Truth or Consequences

Unsubstantiated Claims

James has a customer who’s on the fence and he knows his product will really help he just needs to convince them to say yes so he says… “look I know this is an important decision for you but I guarantee if you give this a try you’re going to lose that 10 pounds.”

So what do you think? Did James go to far? Yes he did. That’s a claim and not only is it illegal it doesn’t help as much as you might think.

On today’s show discover:

  • …how exaggerating product claims can hurt your sales;
  • … if it’s ok to tell a customer you don’t know;
  • … why it’s always better to tell the truth.

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It’s Too Good To Be True

As Seen On TV You’ve seen those “as seen on TV” products that guarantee defined abs by just sitting on the couch, right? You aren’t fooled because you know if it sounds too good to be true it probably is.Your customers know that too. They understand there is no magic bullet and no matter how good your product is, it won’t provide the same results for everyone who uses it, every-time.

When you exaggerate claims about your product and make it sound too good to be true….it works against you, not for you. Oh, and remember all that rapport and trust you worked so hard to establish at the beginning? Well that’s all gone now in an instant!

The question is do you need to make the claim in the first place? What if you said this instead:

“Tim, I know this is a big decision for you and I’m confident you’re going to see results so confident, I’ll even back your purchase with a 30 day money back guarantee. That way you can try it and see for yourself.”

It’s more compelling because you’re communicating confidence and most of all Tim gets to see the results for himself. There’s no promise of results but you’re confident. It’s a big difference.

So making unfounded claims have some serious consequences:

  • They can weaken your rapport;
  • They can ruin trust;
  • They can cost you sales.   

Setting False Expectations

What if you make a claim and the customer buys it? It didn’t work against you then, right? Well here’s the other problem with claims. Claims set an expectation and if you’re product doesn’t meet that expectation you’ll have an unhappy customer and possibly a return.

So claims work against you before the sale (because they sound too good to be true) and after the sale because they set an unrealistic expectation.

Here are a few other ways that stretching the truth can lead to unwanted consequences in sales.

When you tell someone something has never happened before or always works like this it can be hard to believe. “I’ve never had someone who didn’t like the taste?” “People always experience pain relief within the first 5 minutes.”  When you’re the customer it’s hard to believe that you’re the first person in history who didn’t like the taste or didn’t experience results.

You Don’t Need to Know Everything

Finally, there’s a misconception that customers expect salespeople to know everything about their product or service. While it is important to be knowledgeable, it’s not always possible to know everything about your product.

The good news is that customers would much rather hear “You know, that’s a great question and I’m not sure. Let me check on that for you.” instead of some “bad” information that you just made up on the spot.

We talk a lot about trust and value in sales. When you’re straight forward with your customer about what to expect from your product and provide them with good factual information…they’ll trust you and see more value in what you’re offering.

Today’s One-Two Punch

Tell the Truth and Avoid Consequences

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