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[November 19, 2003]

Customer Catcher™

By Martin Wales

Guaranteed Sales Success:  How Surveys Can Help You Develop Winners & Sell More Without Risk

You want to develop the next killer app or product for both financial success and the envy of your industry? If you’re looking to be the company with Viagra-like

Ask The Customer Catcher

What is the single biggest problem you face in the sales & marketing of your technology?

prospect desire, not to mention dominant market share and the spectacular profits that go with it, then read on.

It’s actually easy and inexpensive to reap great rewards with little risk, if any. How? When you execute the most simple business and product marketing strategy of them all.

1. Ask your prospects what they believe is their biggest pain.

2. THEN create your products and services to help them solve that problem.

Few follow this good sense. That’s why a very small percentage of companies ever reach the heights of success they desire. Most blindly skip to number 2. They invest tons of capital, time and energy engineering the latest technology (thinking it’s just what the world needs) only to find it’s a bust!  Nobody buys and you’re beat. Washed up.

You have to use surveys. The tech industry continues to build better mousetraps that customers haven’t asked for and have little perceived value in the marketplace.

Surveys assist you in identifying qualified prospects and selling them exactly what they want to buy.  If you’ve been finding the sales process drawn out, tiring and not as successful as you’d like, then maybe you’re doing too much "convincing" and not enough surveys.

Many advantages are gained when using surveys including how they: 

Reveal Prospects’ Desire
Your prospects prioritize what THEY think is their biggest problem. Others (like you) might argue that they should have other priorities.  In the end, your prospect controls the budget and the buying decision. Surveys reveal the mind set and desires of the person holding the purse strings.

Lower Your Costs
Surveys cost very little when compared to the money needed for R&D. The Internet has further reduced the cost and, more significantly, the time it takes to get client input and feedback. Using the Internet leaves little room for excuses not to be using surveys. There are several service providers that allow you to deliver and analyze surveys through their software using your contact lists.

Increase Acceptance
Customers work and apply technology in the real world. It is not unfamiliar to have technology perform well "in the lab" but have it fail outside. The failure isn’t even necessarily the product but the ACCEPTANCE of it by the intended users. For some reason, CRM, speech recognition and some wireless apps come to mind.

Shorten Your Sales Cycle
Delivering what people actually ask for, and want, allows you to virtually eliminate the pressure of selling. After a survey, you’re merely helping people get what they want. In fact, with the right survey methods, you’re basically pre-selling and pre-closing because the survey becomes the primary part of your sales process.

Increase Profit
If you spend time upfront with surveys, you can literally create a process to "print your own money."  Asked respectfully, clients voluntarily tell you what they want and how much it’s worth to them to get it.

Improve Quality
Continual feedback helps increase the rate at which you can improve the quality of your services. You can add improvements on the fly, if you listen and apply the many suggestions users offer.

Reduce Mistakes
Research and development is a sizeable investment. The fewer errors you make, the greater your ROI.  Surveys identify ‘stinkers’ early on before you waste more time, effort and money.

Illicit Powerful Testimonials
Surveys of your customers allow you to select the most positive and complimentary comments and, with permission, use them in your sales and marketing communications to win new clients. Testimonials are the most powerful sales catalyst for increasing a prospect’s confidence to buy now.

Strengthen Customer Loyalty
Surveys are non-offensive touch points with your customer base and prospects. Positioned as a chance for them to express their opinions, many will take you up on the opportunity. Customers perceive that you’re committed to improving your service and that you value their opinion. Additional sales come from upgrades and cross-selling opportunities are frequently initiated in survey-type conversations.

Reduce your risk and increase your revenue when you look into the future. There is magic in using surveys. Develop more winners than losers. Let the marketplace guide you. Let your prospects and customers literally describe what they want to buy and exactly what they’ll spend their budgets on.

Got a question or a problem? Tell The Customer Catcher™, Martin Wales about yours here. In the meantime, get FREE expert advice 7/24 on www.CustomerCatcherRadio.com. Get alternative and effective strategies in this new Do Not Call and anti-spam sales and marketing world. Contact Martin at [email protected] today.

Like what you've read? Go to past Customer Catcher columns.

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