Saturday, April 28, 2012

Salesmanship or Product which is important ???

Salesmanship or Product which is important ???
Insurance is the most toughest thing to sell they say! I have not sold one so I might have to just buy that argument on the face of it. The closest thing that I have sold to Insurance is Rating for small and medium enterprises. Selling something which doesn't really give you value is not a very easy thing. Now there are arguments for both sides. There are people who sell this product and achieve the required target almost every month. So there we might talk about the salesmanship of the person who is selling it. Then there are others who would say why should I sell this to someone who is not going to benefit from such an investment however small that amount may be!
How do you define a sales person? What is his exact role? Is salesman someone who help identify what the customer wants and then suggest a right product which would fulfill the need or is he someone who would ask questions to anyone who qualify to be his potential customer for which his predetermined answer is his product, or salesman is that persistent guy who almost stalk you to death before you finally buy whatever he is selling so as to just get over it. Philiph Kotler says people buy holes and not drill machines! So can we say that sales as an activity should be superfluous, there is no push required from a salesman?
This is where theory and practice go on a tangent. Sales as we see on a daily basis is not a passive activity! Its a competitive market where people try all sort of tricks so as to ensure that you buy their wares. A sales person would lie, deceive, over promise, mis-represent to ensure that you buy his product. It is so fixed in our psyche that Salesman are supposed to be liars, pushy etc. We always get annoyed at the first sight of someone who tries to sell even though we might be actually considering to buy such a product! Eg: If I am in a mall looking for some electronic item and if suddenly a sales guy comes and asks me what I want to buy or even if he just shadows me along I get irritated. Now this guy is just doing his job he has been paid to do so. So again what is his job? Is it to ensure that he answers my question or is it to ensure that he sells his wares to me? For now I believe that companies are paying him to ensure that he sell wares to those who walk in.
But my argument is that may be its time companies look around and ponder about the strategies that they adopt to sell their product. So what inspired me to scribble so much is the recent max newyork ad. Max Newyork Insurance has recently tried to do something with their new communication strategy about how their agents are different from the other companies. I was always of the opinion that insurance should be sold as insurance and not as an investment option, but very often I see a lot of agents sell it as investment rather than indemnity. Max has played smart by positioning their agents as the honest lot who would give you true pictures and thereby creating a positive disposition at the customers side when an agent approaches him. Otherwise almost all insurance companies offer more or less same products. So once customer give the max guy a chance will he play fair or he will act just like a salesman is to be seen !!!
The ad can be seen here    

1 comment:

  1. Nice article Vipin. Must say its deep. You're right in saying that sales and selling is very difficult. But i believe a salesman should know where to draw the line and let the product do the talking. I know its difficult keeping in mind the competition and targets to achieve but that's what it should be. My article "The Shoe Campaign" speaks of the same thing.


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