In the wake of a recent article by the authors of Provocative Selling in the Harvard Business Review an attendee challenged me to defend Baseline Selling. Since it was in the HBR, this attendee believed it had to be the better way to sell.
Especially in the current economy, one danger of selling to price conscious companies or consumers is the potential for being commoditized. If your prospect has already decided that they will buy, and the only decision they must make is who they will choose to buy from, then the “why me?” nature of your sales call will, by default, commoditize you. How can you more effectively differentiate yourself?
If you are in an industry that has been impacted by the recession, and you are doing everything possible to continue to bring in revenue, then you are working twice as hard, twice as long and twice as smart. If not, you are probably failing right now. Twice as long is plenty obvious. Twice as smart means planning the strategies and tactics you’ll use for each opportunity. But what about twice as hard? Is that working twice as hard today and tomorrow or is that working twice as hard with every prospect?
Most salespeople do not properly identify the real enemy they face each day. They mistakenly believe that they are fighting their competition, themselves, their prospects, the economy, their pricing, and a myriad of other issues. In reality, there is only a single enemy, which often masquerades as one of those other issues I just named. The enemy is….resistance.