Imagine that you’re in a sales situation with a potential client. The deal could be highly lucrative.
Things are going well – you’ve done your research, they like your offering…but they also like the offering of one of your biggest competitors.
From your perspective, it’s anyone’s guess as to who’s going to get the deal. Then something happens. The prospective customer shows your pricing proposal to the other company – or forwards them one of your emails, asking them for their take on it.
What just happened? You lost the sale.
For whatever reason your credibility, in the eyes of your customer, has been compromised. For all intents and purposes you’re no longer in the running. Of course you’re never going to hear that from your customer directly: they’ll continue to go through the motions of the sales process right up until they make the purchase – with the other company.
There are 1001 reasons why you may lose the credibility of your customers.
- Maybe it’s the overly-pushy salesperson who needs to be the center of attention, dominate the conversation, or make it abundantly clear that they’ve been there and done that and (in the words of Stevie Wonder) you would be a stronger man if you took Misstra-Know-It-All’s advice.
- Perhaps you took too long to get back to the customer – returning their call, sending a price proposal, or replying to their email.
- Maybe it’s your outward appearance. When’s the last time that you cleaned that suit, painted your premises, updated your presentation or refreshed the design of your website?
The vast majority of sales are lost because you failed to maintain your credibility somewhere along the sales process. There was something that you did, or that you didn’t do, that pushed the customer into the waiting arms of your competition. Since every company loses a sale, we’re all guilty of losing credibility once in a while.
Do you know the weak-points of your credibility persona? If you do, then what are you doing to address them?
If you don’t, then ask your customers – before you’re the last to know.