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- Up Selling for Business Development Relationships! [ARTICLE]
Up Selling for Business Development Relationships!
The fluid ability of a sales professional to be able to meet a prospect/customer immediate needs, while mentally evaluating other products or services they represent to determine if there are more efficient ways in which they can further meet a prospect/customer needs is the purpose of “up-selling”.
The ability to professionally and with integrity recognize what the real immediate and long-term need of a prospect/customer is and how you can best satisfy that need, may in some situations require you as the selling professional to invest more time with them to recognize a bigger need that they may have and solutions you can provide to them for a more informed, educated decision.
As a sales professional, you must always be on the look-out for relevant “up-selling” opportunities in each transaction to present to a contact. The sales professional wants to be able to evaluate with the given transaction, if there are or is an “up-selling” opportunity to a better (a special, new, improved, discontinued, rebated, better profit margin items) product/service they have that can enhance, improve and compliment their existing purchase, at the time of that initial purchase. A professional sales representative does this as a service to the buyer and not as a mere means of making another sale for the sales sake.
In exploring relevant up-selling opportunities, consider that the buying decisions of a prospect/customer are weighted based upon needs. Four core decision needs a prospect/customer (which may further be compounded if the decision is being made by an individual or groups [committee, departmental, etc.]) may have when making a buying decision (or if they are considering affiliating, joining your organization) are based upon:
- User (implementation/application)
- Advocate (vanity/ego)
Simple Example - A man is buying a new suit, the sales professional might ask him how he plans to wear it. If the answer is for basic occasional wear, then any suit will probably do. However, if the man (customer to be) indicates that it will be worn a lot, in front of other professionals, and he will be very active within it, then the sales professional has information now that can be used to justify a better suit, more expensive suit.
Recruitment Example – For example you have just recruited an individual to your organization. Now go back and ensure they know of other services, programs, positions, jobs, formal-informal educational growth opportunities available by a more aggressive participation in the organization that they have affiliated with and have been assimilated into, can be both up-selling opportunities and a means of greater commitment by the new member to your organization!
Now, an even better example of an up-selling opportunity would have been at the outset to have considered if the new prospect you are selling to join your organization can at the same time become a referring advocate to and with you, to bring in another person or groups of people with them at the same time, then they could come in at an elevated place in your organization (more rank let’s say) and more compensation, then that would be an example of up-selling.
As a sales professional, you must recognize the appropriate “up-selling” items or which products/services you offer that have obvious “up-selling” opportunity.
Every customer contact is an opportunity to meet their needs, if the sales professional does a thorough job in the Inquiry stage of the selling process to uncover their needs (immediate and future), then in the Presentation stage, “up-selling” options can be presented.
Instead of, “this will address your needs”, the conversation may be more like, “you may want to consider this instead of that, as this will do a much better job at…”
Always be looking at the totality of needs that can be fulfilled with the totality of products/services they represent, all with the best interest of the customer in mind.
Another example: If you are presenting the purchase of an educational or motivational keynote for a conference to a prospect and they say yes, then you would potentially “up- sell” them on purchasing also a break-out workshop while your speaker is there. Or the investment by them or a sponsor of supplemental resources for everyone in the audience, such as books or online subscriptions to developmental services. Now you have gone from one small sale to two sales with greater revenue opportunity and thus increased profitability.
As a sales professional, you should always be thinking of greater opportunities with every transaction. To make those options available at the time of the initial transaction is the best window of “up-selling” opportunity. You can also “up-sell” after the transaction as well. You can use new product/service introductions as a reason to contact recent customers and let them know of new offerings, if they would like to make that purchase.
