"Talk to someone about themselves and they'll listen for hours." — Dale Carnegie
Have you heard that old adage that people buy from people they like? Put another way, customers buy from brands they trust. Your brand is a promise to your customer, and everything you do as a company impacts your brand. From the products you create to the stories you tell to the way you handle complications when things don’t quite go as planned.
In order to built trust you need to connect emotionally with your customer. You need to understand who they are. What do they care about? What motivates them? What’s going on in their lives? Where do they spend their time? Building trust means building a long-term relationship with the people you are dedicating to serving. Here are the steps we take at TRACTION to craft messages that resonate.
By talking to people in your market early in the product development process you have already begun to build long-term relationships with your target customers. The advocates that took the time to talk to you about their needs when your product was just an idea are excited to test out the solution they helped inspire. Reach back out to the folks you interviewed during the concept phase and turn them into early adopters. While generating revenue is ideal the goal at this stage is product feedback and reference accounts.
The hardest part of selling for most entrepreneurs is feeling like a salesperson. No one wants to come across as the dreaded, cheesy, used car salesman. So take a deep breath, relax, and remind yourself that you are there to help. Give a very brief introduction about who you are and what you and your company are trying to achieve. Then sit back and let your prospective customer tell you about themselves and what keeps them up at night. Positioning the meeting as a conversation rather than a sales call puts everyone at ease.
To perfect your message you are going to have to experiment and this means testing a number of pitches that aren’t going to work. Each time you hear a ‘no’ gives you an opportunity to refine your approach. You will quickly begin to hear common questions, comments, and concerns about your offering. These themes will help you hone in on what resonates and exclude what misses the mark. With a bit of perseverance you will transform each 'no' you hear into a clearly articulated story that engages and converts customers.