Nothing is more frustrating, when you spend all that time and effort, talking to a prospect and at the end, you don't close a sale by end of the discussion. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur or sales maverick, here's few notes you can understand and master in the field of sales.
Get to the bank!
Its not about what you sell, its more about "how". Many sales representatives don't know how to follow-up, and communicate with a client in the latter stages of the sales funnel, partly because they lack empathy, understanding client's problem or how to handle objections.
Closing is the only thing that gets you to bank. It is your obligation to close a sale as a business owner or sales representative. And, maybe it is a kind of close that happens after a presentation given in a conference room, over the phone, in a shop, in a showroom or that happened door-to-door or online demo. You might know how to sell in each of these places, take responsibility on how to do closures, whenever and wherever it is supposed to happen.
Most sales representatives do not get this right, and get very good at everything else like prospecting, cold calling, outbound or giving presentations. Unless you close that sale, nothing happens that gets you to the bank. Here's 3 skills you need to develop to rank as a top salesman,
The ability to emphasize with your customers.
Let us consider the fact, you are selling low priced item/commodity. Suppose that you're working a retail shop, where people come-in, grab and and go. Or you're selling something that's very transactional, where all you do is just show them the aisle, you aren't really needed. People like to buy things, but don't like to be sold.
You're just providing a quick answer a quick solution, however if you're selling anything that is significant, like high prized luxury goods, you need to have deep empathy, or atleast try to display you really care. People don't care how much, until they know how much you care. When you are selling something expensive, your customers need to know that you've got their back at all times. You have to be able to connect with people you know.
Show how your product/service will help the well-being of your customers. Display how good, your product/service will help their outcome, and when your product or service are not a good fit, you simply have to tell them, it's not a good fit., however if you are going to lose a sale. If there are others who could provide a better service than you, don't hesitate to recommend that to your prospect.
- Asking the right questions
- There's no single formula. "Give a damn", or even act like you really care.
- If there's no empathy, there's no close!
- Don't be a like a robot. Connect, and find the gap!
If you are not able to connect with customer, he/she literally less cares about you, and your product/services. Remember, sales is more about persistence. No one will buy anything at the first glance! Do it again and they do it again, till the client finally understands you really care! Care about their well-being more over suggesting products. Its important to have great closers, and develop good rapport with their prospects.
The ability to uncover challenges & discover pain points
No pain, no sales. The problem is not that you don't know how to sell, the real problem is you might not know how to diagnose your client's problem. Most of us in theory talk too much, and don't know how to ask questions that matter. We keep losing sales, not because we don't have product knowledge! We know our product/service very well, but we constantly lose sales on understanding problems/concerns that your prospects see with your product/service.
Nothing drives sales if nobody cared about solving that problem twice! To motivate, inspire and empower your sales prospects, understand and diagnose their problems, make sense and think about your passback. Understand where they are, and where they want to go. Find this gap, and your job is closer to making the prospect understand how your product/service is a solution that can can bridge that gap better. If you don't understand what this gap is, you're not really help them, and close the sale.
If all you do is keep pushing your features, benefits, chances are they'd not be interested, and that doesn't motivate them. Obviously every sales representatives get objections. If you are reading this, you know what that sounds like, words like "I kind of want to think about it", "let me get back to you" or maybe "follow with me in six months"
When you can help your prospects understand you are perfect startup to help them bridge a gap, the problem may not what be what it sounds like. Prospects don't even know exactly what the problems are, until someone says "Hey do you I want X" and they might think it's Y that will solve their problem, but in reality, the action mgiht need something else, a combination ofn XY, or completely different like product Z.
You may need something completely different, but if don't know what to suggest, it's your job to help them understand. It is also your job, that just goes beyond in your products and services. It's your job to understand the big picture and shape the theory, how your products/services will fit to help them solve their problems. One cannot do that, if you don't have the ability to uncover such sales challenges and diagnose their issues. Be proactive in sales.
The ability to handle objections.
If you've seen how people talk, learn how to handle objections in sales. When your prospect says something, don't be lame, predictive, bragging, and uptight about selling. To say that this is how you're gonna respond, shows you really don't care! All it matters to selling is how you approach. When it comes to objections, don't over-think, and be reactive.
Obviously its like karate. You're waiting for the prospect to finish, and you when you counter him/her with "I'm gonna do that", its more a martial art way how someone throws a punch, and say more "I'm gonna do this" throw a kick. Playing catch-up, you play defense. Its wiser to rather play offense, as the best defense is a good offense.
Pre-empt objections. Set the agenda, and objections don't even come up. If done properly most objections don't even come up when you don't use a script. "You cannot pre-plan too much! A lot of sales books teach you following a script, that you meticulosly say line by line. It is more likely you are going to a boxing match with your prospect, and if one throws a jab, you throw a hook, if someone throws it across, you throw over a cut.
Have flexibility, and loosely set your pitch. Be like water, and be able to do pre-empt objections rather handle objections. It's more about being proactive and handling, that putting yourselves into a cage match and showing a reactive stance to every objections. There are better and smarter ways to sell and close sales, and you don't have to do what everybody else is doing in the market, or by the book. Adapt, and learn.
Keep hustling folks.