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Monday, November 1, 2010

The Bright White Stripe

A guy rang my doorbell the other day – with a generic spray-bottle and a couple of brushes, he completely filled the 10-minutes we spent together with talk, questions, and product demonstrations.

This guy was selling a liquid cleaner door-to-door.

He introduced himself, told me why he was there, and that he was selling the best cleaner in the world.

Then he pointed to my cement stoop, said it was moldy and dirty and asked me to watch this: he sprayed the liquid and used his wire brush to scrub down to a stripe of clean white cement. He kept up a constant stream of talk about the benefits and results of using this cleaner and showed proof on that stoop.

He took me down to the car, asking what was the most difficult thing to clean on the car (wheels). So he squirted his stuff on the wheel and made the spot shine. Then he did a section of the window, the bricks on the wall, and even a portion of the sole on my sneakers. All bright and clean.

When asked about why the cleaner worked so well, he answered by giving a brochure with details about what is in the cleaner while he kept talking about the benefits and results that I was seeing.

He opened his order-book and quoted the price ($48 per quart) and said it is concentrated - makes gallons, and pointed out several order forms from neighbors in the community.

This guy knew his product. He spoke only about benefits and demonstrated results – all from the viewpoint me getting something cleaned. He provided 'evidence' that others had purchased from him and that he would immediately provide the product right on the spot. When we were done, he thanked me and was gone. But I have reminders of the visit with several little clean areas – like the bright white stripe.

He never once claimed he had some Sales Award, or about the history and accomplishments of the firm, or about the thousands of bottles of stuff he has sold, or that he was only one sale away from getting a trip to somewhere.

The number of door-to-door sales has been increasing lately – an old fashioned means of making sales, which - although labor intensive - can be effective even today.

What if sales conversations were based on the principles that this cleaner guy executed so naturally? Does your customer have a need? Do you have a solution? Can you communicate the benefit and results FOR THE CUSTOMER from your solution without a bunch of other noise?

Please join us for:
Talk Your Business - How to make more and better sales right away! Wednesday, November 10th, 7:15am to 8:30, Intelligent Office, Rockville, and
How to Scale Your Organization - Build, Borrow, or Buy? Thursday, December 9th, 7:15am to 8:30, Intelligent Office, Rockville


Thoughthebrowser said...

Aiyee! Love it! *grin*

You had the opportunity to observe a true professional. Of course your blog is the richer for your taking the focus to observe and report.

Unknown said...

Thanks, Dick.

We may see more of this one-on-one sales approach for items that do not lend themselves to mass marketing.

Alone on the store shelf a $50 quart of cleaner will not fly off the shelf, but with a demo, knowledge that it is really 24 gallons, and that others locally have bought it, the cleaner becomes a viable commodity.

The broader application of these same principles can really alter the sales conversation dramatically for other goods and services much more complicated than a household cleaner.