We sales professionals have a tough job. We have to push for the sale, but not too hard. We have to face objections and tackle them with poise. We have to listen, like REALLY listen. We have to be prepared… for anything! And we HAVE to close.
Here are some tips to help your sales soar (and make your job a little bit easier).
Don’t do that, and try this instead…
Don’t push too hard. Pushing too hard can make potential customers uncomfortable and turn them off from purchasing.
Instead, fully understand the customer’s needs before attempting to sell them anything. Be patient, and don’t rush the sales process. Give your customer time to consider their options and make informed decisions. In the meantime, continue to build the relationship and bring value to the relationship. Offer information, resources, and insights.
Don’t operate in your own “Odds Are.” As a result of surveying over 30,000 sales professionals from a wide range of business disciplines and cultural influences, Carew has determined that the “Odds Are” 2 to 1 that salespeople will tend to experience a customer’s message in terms of how that message impacts themselves.
Instead, get in touch with your customer’s Odds Are, understand where they are coming from, and think in terms of their concerns.
1. Recognize the existence and consequences of the “Odds Are” factor.
2. Demonstrate empathy – understand the customer and their concern.
3. Listen, acknowledge, explore, and respond.
Don’t badmouth your competitors. Speaking negatively about your competitors can reflect poorly on your professionalism and credibility and will harm your reputation.
Instead, emphasize your company’s unique features, advantages, and benefits (FAB) that set you apart from your competition. Make sure you know your competitors and continuously gather competitive intelligence. You can use this to make objective comparisons if your customer does ask about your competition.
Always treat your competitors with respect and professionalism, both in public and private interactions. This helps to build a positive reputation and establishes you as trustworthy and ethical.
Don’t fumble over objections. Ahhhh, objections, we all face them! “Your price is too high.” “I’m not ready to make a decision yet.” “I’m considering other options.” The list goes on.
Instead, use Carew’s LAER: The Bonding Process for understanding and getting into your customer’s “Odds Are.” Using LAER not only helps you deal with objections but can also help diffuse anger, build and maintain relationships, and help you dig deeper to uncover additional opportunities. Get to the heart of your customer needs while building trust, credibility, and rapport.
Don’t passively listen. Yes, there is a difference between passive listening and active listening.
Instead, pay attention, be silent and patient, and avoid interruptions and premature reactions. Listening to your customers can help you understand their perspective. Then, you can tailor your sales pitch accordingly, developing benefit-focused recommendations that satisfy their needs.
Don’t oversell. Overselling can create unrealistic expectations and ultimately disappoint customers.
Instead, be honest, transparent, realistic, and set accurate expectations. Use proof! Demonstrate the value that your product/service delivers. Provide your customer with references, testimonials, and case studies.
Don’t come unprepared. Being unprepared can be detrimental to your success.
Instead, do your research. Know your customers, understand their needs, identify the key decision-makers, and set clear expectations. Prepare your materials, anticipate objections, and be professional. Speak knowledgeably about your product/service and effectively communicate your value to the customer.
Don’t forget to close. More times than not, we sales pros give a killer presentation but forget to ask for the close.
Instead, ask for the next steps that ensure the successful adoption of your solution. When closing, you can be direct, indirect, give guidance, provide options, or present the next steps. Be creative; there are many ways to close a deal!
Yes, being a sales professional can be challenging. But if you can understand your customer’s needs, operate in their “Odds Are,” emphasize your FABs, use LAER, demonstrate the value you can bring, be prepared, and always ask for the close, your sales will soar. We promise!