What is the number one success-killer that good salespeople make? They set out to do the exact same thing as every other salesperson, except perhaps a little bit better. The problem is that if you set out to be exactly like everybody else, but a little bit better, then you'll experience the exact same sales success and earn the exact same money as everybody else, except perhaps a little bit higher.

If, on the other hand, you want to experience totally different levels of sales success, you have to be willing to do something totally different from all the other salespeople.

What If I Market the Same Product or Service as Other Salespeople, Though?

Take a moment and think about the last time you went to the grocery store to buy some shampoo. When you got to the shampoo aisle, you saw shelves lined with dozens of different brands of shampoos. Every single shampoo on the shelf does basically the same thing, but each one has managed to find a different marketing message from all the other shampoos.

For instance, one might promise to moisturize your scalp as you use it. Another may guarantee to put the shine back in your hair. Yet another offers only organic ingredients.

Although every shampoo does basically the same thing, each of these shampoo brands has found a way to target a different section of the market. Each has found a different group of people to appeal to.

Why Should I Be Unique?

Let's say that on your trip to the grocery store, you picked out your shampoo, but now you want a nice snack, perhaps an apple. You head over to the produce section.

When you look into the crate of apples, you see it lined with row after row of green apples. Somewhere in the middle of the crate, though, is a single red apple.

Which apple immediately grabs your attention?

Now, you may still choose a green apple, but the very fact that the one red apple stands out from the rest means that people will pay far more attention to that apple than they will to any of the others. And with it drawing so much attention, it exponentially increases the chance that the red apple will be sold.

If you want to make sales, your goal should be the single red apple that stands out amidst a sea of green apples.

But What If I Really Offer the Same Benefits as Another Salesperson?

Some salespeople come up with truly great marketing messages that draw in a lot of customers. You might be tempted to copy another person's sales message, and say that you, too, provide all the exact same benefit as the other salesperson. Don't! Even if you really do offer the same benefits, don't use the same sales message! If you take the same marketing message as someone else, you will only be perceived as a second-rate knockoff of the "original." You may make sales, sure, but you won't make nearly as many as if you crafted your own unique message.

Remember that each shampoo brand uses a unique message to appeal to a specific cross-section of the marketplace. You should do the same; if you are the only one appealing to a specific client need, then you become the one who "gets it" to that set of clients. And you will be the one who they come back to with their wallets open to give you sales again and again.

How Will You Set Yourself Apart?

Mastering the skills taught above are absolutely critical as you move from being a "good" salesperson to a top-level salesperson. If you want your sales numbers to be the same as all the other "good" salespeople, then keep doing the same things as all the other good salespeople. But if you want to achieve totally different levels of success, then you have to be willing to do something different; you have to be willing to set yourself apart.

Author's Bio: 

Matt Vassar is a sales training consultant as well as a professor at Stanford University. His Secrets to Soaring Sales system can be found at: http://secretstosoaringsales.com/