There are many salespeople out there who have no clue what they’re doing. They don’t know where they are in the sales process, which leads to their timing being off. Timing is everything in sales. You have to strike when the iron is hot. If you miss your window, it’s not the end of things- just harder to recover. If you want to be a selling machine you need to have a sales process. I know people shy away from structure because they don’t like to be controlled. Sometimes you need structure to hold you accountable. I have seen and tried a few selling processes but this one has been the most effective. I’ll go more in depth with these steps in future blog posts.
First impressions are everything. People make judgments about you based off their first 30 seconds of meeting you. You’ve got to be on point. It’s important to look professional, smile, have positive body language, and an upbeat tone in your voice. Capturing your client’s attention is the most important aspect of the greeting. Speak clear and be concise with what you have to say. Time is the most valuable asset to your clients so it’s imperative not to waste it. Don’t approach with “how can I help you?” That’s the easiest way to kill a conversation because it’s programmed in our brains to say “I’m are just looking.”
Questions are incredibly valuable in your sales process. Have an arsenal of predetermined questions that you ask your clients to find what they need or want. I see it all the time where sales people won’t ask questions and just expect their clients to close. If you’re trying to get your clients to buy the first thing they see before knowing if it’s truly right for them, you’ll fail miserably. If you don’t know what your client is seeking then you’ll be on the wrong product or service. You can never ask too many questions. Think of yourself as a consultant. How can you recommend something without knowing all the facts? Get the facts. Some clients will be more open to others but that’s where you need to revert back to your other senses. Listen to what your clients are telling you and adapt.
If you have successfully implemented or completed step 2 you can start to find the right product or service. I hope you were listening to EVERYTHING your clients were telling you. There’s no easier way to kill a deal than by showing your clients something opposite of what they were describing to you. This is how you prove to your client that you’re there to help them solve their problems and not to just get them to buy something. When you have found the product or service that’s when you should demonstrate it. This is how you create value. Teach your clients something they wouldn’t find out just by looking at the product. That’s how you create value in the product or service, and simultaneously in yourself as a sales professional.
You need to make it your mission to present 100% of your clients a proposal. They have to know the numbers. What would it take for them to own that product or service? This is where you incorporate suggestive add-ons. Get your clients to see the numbers and you’re one step closer to the close. This is a great stall tactic. Hopefully you’ve asked your clients to buy by now. If they’re trying to leave you can use pricing as a stall tactic. Getting figures will keep your client’s attention a little longer and set you up for another opportunity to buy. Not only that, it may help you discover the true objection so you can overcome it.
Step 5: Ask for the Sale/Close/Referral
It worries me how salespeople think they’re asking for the sale at times when they completely miss the mark. I can write that up for you? MANURE. It’s poop. Nothing makes me cringe more. If you aren’t clearly asking for the sale, you’re killing the deal. Ask for it. For the love of all the sales gods… ask for it.
If you have completed that you’re most likely going to get an objection. I think it’s safe to say that 80% of first objections in the close are smokescreens to the real one. Is price really the objection or is value? The close is delicate… it’s like a chess game. One wrong move and you’re minced meat. You have to resort to questions and fight. Don’t give up.
Fill each problem presented to you with a solution. That’s how you overcome objections. Once you give a solution, you ask your clients to buy again. This may happen a few times until you get it right. Be positive in the close and you’ll stay in it longer. If your energy and attitude start to go south then so will the deal. Never get frustrated at your clients. People buy from people they like. Remember you solve the problem, you win the deal.
Once you get the deal, you need to ask for referrals or social media reviews (depends on your profession). Referrals are how the professionals separate themselves from the amateurs. You need to do this when your clients’ confidence is high and when you have their attention. Don’t get off the phone or let them leave and then ask. Ask for it right then and there and they’ll be more agreeable. People want to help other people. If they can help you out in the moment they will. You just need to ask for it (seems to be a common theme in sales and life).
Step 6: Follow-Up
There are two forms of follow-up. There’s follow-up before the sale and after the sale. Following-up before the sale is all about getting your client’s attention again to solve their problems. It’s a tricky art form. Mastering it equals constant success. Following-up after the sale is how you separate yourself from everyone else. If you check in on your clients just to see how they’re enjoying their purchase, it’ll make you stand out. No amateur does it. Keep in touch with your clients because that’s how you get continuing business and future sales. You have to generate your own traffic in sales to become successful. Follow-up needs to be done.
This is a tested and true sales process. It’s simple and elegant all at the same time. You have to know where you’re at in the sales process, at all times. If you know that you keep failing at the proposal or close you are weak in steps 1, 2, or 3. Then you can reverse engineer your entire sales process to see where it is breaking down. Then you can improve. If you just go through it with no understanding, then you’re unprepared. The greats are the ones who can see everything and adapt. Try this sales process out with yourself or your team and you’ll find success.
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