“A clearly defined product proposition”
It is vitally important that all staff in their relevant departments have a full in-depth knowledge of what they’re selling. Suppliers will be only too willing to have their people come into your organisation to talk about their products, and this is the best way to learn about what you’re selling.
However, as time will be at a premium when they do come to talk to us we need to have a few fundamentals in place:
1) Make sure you’ve read over in advance what they’re to say
2) Make sure you introduce them with enthusiasm and conviction (get their name and title right);
3) Make sure the presentation is no longer than 20 minutes
4) Make sure they present 10 features and 10 benefits about their products that are backed up by facts and are listed on a handout for the staff
5) Make sure they bring a free sample for everyone attending
6) Allow five minutes for questions only
7) Thank them at the end for their time
Features and benefits
Every product or service we sell must have at least 10 features for which there are 10 corresponding benefits.
It’s very important to distinguish the difference between a feature and a benefit. A feature is an attribute about a product or service, while a benefit is an advantage that is derived from the feature.
See some examples in the table below
|10 speed settings||Get the exact speed you want|
|It’s smaller than its competitors||It fits into spaces other models won’t|
|It has the industry’s most powerful motor||It will lift more, blow more, suck more|
|It has a 10-year unlimited warranty||Peace of mind purchase|
|Order by 3pm and receive your order the next day||We can rely on their service|
It’s important that you always stand behind your products. I’m amazed how some companies will insist that a customer has mishandled a product or used it in the wrong manner, or in some way breached their rights to a claim…SO WHAT?
Remember the golden rule: “Perception is reality to the customer”.
For every customer we satisfy they tell five friends; every customer who ends up dissatisfied tells 20 friends.
Unequivocally back your customer over all product or service failures. Bring your supplier into the picture and between you fix the issue so the customer is completely satisfied.
In most companies the claims for product failures or service shortfalls are between 2 and 2.5%: just fix the issue!
Displays and presentation
The golden rule: “A silent salesman is better than no salesman”.
Visual merchandising is your key to success when a staff member is unavailable to work with your customer.
You get five seconds to impress a customer. The right visual display, the right collections, the right lighting, the right placement are vital support aspects to your range displays.
Appoint a professional if you can afford one or do a short visual merchandising course to learn the basics about displays.
Then follow the five basic display rules:
1) Keep it clean
2) Keep it neat
3) Keep it fresh
4) Keep it well stocked
5) Keep it simple