The Values of Sales and Marketing

Sales and marketing is essentially about understanding the values and behavior of your customers and in this article I want to build on the fundamental drivers of human nature that I touch upon in my discussion of social media marketing. Understanding these values will enable you to better align your business efforts to cater to these basic desires upon which all other customer needs are built. A big part of this discussion is understanding and communicating which of these values your product(s) or service(s) is most linked to.

Sales and Marketing

I had previously depicted the values of Love, Experience, Knowledge, Fun, Beauty, Security, Excellence, Goodness, Value - which is different that the word “value” as used to describe these basic human needs! - and Freedom. I think that these 10 represent the complete spectrum of our fundamental aspirations as people and that everything else is then connected to them. In doing so, I will show you how your sales and marketing efforts can be empowered by aligning your mindset and activities to accord with these basic human desires.

Get help with sales and marketing or share your expertise and experiences!

Sales and Marketing for "You""You" MessagingThe Latest TrendsSales, Marketing & Strategy Consultant

Sales and Marketing Value #1: Love

Sales and Marketing

By love I do not mean the idea of romantic love but the basic human need to be appreciated by others. Everyone loves being praised and recognized and this basic tenet of human nature drives a lot of what we do, including what we buy. Companies recognized this a long time ago which is why so much of sales and marketing is directed towards the idea that a person will be admired for owning a particular product or using a particular service. The desire to be known and loved is one of the driving forces behind the explosive growth of social media and Internet viral marketing.

Have you thought about how you can tie your product(s) or service(s) into the idea of love? As a marketer, you should think about the social implications of someone buying what you sell. Are they going to be able to impress their friends, family and people they know? How can you make it so that they want to tell others about how great you are (being ”remarkable”)? There may be slight tweaks and adjustments you can make to your offering as well as your sales and marketing to build on this basic human need if you think about it and apply yourself to it. What you are striving for is to be perceived as being desirable.

Sales and Marketing Value #2: Experience

Sales and Marketing

We all like to do new things – watch any baby and you will see how true this is! Babies love exploring and discovering new sights, sounds and sensations and the truth is that adults are no different. What separates us from kids is that as “grown ups” we have responsibilities and schedules and whatnot that consume most of our time and energy and leave us with very little opportunity to continually discover the world as children do. That being said, most people eventually burn out and start to be less productive over time unless you can get away and take a break from it all by doing something different.

How can you incorporate this fundamental human characteristic into your sales and marketing efforts? Innovation is the term used to describe all that which is new and original in business and and technology. Can you innovate with your product or service to offer something that no one else? It is actually much easier that it seems and you would be surprised how the little things can sometimes make a big difference to your customers. Can you be innovative in your communications? Try an oddly-shaped flier or something outrageous in your next marketing campaign. How about using your phone number as your web address as well? Think of doing things – any small thing – that is different from what everyone else does. Your customers get a new experience and you will be rewarded with their business!

Sales and Marketing Value #3: Knowledge

Sales and Marketing

We want to learn new things as well – just watch kids listening to a story and you will know what I mean. Actually, stories are a powerful sales and marketing tool that deserve a article to themselves (and I have made a note to write one!). Adults love stories as well which is why movies are one of the only recession-proof indulgences that thrived during the Great Depression as well as the 2008 economic crisis. Personally, I find nothing quite as satisfying as being in the presence of a master teacher and can sit for hours enthralled in learning.

As a business professional, part of your job is undoubtedly to teach your customers as part of the sales process. However, are you just trying to teach customers about your product or service in order to sell them something? How about a broader approach where you are an industry expert simply seeker to advise customers in a consultant role? This is how the most successful sales organizations and individuals operate and in my opinion, the highest form of this approach is to unselfishly seek to serve and teach others in every way at every opportunity, regardless of personal benefit.

