Business Couple Walking on StreetWhen presenting your product or service to a prospective customer, there is a lot to consider. It’s important, or course, to know the features and benefits of what you are selling, but it’s more than that. You also need to be able to build rapport, and then listen well, understanding the needs of the person you’re talking with.

Here are four things you can do to help you master your sales pitch, and close more sales:

  • Do your research – Before you are ever in a position to present your product or service, make sure you’ve taken the time to learn about what people want, and why they would buy your product. Spend time finding out the needs of your target market, and the problems they have that your product or service solves. Understand what is important to your target market, and how they spend their time. By taking time to understand what your customers in general are seeking, you will have an advantage when working with a specific customer.
  • Know your prospect or customer – When you present to a specific customer, the most important thing you can do is ask questions to understand that customer’s specific needs and communication preferences. Begin by building rapport…ask about family, what they’ve been working on, etc…and find commonalities that help the customer feel comfortable and connected with you. Be sure also you are communicating in the way that the customer prefers…do they prefer communicating electronically, via phone, in person…make sure you know! Ask questions about problems the customer might have that your product or service can solve, and what they are looking for. The more you can learn about the customer, the better able you’ll be to customize your presentation in a way that specifically addresses what the customer is looking for.
  • Focus on value – After you have a good understanding of what the customer needs, it’s time to present products/services that meet those needs. Focus on what you’ve learned about their needs, and highlight how what you have to offer will bring value to the customer’s life. This could be financial or it could be lifestyle-related. For example, you can help the customer picture how much better life would be if they had your product. You don’t need to present every single feature of your product. Rather, focus on what the customer has told you they are looking for, and highlight how the customer will benefit when they choose your product.
  • Make a conscious effort to close deal – After you have presented the products or services that will best meet a customer’s needs, it’s time to close the deal. It’s not enough to present a list of benefits. You must ask for the sale. You can opt for the direct approach: “So, how many would you like?” or you can use an assumptive close: “Would you like me to gift wrap that for you?” But be sure you make a conscious effort to close the deal, because you can’t expect your customer to do so.

When you regularly apply these four steps, you will find that you are more likely to close sales because you are focused on the needs of your customers and prospects, rather than on a list of features and benefits. Sales is a people business, and the more focused you are on meeting the needs of people, the more successful you will be!

What advice would you give to someone looking to master their sales pitch? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments below!