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5 Top Tips For Successful Consultative Selling

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For me, no matter what you sell, a consultative selling approach will get the job done.

Here are my top 5 key tips to make sure that your selling interactions are more effective:

CONSULTATIVE SELLING TIP # 1
Have The Mindset Of A Doctor

I want you to take your salesperson’s hat off for a moment and instead put your doctors hat on.

Like with any doctors consultation they will ask you lots of questions before writing out a prescription – you need to use the same approach.

CONSULTATIVE SELLING TIP # 2
Find Out The Key Drivers For Change

In order of importance your buyers will take action more on:

1. PAIN
2. FEAR
3. PLEASURE

So while performing your doctor’s diagnosis bear this in mind. You’ll want to uncover the pain, the fears and the pleasures from your buyers.

Only then will they be “motivated” to take action.

CONSULTATIVE SELLING TIP # 3
Focus On Them And Not On Winning The Deal

If the need for the commission and sale is greater than your desire to help the buyer then this will show.

Come from the mindset that you are there to help them and get what’s best for them rather than doing everything you can to “win” the deal.

CONSULTATIVE SELLING TIP # 4
Don’t Be Afraid To Push Back

Sometimes, your buyers may not be open to what you are asking. They might be difficult to get on with and might be withholding information.

If they are like this then beware.

My experience tells me that they might have already made up their mind on who they are going with and are just using you for either:

1. Further education and ideas
2. A comparison
3. Company policy states they need to get quotes from 3 different vendors

Don’t be afraid to push back and walk away if it’s not right.

CONSULTATIVE SELLING TIP # 5
Appreciate Different Buyer Types

Don’t treat others as you’d like to be treated yourself.

Yes, that’s right!

Don’t treat others as you’d like to be treated yourself!

Instead, treat them as they would like to be treated!

Some of your buyers will be very analytical and detailed, others will not have a moment to spare.

How will you sell to these different personality types?

It’s not a one size fits all approach.

Some buyers will need facts and figures – the detail.

Other buyers will need a high level overview and the bottom line in a “no fluff” way.

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Consultative selling done in the right way is a very powerful approach.

Keep the methodology simple and you won’t go far wrong.

If you remember nothing about it at all and your mind goes blank then just approach your sales interactions like a doctor would in meeting with a patient.

And remember…….

Prescription before diagnosis is malpractice!

Happy Selling

Sean

Sean McPheat
Managing Director
MTD Sales Blog

MTD Sales Training

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Sean McPheat

Hi! I'm the founder and Managing Director of MTD Sales Training - we offer sales training solutions for companies both large and small. I'm blessed to work with 25 of the most talented trainers in the UK....well, I did recruit them! ;-) Today, we've delivered training in over 23 countries to over 2,500 different organisations and 50,000 staff. Our clients include Xerox, Friends Provident, Starbucks, Taylor Wimpey, CISCO, Allianz and Lloyds TSB to name but a few.

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  • http://businesscoaching.typepad.com Paul Simister

    Good stuff again Sean.

    I particularly liked point 4 about pushing back.

    If this is about building relationships based on win-win then it is important to start as you intend to continue.

    It may be counter intuitive but firing a customer or prospect is so liberating since it reminds you that you have control and are not just a victim to be tossed around by the evil, manipulative buyers.

  • Sean McPheat

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for your comments.

    Yeah, pushing back is seen as a big “no no” in a lot of companies because of the fear of actually turning down business but YOU MUST base everything on a win win.

    Win Lose either way and no-one “wins”

    I recently “fired” a prospect who wanted to use us and I qualified them out of the process. The decision maker looked at me gone out and then when I explained the reasons why he came to the conclusion himself that they were a nightmare to do business with and that’s before they pay us a penny! Imagine what they would have been like after!

    Sean

  • http://www.salestraining-chicago.com Scott

    Sean,

    Indeed, point #4 is spot on. I always encourage my team to have the attitude that not every prospect is a good prospect and that the deal has to be good for both parties. I use the phrase “unpaid consulting” to describe the brain drain that many prospects attempt to do.

    Cheers,

    Scott

  • Gerald

    Hi Sean,

    Great tips and very practical. I am sure this would help a lot of sales people to break the traditional sales techniques and increase their share.

    Thanks again.

    Gerald