What makes a great sales representative? Among things other than persistence, it’s someone who can relate to and connect with their prospective clients. But before you do that, you have to understand your prospects. That’s why creating an ideal client profile is so important.
Who Do People Do Business With and Why?
According to the Entrepreneur, prospects do business with someone they can relate to, trust, and like because there’s usually some sort of risk involved.
What Traits Do Those Sales Representatives Need to Have?
Sales representatives need to demonstrate that they’re relatable and trustworthy in everything they do; from what they wear to how they talk to what certifications or degrees they have.
How Do You Know How to Relate to and Build Trust With Your Prospects?
You need to understand your prospects inside and out. Not only who buys from you, but who your ideal clients are and what they want. A few questions to answer here to identify who your ideal personas are include:
- What specific problem does your company solve for them?
- Is that product or solution reasonably profitable for your business in regards to its other offerings?
- Do you like doing business with these people?
How Do You Better Understand Your Ideal Client Personas?
You can do this by creating buyer personas. Hubspot has a great template to help you map out some basic information and the Buyer Persona Institute has a great methodology for interviewing current closed/won and closed/lost opportunities to get solid feedback straight from the clients you’d like to attract. You can also do surveys using tools like SurveyMonkey to collect more quantitative data for information about demographics and more.
Buyer Persona Fail
With the election around the corner, I thought it’d be fitting to refer to some interesting political ads popping up in regards to buyer personas.
Here’s a fun rap tune from 2016 presidential candidate Ben Carson in which he attempts to “relate to young black voters.” Judging by the comments and articles reviewing the $150,000 ad, the response was not positive. Maybe if the people running Carson’s campaign had interviewed and/or polled some of the target persona, they might have learned more about how and why people who like Ben Carson want to vote for him and leveraged that for the ad. Yes, that demographic probably likes rap music, but maybe not with Carson in it. Maybe they like Carson too, but more-so because they respect him as a surgeon and his stance on certain issues that will help them. The messaging could have focused on that: How Ben Carson plans to help them if elected. And instead of a rap tune, he could have done a YouTube video, a TV ad, or appeared on a show as a guest that they all watch like Mr. Trump did.
Buyer Persona Win
Ironically, Donald Trump’s epic jam session to rapper Drake’s song, “Hotline Bling,” on SNL was “spectacular, of course.” Why the difference? Trump knows who his target voters are and what they care about as a savvy business guy. He knows that people are tired and fed up with the economy and sleazy politicians. They just want to laugh, elect someone who gets shit done, seems to be in touch with reality, and appears trustworthy by being authentic in everything they do. I’m not saying I’m necessarily voting for Donald Trump as president, but as he loves to tell everyone, he is leading in the polls…and there’s a reason why.
While you may not be running for president with such a strict deadline for marking victory or failure, your success is gauged constantly by revenue, and if you’re off base, that will be reflected in the growth of your division or company.
Information Gathered in a Persona Profile
Here are a few fun bullet points on information you can gather in a persona to better understand your client and then make sure all of your collateral resonates with:
- Values (personal and professional)
- Tone and style
- Pain points
- Solutions your company can provide for those pain points
- Real quotes about why they choose your company
Aside from who your client is, you can also learn more about how they find and choose a product or service like yours during the interview process from the Buyer Persona Institute. For example, do most of your prospects get on Google when researching for a solution like yours? Or do they only turn to referrals? You want to know things like this before you develope an SEO strategy or a referral program so you can maximize your investments.
Looking for more information about creating personas? Join our free webinar on February 16 where we will review buyer personas and walk through some sample ones.
Posted by Jackie Connors
Jackie Connors is the Founder & CEO of Digital Marketing Direction, a top-tiered HubSpot Solutions Partner agency based in Texas. She provides inbound training, consulting, and content marketing services to mid-market companies.