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    Here's the September 2010 issue of Psyche-Selling TM eNewsletter, and many companies are either looking to either rev up sales for the last 3 months of the year, or are looking to planning next year's sales targets.


    In China, many sales people are complaining that customers simply buy based on price, and customers' loyalty are almost non-existent. 


     Well, the fact is that customers' loyalty is always earned, and not given.  As such, as sales people would have to actively engage customers in order to win their loyalty.


     Hence, this month's topics:

  1. How to Engage Your Customers to Exceptional Sales Results; and

  2. Hospitality Sales People: How to Ensure MICE Success for Event Organiser Customers


     This issue's main article is on  "How to Engage Your Customers to Exceptional Sales Results", and the focus is on how sales people can actively engage customers to increase their loyalty levels, as well as to deliver exceptional sales results.


    In brief:

  • While the job of the sales person has increasingly becoming more complex, many customers are still viewing sales people nothing more than "talking brochures" and "money collectors";

  • To alleviate the level of respect from customers, sales people will have to engage customers in deeper conversations, so that customers can appreciate the sales person's value;

  • Even without official customer engagement budgets and plans, sales people can actively engage with customers in conversations on the product offerings, on how the sales person can be of value, and on what the future will be like if the customer keeps on buying.  Read on... ...  


    To read the rest of this newsletter, pls. of this newsletter, pls. of this newsletter, pls. of this newsletter, pls. click here (


    In the meantime, please check out our Asia HR Summit 2010 How to Engage Your Employees to Exceptional Performance to be held in Shanghai on 21 October 2010.


How to Engage Your Customers to Exceptional Sales Results


by c.j. Ng


     According to a market research conducted in 2006 (Eisenberg & Eisenberg), simply attaining a high level of customer satisfaction does not seem to guarantee the customer's business.  In fact, 60% to 80% of customers who defect to a competitor said they were satisfied or very satisfied in the research just prior to their defection.


     In fact, many sales people and sales managers are lamenting that customers' loyalty is so low, they will just buy from anyone who can offer the same quality and a marginally lower price.


     While a lot has been discussed about what kinds of media (online or offline) should we engage our customers, as well as how shall we measure the level of customer engagement our customers, very little was discussed about what should be the content of our customer engagement initiatives.  In other words, if we want to improve the level of customer engagement, what kinds of information must we pass to them, AND what kinds of information do we expect in return.

     In fact, even much less has been discussed about how sales people can play a low-cost and active role to actively engage customers so that they help us deliver exceptional sales results.


     Here are the 3 main conversation topics that any individual sales person can communicate with the customer, so as to actively engage the customer:

  • Conversations revolving around your product and service offerings

  • Conversations revolving around your added value as a sales person

  • Conversations revolving around the brightness of the future


Conversations Revolving Around Your Product and Service Offerings

     Even though the concept of selling benefits not features has been going around for decades, many sales people are still communicating features rather than benefits to their customers.  These ranges from:
  • Specifying the size of the room when selling hotel rooms  or meeting packages;

  • Emphasizing the hardware specifications when selling IT products;

  • Selling the material rather than the benefits that such material can deliver


     Many sales people will argue that the buyers do have in-depth technical knowledge, and hence will appreciate the implications of the benefits that each product feature will deliver.  However, here is an illustration why having a conversation that revolves around your product benefits in addition to the technical features is essential to sales success.


     If a customer is shopping for a new car, chances are the car sales person is going to open the hood to show the customer the "technical details".  However, even if the customer knows nothing about car engines, chances are he or she will pretend that they know, and make some positive comments to the car sales person such as "Not bad" or "Looks good to me".  Customers, in general, hate to admit they don't know certain things.  As a sales person, you will need to present your offerings in ways they can understand.


     Hence, in order to strike a conversation that revolves around your product or service offerings, you will need to:


Conversations Revolving Around Your Added Value as a Sales Person


     With the advance in informational systems, be it search engines, shopping platforms or online social networking, customers have access to a lot of information that they previously couldn't get.  These include information about your products, your prices and how to buy them.


     Hence, if customers can buy your products off a catalogue or web site, they don't need the sales person to be a "talking brochure" or a mere "money collector".  Instead, they need sales people to create value by:

  • Being Responsive by pro-actively identifying current and potential challenges that the customer may face, as well as suggesting ways the customer can overcome such challenges;

  • Developing win-win Relationships with multiple stakeholders or influencers so that decision-makers don't have to sell your products and services internally to their colleagues; or

  • Being Resourceful or even creative to work across different departments or business units to provide customised solutions that fit the customers' every need,

  • Being a Reliable and trusted source of information and provider of reliable products and services, etc.


