These can help anyone who is in sales perform better, turn prospects into customers and keep them coming back for more.
1 Know yourself
What are the opinions, prejudices, judgments, attitudes, values and beliefs, philosophies and old baggage that may be sabotaging your sales success? Do you know who you really are?
A thourough, honest self-appraisal and a subsequent modification of incorrect attitudes and behaviour are critical for autonomy and success in selling in the new business climate.
2 Know your fundamental mission
Ask yourself why you are selling. Is it to make money? Have fun? Serve your clients? Grow your company? Contribute to society? Provide for your families' current and future needs?
Your reasons - more than your goals for staying in this demanding, challenging and rewarding career - will determine the peace, balance and fulfilment in your sales career.
3 Build strong relationships
What type of people do you like to be around? How do you like to spend your time? What else is important to you in your life besides your career? Are your companions satisfied with your current selling position or circumstances?
Selling today is about building successful, positive on-going relationships.
Your overall success will be greatly impacted by your willingness and ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with everyone who is directly and indirectly connected with your sales success.
4 Devote time to personal growth
It is important that you regularly read good books, listen to great CDs, attend seminars and network with people who can help you.
5 Look ahead
Solving your prospect's or client's problems is no longer an effective sales strategy.
The successful sales staff in the marketplaces of today and tomorrow are creative problem-solvers. They think far ahead of their clients, not just along with them.
6 Build trust
People buy from people they trust, not people they simply like. The key to building trust is simple. Promise a lot and deliver more.
I am a trainer, speaker and consultant but I do not actively sell myself as any of these. I do, however, sell myself as a client resource.
Think about what you can offer your client other than your products or services.
7 Don't sell on price
Successful sales staff sell value. The price will always seem high if value is perceived as low. When you focus on price either because of poor product knowledge, poor client knowledge or poor sales skills, you will always lose in the long run. Clients want the best value for their dollar.
8 Prospect for information
Effective prospecting is the most important sales skill you need to master. It is more important than good closing techniques, impressive sales presentations or the ability to handle client resistance.
The most important element of the sales process for successful sales staff is not the giving of information, but the getting of information.
They do not just plan their sales presentations but have a presentation strategy.
9 Have a conversation
An effective sales presentation is not a presentation but a two-way conversation. Many sales staff have been trained to deliver their sales message. This message is often a programmed discussion of the various features and benefits of their product or service.
Every prospect buys for his own reasons, not those of the salesman or the company.
When you deliver you standard approach or presentation, you are assuming that each prospect buys for the same reasons, at the same time and in the same way in the buying cycle.
10 You cannot sell to everyone
Sales resistance from the client or prospect gives you valuable insight into his thinking. Successful sales staff do not try to manoeuvre around this resistance but get it into the open as soon as possible.
The myth is that you should be able to sell to everyone, sooner or later.
I wish this were true. It would make selling so much easier.
But the reality is, not everyone in the marketplace is a good prospect for you, now or in the future.
They may be a prospect, but not the best one for the time, energy and resources you have available at the present time.
Timing is critical in successful sales.
11 Closing is not a fluke
Closing the sale is not a matter of tricking or manipulating the customer.
It is not using fear, guilt or hard-sell tactics.
Closing the sale on a well-qualified prospect is the natural conclusion to everything you have done in the sales process that is correct and effective.
12 Follow up
After-sales service is the glue that keeps clients loyal, makes them buy more and be willing to give you referrals and positive references.
Re-examine your selling philosophies in the light of current market and consumer trends.
You may need to re-focus some of your attitudes and approaches if you are going to excel in the sales profession in the years ahead.
The Straits Times, CATS Recruit - Thu, Sept 27, 2007
by Tim Connor, a US-based management trainer and author of Soft Sell, a best-selling book on sales]
For complete content, please check this book below out!
Soft Sell, 4E (Soft Sell: Use the New Art of Selling to Create Opportunities & Close More Sales)
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