When is the last time a sales rep convinced you to buy a phone?Evan Selleck - Contributing Editor
Let’s paint a picture together. Grab your imaginary brush, and let’s get to work. (There won’t be any pretty trees, though, so don’t get too excited.) With that imaginary brush and your mind’s eye, I want you to create a local wireless retailer in front of you. A moderately sized building, with a network logo right on the front (you can tell me more about that part later). Glass doors, so you can see the spacious area inside. And then, the most important part to our portrait: the sales associates.
We’re painting this generalized image, with no real specifics, because that’s a part of the story that is meant for you. You see, I want to know about your personal story the last time that you went into your wireless network’s store, with the sole purpose of buying a phone. Whether it was to start a new contract entirely, upgrade, or just buy a phone to buy a phone, this particular story is all about the purchase.
Back when I was selling phones, I met a wide array of people all searching for the device that would either “just make calls,” or do “everything I need it to.” As you can imagine, that’s quite the stretch between desires or needs. Finding the perfect phone for someone can be tricky, especially when the average person’s opinion of something can change at the drop of a hat. I know for me, personally, a phone I loved in the store can be a completely different device a few days later. So, a sale’s person’s job is two-fold, in most cases: listen to the customer, and find the right phone.
But, what if you’re the customer that goes into the store already knowing what you want? Whether you saw it on the Internet, or on the TV, or just saw it out in the wild and saw someone using it, your opinion has already been shaped and molded. You are, for all intents and purposes, “already sold” on the phone that you want. So, in that particular instance, the sale’s person job should just be pretty simple: sell you a phone.
I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen a person in that situation, and have watched a sales person try to sell the customer on another phone entirely. “Oh, but that phone has a smaller screen compared to this one!” Or, something like, “You won’t like that operating system, but you’ll definitely like this one!”
Which led me to wonder how many times you, as a customer, Dear Reader, have been “talked into” or convinced to buy another phone entirely. For this particular case, I’m not talking about a time where you’ve got into a store not really knowing or caring which phone you walked out with. I want a time where you went in going to buy, say, a Samsung Galaxy S III and walked out with a Samsung Galaxy Note II because of the sales rep.
I want to know about the time where the sales rep went above and beyond the call of duty to get you to buy a different phone. But, most importantly, I want to know what the reasons were. Which phone did you go in to buy, initially? How did they compare that phone to the one you walked out with? And, perhaps most importantly: did you tell the sales rep right from the start that you knew which phone you wanted?
I’m very curious to see if this has happened to the majority of you, or if that specific tactic just falls by the wayside more often than not. So, tell me your story! I want to hear it.