“If you think education is expensive, try the cost of ignorance.”
~ Derek Bok
People need to know how much you care but they also want to know that you have the competence to guide, direct, recommend or select the best option or choice for them regarding your product or service. Product knowledge is a vital sales requirement if you are to compete successfully.
There are a variety of things you need to know from a product knowledge standpoint. You need to know:
-What your product or service does.
-What it can’t do or isn’t.
-What your competitor’s product/service can and cannot do.
-Your unique selling positions.
-What your competitor’s unique selling positions are.
-How other customers have uniquely used your product/service to improve their business or personal life.
-How your prospects have uniquely used your competitor’s products/services.
This is just a start. The key is to know what you need to know and what your prospect needs you to know to address their needs, questions, challenges or problems. Winging product knowledge is no longer an acceptable strategy. It never really was but many salespeople have falsely heard – fake it until you make it – not so in today’s competitive world.
This is especially true when you are dealing with a complex product/service and have knowledgeable and sophisticated buyers.
Don’t fake product knowledge. Learn what you need to know as quickly as you can. Product knowledge does not make up for poor people skills, selling skills or poor attitudes, but if you have all four you can achieve greatness in selling.
In His service, Tim