As a marketer my basic mantra has been “see it through the customers eyes”, simple and effective.

Recently while mentoring a great young sales person for a client, I noticed that even though she asked the right questions at the right time, and used the information returned to progress the sales process very well, she had less success closing than I would have expected.

On reflection, she was failing because of the language she was using.

Her language reflected that of her employer, and in it were embedded the jargon and descriptive nuances that were used to communicate a complex product amongst themselves, and it was not necessarily the language her prospects used amongst themselves. Although the differences were small,  they were important, not just for the clarity of understanding that was communicated, but importantly for the comfort of the prospect, who was reassured that there was no ambiguity at play.

It became clear that in addition to the marketing mantra, there needs to be a sales one as well, “speak using the customers voice”.

By so doing, you avoid the pitfalls of the same words having slightly different meanings and implications in different contexts, and by using the customers voice back to them, you enhance the opportunity to build the rapport so important to building a relationship.