Author : Vishala Pechetti
Date: 7th April 2023
In today’s competitive market, having good product knowledge is no longer just an advantage but a necessity for sales reps. Consumers have access to a wealth of information about products and are becoming more knowledgeable and discerning in their purchasing decisions.
To be successful in sales, reps must possess a deep understanding of the products they are selling.
In this blog, we will explore the importance of product knowledge in sales, and provide insights on how to develop critical product knowledge skills for your sales representatives based on our podcast with Mr. Sridhar Rammurthy – Head of Product Development & Management at Reliance Nippon Life Insurance shares his insights.
In the world of sales, having a deep understanding of the product is crucial for success. Customers are looking for solutions to their problems, and sales reps who are knowledgeable about their products can help match the right product to the customer’s specific needs.
By developing critical product knowledge, sales reps can also answer customer questions with confidence and authority, leading to increased trust and credibility. Additionally, sales reps who understand their product’s unique features and benefits can differentiate it from competitors, leading to a competitive advantage in the market.
Furthermore, having strong product knowledge can also help sales reps anticipate potential objections or concerns from customers and address them proactively, leading to smoother sales negotiations and better outcomes for both the sales rep and the customer. Overall, developing critical product knowledge is essential for sales reps to succeed in today’s market.
Instead of trying to force-fit a product onto a customer, it’s important to focus on understanding your customers’ needs. This helps sales reps to get a better understanding of the customer’s needs and tailor their product offerings accordingly.
To achieve this, interactive training sessions should be implemented that encourage your sales reps’ active listening and effective questioning skills. Role-playing exercises and real-life scenarios can also help your sales reps refine their skills and learn how to tailor their pitches to each customer’s specific scenario. Also, regularly gathering feedback from customers can help sales reps stay up-to-date on their evolving needs and preferences, ultimately leading to increased sales and customer satisfaction.
By prioritizing customer needs and implementing effective training techniques, sales reps can become skilled at identifying customer pain points and requirements and offering tailored solutions that truly meet their needs.
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It is crucial for sales reps to understand their customers and match their approach accordingly. A standardized technique may work for low-value products, but for mid-to-high value products, a customized approach is necessary. It is not just about having product knowledge, but also about understanding the customer’s needs and values.
The key is to strike a perfect balance between the two. By striking a balance between these factors, sales reps can effectively engage with customers and close more deals.
Objections from customers can actually be beneficial as they provide an opportunity for sales reps to show their product knowledge or highlight certain features that were not previously mentioned. However, if a sales rep has conducted a thorough needs analysis and tailored the product to meet the customer’s explicit needs, objections should ideally not arise. If they do, it is important to refrain from immediately rattling off answers and instead take the role of a curious student to better understand the root cause of the objection. This involves getting to the bottom of why the customer is asking a particular question, whether it’s related to price, features, services, or brand perception.
Additionally, it is crucial for sales reps to be fully present during conversations with customers and avoid premeditated answers or scripts running in their mind. By understanding the true intent of the customer’s question and addressing their specific needs, sales reps can effectively handle objections and close more deals.
It’s true that it’s difficult to become an expert in a product if an organization is constantly selling new or different products. Rather than putting all the blame on the sales reps, it’s important to recognize that organizations evolve, there are regulatory pressures, customer needs change, and there is competition in the market. Therefore, it’s important to teach salespeople a method to learn and stay updated with the product offerings. Leaders should not expect their salespeople to become PhDs in their products, as this may not necessarily translate into better sales.
Instead, it’s about teaching sales reps a methodology of engaging with customers to understand their needs and providing them with solutions to their problems. In sales, trust is key, and salespeople must demonstrate certain behaviors to evoke that feeling of trust in the customer. It’s not just about product knowledge, but also storytelling skills that help create a whole picture of why a customer needs a particular product. Companies can create a framework and use technology to help sales reps stay updated with new product features.
The key to successful sales is not just having deep knowledge of the product, but also the ability to engage with the customer and understand their needs. While it is challenging for salespeople to become experts in constantly evolving product lines, organizations can provide a framework and methodology for continuous learning.
The focus should be on understanding the customer’s intent, building trust, and creating a compelling story that demonstrates how the product addresses their explicit problems. With the help of modern technologies, sales reps can stay updated on new product features and improve their ability to sell effectively.
Awarathon’s AI-powered sales simulator provides sales reps with a cutting-edge, real-world platform to enhance their product knowledge, confidently tackle objections, and help them offer tailored solutions that cater to their customer’s requirements. Book a free trial now