Best Practices

What the Great Dress Debate Reveals About Selling Value

Christopher Tuttle

The Internet lost its mind yesterday over a dress.

Dress
Photo courtesy of ABC7 News

By now you’ve probably seen this image scroll across your Facebook feed, pop to the top of your Tumblr account, or maybe you even caught Taylor Swift and Jimmy Fallon tweeting about it last night.

We aren’t here to tell you whether or not the dress is blue and black or gold and white (ahem, #teamgoldandwhite).

What is more interesting is the insight the optical illusion offers to sales leaders.

Sales reps should always be asking themselves the following question:

“Am I selling a product or am I selling a solution?”

In other words, are you providing value?

Sales leaders should never forget that the competitive environment for nearly every product you can imagine (and for whatever color of dress you can imagine) now stretches to virtually every corner of the globe. Competition is fierce, and prospects need more than feature pitches and competitive pricing to drive their decisions.

The sales profession is entering a new era. Sales is no longer about doing a good job of communicating features and benefits. It’s about working with each customer to create value as the customer defines it.

When you can successfully place yourself in your customers’ shoes and understand their needs, you will be seen as a valuable resource, not as a pushy salesperson.

Too many reps miss the opportunity to sell value, and end up trying to dump a truckload of widgets on the lowest bidder.

Reps who meet their quotas, who accelerate sales and build lasting relationships with their clients are not busy trying to sell “a black and blue dress” or “a white and gold dress.”

These reps simply sell “a dress the whole world is staring at”— and that has more value than any color combination.

Still want to know why some of us see blue and black while others see white and gold? Our friends at Wired have an excellent article examining the science behind our eyes.

Want to forget the dress and learn more about how to accelerate your sales? Take a look at the ebook below.

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