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I can’t sell anything, until I know everything!

By Percy Chong, 12th November 2015

Do you need to know everything about your product before you can sell confidently?

How often have you encountered salespersons who expressed that they do not have any confidence in selling until they have acquired all product knowledge?  Or are you one of these guilty salespersons?

ASG have coached and repeated many times over and will continue to maintain that, you do not need to know everything before you can sell. In fact, there have been many instances where sales closes have happened around us despite the lack of product knowledge. Product knowledge/training though important, is not the most crucial element in securing the sale. And it is definitely not the only stumbling block with failed sale attempts, and should not be the only excuse for not attempting the pitch, or even losing one.

Interview with many top sales rookies have also revealed that they too have suffered from limited product knowledge. But that did not deter them from attempting the sale. And it was because of their boldness and willingness to approach their prospects that they have attributed, allowed them to be at the right place and right time to pick up countless sales opportunities. They further shared that although their lack of product knowledge is a concern with most prospects, most of the same prospects are also understanding towards their situation (of being new), and if they are able to explain themselves satisfactorily or ultimately provide the prospects with the information requested for, the sale will still happen.

Rarely do the prospects expect any salesperson to be a walking encyclopedia of information or product knowledge. Of course, there will always be the occasional and unreasonable “suspects”. But that has always been part of the selling experience for all salesperson, with or without product knowledge. 

Looking deeper, the crux of the matter really isn’t about product knowledge or training, but the absent of confidence triggered by the lack of product knowledge.

So how do the top sales rookies circumvent their lack of knowledge and not let it affect their confidence and their sale?

Their solution is simply in the shift of their paradigm. Their lack of product knowledge or confidence is diverted or replaced by their belief in having an excellent product support/specialist team or supervisor, being able to assist them to answer all tough or technical questions should it be presented to them (ie. “Borrowed” confidence from subject matter experts).

This clever redirection of their mindset allowed them to speak with confidence to their prospects despite not having much product knowledge. Naturally, the backend support needs to be robust and available, in order for them to have the conviction to attempt their pitches boldly.

With this glaring example, ASG maintains that it is a misplaced belief that a salesperson needs to know everything before they can sell. More often than not, being successful in sales is not dependent upon having more knowledge, but more likely in having a new “mind” or fresh way of looking at things.

Article contributed by Percy Chong (through Asian Sales Guru)
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