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FALL 2014

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Distributor's Link Magazine Fall Issue 2014

70 THE DISTRIBUTOR’S

70 THE DISTRIBUTOR’S LINK His eyes were narrow and bloodshot from staying out late and partying too heavily the previous night. A two-day old stubble framed his face. He was wearing a dark colored tee shirt, which he hadn't tucked in, a pair of jeans, and scuffed loafers which had probably never seen shoe polish. It was the second day of my Sales Academy seminar, and this participant in the program was complaining to the group that his customers were only interested in low price. I didn't say this, because I didn't want to embarrass him in front of the group, but I thought it none the less: "Do you think your appearance and demeanor have anything to do with your customers' reaction Do you think that you may give them the idea that you are the lowest rung on the pricing scale Is it possible that you have inadvertently positioned yourself as the Wal-Mart of the industry" Dave Kahle Dave Kahle has trained tens of thousands of distributor and B2B sales people and sales managers to be more effective in the 21st Century economy. He’s authoredeight books, and presented in 47 states and seven countries. Sign up for his weekly Ezine , or visit his blog. For more information, or to contact the author, contact: The DaCo Corporation, 835 West River Center Drive, PO Box 523, Comstock Park, MI 49321. Email:cheryl@davekahle.com http://www.davekahle.com, Phone: 800.331.1287 or 616.451.9377 Fax: 616.451.9412 SALESPEOPLE: POSITION YOURSELVES WITH POWER I remember, as a child, having a salesperson call on my family. He had an appointment to discuss a correspondence course for one of us. He drove a big Lincoln, dressed richly, spoke articulately, and carried himself with confidence. It wasn't a coincidence that we bought his program without quibbling about the price. These two scenarios illustrate a powerful and frequently overlooked best practice in the world of sales: Whether you intend to or not, you always create a position in the minds of your customers, and that position influences the customer's attitudes toward you as well as the buying decisions that follow.In other words, if you look like you're the low price, your customers will expect you to be the low price. It follows, then, that if we are going to be an effective, professional salesperson, we ought to give thoughtful consideration to how we position ourselves in the minds of our customers. Let's begin by understanding the idea of positioning a little deeper. Positioning has long been a term bandied about by advertising mavens and marketing gurus. They define it as the place that your brand or product has carved out in the mind of the customer. It's the pictures that enter the customers' mind when they think of your product, the feelings that your product evokes, the attitudes they associate with you, and the thoughts that they have of you. Chances are, for example, that the words "Volkswagen Beetle" evoke a set of responses from you that are different than "Chevrolet Corvette." You expect a certain degree of quality, price and service when you enter a Wal-Mart that is not the same as your expectations upon stepping inside a Saks Fifth Avenue store. please turn to page 218

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