Do You Know Your Customers Business?

By Mike Philie
In December 22, 2011

Another self-inflicted wound is not having a thorough understanding of your customers business. Why they buy what they buy and what affect your product has on their overall business is a key ingredient if you’re trying to develop a repeatable sales process. Over the years one of the strengths of a good sales rep was to know all about the products their company could produce and the ins and outs of getting a project through the plant. An area that had little emphasis was how well they knew their clients business. Back then the focus was mainly on the product you were producing. Today you need to know more.

Who does your client compete with, what market differentiation do they enjoy in the markets they serve and what are they doing with the print or related services that they buy from you. The more that you know these issues the more you begin to speak your customers’ language and become better aligned with helping them reach their goals. Taking that to a higher level means that within a vertical market, you can become amarket specialist in how those companies use print and related services to run their business and make money. Having this position can change the conversation you would have with a prospective client and more importantly, who you could have that conversation with.

Mike Philie

Mike works with printing companies that are not satisfied with their sales and business development performance, and are looking to get objective advice and strategic direction on how to improve the results of their business. His engagements can range from providing input on the overall sales strategy to building business development pipelines while training the processes of “selling” in today’s marketplace. Mike quickly establishes himself as a trusted resource and advisor to the owners and senior staff of his client companies through his personal involvement, and very quietly and effectively becomes an extension of their staff.

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