Your customer is evolving, and salespeople must adapt and evolve their own strategies to keep up. Due to the growing nature of customer demands, salespeople should strive to be on the same page as their prospects and clients, and the more you know about them, the more likely you will share the same vision and meet their expectations.

Jonathan Farrington writes about the importance of this in a recent post on his blog, and he shares some advice for aligning your services with what clients want. First, he recommends making a list of your top ten clients. For each one, list all of the most important things you know about them. Not sure where to start? He recommends asking the following questions about each:

  • What their commercial objectives are in 2016?
  • What their trading trends are? Up, down or static?
  • Are they expanding or contracting?
  • Did they make a profit last year?

Most importantly, Farrington encourages you to ask yourself “Do you know where or how you can make a significant contribution in helping them achieve their overall goals this year?” These questions will give you a snapshot of your clients’ and prospects’ goals and how your product or service will help them reach those goals.

Finally, when analyzing how you can adapt your strategy to align with their goals, consider adding the following five “magic” words to the statement: “How will I help clients/ prospects ___?”

  • Save
  • Gain
  • Reduce
  • Increase
  • Improve

“Those are the five magic words that will make you very attractive – if indeed you genuinely do have something to bring to their party,” Farrington writes. They have absolutely no interest in you, your company, your past successes, your ability to stage a dynamic presentation, or even your products/solutions – unless they impact their commercial objectives, profitability, market share or overall success.”

Educate yourself about your prospects’ and clients’ true needs and stand out from competitors by showcasing this knowledge. Doing so will prepare you to compete for today’s “customer 3.0!”