By: Jake DiMare
I really enjoy the "selling" aspect of my job. When I am helping my clients figure out how to solve business problems with technology based solutions I am a lot more excited about my work. I am a project manager and consultant which means I am often the person a client will talk to when they believe they need a new web site or other web based application developed.
The best part for me is there is no pressure. It is my job to communicate with a person until I understand their problem. Then I collaborate with them to architect a solution to the problem. I believe it is this earliest phase where the most room for creativity actually exists. The client communicates their goals, constraints and requirements. As the consultant I gather all this information and then come up with a plan.
Really...in the final analysis a good sales process is a conversation (dramatically simplified):
Client: I need a web site.
Me: Great! Tell me...what do you plan to do with this web site?
Client: I plan to make money of course!
Me: Ah, you need an eCommerce web site. What business are you in?
Client: I am in the business of selling widgets all over the world.
Me: OK, so we need an eCommerce site with content localization and multiple language support.
Once I have learned all the requirements I can switch to goals:
Me: OK, we have talked about the requirements...what are your goals? What would you like to see the site help you achieve from a business perspective?
Client: Well, I would like to see web based sales increase 5% over the next year.
Me: Excellent...are you currently open to expanding into new markets?
Client: We would like to further explore this possibility.
Me: Have you considered an SEM (Search Engine Marketing) strategy to increase overall web traffic?
Client: We would like to further discuss this...
If I have done a good job as a communicator I am eventually rewarded with a sale. I see some more process beginning to crystallize...it's early but I have been doing this quite successfully in professional environments for about 3 years now...I will be ready to teach others how to do it soon enough...it will be at this point I need a method or strategy which can be duplicated.