An analysis of a salesperson’s role and how it relates to that of a storyteller
While most people believe that a salesperson’s job is to sell a lot and sell fast, there is in fact another aspect to their jobs that goes unnoticed. They are storytellers. Like today’s modern authors and writers, a salesperson spins a story to their prospective customers.
They Construct A Narrative
Like every good story, a salesperson must have a good beginning. In my experience that usually involves providing some information on the business itself or the owner. How they started the business, what inspired them to enter a particular market, how long the business has been around, etc. By providing this narrative the company/business owner changes from a faceless entity to something that customers can recognize and appreciate. They are able to identify with the company, and by extension the salesperson.
They Add Intrigue and Suspense
A good sales pitch targets a customer’s needs. It helps to isolate their needs or get them to think about their future needs. Like a good story, they do this by building suspense and intrigue. They peak the customer’s interest, prompting them to ask questions and obtain more information. They allow the customer to become invested in the answers and the outcome. They do not try to cause unnecessary worry or harm to the customer but to get them to think about what comes next.
They Want a Happy Ending
Like every good story, the reader hopes for a happy ending. All we want is for things to work out and for the characters in the narrative to be happy. We sometimes become emotionally invested in this outcome. For salespeople, it is the same way. They want their customers to be happy, they want to know that they have helped them in some way by making their lives a little easier and stress-free. By closing a sale, you are not only making your customer happy but yourself as well.
For as long as there has been language and communication, there have been stories. For as long as there has been business, there have been salespeople. Both of which have endured since time immemorial. So is it only natural that the two should be intertwined so closely.
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Courtney Rosebush is a Marketing and Sales Coordinator at Triella, a technology consulting company specializing in providing technology audits, planning advice, project management and other CIO-related services to small and medium sized firms. Courtney can be reached at 647.426.1004 x 227. For additional articles, go to www.triella.com/publications. Triella is a VMware Professional Partner, Microsoft Certified Partner, Citrix Solution Advisor – Silver, Dell Preferred Partner, Authorized Worldox Reseller and a Kaspersky Reseller.
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