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Introduction

Today's turbulent marketplace creates constant competitive movement, fluctuating threats, and lucrative opportunities. To acquire, expand, and retain long-term profitable customer relationships, companies and individuals cannot rely on a conventional approach to sales. Increased complexity, escalating customer requirements, rapid commoditization, and relentless competitive forces are all putting intense pressure on sales and marketing, demanding superior strategies and precise execution. Sales success requires an integrated process that enables you to respond within limited windows of opportunity.

To compete and win more sales in the world of transformative sales, sales and marketing professionals need a way to work smarter. They need a new business paradigm that is specifically designed for the transformative sales arena, one that offers a system and the skills and the mental discipline needed to execute it. That smarter way to sell is the subject of this resource.

A smarter way to sell should transform the conventional sales pitch that customers must endure into a high quality decision-making process that customers value. This process equips salespeople with a way to help customers discover, diagnose, design, and deliver the best possible solution to their problems.

A smarter way to sell should transform salespeople from predators into valued business partners in the customer's mind. This process positions salespeople as professionals who bring credibility, integrity, and dependability to the business engagement. They are a source of business advantage to their customers.

A smarter way to sell should transform the sales process from premature presentations, pleas for customer consideration, to a process of mutual confirmation. This process builds mutual understanding step by step, thus ensuring that both sales professionals and their customers most efficiently use their resources.

A smarter way to sell should transform the conventional solutions-based, seller-first approach to sales into a diagnostic-based, customer-centric approach. This process enables salespeople to differentiate themselves from their competitors in the most effective way of all—by standing squarely on the customer's side of the engagement.

In fact, a smarter way to sell is to stop selling in the conventional sense. Instead, we need to think in terms of business development, that is, developing our customer's business.

We need to get beyond selling to managing decisions. All good salespeople have a sales process, all customers have a buying process, and they typically have conflicting objectives. We need to set aside conventional processes and replace them with a collaborative decision process, provided by the sales professional.

We need to get beyond problem solving to managing change. Providing quality solutions to customer problems no longer assures a successful sale and certainly does not guarantee a successful implementation of that solution. Change, along with all the attendant risks involved, is the key issue customers face. We need to help them understand and navigate the change required to assure a successful implementation of our solutions.

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Integrated Business Development

We need to get beyond meeting needs to managing expectations. Just because we see a need does not mean that our customers see it or understand it as clearly as we do. We need to evolve and expand our customers' understanding of their needs and their expectations about solutions.

We need to get beyond transactions to managing relationships. In the rush to close deals, we too often forget the human factor and squander the long-term opportunity. We need to address the hopes, fears, and aspirations of our customers and create mutually beneficial relationships.

Finally, we need to get beyond reacting to managing clear communications. Too often, we react to customers in rote patterns, without asking for clarification or thinking deeper. As a result, we sound just like every other salesperson. We need to achieve the kind of true communication that fosters crystal-clear and mutual understanding of our customers' problems and the best solutions we can recommend.

Among the byproducts of this fundamental reframing of the methodology of the transformative sale are solutions to some of today's toughest sales challenges which:

What this resource promises its readers is a pragmatic exploration of the transformative sales world and an optimal approach to mastering and winning the transformative sale.


The topics covered herein concern solution sales, consultative sales, and consultative selling.

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