Remember: Benefits sell

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Q. There is a lot of competition out there. How can I differentiate myself from other sales reps?

A. The goal of any sales call should be to sell your prospects precisely what benefits them the most. As professional sales people, our jobs are to identify the needs and challenges of our prospects, and then connect our company or products with these needs and challenges to provide a solution. The prospect must see both a benefit and a difference in doing business with you. So what makes your company different?

The problem that many sales people have is that they are "feature happy." They have a good knowledge of the many features of their companies and they recite them to their prospects, assuming that they understand what these features will do for them. Sales people often discuss only these features and fail to describe the benefits, or the "what's in it for me" for the prospect.

As sales people, we need to remember the old classic, "Features tell, and benefits sell." Features tell your prospect about your company: "efficient patient set-up, patient education, respiratory therapists on staff to support patients." Benefits describe what your prospect will get from these benefits. Presenting a prospect with benefits is all about "painting a picture" of what they will get with your company. How will it be better for them doing business with you vs. another company? For example, "ABC Solutions offers seamless, quality care and service to your office and to your patients. What this means to you is that callbacks will be reduced and time will be saved to allow the office staff to focus on other tasks."

Remember, your prospects hear from many sales people every week. What makes your company different?

Susan McGinnis is a senior sales trainer for Philips Respironics Home Healthcare Solutions. Reach her at 724-387-4824 or