Sales is not for everyone!
It's a myth. But, being a salesperson is no easy job. You often have to work on sales calls for long hours, meet new strangers, travel around to different places, and do your best to sell someone, something that they probably don't want or need. The best sales challenges that you can never be entirely sure about is your income from month to month and performance perhaps, which means that you might have to work hard to make your ends meet before your jobs are going to be automated.
On the other hand, let's be a little optimistic about life in sales. Sales is an exciting place to be in and perhaps the best time is now! It also means that there are no limits as to what you can earn. Much like any other field, your skills, along with some grit and determination, defines your sales career. You get what you put in, and those who dedicate to their profession are sure to reap the incredible benefits of their hard work!
MAKE A CUSTOMER
NOT A SALE
If you are an entrepreneur and looking to set your foot into direct sales, for your business, training your own in-house sales consultants to deal with will be a challenge. This may be a good thing, but it can also turn you busier managing employees than focussing on product/services development. Picking sales consultants can be a challenge, and this works only with experience. When you own your sales it is tough, it's often a good choice to outsource sales functions and focus on efforts to building the product/services as a whole.
Know your market and do your research. Keep a tab on competition and ask yourself how you can differentiate from your competition. Offering something better and unique is key to getting sales and repeat clients, and leaving behind a trademark why people would want to join your direct sales business. Travel and more travel will keep hurting one's daily routines, but that's how sales work. A salesman is a go-getter and needs to follow your schedule over the heart and stick with your plans.
It can often be quite tricky to land your first client. It's a widely spoken myth that sales rely on reputation in your industry and reliance on references from other satisfied customers. Often you can work on a few ideas that make finding your first client a little easier. Meeting face to face is a great start. Action that bears the most fruit than sending out emails, or messages is directly meeting people one-on-one. Find a few companies and individuals who you believe may require your products or services, and when you finally get a chance to speak to them, try not to focus too hard on selling yourself. Focus on how you can make their lives just a little bit easier, focus what benefits you can bring to their table - the sale will soon follow.
Connecting with your competitors
This may sound counterintuitive, but one of the greatest advantages of being in direct sales makes your competitor more than willing to help you out especially if they are doing well. Reach out to the competitors in your field and ask if you could collaborate with them on specific projects. Chances are they have a surplus of work and need some help.
Be an active member of the startup community. The world of business can be tough, but it is also a community that fosters development and growth. Try to attend meetups, seminars, conferences, workshops, and other events in your field. You will find people who are more than ready to help new entrepreneurs. Approach your community and offer you to help new entrepreneurs, offer them your assistance. They may very well become your first client. There are competitors everywhere, and there's no business who can boast they don't have one!
Sales is relationship selling. It's demanding work, and as an entrepreneur heading a large field sales personnel, you'll want to hire the right talent who can handle the pressure. Sales demand every single one of your salespeople to have a few traits that make your team successful as a force.
Think on your feet.
Being situationally aware is an amazing trait. No one can be prepared for absolutely everything that's reasonably a situation that warrants. Your sales mavericks should be prepared for everything they can reasonably expect and have prepared responses to common questions, as well as knowing whom to direct customers when they require more specialized information. Be ready to handle situations that demand people who can think laterally.
Even though you may have an amazing sales script that you follow when talking to clients, that doesn't mean that you don't have to improvise from time to time. If you're reading your sales pitch, any prospect would avoid expressing interest. One must think of something quickly to read this situation, perhaps connect a new reason that your prospect would want to buy your product/service. Think of a way that will fit into your client's budget without sales costing them a fortune. The world of sales always comes with surprises, so any competent sales development representative must be prepared to face unexpectedly. Be passionate about your work and your product. Would you buy from someone who isn't enthusiastic about their own product/service?
Be detail-oriented, be organized. The sales world can be hectic, and things can get lost in the shuffle quickly. Disorganization can cost your team, and startup, time and money. Everyone you hire should have a good head for keeping leads, appointments, schedule, itinerary, and manage time effectively. This will not only make them better at their job but also let them coordinate with cross-functions more easily.
Communication – Use Brevity!
Sales involve interacting with an array of people of all genres and keeping the conversation going. That's part of core responsibility for your sales team. They'll need to talk to customers and turn leads into conversions, and on the back end, they'll need to coordinate with the rest of your business so they can do their work more effectively. If a potential hire doesn't have a history of or experience with teamwork, they're likely a poor fit.
Working with customers can be an ordeal, and most on-field sales teams would feel anger and frustration on daily calls. Travel adds to their woes. However, it doesn't mean they're free to lash out at your market. They need to stay respectful, no matter what, even as they act appropriately. When a prospect asks not to call back again or shows you a door, it doesn't mean your sales team can start being disrespectful. Fear of rejection is common, and be prepared to face every possibility. Everything is a learning opportunity.
Efficiency is the goal of every startup. Time and capital are at a premium, and every bit wasted brings your startup closer to failure. While your sales team is not in charge of your capital, they're definitely in charge of their time. They need to know when a sale needs a little more time to push through, as well as when to lose a potential lead, to focus on other leads.
You only have a few hours a day that you can get things done. The chances are that you don't want to be working go for hours a week. If you did, you would quickly get burnt out and lose the will to do any work. What you do need to do is to find out the best way to manage your schedule and fulfill all of your mandatory duties. Make use of every spare time for your mandatory duties, make phone calls, do research, prepare for appointments, and anything else that may be relevant to your work.
Is it possible to make money beyond your wildest dreams in a sales job if you are willing to learn the craft? Yes, perhaps! Do you think that can master sales? Do you think that you have what it takes to become a master salesperson? Can you do field sales on your own? Take sales inspiration from Billy Porter's life.
What is a salesperson without attitude? The answer is not very much. Any job that requires you to interact with people very often is going to need a personality. For example, a valet who can handle his customer's cars is far more likely to get substantial tips compared to one who treats them like dirt. It's hard to make someone like your product if they don't like you. Practice being outgoing and meeting new people at networking events.
Try and find meeting new people at networking events. Try and find common ground between you and your prospects you are meeting so that you can ease up and sell better. Wake up with a goal! Rather, you already know your goals and work towards them every day. You don't need someone telling you what you need to do because you already know what you want to do. Since salespeople often work rather independently, even if they are part of a larger company, they must know how to fend for themselves without anyone else's help. You are always seeking self-improvement. Never stop improving!
If you want to be likable, you have to be positive. If you spend each day thinking "Why am I doing this job?" you iterate this thought very often and make a fool of yourselves. Find a way to cheer yourself up each morning. You could practice positive self-talk before a mirror or do some warm-up exercises after you wake up. Either way, the happier you are, the more productive you are. Even by forcing yourself to smile, you can feel joyful, so do what it takes to cheer up. You are self-motivated. You don't always need someone looking over your shoulder to ensure that you get back to work.
Delegate. Delegate. Delegate! Sales need not be boring. Travel does break sales personnel, but knowing how to manage your travel is half the work for most sales representatives. Ref. Traveling salesman problem. Micromanaging your team is a shortcut to failure as an entrepreneur. One of the things that make a direct sales company so successful is training and support your sales consultants get before the first call. A good idea is to have weekly sessions not only to hear feedback about how they doing but to lead them correctly.
Talk about your sales experiences, and encourage a team of sales-savvy consultants to work towards a sales "close". Direct sales is not a marketing call, you sell when people recognize you already. That's why marketing and advertising plays a significant role in pre-sales. Direct sales work better when you are selling an established brand. A brand that is well known in the market helps. If you are recruiting a team of specialists, offer excellent training and support.
Stay Motivated, Always!