Sales Tips That Solve the Too-Much-Tech Dilemma
Today, I offer the third installment in a series of sales tips based on a consumer trend analysis report recently released by Ford Motor Company. In the report, Sheryl Connelly, Global Consumer Trends and Futurist at Ford, analyzes the results of several surveys which help guide Ford’s new product and design thinking. The great news for us is that she makes her research available for organizations to use.
My focus today is on a very popular and important topic discussed in the Ford consumer trend report: technology. In the report, Connelly says that research has helped Ford understand that “more isn’t’ always better” and that technology has to integrate seamlessly to be worthwhile. I certainly agree with that sentiment. I certainly believe the insights she shares have a lot of sales tips to offer any business—including yours and ours.
Becoming a Wreck from Tech
Convenience and efficiency are the obvious benefits gained from most new technologies, whether they are designed to help us at work or at home. And many of them do contribute greatly in those areas. It wouldn’t be incorrect to say that our business solutions revolve around several of them.
The truth is, new technologies must be evaluated and—if appropriate—adopted with wisdom and discipline. Without those key considerations, it is easy for technology to gain momentum for its own sake, rather than for what it can do to improve lives. Survey stats suggest that technology has begun to overwhelm us. We allow it to think for us, rather than work with us. We feel less in-control the more we know. Other unpleasant byproducts appear to be shorter attention spans and decreased ability to retain what we see, hear and learn.
Take one major recent technology; the Internet. Roughly three-quarters of adults globally say they frequently find conflicting information online. How can that not lead to frustration? Survey respondents also suggest that our increased dependence on technology has several other “downsides.”
77% believe increased reliance on technology is a cause of increased obesity
78% of women (and 69% of men) believe it contributes to sleep deprivation
63% say it makes us less polite, and
47% conclude technology actually makes us “dumber”
Combat Tech Tyranny With These Sales Tips
This information is important for those of us who depend upon sales for survival. It provides excellent insight into how your customers view technology today. It also can illustrate sales tips that can help you frame your marketing strategies, sales calls and primary selling message in such a way, that those prospects can truly appreciate the value of your solutions.
- Don’t sell features, sell benefits. This isn’t a new thought, but it’s more important than ever. When it comes to technology, product features are often complex and technical, and tend to require insider jargon to explain. Benefits, however bring the excitement. Link your product directly to an easier life, a smoother workflow or an earlier ride home each day.
- Understand your prospect’s technology threshold. Technology is the fuel driving many of today’s most important advances, and a successful sales effort doesn’t have to minimize its importance. But with a little research in advance on each potential client, you can assess his or her familiarity and comfort-level with tech issues. What IT systems are in place at the company? What suppliers handle the company’s needs in other areas? How much technology does the company’s sales staff employ on a daily basis? These may provide clues. If you know your prospect’s comfort zone, you can be more confident in your sales call.
- Your best “device” isn’t one. Regardless of what product or service you are selling, be sure to deal with the customer on a human level and build the relationship. Don’t let your meeting be interrupted by cell phone or tablet activity and don’t get “lost” in demonstrating a website or an electronics-driven technical presentation. If you use research and preparation to build the customer’s confidence in you, technology won’t dominate the meeting.
Sales Tips from Superior
Many of the solutions we offer our customers are based on advanced supply chain technologies. Our Corporate Kiosk™ technology offers totally web-based ordering and fulfillment of business forms and promotional items from a platform standardized across your enterprise, in many locations. But we don’t “sell” the technology. We demonstrate the time and money it saves.
At the same time, our E(c3) print management and e-procurement technology places an incredible selection and variety of print vendors at our clients’ fingertips. This allows clients to get the best possible combination of quality, price and dependable performance. This, too, is based on technology. But the benefits are printed pieces delivered reliably to reduce headaches, efficiently to reduce workload and at a fair price for your bottom line.
Sales Tips You Can Use Today
For more on these, and other sales tips that will help your sales team succeed, contact us today and ask for a free sales and marketing enablement review.
Our entire company focuses on increasing efficiencies in our clients’ workdays in order to help them live the good life. It may sound corny, but we have been doing it for almost 100 years and it is just in our DNA. It’s what we do.