“Sales is about listening and sharing and teaching and being an asset for your customer.” – Scott Ingram in today’s Tip 1067
Do you rethink your traditional negotiation techniques?
Join the conversation below and share your thoughts!
Have feedback? Want to share a sales tip? Call or text the Sales Success Hotline: 512-777-1442 or Email: [email protected]
Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today’s tip comes from Todd Caponi. Todd is the author of the 3x award-winning & best-selling book, The Transparency Sale, and a top-rated keynote speaker & trainer as Principal of Sales Melon LLC. His next book, The Transparent Sales Leader, is planned for early 2022. Here he is:
Todd Caponi: Hey there. I don’t know about you, but it always seemed weird to me that I needed a different personality to sell than I did to negotiate. What I mean by that is sales is about listening and sharing and teaching and being an asset for your customer. You build that relationship from the first interaction, you take them to the goal line. The most important point where they say yes. And suddenly we go into this kind of liar mode where subconsciously we’re not sharing what a good deal is. And maybe we’re making up fake expiring discounts. And maybe we are taking many of the techniques that we use to negotiate from former FBI hostage negotiators.
Don’t Get me wrong. One of the greatest books of all time is Never Split the Difference. But the cover even says negotiating as if your life depended on it and field-tested tools for talking anyone into or out of just about anything. That doesn’t sound like we’re building trust, does it? And in industries where we’ve got renewable technology like SaaS or in industries where we’re selling services, where that upsell, cross-sell, renewal, long term relationship really matters traditional negotiation techniques that are designed for one time interactions like releasing hostages from a bank heist or a robbery gone wrong, or even an old school software deal where it’s a perpetual license where you buy the bulk and then maybe you pay a maintenance fee going forward.
Sure, those things were great, but this is 2021 going into 2022. We are needing to build relationships. We don’t have the advantage of tasing our customer when we get done with the negotiation because they’re going off the jail. We need to have long-term relationships with them. And this is why this idea of transparent negotiating is so valuable, and it’s why it’s probably the most popular thing that I teach, and I’m actually teaching it 5 times this week. So it’s certainly top of mind. But transparent negotiating is about really changing the game of negotiating. So that when we talk about price and when we make our proposals, it also leads to our negotiations becoming much more fruitful and trust-building instead of eroding right at the goal line and it’s about playing your cards face up.
You and your organization, like every other for-profit organization in the world, there are four things that matter to your company.
The first one is volume. How much the customer commits to in terms of products, technology, licenses, services, the more they commit to it’s probably better for you. Right?
Number two is timing of cash. The faster a customer pays, the better it is for you and your company. Trust me. Slow-paying customers is of no value to you. You want customers to pay faster, right?
Number three is the length of commitment. How long a customer commits to your products, technology, and services that comfort and confidence and predictability is really valuable.
And number four, talking about predictability is the timing of the deal. Your ability as an organization to predict when business will happen is immensely valuable. So when the customer signs is not only valuable to you and your quota, but also to your investors but even more importantly to your organization, to be able to resource and to be able to plan.
So my advice to you is to rethink traditional negotiation techniques. If you feel like you need a different personality or that you’re eroding trust at the goal line, you probably are. And transparent pricing and negotiating is all about telling the customer; Hey listen. Our pricing is based on four things that matter to us. How much you buy, how fast you pay, how long you commit, and when you sign? Your pricing is based on those things. And as we get into these discussions, the levers move both ways on all of these things. Your price is too expensive. We need net 60 payment terms or we want to pay monthly. We don’t want to commit to 3 years, we want to commit to 1 year. We want to sign whenever the heck we want. Will you hold the price in the next month?
You can use those four levers as your basis to make sure that you’re getting value for every dollar you give away or every other concession you give away. You also, like I said, are building trust to the goal line instead of eroding it. And if you play that last lever, right, that timing of the deal right, your deals will become more predictable overnight.
So give that a thought. And if you need some help with this, reach out. It is a common thing that I talk about and teach, and I would love to be a resource for you to help you get over that hump and continue to build so that your customers stay. buy more and are more likely to become an advocate. All right, thanks!
Once you’ve done that, be sure to come back tomorrow for the start of our top 10 sales tips of 2021 countdown.