4 Tips to Make Your Sales Interactions More Customer-Centric

4 Tips to Make Your Sales Interactions More Customer-Centric

4 Tips to Make Your Sales Interactions More Customer-Centric

When you're selling, your first challenge is always to connect with the prospect - build rapport and a basis for why they should care about you and what you have to offer. But too often, selling companies approach this conversation in a seller-centric way - fronting with what the company has to sell vs. what the customer needs.

Turning this around to focus more on customer-centric sales - especially at the front of the process - can be relatively easy if you reframe your approach and leverage modern customer relationship management (CRM) tools to your advantage.

Here are five initial ways to pivot quickly and efficiently to a customer-centric selling approach.

1. Treat the first sales call like an interview.

Even if you've already qualified the prospect, your first call should still be about them. Even if you only have a few minutes in person or on the phone, ask smart questions to not only better understand the prospect's situation, but also get them to directly admit the challenges and pain currently faced by life without your solution. In your first call, ask a handful of smart questions and spend at least 75% of the time listening. With the right questions, many prospects will walk right into the sale.

2. Understand existing customer priorities.

Too many sales professionals waste hours of time trying to sell something their prospects don't need. And even if they would benefit from it, you must align your solution with an existing problem or initiative in the organization. Your prospects are too busy to start juggling yet another priority not already on their plate. But by aligning your solution with something they need.

When you're selling, your first challenge is always to connect with the prospect - build rapport and a basis for why they should care about you and what you have to offer. But too often, selling companies approach this conversation in a seller-centric way - fronting with what the company has to sell vs. what the customer needs.

Turning this around to focus more on customer-centric sales - especially at the front of the process - can be relatively easy. Here are five initial ways to pivot quickly to a customer-centric selling approach.

3. Treat the first sales call like an interview.

Even if you've already qualified the prospect, your first call should still be about them. Even if you only have a few minutes in person or on the phone, ask smart questions to not only better understand the prospect's situation, but also get them to directly admit the challenges and pain currently faced by life without your solution. In your first call, ask a handful of smart questions and spend at least 75% of the time listening. With the right questions, many prospects will walk right into the sale.

4. Identify opportunities and organize your efforts with a customer relationship management (CRM) system.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software has been revolutionizing how companies gather, store, and track valuable customer data for well over a decade. Each year the technology continues to become more powerful, user-friendly, and affordable for companies in every stage of growth.

Using a CRM for sales can help you gather key details about what your customers need and can also dictate the type of experience they’re expecting when they ineract with an organization.  Through email, custom webforms, and social media that you can then use to craft highly targeted marketing materials that will resound with your consumers. This can be particularly powerful if you own a small to medium-sized business because it can help you gain deep insight into your customer’s preferences and demographics much more quickly and easily, which will make your marketing dollars much more effective. 

You can also use top CRM tools to understand where customers typically convert in your sales cycle and understand what ultimately helps them commit to your brand over the competition. While you may have a good idea of who your target audience is, using a CRM will help you collect specific customer data that you can use to narrow down the characteristics and motivations of your ideal customer and identify trends as they emerge.