Your true differentiation in the marketplace, up against other consultants and agencies, will always be you. What can separate you quickly from the competition is making the sales conversation all about them. Let me explain.
The discovery process of asking questions and uncovering your client’s most pressing challenges quickly separates you from the pack. How? Because nearly everyone else goes in with a rush to pitch their services, trying to ‘convince’ the client how great they are and then they hit a wall wondering why clients are so jaded and don’t want to move forward.
It isn’t about memorizing a bunch of questions. It’s about understanding what you’re trying to accomplish – a deep understanding of the client’s current situation, needs, and long-term goals. When you focus on that objective, the questions will come to you.
Sherlock Holmes never jumped to conclusions too early, and you shouldn’t either.
The first step is to recognize self-orienting habits that stand in your way. Often we don’t even know how much we’re trying to make it about “me” rather than “them.”
In a previous post where I talk about why I stopped pitching clients, I stated:
You can’t sell anybody anything. They must discover they want it.
And it’s your job as a sales or service professional to ask them enough questions so they can make this discovery for themselves.
Once I learned this I went from becoming a salesperson to becoming a consultant.
A consultant is a trusted advisor. This was the new mindset that changed the game for me.
The better you get at the discovery process and positioning yourself as a trusted advisor, the easier you’ll be able to charge what you’re worth.
The most effective way to position yourself as a trusted advisor is to put your focus on the client. Ask great questions and be a great listener.
Here’s a graphic in case you want to know the “clues of excessive self-orientation.”