Sales and Marketing Value #4: Fun

Sales and Marketing

If students spent as much time studying as partying, our prospects for a brighter future as whole would be much stronger... That being said, there is nothing with wanting to have a good time - as long as no one gets hurt! - and it is, in fact, a basic human compulsion which it is harmful to deny. The people who enjoy life the most are those who have fun with things and take things lightly. The are constantly cheerful and great to be around, which is why others are naturally attracted to them. The saying, ”all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is as true for children as it is for adults. This is the reason show business is such big business.

How much fun are you? That is where sales and marketing starts and finishes, if you think about it. You create the value through your product(s) or service(s) and then communicate it based on your Marketing Personality. You then interact with people, build relationships and close business. If you say that you are not a ”people person” then you really shouldn't be in sales and marketing, in my humble opinion. You must must learn to be a people person and you must become more of one each day! People is what business is about and making friends with people is how you grow your business. As to fun, it is the glue that holds friendships together just as being cheerful is the way to make friends.

Sales and Marketing Value #5: Beauty

Sales and Marketing

The desire for beauty is a trait that is not just confined to personal beauty but extends to almost everything we do. We like to own beautiful possessions and appreciate seeing beautiful objects and places. Some people are more driven by this aspiration than others which is why some people are more organized and take the utmost care in matters of cleanliness, for example. Our collective love of beauty is why great art and literature has survived throughout the ages and why most people love nature. It is why we adorn ourselves, our homes, our cars and, yes, our cubicles!

How can you turn the desire for beauty to your advantage in sales and marketing? A big step is by making sure all of your physical evidence is beautiful and representative of the image you want to convey about yourself and your brand. This includes everything from your shop to your order forms, packaging, displays and everything that a customer can see and touch as it relates to your business. Your marketing communications should be visually appealing – and not just written well! - and your salespeople should be immaculate. How about extending that to make sure that your customer has an all round beautiful experience in doing business with you?

Sales and Marketing Value #6: Security

Sales and Marketing

We want to know that the things we enjoy today will be here for us tomorrow. Uncertainty about the future is one of the biggest driving forces and motivators behind human behavior and is borne out among other things in the huge financial services industry focused on saving for the future and the insurance industry which provides against unforeseen accidents. People spend an inordinate amount of time worry about their jobs, kids, bills and whatever ups and downs the think tomorrow might bring. Insecurity might stem from personal thoughts and feelings or may just be a reflection of the world at large which is constantly reminding us of all of the negatives fate may bring our way.

What kind of steps are you taking in your sales and marketing efforts in order to build on your customers' need for security? At the very least you are providing a quality product or service with lasting value. As well, you provide excellent service and support and are responsive to the needs and concerns of your customers. Make sure you take the time and effort to build assurances into your customer communications so that people know that you are dependable and there to fix their problems. Just knowing that they can trust you and rely on you will go a long way towards building customer loyalty and strong, lasting relationships.

Sales and Marketing Value #7: Excellence

Sales and Marketing

The Lexus ”Pursuit of Perfection” campaign is a great example of sales and marketing tied into our desire for excellence. We want to be the best, have the best and do the best and this need extends to every sphere of human activity. Whether it be the Olympics or other sporting events, new technology or ancient wisdom, we constantly aspire to and seek to be inspired by the very limits of human experience and beyond. The need for excellence is as abstract as it is hot wired into our human psyche and is something that influences each of us to some degree.

Are you excellent? Sales and marketing excellence means making sure that everything you do is the very best and that you communicate this to your customers as well! Making sure that you have the very best product(s) or service(s) extends to enabling your customer in every which way to make sure that everything from the buying process to customer service and support is exemplary. It's not just about making your customer happy but your own desire for excellence and in order to run an excellent business. Besides, a happy customer is one that will come back and tell others too!

Sales and Marketing Value #8: Goodness

Sales and Marketing

I don't mean “goodness” in a religious or moralistic sense, only the fact that each person has an internal indicator by which they judge everything to be either good or bad. Generally speaking, we try and avoid all that we consider “bad” and achieve all that we consider “good”. This applies to human virtues like honesty and integrity as well as mundane things like choosing a good meal at a restaurant. People are judgmental by nature and a good example of this is the fact that statistics show that most people form snap judgments of candidates in an election and vote based on those feelings rather than any factual evidence or each candidate's policies.