Up-selling can take on many different forms. This can be a valuable and legitimate reason for continued follow-up with clients, ensuring they are aware of additional ways to enhance their last transaction with you, and thus build a better and deeper relationship with them. Consider reconnections:
- You can use new product/service introductions as a reason to stay in contact with new and established customers and let them know of new offerings, if they would like to make that purchase, upgrade, etc., and if you can work the financials so what they have previously purchased with can be credited in some degree towards their next purchase, even greater respect and leverage …
- You can use new product/service introductions as a reason to stay in contact with new and established customers and let them know of new offerings, if they would like to make that purchase, upgrade, etc. … And, then use this legitimate re- connection as an opportunity as and when appropriate to solicit “referrals” from them and their vast network, personally and professionally …
- Leveraging yourself as a Subject-Matter-Expert and always reflecting on ways to share your unique industry, marketplace opportunities, or perspectives on how to utilize your organizations deliverable’s more effectively so the client can gain additional ROIs ...
- Leveraging your colleagues as Subject-Matter-Experts and always be reflecting on ways to share their unique industry, marketplace opportunities, or perspectives on how to utilize your organizations deliverable’s more effectively so the client can gain additional ROIs ...
- Leveraging yourself as a Subject-Matter-Expert and always reflecting on ways to share your data base strategically for introductions within the industry and marketplace opportunities so the client can gain additional ROIs ...
- Use your existing relationship as an opportunity to explore other services or deliverables that you may have that may enhance their professional needs for an upgrade in the relationship or horizontal add-on of other deliverables that you may have …
- Always be evaluating the marketplace for other suppliers, vendors, manufacturers, etc. that may have a deliverable that can be added or combined to what you have connected to your client on, and by your client acquiring that deliverable it enhances what they have or provide to their subsequent customers or enhances their marketplace position …
- Examine the form of the deliverable that you are providing the marketplace and any specific customer, then evaluate whether you have or could create a new deliverable as an upgrade that enhances what the client is doing with you, and this cross-sale strengthens your relationship and generates additional revenue streams …
Example: If you are engaged in professional-personal development by attending a human capital development on-site training program and gain value from that experience, this would be the initial sale activity. Then if there were on-line learning and development portal self-driven courseware programs and the person you did or are doing business with lets you know about this additional opportunity, as an additional way to increase your skill set and thus marketplace value, you would want to know and consider this, this would be the first follow-up up-selling opportunity.
Then, sometime into the future, if there were a release of new resource (book, audio, on-line program, coaching, master-mind collaboration groups, improved live on-site program, etc.) these would all be additional cross selling opportunities.
I could design regular touch-points to keep my name in front of the client or marketplace through penning regular, high value, content rich articles or article series/column that can be delivered via social media/internet subscription (free or for a fee) or traditional hard copy distribution that reinforce the spirit, theme, reason for the initial client interaction …
Completely fulfilling a customers’ need with all products/services offered by your organization/department is the responsibility of a professional sales representative and sales leader.
Another means to fulfilling legitimate prospect/customer needs from a up-selling perspective may be to deploy the Business Integration Grid™ (BIG) discussed in previous PERFORMANCE DRIVEN SELLING® programs, training, on-line courseware and this series (www.JeffreyMagee.com). Consider:
- The contacts you have that you are doing business with and the appropriate services or deliverables they would need connected to what they are doing business with you on, that another non-competing entity or vendor provides. Now image you had a forged referral relationship with those non-competing entity or vendors (partnerships, collaborations, alliance-partners). That based off of the relationship you have and the trust factor established you could now recommend services and deliverables from another entity that would serve them in their needs and at the same time generate an additional free revenue stream to you and your organization!
- Now, explore the same BIG model in reverse. The contacts and customers that these partners (collaborations, partnership, alliance partnerships) already have relationships with, brainstorm the massive business development opportunities that may be present and strategize which ones that they are doing business with and the appropriate services or deliverables that you have that they would need, and build a campaign to connect to them. Now image you had a forged referral relationship with those non-competing entity or vendors. That based off of the relationship you have and the trust factor established with them, and their respective trust factor to their clients, you could now recommend services and deliverables that would serve them in their needs and at the same time generate an additional free revenue stream to you and your organization – and additional revenue streams to those partnered organizations!
Completely fulfilling a customer needs with all products/services offered by your organization/department is the responsibility of a professional sales representative and sales leader.
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