When they Don’t Even Know they Have a Problem

Overcoming Barriers to Your Sale—

by Rich Webb the ‘Profit Doctor’

When you are selling a product or service, one of your most difficult challenges is when you have a solution to a problem that your buyer does not seem to know they have.

You can see the problem hanging over them like a hammer ready to smash a coconut, like Gallagher about to pounce on a watermelon; but somehow, they think everything is fine.

You have to find a way to help a decision maker understand that they have a problem, and that it’s a big enough problem they need to pay attention to it now.  You then need to help them realize their problem can be solved, and that you have the best solution.  Here is a suggestion for an effective 4 Step Approach. 


  1. Identify – Think of it like a doctor. Provide a simple set of diagnostic questions so that the person can recognize and ‘personally feel” their own “symptoms”.  Once they emotionally or personally feel it, they will recognize that there is a problem.
  2. Educate – The person or decision maker needs ‘something they can relate to’ for why they need to change. Help them imagine the future, become aware of facts that they do not know, use      statistics that compel.  Show them you have the best solution ‘for them’.
  3. Offer Choices – Provide options of ways to solve the problem, including your own as well as others. One option is to keep doing nothing. Provide them a clear picture of the results, especially the costs, of doing nothing.  Progressive Insurance Company rose to national prominence using this concept of offering multiple choices.
  4. Validate-Let them see proof of the case you have built, verify that your claims are true, offer 3rd party viewpoints to establish trust and credibility.


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