One of the most important things to understand about sales is this: you are there to help your customers succeed. 

If you start from the other side and believe that you’re here to sell your services, it’s easy to go astray. Your client will pick up on the fact that you’ve got your own agenda, and will be slower to take you at your word. You may find yourself over-promising or being pushy. That’s the sort of thing that gives sales a bad name, but only bad sales people resort to that. Good sales agents know that the best way to secure repeat custom is to put the client first. 

Successful marketing is all about anticipating the needs of the client. What’s in it for them? Think of yourself as a problem solver. You’re the one who can help deliver what your customer needs. 

The best approach is one of service: ‘how can I help you?’ How can you help the client to meet their objectives successfully and cost effectively? Do that, and you succeed as well. You succeed together. 

That might sound disingenuous, and it would be if you weren’t serious about helping your customers! But your clients will see through you if you’re faking an interest. Take their needs seriously instead, and your authentic interest will win you respect. Ask good questions about their needs and concerns. Listen with an open mind, rather than waiting for an opening to sell. 

Think about what you can bring that will solve the problems they are raising – can you advise on procurement or lead times? How can you keep costs down, or help with budgets? 

There are advantages to this service-based approach to marketing, both for you and the client. It creates rapid rapport. It answers the question, ‘What’s in it for me?’  It makes a space for open and trusting communication.   It takes the pressure off you to ‘sell’, and lays the foundation for a potentially long-term relationship.

It’s human. It’s honest. It’s collaborative. It works. 

Where next?



Download our free guide:
The Really Useful Guide To Construction Marketing
You can read it as part of your CPD with the CIOB


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