Are Your Originators Selling Value or Price?

In recent conversations with sales managers, the most common refrain I hear is that we need originators who can sell value, not price. I have always believed that selling value is the fundamental role of the originator and mandatory for a sales organization’s success.

The problem is that value may look slightly different to each person in the customer’s organization. While individuals may all agree on group outcomes, different departments and individuals have their own personal agendas that are critical for the originator to understand.

What this means is that in any sale, there are multiple values that need to be addressed. It is the job of the originator to know what the agendas are and to show relevant people the outcomes that will be reached by dealing with you—and only you. Top originators always pitch knowing that they need to sell multiple values. The best salespeople present a separate value proposition for each key person in the decision-making process as well as the group. It doesn’t matter if it is a husband and wife or a broker or a correspondent, you are selling separate value propositions to them.

How does an originator know the separate agendas of each party in any transaction?

It is all about the salesperson asking great questions. It may sound simple but asking great questions is a difficult process that requires planning and effort because what you ask a potential customer varies based on the individual’s life experiences. Average originators treat everyone the same and consequently, have uneven results because they do not have a sharp enough focus on the drivers of each prospect.

In Nicholas A. C. Read’s great book, Target Opportunity Selling, he states, “the building blocks of any value proposition is asking questions that drill into triggers, problems, and opportunities behind the customer’s vision.” To ask good questions, originators must plan the question sequence and write down what they will be asking. Top producers never wing the all-important initial meeting with a customer.

Also, top producers always have an end point in mind for every conversation with a prospect that requires them to build on what it will mean to the referral source or a borrower to have a relationship with them. Average producers don’t do this and as a result, are stuck on just selling price. A pricing-dependent selling strategy is dangerous for one’s personal income because it only works if an originator is working for the lowest price lender. By definition, only one lender can fill this role.

This explains why top producers are hard to recruit because they understand that having the lowest price is not as important as selling the value of doing business with them. The originators that sell the lowest price do not form trusted partnerships with their clients—a value-based relationship.

Are your originators still selling price? If so, what are you strategies to ensure that your originators are selling value? If you want to know the best tactics to shift from a price-based to value-based strategy, contact me.