The Person in the Mirror

Sellers are always being schooled on how to properly qualify by doing their homework up front, asking good questions, identifying and visiting the executive decision-maker, assuring there is budget, and a compelling event. Great. That makes you unique… just like everybody else.

Do you stand WITH your logo or in FRONT of it? Let’s face it, if the logo on your business card is a prominent Fortune company, you can pretty much make an appointment and get in to a senior executive. (Assuming of course that your company hasn’t blackened an eye there in the past!).

What if your logo isn’t so recognizable? I once represented a start-up whose named sounded like an ice cream custard provider. Boy did I get some reactions! OUCH! How do you build value when you cannot rely on the logo? Answer: You build value in yourself.

Salespeople tend to forget or ignore the fact that there are many individuals who charge $350/hour for their advice. Consulting companies come to mind. How many of your customers would pay you $350/hour for your advice if they were asked? How many of you have been asked (after the sale was made) to become part of the day-to-day ongoing advisory council?

If we have heard anything this year we know that Web 2.0 buyers are dependent on social interactions more so than sales calls to make buying inquiries/decisions. Is anyone talking about you in social forums? As the number of face-to-face calls goes down (buyers are granting fewer meetings); the importance of creating value for the buyer once granted, has never been more critical.

Taking the time to build value for yourself and standing in FRONT of the logo will create differentiation beyond any sales process training espoused by so many sales managers today. Don’t get me wrong, you need sales process to be able to forecast with confidence and effectively manage time and resources. However, there is more you can do to build your personal brand. How are you going to build yours so that the buyer would be willing to pay for YOU if asked?

Ask the person in the mirror.

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