The ultimate rapport builder. Go and do this for people. They will love you for it.

Do not start with the product. Start with the solution to the customer’s problem. People don’t really buy products. They buy what the product can do for them. They buy what the promise is.

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Give people solutions. Be the best problem solver you know. Photo by Olav Ahrens Røtne on Unsplash

One of my favorite headlines of all time is , ‘Corns gone in 5 days or your money back!’ That’s a headline that solves a problem backed by a guarantee. That isn’t selling a product. That is selling a solution to a common problem. What do people want? Their problems solved.

Think about people who are new to something. They may not even understand fully what their problem is. Maybe they’re in something difficult to figure out and they’re new to it. They’re looking for an expert, a resource, someone who has been there before and seen the problems and solved them. They’d even pay up for this expertise. Their problem isn’t going any where, and they are searching for answers. Imagine trying to help them by immediately putting product in front of them, product they don’t really understand. Will that help them? Will they grasp what needs to be done here? Or, will they be further confused? Remember: the confused customer doesn’t buy.

A far better approach is explaining the why behind the product. You have this problem, Mr. Customer. It is doing this, this, and that. And it is painful to deal with. As experts in this sort of matter, we’ve seen this before. You need our solution because it is designed to remove problems such as x, y, and z. It is designed to work in conjunction with x because we’ve found that it is a powerful combination to eliminate the problem entirely. Our experience shows that…And then, boom: you’ve solved their problem. And you gave them an explanation of why before you solved it so that they could understand it better. That’s great selling.

If the customer doesn’t understand his problem yet, then he’s not going to understand, nor care, about your product. Then, why are you leading with it? It’s a common mistake. You can’t talk product yet until you show to the customer that you have a full grasp on his problem. You need to reassure him that you’ve been here, seen this before, and can help. He needs to feel like you understand what he’s going through. This is the marketing and salesmanship that is often left out of the relationship. Prove to them that you get them first. Prove to them that you understand them first. Prove to them that you’ve got the experience to back up what you’re saying first. Then, talk solutions. Then, talk answers. Then, talk, ‘Here’s how to…’ and you’ve got them.

People got problems, and they are willing to pay people to solve them. But you have to be willing to understand where they are first. You have to be willing to take the time to listen first. You have to prove you’ve been there first and have the experience to solve the problem for them. Then, once they feel like they know, like and trust you, you can present your answers.

Nothing helps to build rapport and make things happen like solving problems for people. It is the ultimate sales and marketing strategy.

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