The Sales Process

marketing value pricing Mar 10, 2020

‘I struggle with selling! I don’t know what to say to new clients.’

The issue accounting professionals have with ‘selling’, is the wrong mindset. We think that to be good at selling, we need to have good selling techniques, we need to have good ‘closing’ techniques. But that’s not actually necessary.

A while back I read a book called ‘Spin Selling’ by Neil Rackham. If you haven’t already read it, I highly recommend you add it to your reading list.

In this book, Neil conducted a huge study into the results from sales processes. One of the things he found, was having special closing techniques did not significantly change the outcome.

That reassured me a lot because I’m really not a fan of overly ‘sales-y’ closing techniques. I’m sure you feel the same.

So how do we sell?

You can watch the video here.

One of my mentors Peter Thompson taught me something a few years ago. He said this…

‘Don’t sell. Just allow the client to buy.’

At first this seemed really strange, but once it really sunk it, my whole mindset changed.

When we think of selling, we tend to panic and think we need to have loads of clever scripts and interesting sales techniques, but you don’t need any of that.

The service you provide is highly valuable. You can help solve people’s problems - that’s hugely valuable.

You don’t need to focus on selling, instead focus on the client. Focus on how you can solve their problems.

The purpose of your sales meeting is to inspire the client to take action. That action is usually to work with you, and buy from you.

You can inspire clients to take that action by demonstrating.

You can demonstrate in 3 key ways…

 

  1. Ideas - If the client was after tax planning, you might share a few ideas. Don’t give the whole answer, don’t implement anything, just share a few ideas on how they could save tax. Sharing these ideas demonstrates that you have the knowledge and the expertise to help solve their problem.

 

  1. Numbers - we are the numbers experts, so wherever possible, use numbers to illustrate the tax savings, the potential change in profit, the cashflow, or the time that they will save when they decide to work with you. Demonstrate with numbers.

 

  1. Stories - Make sure that every single time you help a client you ask for a case study. Get a story because they are really powerful in your sales presentation.

    If, for example, you are talking about advisory services with an engineering business, and you are talking about how you can help the client grow their profits because they are struggling, you might be able to say as part of your sales process…

    “6 Months ago we were working with an engineering business just like you. We did these 3 things and now, 6 months down the line, they have doubled their profits.”

    Those stories inspire the client in your sales meeting because you are demonstrating that you can get the results they are after.

 

Your prospects are much more likely to buy from you if you can demonstrate that you can get them results. Demonstrate that you can get results and you will inspire the prospect to take action.

If you would like to learn more about value pricing, I run a free live online training session every month which you can attend and ask me questions. Click here to register and I will send you an invitation to the next session.

And if you would like to join a community of like-minded accounting professionals learning to price more effectively and confidently, you can join my Facebook Support Group here.

Wishing you every success on your pricing journey.

Mark Wickersham

Chartered Accountant, Public Speaker and Author of Amazon No.1 Best Seller, “Effective Pricing For Accountants”

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