Sales is about added value. Period.

Freija KleijnenUncategorized

Delivering quality is the basis of success for your company. High customer satisfaction will follow automatically by delivering added value. But how do you describe this – too often abused – business term?

Not whether you are always the best in the class, but whether you strive to deliver quality, that is what customer will remember first. That is what clients most appreciate. It must have been 10 years ago and I still remember : “The strength of a supplier is not measured at times when all is working fine, but when projects go wrong“, a well appreciated customer of mine once said. That’s how you are perceived by your customers. Not when you as a seasoned sales professional comes along to tell stories and talk about good looking reference cases, but when the client is facing the trouble caused by your solution that is not working any longer. Now it is up to you, to take your responsibility and help your client. This is your moment of truth and this moment will always be remembered. Now you make or break your customer relationship and with-going satisfaction, forever.

Delivering quality is about added value: what makes you unique in what you sell or deliver that will help your customer to bring him closer to his objective: sell a turnover enabler if your customer is looking for more revenue. Propose a cost reducing solution if your client is looking for more effectiveness and higher margin in his production process.

Bring your team of directors together and define the term ‘added value’.

The start of the year is a pivotal moment to think about what makes us unique and what ‘added value’ really means. Bring your team together and define the term ‘added value’. It is too often used in professional literature often in an inappropriate way unfortunately. No one disagrees with added value, but nobody can determine exactly what it is, what the parameters are or what the forces are that affect the perceived added value of the customer. And it all comes down to our (future) customer: how and what is our value perceived.

If you have no clue how to achieve the definition of added value, these brainstorm tools & techniques (thanks to and sold by BIS Publishers ©) can help you in defining ‘added value’:

1.     SWOT (or SWTT as we call it @Business Markers). Always a good start to get the positive elements analysis before digging into the PWRSWOT;

2.     Define into 2 opposite axes what makes you unique;

3.     The time machine: define causes and effects to get to your success;

4.     Classic brainstorming: writing down ideas on sticky notes against the clock and in team.

Tip: added value only works if associated with your core business. Only when the customer sees the possibilities and when he recognizes the value of your offer to be able to develop and use it within his own objective. Take an example of a customer’s objective before you start the exercise and make your outcome concrete. Wishing you success!