Why Business Acumen is Key to Sales Success
You could have the greatest product on the planet, but if you can’t convince your customers that you’re trustworthy, you won’t sell a thing. When I think of my days in sales (which lasted about 5 minutes...shoutout to the sales teams!), I got really good at reading the sales scripts. I watched all of the videos on the successful sales individuals, copied everything they did, mimicked their responses to objections, and it still wasn’t enough. I wish somebody would have just told me to be a friend to prospective clients. It was clear that when I was reading a script, I wasn’t being authentic. Any company can find itself a vendor, but being a partner to your customer is much more valuable. Clients are looking for partners to really help them drive success, to be someone they can confide in and turn to for advice. To be a true key to their success.
You can have a great product, but how are those products beneficial to your customer? Their company strategy? Economics? Being a supplier of products is not good enough. We need suppliers who are driven to bring value and drive success by being a business partner. And to be a business partner, you need business acumen. In an article published by Forbe’s Sharon Michaels states:
“Selling your service, product or idea is about doing the right thing for everyone involved – it is about building win-win relationships.”
Your job is not to convince everybody that your product is right for them. Not everybody is going to be a fit. It is about finding the right people to partner with and make an equally beneficial relationship. And the best way to know your customer is to know their business like an executive. How does your product benefit their profit goals and increase cash flow? Make your customer feel like you're there to help with their business objectives too.
As you start to learn about your customers — their companies, strategies, stresses, and priorities — you’re able to customize your approaches to better suit them. This is how you will gain creditability and trust. This is how you hit your numbers and succeed in your own sales role. Business acumen is what helps drive your own sales success and drive success for your customers and partners. Business acumen is the tool you need to gain the trust of your partners. This is why business acumen is key to sales success.
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