Value selling: How to sell expensive products for their high value

purina feeds

Tony Jon, whose JTS Agriventures is engaged in the distribution of Purina Feeds for hogs and broilers under Cargill Philippines, says  he has to engage in value selling to make the brand acceptable to the market.

This implies, according to Jon, the need to explain to farmers the long-term benefits of using quality outputs, since the Purina brand is more expensive than most other brands.

“We tell them they should be more concerned with performance and ultimate unit production cost rather than feed cost on a per bag basis.  It is not easy, but challenging – requiring a lot of strategic market positioning.  We want to help upgrade the livestock industry by offering good performance feeds to the local livestock growers.”

Indeed, value selling is an important sales technique that relies on building on the inherent value of a product or service.  Because price considerations are dominant in buying decisions for the ordinary buyer, sellers need to demonstrate that higher price ultimately ends up “cheaper,” peso for peso because of the premium value (e.g. product quality, effectiveness/performance, durability, better service, ease of use, not to mention prestige) consumers get from the higher-priced product.

All too often, however, customers would insist on buying on the basis of price.  When they do this, sellers can turn the tables on them and push value selling.

Here’s what suggests:

It’s important to acknowledge needs and concerns, but spin it back into a value selling question and rephrase “price” as “value.” If a customer says, Do what you can and get back to me with the best price,” the response should be, “I can understand your concerns about getting the best bang for the buck.” Continue, by getting customers to elaborate on what “value” means to them with these value selling questions

  1. Can you help me understand the criteria you look for in determining whether you’re
    getting the best value?
  2. Let’s put price aside for the moment.  Help me understand how you define value.
  3. Tell me about the things that are important to you when it comes to getting the best value
    for your money.

Sure, value may still come down to price, but it is important for price to be one of many factors to discuss, not the only factor. What does value selling mean to customers, or in their case, value-buying? Several types of criteria come into play:

  • Service
  • Delivery
  • Support
  • Turnaround
  • On-time performance
  • Shorter lead time
  • Ease of use
  • Reduced hours
  • Elimination of paperwork
  • Improvement of performance output.

Companies are not in the business to save money — they’re in the business to meet performance targets and generate revenue. That’s why value selling is so vital, you’ve got to challenge customers and get them thinking about profitability.

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