Five Reasons Why
by Dr. James Alexander Ed.D, Alexander Consulting
No matter what stage of development your services organization is in, relying entirely on the product sales force to drive services is not a good idea. Discover how to tap into your hidden sales force—what it takes to get your technical talent competent, confident, and committed to seriously selling services.
There is no faster and easier way to grow profitable services revenue than by using your technical people to help sell your offerings. Nothing works better or quicker.
Five Reasons Why Using Technical Talent to Sell Is Such a Good Thing
My research shows that a best practice of top services organizations within product companies is that their technical talent demonstrate appropriate selling skills. Let’s look a little deeper to see why this is so powerful.
- There are lots of them. Depending on the type of services sold and the services strategy, services providers usually outnumber salespeople. Of course it varies, but often the ratio is 20 to 1 or more—professional services consultants implementing projects, field services engineers doing preventive maintenance, technical support engineers resolving problems. Just think of the power of increasing your services selling capabilities if you can tap into just a part of this potential.
- They know the customer. Services providers are where the action is. Who better understands the issues and day-to-day realities of customers than the folks who implement, prevent, troubleshoot, fix problems, and advise on new opportunities than a service technician who is in the building or on the phone every day and knows everyone from the facilities manager to the department head to the CIO? As they walk the plant floor or office hallways, eat in the lunchroom, and meet with technical staff, they become privy to a wealth of information specific to company issues, challenges, problems, and opportunities.
- They have established trust with the customer. Trust is, of course, a main driver in decision-making, and your technical talent often have a high level of customer trust established from a history and track record of doing what they say they will do. When your technical people make suggestions, customers listen.
- They are not a threat. Technical folks don’t have “sales” on their business card. The “BS warning signal” that automatically goes off inside customers’ heads when they come in contact with a salesperson does not sound when dealing with a technical person. Customers are much more likely to share their reality and respond to recommendations from a technical person than they ever will to a salesperson. This is an important fact of life.
- Small investment—big return. Once your technical talent buys into the concept that when they influence with integrity it is good for their customers, you are two-thirds of the way home. Because of the four points outlined above, all it takes is some building of existing skills and a road map on what to do, and they can quickly start positively influencing services sales. While it might take years to get product sellers effectively selling services, your technical people can be productive in just months.
*Seriously Selling Services offers research-based, field-proven core and best practices, lessons learned, and benchmarks for successfully selling services. Alexander, a world-renown researcher, speaker, consultant, and best-selling author on the subject of services, brings to light the misconceptions that can stop serious initiatives before they get started and offers fresh insights on how to succeed in this lucrative and worthwhile endeavor. Learn More www.serioulsyselling.com
Regardless of the industry you’re in,
it’s time to seriously sell services!