The sales and marketing saying that ”people buy based on emotion” is grounded in this principle. Despite your best efforts to convince people that you have a great product or service, they will make an overall judgment themselves based on their own personal criteria. The key, therefore, is to understand what this criteria is for each of your customers. What is it that they are looking for and what do they plan to achieve by buying this product or service? As well, their perception of “goodness” extends to you and everything about your business which is why you must strive to maintain the utmost professionalism and courtesy while striving to serve your customer and, again, be excellent in every way possible.

Sales and Marketing Value #9: Value

Sales and Marketing

The best way to describe this human need is that it is the ability to fulfill all other needs! We all have things that we need to do and have and we want to achieve all this with the least amount of effort or expense. Whether it is getting a degree or good job to buying roses for your wife – or husband! -, people will always base their behavior based on what is in it for them and seek to maximize their perceived gains and minimize their perceived losses.

Value is an age old concept in sales and marketing and is the reason why we all know that ”everyone loves a bargain”. People are looking to gain more for less and as a business owner or professional, this is what you should be looking to provide and communicate. Step 1 is to know your customer and what they want and Step 2 is to give it to them in abundance (not to mention, communicate all this to them at every step of the way!). In fact, I will not be remiss in pointing out something that a sales mentor of mine explained to me, that people usually buy for 1 or 2 personal reasons and that if you simply figure these out and focus on them, you will have sale.

Sales and Marketing Value #10: Freedom

Sales and Marketing

“Okay, this is going too far,” I can hear some readers think! Well, this is the ultimate value I want to touch upon in any case and what I am referring to here is the human desire to transcend pain, suffering and even our very human condition. While this may sound mystical, it also holds ground in day-to-day practical affairs and has a direct bearing on your success as a sales or marketing professional. Think of it this way: people want to avoid everything they perceive as being negative and achieve everything that they perceive as being positive and we want this forever. The desire for freedom as I am describing it here is different from the value of Goodness to which I previously referred because that is more a matter of judgment whereas the “good” we are trying to seek here refers to our condition.

Bringing this back to sales and marketing, the obvious touch point is the fact of solving customer pain as a sales and marketing strategy. Most successful salespeople will tell you that fear of pain is more powerful than a person's desire for gain. Some will even go so far as to say that if you don't have a pain, you don't have a sale. If you can fix a problem, people will buy, but on the other hand they are wary of promises of benefits that may or may not materialize. I personally think that both motivators can be equally strong in different situations and in fact the desire to improve something may in itself be a fear of becoming stagnant by not changing. Whatever the case, you can use our innate desire to better our condition – individually and as organizations – and eliminate all destructive and uncomfortable factors in our present situation to help position your product, service and message for greater success.

Get help with sales and marketing or share your expertise and experiences!

Sales and Marketing for "You""You" MessagingThe Latest TrendsSales, Marketing & Strategy Consultant

Do you have Sales and Marketing expertise or experiences?

Do you have insights, strategies or a story about sales and marketing to share with other readers? Perhaps you have implemented a new strategy that is working really well or have insights into how the Internet is changing the sales and marketing landscape! Send in your thoughts in as much detail as you like to create a page in this section.

[ ? ]

Author Information (optional)

To receive credit as the author, enter your information below.

(first or full name)

(e.g., City, State, Country)

Submit Your Contribution

 submission guidelines.

(You can preview and edit on the next page)

What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

Sales and Marketing Philosophy 
I have got to say that this is one of the most intense sales and marketing articles I have ever read! It should belong in a textbook on philosophy or ethics!! …

What an amazing article! 
Thanks, I really appreciate the profound insights that you have put down here. It is so true that all of our actions as humans are based on emotion and …

Click here to write your own.

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.




Like my blog posts? Let me send them to you! Don't worry -- your e-mail address is totally secure and I won't send you anything else.

Sales And Marketing

Privacy Policy