05 Jul 2013

How To Sell Your Product If It’s a Vitamin and Not A Pain-Killer

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photodune-vitamin-c-blogPain-killer Vs. Vitamin   In general, your product falls into one of two categories. Either it is a pain-killer that solves a very critical business pain, need, or crisis for your prospect. Or it is a vitamin that doesn’t really solve any major pain or crisis, but is a nice-to-have and is just a better way of doing something.

Vitamins Are Extremely Hard to Sell  When your product is essentially a vitamin, it’s extremely hard to sell because it is almost impossible to get the prospect’s time and attention, and it’s very hard to create urgency around the sale.


So What Do We Do, How Do We Sell a Vitamin

1. Focus on increased revenue   Show how the increased productivity, or increased time-saving, or increased efficiency, can translate to increased revenue. And then tie the increased revenue to an ROI calculation. Show a before/after analysis from using your product.

 2. Focus on increased budget dollars  If your product really helps reduce costs and not increase revenues, then clearly point out the amount of the reduced costs that will be achieved and how your prospect’s (budget) dollar savings can be used to generate more revenue or used to help solve your prospect’s higher critical/crisis projects. Again, show a before/after analysis from using your product.

 3. Show How Your Product Provides A Competitive Edge  Showing how the capabilities of your product can give your prospect or your prospect’s company a more competitive edge sometimes works well. It’s hard to translate that into specific revenue, but most executives, especially marketing and sales executives, do consider gaining a competitive edge to be a very critical capability.

 4. Point Out That 1-2 Of Your Prospect’s Competitors Are Using Your Product: Point out to your prospect how one or two of his/her competitors are actually customers of yours, and are using your product. You need to be a little careful how you present this information, but it usually works.

 5. Tie the Sale to Your Prospect’s Boss’s Needs  If possible, find out the priorities and crises that your prospect’s Boss is having. Perhaps you can tie the sale to those needs. For example, your prospect might be doing well from his/her revenue point of view, but perhaps his/her boss who has a wider revenue perspective is having trouble with his/her revenue goals overall. So you can tie your product’s productivity increase and subsequent revenue increase to helping solve your prospect’s boss’s revenue problems.

 6. Tie The Sale To Helping Your Prospect With His/Her Career  It might be possible to tie the increased productivity, increased revenue, reduced costs, and ROI that’s associated with your product to your prospect’s career aspirations. For example, achieving some of these increases might help the prospect position himself /herself as doing much for the overall corporate mission and goal.

7. Create Urgency By Using a Specific Date  Creating urgency for a vitamin is very hard to do. The best way to create this urgency is to tie your sale to a critical, impending event with a specific date. Examples are an upcoming product launch, or a trade show, or end-of-quarter results, or an upcoming audit, or even the prospect’s upcoming performance review. 


Summary  First, be honest with yourself and decide if your product is a vitamin. If it is, then sell by focusing on increased revenue, increased budget dollars, providing a competitive edge, selling to your prospect’s boss’s needs, and selling to your prospect’s career goals. Create urgency for the sale by tying the sale to a critical, impending event with a very specific date.




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