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How Well Do You Click?

November 29, 2009

Brady at the Atlanta Children’s Museum

Written by Meredith Oliver

My twenty-one month old son, Brady, is obsessed with any kind of ball.

Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls, bouncing balls, tennis balls, beach balls, bowling balls, golf balls…you get the picture!

We recently attended a family-oriented networking event at a bowling alley. We were quite surprised when Brady went berserk because the bowling balls wouldn’t bounce. The bowling balls made him so mad we had to leave early.

On another occasion we selected a family sports restaurant for dinner thinking it would be a loud, fun atmosphere appropriate for a nearly two-year old boy. We walked in only to find pool tables and you guessed it…balls! The pool tables were already taken and Brady was VERY upset he couldn’t play with the balls too. Another family outing foiled by rogue balls!

Some little boys (and some big boys too) love cars, other trains and yet others comic books.  Every kid is different and has unique likes and dislikes. Your customers are no different. You never know which feature or benefit of your product is going to click with a potential customer. Just like with kids, you have to find the angle that clicks with each prospect. Don’t assume all customers are the same.

Most salespeople tend to emphasize their own personal favorite feature or benefit. You can’t click with a customer with your own bias in the way. That’s why sales trainers spend so much time teaching rapport building and discovery skills. There is an art and a science to clicking with another human being. I often wonder if “clicking” is something that can be taught or if some people are just born clickers and others are not.

My speciality is teaching salespeople, marketing professionals and business owners how to CLICK with prospective buyers using technology. The type of clicking I teach is both figurative and literal; to be an effective salesperson today you must be able to read your customers’ needs AND use technology to connect, communicate and close. On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 is low), how well do you click on both levels?

I passionately believe that consumers have been irrevocably changed by two profound recent events: 1) The market downturn and 2) The rise of social media. The Wall Street scandals, loss of retirement funds and high unemployment numbers has irrevocably shaped entire generations attitudes on how, when and why they will spend money.

The rise of social media has brought about record use of technology as a preferred communication tool. Did you know “power mom’s” (moms with school aged children) are 60% more likely to text than other groups of consumers? Do you know how to text? How to post on Facebook? How to take a digital picture and attach it to an email?

Business owners listen up…ALL of your key players within the organization must be able to CLICK both figuratively and literally with your prospective buyers and existing customers. If some of your valuable team members are behind the curve, invest now in training and coaching to get them there.

I am so passionate about this that it is my topic at the Super Sales Rally at the 2010 International Builders Show in Las Vegas. The Rally is “rock and roll” themed this year; I can’t wait to deliver my personal Bon Jovi tribute titled “Wanted Dead or Alive: Salespeople Who Can CLICK.”

A good first step is to administer a technology skills assessment of your team. Next, profile the technology prowess of your target audience. You might be surprised to learn how technology savvy they are. I have several clients who target baby boomers and retirees and use the Internet as their primary advertising medium because that group is very technology savvy.

Finally, look to close the gap between the technology your customers prefer and the technology your salespeople and customer service representatives use and understand.

More to come on this topic in the coming weeks. And, if you are attending the International Builders Show, be sure to attend my seminars! You will leave knowing how to CLICK better than ever before! I promise!

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