Don’t Sell. Help Me Buy.
We have been enabling sales teams with our product for four years now. We have helped companies with no sales process whatsoever create one or move companies from keeping track of customers via yellow legal pads to using web-based software. Along the way we have run across all types of sales teams and different approaches to selling. From the hard-nosed, dialing for dollars, high volume call centers to the easy come, easy go window cleaning service and everything in between.
One clear thing that stands out is that the successful companies have one thing in common: They don't really sell, they just help their customers buy. Moving your team's approach away from sales "pitches" and PowerPoint decks to a more consultative and friendly style is well worth the effort. Who really wants to be "pitched" anyways (except Chase Utley of course). I am seeking a product or service usually because I need help solving a problem, not to hear sales pitches.
Helping customers buy puts you, as a sales person, in a position of trust with your Client that yields quite a few benefits:
1. Easier and shorter negotiations.
2. Longer relationships.
3. Increased likelihood of winning follow on business.
4. Eliminate any reason for your Client to entertain the competition.
5. A reason to work through any problems that arise along the way.
6. Top of mind with your client if and when they change companies.
7. Clients will talk about you to others, helping you ultimately sell more.
Try moving away from a "me vs. them" mentality and towards an "us" frame of mind. No more pitching, just helping. In the long run your Clients will thank you for it and your sales numbers will too.