Selling a product or service—verbally or through marketing efforts—shouldn’t be a one-sided, pushy endeavor. Since small business owners believe in what they’re selling, there’s a strong desire to tell potential customers everything all at once. But being bombarded with features, regardless of how amazing, is overwhelming and confusing. Customers gain some knowledge, yes, but they’re left sorting out whether or not it has value for them.

Act as an advisor. Find out what problem the customer needs to solve and how you can provide value. Explain exactly how features deliver benefit and what it might mean for them. Additionally:

  • View every customer touch-point as a relationship-building tool.
  • Build trust and gather info by asking questions.
  • Get better at listening and responding. When you’re talking to customers, only suggest solutions that apply—there’s no need to force things that don’t.
  • Don’t make assumptions. Ask, research or use applicable data before you start suggesting.

Long-term loyalty begins with perception. If a customer feels all that transpired was a sales transaction, it’s only a short-term win. If a customer feels your business cares about the outcome for them, there’s a completely different dynamic that’s more likely to lead to referrals and additional purchases.