     Some sales people and managers may question that if sales people were to spend time solving customers' problems, do they still have the time to do the selling.  More importantly, what if the solution to the customers' problems and challenges is our competitor's products?


     While how each sales team or sales person responds to such thorny issues will vary, here are some guiding principles:

  • Customers don't just buy from someone they like.  More importantly, they buy from whom they trust;

  • In a recent straw poll with sales and HR managers (from international companies in China) identifying what are some critical behaviours or competencies that drive sales results, the consensus was that most top sales people are helpful by nature;

  • Given that most product features, quality, price, delivery, service standards are pretty much similar, the sales person could be the only differentiator in the entire sale.  Small wonder that research by HR Chally shows that 39% of a customer’s decision to buy from your company is based on the effectiveness of the sales person.


     Hence, the question that customers are asking sales people is NOT "why should I buy your products or services".  It's becoming "why should I buy from YOU?"


Conversations Revolving Around the Brightness of the Future


     One of the key issues about doing business in today's world (especially in a fast developing economy like China's) is markets, along with customers' expectations, are changing very quickly.


     What this means for the sales person could be:

  • Whatever is your best selling product may get obsolete  very quickly;

  • Whoever are your best customers may suddenly decide to buy from someone else; and

  • Whichever are your most profitable territories may be swamped by competitors offering the same quality at lower prices


     If you are not relevant to your customers' future needs, then you may find yourself being substituted by others who are.


     Hence, it is not only important to engage with customers in the present tense, it is just as vital to engage them for the future.  To do this, you will need to:

  • Be engaged in the future product offerings, future markets and future customers of your customers;

  • Be Responsive to your customers' future needs and pro-actively suggest how you can help them meet their future goals;

  • Be Resourceful and creative to customise or create future solutions for your customers' future


     The problem with implementing the above?  Well, sales people are measured by current and not future performance.  Especially when that future could be 3-5 years down the road.  Still, smart companies and sales people who would like their customers to buy from them for years to come will commit some time and resources to partner with their key customers to create a future together.


     Need help in engaging your customer to exceptional sales results?  Simply e-mail or call +86-136 7190 2505 or Skype: cydj001 and arrange to buy me a mocha.  All information shall be kept in confidence.

Power Breakfast Hour: 26 October 2010
How to Engage Your Customers to Exceptional Sales Results


     Join International Sales Leadership and Performance Coach c.j. Ng in this Power Breakfast Hour in Shanghai where you will find out:

  • How to induce customer loyalty when 60% to 80% of customers who defect to a competitor said they were satisfied or very satisfied in the research just prior to their defection;

  • How to conduct deep conversations with customers that will build trust and increase customer engagement;

  • How you can actively engage with customers in conversations on the product offerings, on how you can create value, and on what the future will be like if the customer keeps on buying


VENUE:  Crowne Plaza Shanghai • 400 Panyu Road (near Fahuazhen Road) • 上海银星皇冠酒店 •  番禺路 400 号 (靠法华镇路)

DATE: Tuesday, 26 October 2010

TIME: 08:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. 



     To make this a more conducive discussion, we are expecting a small group of about 15 people only. The room can only take in 18, so please register early to avoid disappointments. Please e-mail your registrations to  You can also download c.j.'s PPT on Stop Hiring Under-Performing Experienced Sales People, Start Developing Competent Ones that Deliver Results.

     Pls. check out our web sites www.directions-consulting.comm and for more inspiration.

Need a Keynote Speaker for your Major Sales Conference?


     Whether you are holding a conference for your regional staff, resellers or even customers, we have the right speaker who can help you deliver the spirit of your conference, and effect positive changes to meet your goals.


     The topics our speakers can speak on include:


    • Why Some Sales People Succeed While Others Fail?;

    • How to Lure Away Your Competitors' Key Accounts, and Make Them Buy from You Instead?;

    • Improving Sales Productivity by Motivating the Sales Force;

    • Sun Tzu and the Art of Strategic Decision Making;

    • The End of Guanxi as We Know It!; and many more!


     Simply e-mail your requests to or call +86-21-6219 0021 for enquiries.  Sample video and audio recordings available upon requests.


