makes it easy for you to network. If they don’t qualify for your help based on your value proposition, ask them if they know of anyone who could benefit from your services.
And just like that, your value proposition has freed you from the stigma of a pushy salesperson. Your sales process has become a way to help real people with real problems.
Provide value through lead magnets
Pat reminded me that all business interactions, whether B2B or B2C, are really P2P… person to person. So lead magnets need to have value to the people you’re sending them to.
Offer them the best that you have by way of tips, tricks, and advice, and let them come to the conclusion that they need your help implementing.
For instance, offer them checklists or “3 ways to be successful.” Share a helpful article in their field or a helpful statistic.
If you want to do great sales, then you need to be all about helping people. So let them know that you’re all about their success by sharing helpful lead magnets.
Pat is adamant that you figure out your value proposition. Everything else in sales revolves around this. A clear value proposition will free you up to listen to customers’ real needs.
Pat noted, “the more they talk, the more they’re likely to buy.” So take Pat’s advice and get them talking through your clear value proposition.
Pat’s must-read book
If you’re truly new to sales, Pat recommends reading To Sell is Human by Dan Pink. Dan paints an effective picture of successful sales and makes it doable for the novice.
True sales is simply teaching, and that teaching ultimately leads people to buy.
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Want to connect with Pat? Find him here:
Connect with him on LinkedIn - Pat Helmers
Listen to the Sales Babble Podcast
Download “Selling Secrets for Non-Sales People”