The price of whatever you sell carries with it a discomfort for most salespeople. They’re hesitant to bring up the price because it’s the final element in completing any transaction — or so they think.
Actually, price or fee or rate is a logical progression of a presentation. If the rest of the elements of a presentation have been properly communicated and transferred, then price is not a barrier to sale. Better stated: Price is not a barrier to the customer deciding to purchase.
Why do salespeople have reluctance or fear of price presentation? Because it determines outcome — yes, no or delay (which usually means no).
Price also brings truth. The “I can get it cheaper, we’ve decided to go with someone else, we’re putting this out for bids, I’m not the only decision-maker.”
But the main reason salespeople get nervous about fee is that their belief system is weak. They’re not certain of their product, they’re not certain of their ability to deliver their message, they’re not certain of the customer’s desire to purchase and they’re not certain of themselves.
When belief is weak, price is a bigger barrier to the salesperson than it is to the customer.
As a professional salesperson, your job is to be as personally prepared as you are customer or prospect prepared. Personal preparation, or should I say mental preparation, will lower the barrier to your own price reluctance.
If you’re ready for the customer, if you’re proud of your company, if you’re proud of your products and services, if you believe in the value of what you’re offering, if your communication skills are excellent and your self-confidence is high, then you don’t have to worry about price.
There are 5.5 keys that will help you in moving forward with price confidence:
1. Study your past successes. Look at all the reasons customers bought from you in the past. If you don’t know the reasons, now would be a good time to call them and ask. Customers have all the “price and value” answers you could hope for. Most salespeople never ask for them.
2. Prepare your presentation in a manner that discusses prices and fees along the way, not at the end. Personally, I bring up prices and fees in the first five minutes — that way all the anxiety is gone. The customer knows there is a price attached to your product or service. The sooner it’s discussed, the easier it is to make value the heart of your presentation.
3. Convince yourself you’re offering the best products and services in the world for value received. If you are not totally convinced, don’t start the presentation. Your belief in what you sell is evident to the prospective buyer whether present or absent.
4. Believe in your heart that the customer is better off purchasing from you. That they will profit more and produce more, and that the value of what you offer far exceeds your price. When your belief is so powerful that it becomes transferable to the prospective buyer, then you have become believable and trustworthy.
5. Bring testimonials to the presentation — the voices of other customers who talk about the value, the piece of mind and the confidence others have in you. People who have paid your price and are glad they did.
5.5 Bring your best self to the meeting. In the “Little Red Book of Selling,” you have read the workday starts the night before. It’s a quote from a friend of mine’s grandfather, who coincidentally was a multimillionaire. The better prepared you are, both physically and mentally, the easier it will be to deepen your belief system, raise your self-confidence level and walk in with a feeling of relationship rather than sale.
Worth restating: Your personal preparation, especially your mental preparation, holds the key to your confidence and ability to deliver the price.
Become an expert at how your customer profits from the use of your product or service. Become a master at outcomes and ownership — not sales presentations and closing techniques.
These personal elements and sales tools, when presented as a group, will make a compelling message, prove value over price and create the atmosphere in which the customer want to buy.
Your challenge is to master them.
Editor’s note: Jeffrey Gitomer is on sabbatical. This column originally appeared in the April 4, 2016, Business Journal.
If you want a few ideas on price negotiation, go to gitomer.com, register if you’re a first time visitor, and enter PRICE POINTS in the GitBit box. Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of 13 books. His online courses are available at gitomerlearningacademy.com. For information about training and seminars, visit gitomer.com or gitomercertifiedadvisors.com, or email Jeffrey at firstname.lastname@example.org.