“Your customers are more driven to get things done on your behalf when they understand your business and they understand you personally.” – Todd Caponi in today’s Tip 619
How about you? Do you offer with “expiring discount?”
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today Todd Caponi is back with a very timely tip. Todd is the author of the award-winning (best of 2020) book, The Transparency Sale, a top-rated keynote speaker & trainer as Principal of Sales Melon LLC, and he’s also Managing Director of Chicago’s VentureSCALE. Here he is with today’s tip:
Todd Caponi: Hey everybody, Todd Caponi here. And for many, you’re probably heading down the path for the last couple of days of the quarter. And in many cases, you’ve offered discounts that are expiring here on September 30th.
So wanted to give you a little bit of insight and advice around there. Now it starts from like, I think this is a Banana Republic shirt, and pretty much every Monday, I get a coupon email from them that offers 40% off and right around five o’clock in the evening, they will send another note saying, “This discount goes away and seven hours, so you better get on it.” And if I don’t, guess what? Next Monday, I get another one saying, “Hey, it’s friends and family discount week and it’s 50% off.” I’m like, Oh, well I guess the 40% didn’t go away. But a week later it’s back and it’s even bigger.
Now your buyers have all been reinforced and taught this over many years and it doesn’t even take having to buy very often to know that you are going to care more about your deals at the end of the quarter. And if you’re dealing with a professional procurement organization, they’re staying quiet right now. They’re making you sweat it out because they know that the incentives are going to come rolling in just like a Monday Banana Republic email.
Couple of things to do. First of all, when we talk about the fact that your discount is going to expire at the end of the week, I would suggest that you pull back on that and you explain it a little bit differently. If you’ve got a good relationship with the buyer, your sponsor within the organization, the mobilizer within the organization, I would do two things. Explain it, first of all, in terms of a business perspective that, “Hey, part of the reason that we offered that discount by the end of the quarter is that there’s value for us in our business and being able to predict our business. We had gotten aligned around getting this thing done by the end of the quarter. And that’s why that discount is there.”
So when the customer then asks, well, will you hold it to next week. My suggestion would be to answer that by creating a little uncertainty. And what I mean by that is to say, Gosh, I don’t know. We’re going to have to look at October and October. What I do know is that that discount still rides through the end of the week because the customer knows, first of all, that I’m sure it’ll be back. And if they want to sign it on Friday, October 1st, you’re probably going to offer it. But the minute that you say yes is the minute that your deal just moved to October and the minute you say no trust erodes, because they know that’s probably not true. And if the price is going to go up, they’re going to likely have to go get new budget approvals for that whole process. So that’s number one.
Number two is if you’ve got a good relationship with this customer, there’s no harm in sharing a little bit about how you’re measured because every customer, every buyer, every organization they’re measured by something. And to be able to share that, “Hey, listen, I know that we’ve got this discount. We’re talking to the end of September, just from a friend to friend type perspective. It’s one of the things I’m measured on is my ability to forecast, which is why that incentive was there. And hopefully, we’re able to get this thing done and I’m able to hit my own KPIs and your help here would be great.”
So doing those two things, explain it from a business perspective. And then if you’ve got a good relationship with the customer, you can share a little bit about the personal value in being able to be a good forecaster and what that means. And those two things together. I mean, people are people. We make feeling decisions. We use logic to back it up. We communicate logic. You’ll find that your customers are more driven to get things done on your behalf when they understand your business and they understand you personally. So give that a try. I hope it helps and good luck here at the end of the quarter.
Scott Ingram: Next you’ll want to go buy a copy of Todd’s book “The Transparency Sale” if you don’t own one already, and then connect with him on LinkedIn and we’ll have links for you to do both of those things as well as the video version of this tip, at DailySales.Tips/619
Once you’ve done that. Be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip. Thanks for listening!