One of the most powerful sales techniques that exists is knowing your product.
My wife and I recently watched a documentary called “Jiro dreams of Sushi” about Master Sushi Chef Jiro Ono. Mr. Ono has been making Sushi for 70 years, and is considered to be the world’s greatest Sushi Chef. He runs a restaurant that seats 10 people at a time and charges $250 minimum for a meal that is often eaten in 15 minutes. Reservations are required and in the documentary when a man tried to make a reservation he would have had to make it 1 month out. Chef Ono’s restaurant has a 3 Star Michilen rating.
The nearly legendary status of Jiro Ono is obviously because he’s a master at his craft, but that’s not what particularly inspired me. The food that Jiro’s restaurant serves is purchased from several vendors – the various fish, shrimp, and rice all come from different vendors. In the documentary, they make no secret of letting you know that the reason those vendors are used is because they know their products, and they know them intimately. One scene with the rice vendor is jovial, but the rice vendor almost flippantly mentions that the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Tokyo approached him to purchase his rice. His response? “I know this rice, and I know that Jiro can cook it, and they can’t. So this is Jiro’s rice. Why would I sell it to them if they can’t cook it?” During another moment, the shrimp vendor remarks “Each day, I look through the shrimp to find one that is worthy of Jiro.” And they don’t hesitate when they find it – they know exactly what will provide value to their customer and offer it unabashedly.
The other common theme throughout each vendor, including Jiro himself, is that they know their product so well, they’re never afraid to say “This is not good. This is not good enough.” Which means that there is never a doubt in their minds that when they’re serving you, it’s the best. The best fish, the best rice. They absolutely believe that if they’ve determined it’s valuable to you, that you would be crazy not to buy from them, because they know their product.
My challenge to you this week is to ask you: How well do you know your product? How much do you believe in the value of what you’re selling? When you’re giving a presentation to a potential client, does it seem crazy to you that they might consider not buying?
You can see this on my LinkedIn if you’d like