This summer, I took a vacation with my business partner. We needed some down time and strategy time. What better way to strategize, then spending some time on the beach? One of the days, we got some time away and took a walk on the beach. The conversation turned to business and how things had changed since COVID. Specifically, we were discussing how buyers are changing the way they make buying decisions.
We all know pre-COVID people looked online to shop but not necessarily buy. Now, we shop and buy online. So how do buyers make a buying decision with little or no need for connection or interaction?
More specifically, how do people buy a monthly “subscription” vs. a “one-time” purchase without talking to anyone, especially if it is a large ticket item. Now more than ever, consumers are making these decisions on their own with little or no assistance. Recent research suggests that consumers are willing to pay for a customer experience. If that research is true, how do marketers and salespeople create that customer experience?
This makes the sales process even more difficult. How can salespeople become part of the buyers’ decision-making process without turning them off? We played around with some ideas about branding, being viewed as consultants and not merely pesky salespeople. Easier said then done.
One of the ideas we were discussing is providing even more content within our area of expertise. Since the buying public is online and is going to stay online, we need to have our presence felt. We aren’t a big company with a huge marketing budget. How do we get heard in the crowded marketplace?
We want to get in the game and the field is crowded. We don’t necessarily have big personalities or are influencers but we do solve a problem that could help a lot of companies.
We decided on this beautiful walk that we have to play to our strengths. I am a writer. I enjoy it. It is a good way for me to spend my down time. My partner is a creative. She can make everything look beautiful, literally. So, we have to get in the game by playing to our strengths and hiring out the other stuff. Can I do things? Sure, but should I spend the time when it takes me 3x times longer. No, probably not.
If we want to compete, we need to be smart, strategic, and efficient. I am a people person and I like meeting with others face to face and listen to what the client has to say and look at them. That is hard to do in this environment. It is hard for me to have a natural flow, so I need to work on that and write more. What helps is my partner can make me look good so I need to leverage that too.
What is bonus is that the online world is visual, so I need to capitalize on that. What is your secret skill that you are not leveraging? What do you like to do that would get you in the online game? What can you offer that would help the buyer to commit? Now that the game has changed; how are you going to get on the field, that creates an interest?
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