By Carrie Wynne
Sales is really quite simple and not nearly as frightening as some people think. If you’re a new business owner or just starting out in sales you may be feeling a little intimidated by the sales activities involved in promoting your product or service, but don’t sweat the sales stuff.
You just have to get a list together of why your service or product is of value to your prospect and be willing to promote it. Always be willing to answer this question: what’s in it for them?
You need a straightforward and honest approach when prospecting. You have to be naturally confident. Pull it off something like this: “Here’s what we offer. This is what we do really well. Here’s what’s excellent about our products. Here’s the value for you and this is how much it costs.” Everyone can relax when there are no games being played.
Here are three tips that I like to teach salespeople.
Establish key players
If you don’t talk to the decision maker you’ll waste a lot of time and be stepping on toes. Start at the top and work your way down.
Determine the potential
You must qualify your prospect and decide if it’s the right business opportunity for both parties. This may take a few calls to decide. They won’t share too much information with you initially. That’s your job to figure it out. This is a very important step and it’s tricky. People have an inclination to say no quicker then yes. I like open-ended questions that are conversational as they land easier on people.
Build the relationship
Once you’ve established a good fit with your prospect you must develop a rapport and build the relationship. Be persistent and cultivate it. It’s like planting seeds. You’re watering them, fertilizing the soil, nurturing the seeds so that the plant becomes healthy and strong. It’s the same with an account. Experience has taught me that no means maybe or not today.
If you continue to make follow up calls and stay in touch you will see results eventually. Don’t waste time with, “H,i how are you calls.” Social calls are not business calls. Always leave them with something, even if it’s just a tidbit of information. Remind them about your products and services and go the extra mile in any sort of way to earn their business.
One final thing that many salespeople forget to do is ask for the business. “Will you call me when you’re ready to move forward? Will you give me an opportunity to quote next year? Will you come in and see me when you’re ready to sit down and discuss going ahead?” That alone will make you more money than any other thing you do.
This article was first published in the August issue of Hometown News. For more articles from our August issue, pick up a print copy at a local retailer or read our digital version.