Is Transparency the Ultimate Sales Tool?

by Riaz Sidi | Follow Him on Twitter Here

Business in the old economy was about trade secrets and mechanisms to keep the competition at bay. The competitive advantage was securing information that others could use to jump ahead in the game.

Those days are gone.

We all know the power of relationship building through social platforms and the amount of information that can be utilized by anyone wired up with the ambition to see something to fruition.

In sales, there has been skepticism towards new economy principles. Those who keep their businesses clouded with mystery are falling behind – without even realizing it!

What’s the Big Secret?

The problem isn’t the product, it’s the sales rep who says, I don’t want the consumer to really know what they are purchasing – and this my friends, is an enormous tragedy.

Why Transparency is Key?

Everyone is afraid to look bad, everyone wants to be an expert in some field that was invented a year ago, and no one has the balls (or ovaries) to admit that their product or service might not work as planned.

What we should be doing is standing behind our products, yes, but also realizing that with technology or in any industry, errors can occur, mishaps can be experienced and to face this head on with the client.

It is always better to take ownership for your product or service not living up to its expected standard and to add-value by being conscientious of this and by approaching your client to say, look it didn’t go as planned but let’s make it right, right now!

Too often as consumers we are left scratching our head, wondering whether we have to follow up or continue following up on a purchase that went awry. We are afraid that we got duped and that company policy won’t allow the sales person to right the wrong.

If a policy is so strict that the company puts customer service after any policy, they deserve to lose your business in the new economy.

We need to start holding ourselves as sales representatives and as customers to a new standard where we are treating our clients well, and being treated well as clients investing our hard earned money into a product or service.

The best way as a sales representative to do this is to be transparent; upfront and honest about any potential pitfalls and the process that will be taken in the event that things get effed up.

You cannot be a good sales representative in the 21st century by sticking your head in the sand once your product or service messes up and not taking responsibility for the repercussions of it failing.

The transaction is much better if the sales representative can answer those difficult questions, right the wrong, and take ownership by making your purchase the most incredible experience you have, even if things don’t go so well the first time around.

At the end of the day, value will be revealed through a sales experience when one knows they will be taken care of regardless of whether things go well or wrong.

And transparency is the only way to achieve a great relationship, where no error or mishap will leave a customer wondering where the sales representative ran off to with your hard earned dough.

Do you agree or disagree? Please comment below why or why not?

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Scott Jazey July 31, 2012 at 8:20 pm

I agree that if there is a “screwup” we should be transparent. In fact an error is an opportunity to show what we are made of. Yes Errors occur but how we respond can elevate you in the eyes of your client. I do worry about the word transparancy…I would not want to create objections in the name of transparancy and I think there is a danger of trying to be transparent but actually just talking too much…Just a thought. Why stop a sale? I believe in my product!

Reply

Riaz Sidi August 2, 2012 at 2:46 pm

An accountable sales rep who confronts the screwup as an opportunity will definitely be viewed in a positive light.

I do agree with you Scott that there is a certain degree of transparency that may open up an objection and may actually confuse the client rather than enlightening them as to the benefits of your product or service. It is a fine line between confusion and transparency but as knowledgeable sales reps, it is our job to determine that line and to ensure the customer is receiving the value they are investing in.

Thank you for the comment!

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