While we teach, we learn.
Here’s a simple but highly effective sales strategy with a big payoff. The first time I ever made use of it, I was just starting out in my career. My boss instructed me to go on a sales call with “Alice,” a trainee who’d stumbled onto a big opportunity, and teach her how to beat our competitors.
Aargh! I wasn’t ready for that. I didn’t know much about the other vendors. All I knew was that we needed to win. Plus, I didn’t want to look stupid in front of a trainee.
For the next two days, I immersed myself in learning everything I could about the competition. I studied how they stacked up against us. I talked to experienced reps to learn about their strategies. Finally, I figured out how to engage the prospect in a conversation that would make us seem like the obvious choice.
My head was spinning. Before we went to the meeting, I reviewed everything with Alice. I outlined competitive strengths and weaknesses. I reviewed our plan for the meeting. Then, I answered her questions.
We marched into the prospect’s office. I was a nervous wreck, but I did my best to hide it. Two hours later, we left with a signed contract. I was never so relieved in my whole life.