The First Stage Of Value Creation - Pile On The Pain
By Guy Aston - Mid-Market Business Director, Huthwaite International
In past articles, I have stressed the importance of building value so often it should be like a mantra to you. Saying it is one thing, but doing it…? Well, let's begin to take a closer look at the process of value creation.
Leaving emotional decisions aside, most rational buying decisions start with some form of issue; "The network is so slow since the merger", "It's been difficult meeting demand over the last few months" and suchlike. Therefore, if we are selling solutions, we need to find people who have issues...
...we can solve. It might be cute to seek out those problems during sales calls with contacts that we meet. The questions we ask during this process, we call Problem Questions. An example may sound something like "Has adding fifteen extra users onto the system ever caused the server to crash?". Remember, it must be a question. "You know, fifteen extra users could cause server overload" is not a question! We must get the admission of a problem from the customer; they must own the problem. If you recall the previous article, on how value creation is akin to counselling, you will recall that it is so important that we ask the questions to enable the customer to voice the problems.
Another important fact to remember is the proportional relationship between the size of the problem and the value of the solution. A bottle of mineral water in a supermarket may cost £1.20. I wonder how much you would pay if you had just spent a day crawling out of the Sahara Desert without a drink? From a customer viewpoint, the greater the pain, the greater the gain. It... continued on page two >