Put yourself in the position of a customer: when you are buying a product or service - especially a service - it does not interest you to know how, when or how many people are involved in providing it, but rather, the result that will come into your hands at the end.
For example: if you are looking for an internet plan that meets your needs, you don't want to know how wide the network is, whether the company uses fiber optics or how many people will install it. You just want to know how much data and internet speed will be available in your home. That simple.
Your client wants the same from you. This means that you are not going to sell an agenda, saying what actions you will implement and when, but the result. What will make your customer's eye shine is not a schedule saying what changes you will make each day or week to reduce costs in the company. But rather, what the increase in annual revenue, for example.
Observe, therefore, how to sell a solution, not a project.
Do the homework
Talking especially about that first meeting you will have with your client, perhaps the most difficult of all, which is when you need to transform yours until then prospect in an active client, this is the main moment when you must show that you have a solution to his problem and not simply a project for your company.
If the client has already anticipated the reasons why he sought your services, then you need to focus on the informed need and present the service that will meet and resolve the pain that has already been addressed.
However, do not restrict yourself to this, for two main reasons. The first is that, sometimes, the customer, because he is within his own organization, cannot effectively see what his problem is or what solution he needs. This is exactly the work of a consultant: offering an outside look, from the third person, from an impartial and, why not, calculating perspective.
For example, sometimes the customer thinks that the company needs to scan their entire archive. However, perhaps he just wants to get rid of that absurd volume of boxes that is taking up space that could be productive. Perhaps outsourcing the custody of the file is cheaper than digitizing everything - not least because much of the documentation cannot even be discarded anytime soon.
In short, listen to your customer. But don't limit yourself to what he asked for. Do your research. Draw up a complete business diagnostics. Study your client's business, the most common pains of organizations of that type, imagine other problems he may be facing.
And this is true, of course, for those cases where you will do first contact without the propect having anticipated any information. Be forewarned. It is true that, in the first contact, you should hear more than speak, but you cannot give the impression of unpreparedness or negligence.
Arriving with information, examples, asking the right questions, all of this will convey an idea of experience and inspire confidence in your work. By anticipating the solution and offering new perspectives, you show yourself as a partner to your customer.
Sell yourself - without selling
The focus of its sale is on the solution, the problem that will be solved within a combined period between the two parties. Therefore, it is not the time to sell "you". This means that when selling your service, you should simply focus on what you can do for your customer.
The fact is that your customer does not care about you. He doesn't want to know your resume. You have no interest in knowing where or with whom you have worked. Nor what have you managed to do for other companies or people. He cares what you can do for him. And only.
Talk about the benefits you have to offer, without giving the impression of boasting about your victories. However, while doing so, highlight your differentials. After all, you are not the only professional on the market and your client needs to believe that your solution is better than others.
So, take a stand and show him that from your business perspective, the solution you will present is the best of all. Clarify how you can help. But be specific. Stating that you "meet deadlines" does not mean anything. Quantify, classify, present numbers in organized spreadsheets.
Sell the true value
People buy products and services on the basis of how such products and services make them feel. Or thinking about what they will be able to accomplish and achieve through them. Or the problem they will never have to face again. That is value.
In the case of a company, you need to offer business value. In general, a solid value proposition is based on one of these four fundamental points: 1) generating revenue, 2) reduce spending, 3) increase productivity, 4) reduce risk.
Therefore, when creating your story, when offering your value, include quantitative metrics that reach one or more of these four spheres. Your buyer wants to believe in your service. Deliver real value to you. Concrete. Palpable.
Point of view
If you've made it this far, you've realized that selling a solution - more than selling a project - is a different way of doing business. Selling solution and value involves creating connections with people. It requires relationship, trust and, above all, a real willingness to help, to solve the customer's problem.
Remember: the project is not convincing. Your customer doesn't want to know when or how. He wants numbers, data, results. He wants a solution to his problem. How will you get there is your problem.