Practical Tips for Hospitality Sales People:

How to Ensure MICE Success for Your Event Organiser Customers


By c.j. Ng


In a lot of press releases, many international 4 and 5-star hotels are emphasising that they will be going big on MICE, which stands for Meetings, Incentives, Conventions (or Conferences) and Exhibitions (or Events), in the immediate future.  In fact, most of their advertisements are promoting their MICE packages.  In an even bigger picture, almost all experts are saying that the future of the hospitality business lie in MICE.


Being an event organiser myself, here are some tips for the MICE sales person to optimise MICE sales revenue and profits, especially if the sales person has been selling rooms all these while:

  1. MICE need NOT be big events.  In fact most meetings held in hotels are for 30 pax or less.  The mistake that a lot of hospitality sales people make is to assume all MICE are large events that will at the same time fill up their 400 rooms.  In the same vein, the problem with a lot of hospitality sales people when serving MICE customers is to also focus more on selling the rooms, rather than how to help the customer organise a successful event.

  2. Small events can lead to bigger ones, especially when the event organiser would like to test a hotel or resort on a smaller scale before organising a big one at that hotel or resort.

  3. Event organisers are NOT architects or interior designers.  They don't have a clue how large is 1,000 m2 or 500 m2.  What they need is to know how many people can fit into the room under what kinds of seating arrangements.

  4. If you have a showroom for your rooms, you can also have a showroom for your meeting rooms where the tables are set and the room is lit.  Better still, show your customer some video clips of your past successful events that were held at your hotel or resort.

  5. While the hardware is important, MICE delegates and participants are more concerned about the "experience" from the time they arrive to the time they leave the hotel or resort.  Similarly, events organisers will definitely appreciate the efforts of any hospitality sales people who can make the arrangements such that the organiser can have a peace of mind for their events.

  6. While MICE sales people are usually not required to be present, event organisers expect every detail to go according to what has transpired with the sales person.  The excuse that every event organiser HATES to hear is the sales person saying, "But I have informed F&B to ... ..." Event organisers, just like any customer, will hold the MICE sales person accountable for ALL results, good and bad.

  7. Event organisers sometimes have to switch to a different hotel in a different city for their next event, even though they are very appreciative of the hotel or resort staff doing all they could to help create a great event.  When that happens, be gracious and pro-active to refer one of your sister properties to your customer.  When you do that frequent enough, your sister properties will return the favour too.


If you can ensure success for your Event Organiser customer, chances are the event organiser will be back for their future events.  Your job is NEVER to just "peddle" the meeting rooms, nor even the F&B or the related facilities.


Your goal is to help the organiser organise successful events.


If you would like to get more and better ideas how to optimize MICE sales, revenue and profits, you can either download the PPT slides used in our workshops, or e-mail info@directions-consulting.commm or call +86-136 7190 2505 or Skype: cydj001 and arrange to buy me a mocha.  All information shall be kept in confidence.



Sales... ...the lifeblood of a company, a matter of "life and death", survival or extinction.  Indeed, something that needs to be studied, applied and re-modified consistently.


Yet today,

  • many companies still don't have a coherent approach as to how they can generate more sales and achieve better margins;

  • many sales people are still lying to their customers so that they can meet their targets at the end of the month;

  • many customers are still waiting ethical and professional sales people to help them find out their real needs, and provide solutions that work


Psyche-Selling TM is set up so that companies and sales people can make healthy profits and STILL provide genuine solutions to customers.


Psyche-Selling TM would like to create an environment where customers can trust sales people to give them what they want, and NOT be pushed with all kinds of products and services.  In return, customers will become loyal fans of these ethical and professional sales people, and repay them many fold for the long-term.


Psyche-Selling TM will not rest, until the above is achieved.  Not just in China. Not just in Asia.  But everywhere where buying and selling takes place.


Psyche-Selling TM is a wholly-owned brand of Directions Management Consulting Pte Ltd that specialises in the field of improving sales performance by enhancing the performance of the entire sales team.  Apart from the regular "selling skills training", Psyche-Selling TM conducts pre- and post-training analysis, interviews, monitoring and reviews, working closely with managers and even senior management, to deliver real improvements in sales leadership and performance.


Hence, Psyche-Selling TM would like to be known as the preferred choice of outstanding and remarkable clients, and pride ourselves as such.  We will also be continuing to assist our clients achieve greater heights in 2009 and beyond.


Enquiries and suggestions, pls. e-mail or visit




Mailing Address: Shui Cheng Nan Road 51 Lane No. 9 Suite 202 Shanghai 201103 China