The enduring truth of the statement “people buy from people they know, like, and trust” remains a constant in the realm of sales.
This principle has stood the test of time and continues to be a significant factor in the sales decision-making process.
“Sales authenticity” resonates with people in different ways.
This week, we’ll dissect two areas that sales authenticity derives from and how to embrace it to – well, sell.
Let’s get into it.
Where does sales authenticity originate and how can sellers embrace it👇
Buyers want to be more than heard, they want to understood.
Authenticity comes from a seller being able to understand the individual prospect and their acute/specific pain points. This is a true level of understanding, not masked by their alma mater or a loose connection to a former employer.
As Arlen Plaister (GTM Operator & Advisor) explains, “Seller authenticity comes through most clearly at the point of sale. Are they genuinely curious to learn more about the prospects business and how they can help support strategic priorities? Do they provide guidance that makes the buying process easier? There is nothing worse for the buyer than feeling like they are being run through a process without consideration for their priorities.”
Ways / tools to help sellers do this:
- Technology: Sellers need to be able to see data across a multitude of touchpoints in order to form a holistic understanding of their prospective customer – from questions and feedback shared across digital channels like social, community, and forums to product usage data (which features, which surfaces, how often, and which other teams), CRM insights at the individual and business/account level, customer support systems, and more. Common Room automates every signal to provide a unified view and understanding.
- Reading: Kevin Wilson (VP Sales at Supermove) highly recommends the book, Sell the Way You Buy by David Priemer, for developing greater transparency and, in turn, authenticity. The book is about much more than putting yourself in the customer’s shoes. It’s about learning how to ask questions, how to listen, how to tell a compelling brand story, and how to talk to customers in a human way that truly connects. In short: to sell the way you buy.
Zooming out, authenticity broadly can be thought of as: the things that you say and you do, you actually believe in.
When what you say and what you do don’t align, it can surface as a lack of genuine belief and create an authenticity rift
For example, if you say that you care about the overall career success of the person who will become your champion, help them be overall successful. If you see an article pertinent to their role beyond the bounds of your solution, share it with them, introduce them to people that will support their success in their role and career, etc.
Support may include the solution you’re selling, but doesn’t abruptly halt at the bounds of it if you express that it doesn’t.
It doesn’t stop – at all. It should be a continuous ongoing process, extending through the customer lifecycle.
Ways / tools to help sellers do this:
- Technology: Alignment starts with knowing what you’re expressing, in order to recognize what “authenticity commitments” your’ve made. Recording software like Gong or Replayz enables you to do so.
- Example playbook: Robert Simmons (VP Sales at LeanData) coaches his team to make sure that customers are successful in team meetings and shows how serious he is about this by joining customer calls, checking in with clients consistently to ensure they’re seeing value from the partnership, and seeing how else he can be better serving them and adding more value for them. This might include things like asking customers to speak at sales team events, as well as arranging regular customer appreciation dinners whenever visiting a particular city where there are many clients.
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That’s it, that’s all.
I’ve been down in Arizona for an offsite this whole week.
We’ve been doing 2024 planning and in short – I’m excited.
Big things ahead.
Enjoy your weekend!