Solution selling

I love the term ‘solution selling’

It’s used to, I think, soften the idea of selling.

There’s nothing wrong with selling – but there is something wrong with pretending you’re trying to solve a problem.

Generally to solve a problem you need to know what it is. When was the last time someone asked you what problem you were trying to solve when trying to flog you something?

Solutions can’t be reached when all parties involved have a different motivation that drives them.


6 responses to “Solution selling

  1. Totally agree! Many salespeople just don’t know how to diagnose a problem before they try to solve it — the equivalent to “sales malpractice”. We recently wrote a blog post about this, that might be of interest to people striving to be solution sellers:

  2. You need to stop having those early morning meetings before your first coffee’s kicked in. Its not agreeing with you

    Its probably more that all parties will always have some kind of differing motivation – their own revenue/ ego etc. As long as theme that brings them altogether is common and productive, thats fine.

    Its the ‘fluffers’ in the business who sell from a script without actually understanding why they are in the room that compound this problem. They call it ‘solution selling’ because they think it’s probably why you’ll say yes but they can’t be clear on what the solution is.

    In future, ask them why they want a breakfast meeting first. If they can’t articulate the actual objectives, yours and theirs, tell them to bugger off til its past 10am.

    And give me a bell – where are you?

  3. actually, I, think its used to adverise a really crap job by a recruiter that will never pay you any commission but promsie the world!

  4. Any decent sales person should try and find out your needs before they try and match them to what they are selling.

    Most of them are not trained properly or they are a little desperate to sell and try to shortcut this process.

    Send them on their way.

  5. My favourite is “consultative selling”.

  6. I think one of the biggest downfalls is that so few sales people (digital or otherwise) have actually worked agency or client side and understand the pressures and process involved.

    I agree that a-lot of sales people either don’t have the ability, time or want to ask the right questions but I also think agency people don’t always ask their clients enough questions – the # of times an agency person can’t answer simple questions like “what are the objectives of the campaign? where will the ads click through to?” amazes me.

    If an agency is able to tell us what the client’s challenge is we have a better chance of offering the best solution. Too often we get one line in an email with “Have X dollars and 300×250 mrecs” what can you do?

    Naturally I am going to defend publishers – however I was on the agency side for many years – in agencies that prided themselves on really good briefs – and really good briefs usually equal pretty good proposals back from the media.

    It’s the whole “shit in shit out” theory – and I think we can all improve.

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