I'd like to tell you a story about a friend of mine who started a training business with no training or business experience. Now, there's nothing wrong with starting a business and, to be honest, most people start their business with little or no experience. Learning on the job is often the best way to learn.
The problem in this particular instance was that I sat down with him to help write a marketing action plan and his big thing was his passion for what he was doing. It's brilliant that he has passion and, to be honest, his business stands a better chance of survival because of it.
But, his thinking was that in his marketing he needs to make appointments to get in front of people to show them his passion. Well, unfortunately, I had to burst his bubble because, when somebody is buying a business service like training, they'll never buy it because the person selling it is passionate.
The only reason anybody buys any product or service is because they can see something in it for them. In other words, you need to get across the reason (or reasons) why what you're offering is a good thing and why the person or persons sitting in front of you should buy what you're trying to pitch.
Unfortunately, passion alone doesn't sell. Passion isn't enough to make anyone buy.
Don't get me wrong, passion is amazing and passion is brilliant. Passion can inspire you and motivate you to go on and do wonderful things.
But, unfortunately, when you're in a selling environment, when you're standing in front a potential customer, you can be as passionate as you want, but you're never, ever going to convince anybody that they should buy from you unless you can give them the reasons for doing it. And this normally means you being able to show them with benefits to them, their business, to their role, to their security, or any other benefit angle that you can think of.
You see, passion is great but benefits are what sell.
Don't just tell people about your product. Tell them why it's good, what it's good for, how it will help, the kind of results that clients can expect. Get across the passion that comes out of doing a good job for your clients and the feedback that you receive from those clients.
Unfortunately, passion alone never sells anything. A good sales pitch that revolves around business benefits will always, always win over passion.
So, if you're passionate about what you do, and I sincerely hope that you are, try and turn that passion into benefit. Why is this passion that you have for what you do and the results that you can bring for your clients good for your client? Is it sufficient for them to make a decision to buy from you because, until they can see this passion turned into “what's in it for me as a customer”, they're never going to buy.
So, I hope that's been useful. I'd love to hear what you have to say about it in the comments below, even if you disagree with my assertion that "passion alone doesn't sell".