29 Jan

What’s in it for me?

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Putting your customer’s Needs Ahead of Your Product or Service

What’s in it for Me?

What’s In It For Me (WIIFM) is a concept that the most successful salespeople understand. It’s human nature to think, “What’s in it for Me.”

People like to know that they are getting the best deal and bad salespeople that are unwilling to put the customer first can be left with an empty pipeline and sales targets missed.

How to Sell the WIIFM Way

The concept of WIIFM is easy, but putting it into action can take practice.

Many salespeople tend to promote the features of their own product or service, without ever really explaining how that product is beneficial to the buyer.

It is important to use open questions to better understand the needs of the buyer, and as such sell in a way that is focused on the benefits of using your product or service. 

Sellers who lead with this methodology are far more likely to captivate their prospect and build stronger pipelines.


Go Ahead and Tell Them What’s In It For Them.

Every salesperson has their own way of dealing with customers, and often, the sales process can be long and drawn out. Sometimes the benefits of an offering are only presented at the end of the pitch.

Today’s customers do not have a lot of time and are usually educated on your product or service already, so the goal of any good seller is to ensure they convert the sale as smoothly as possible. When using the WIIFM method of sales, it is essential to tell the buyer what value they will be getting, essentially what is in it for them. Do not wait until the end of a conversation to do this. Address the benefits that meet their needs along the way. SPELL IT OUT!

Features Are Not Part of WIIFM

Traditionally, salespeople will present every aspect of what they are selling along with features of the product. For example, a person selling a new and improved hoover would list a swivel action, never losing suction or an emphasis on pet hair pickup technology. These are the features of the product, but not actually what they can do for the customer.

They might buy the product, but a hoover is just a hoover with cool features to the customer. There is no real draw for them to purchase it, but with the WIIFM approach, things are different.

The WIIFM approach in sales looks at the person as not just another customer, but one that has specific needs.

Say you are selling hoovers and a client is a single parent with three children and very little time on their hands. Likely, they hate having to hoover, and even if the children help out around the house, there is always something more to do.

When selling this particular customer a hoover, the notion of a robotic hoover might come into play. While our prospect is at work, the hoover can clean the floors and dock itself when it needs to be charged, meaning the benefit is that the work gets done without the need to undertake the task yourself! Winner!

Suddenly, you have shown your prospect that they can take care of one seemingly simple, but annoying chore that they do all of the time. Now you have given this customer a chance to enjoy more time with their kids and the ability to come home to a hoovered house every day.

The investment in a robotic hoover can be expensive, but with the WIIFM mindset, you are more likely to make a sale as it solves a problem for that specific customer.


To summarise

WIIFM is a concept that every salesperson would do well to employ. It allows the customer to know that the seller is not looking at them as just another sale but attempting to help alleviate a real pain point or need.

Words are important and appealing to the emotional response of the customer is vital. An excellent salesperson picks up on seemingly small details about the customer’s situation to help find common ground and ultimately demonstrate the value to win the sale.

Remember, features are great, but it is not always the features that will sell your product.

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Written by Ben Bennett

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