Why is a Salesperson like a Refrigerator?

Let me ask, have you heard the joke about the light being on inside the fridge? Top sales professionals, like fridges, are always “on”. Let me ask, have you heard the joke about the light being on inside the fridge? You know, where you were asked to open the door of the fridge and voila, the light was on. Now I know you know the light only comes on when you open the door. But the refrigerator is always on! It has to be to do its job.

Top sales professionals, like fridges, are always “on”. This is especially true for those who need to prospect to find new clients. One individual I know worked many years as an electrician for a major U.S. automobile manufacturer. At the suggestion of a good friend, he decided to pursue a sales career in the financial services industry. This was a pretty major change in vocation; he went from dealing with watts and volts to handling people’s investment and insurance needs.

Was he a success? Well, in his first full year he shot up to becoming the top rep in North America for his company. To prove he was not a one-hit wonder, he repeated this feat his second year, and yes, the third year too! To this day, he remains one of the top reps with his company.

So how did an electrician, now a salesman, become so successful? If you ask this modest man, he will say “It’s simple really, you do the best you can for your client, and you always have to be on.”

To meet this gentleman, you would know someone with an insatiable appetite for learning. He wanted to know everything he could about financial planning and the products he represented. He was a keen student of his sales manager and a constant observer of the successful reps around him. He was a sponge.

One day, I asked him what he meant when he said being “on”. He told me “To be successful I have to meet a lot of new people. I have to be able to tell them quickly what it is I do and how I can help them.” He went on to say, “I look at everyone as an opportunity.” “When I go to the super-market I look for the longest line and stand in it, I know I’ll have a chance to strike up a conversation with the person in front of me, and the person who comes behind me.” Talk about a captive audience.

I marveled at one story he told me about when he went shopping for a bed cover and pillows. After he completed his purchase he thought, “I’ve done business with you, you should do business with me.” He proceeded to book an appointment with the sales clerk who had sold him his pillows. He also asked if she would introduce him to her manager and the other sales clerks. He left the store that day with five appointments booked in his day timer.

Why? Because he was always “on”. Top salespeople maintain a laser-like focus combined with a strong desire to succeed. Don’t be as cold as a refrigerator, but do think about being “on” all the time.

What Not To Do With Your Leads

Anyone that works in sales knows just how important it is to have lead sources to keep your pipeline filled. But it is not only how we obtain the leads that is important, it’s what we do with them once we get them. One of the most critical mistakes a salesperson can make once they receive a lead is not acting on it immediately.

I once worked with a guy who belonged to a networking group, the sole purpose of his joining this group was to receive leads. This group wasn’t cheap either, it cost him $500.00 annually to be a member.

He would come back from his weekly meeting with a lead in his hand and pin it to the bulletin board above his desk, and there it would stay until he noticed it a few days later. It drove me nuts. In sales, and it does not matter what you are selling, every day is critical! At any moment, your competitor can call your customer and walk away with the business.

Another common mistake I have witnessed countless times is contacting the lead in a timely fashion, but having absolutely no enthusiasm once you contact the customer. When you call a potential customer, smile as you speak to them, the customer will pick up on the inflection in your voice and respond to it.

Don’t act as though the customer is a burden to you, and that you are doing them a favor. Remember, you are the expert when it comes to your product, don’t expect your customer to know everything, if they did, they wouldn’t need you. So make sure they know that you are happy to help them.

Another no-no when following up on a lead is to yawn, sneeze, or cough into the receiver of the phone. I understand that these are normal and common bodily functions, but there is no excuse for doing it directly into the receiver, this is a great way to lose the sale, the yawn alone will most likely make the customer hang up the phone.

Always put yourself in the shoes of the customer. Imagine meeting someone for the first time over the telephone and your conversation is being interrupted by yawns, and sneezes, I doubt you would be gung-ho about doing business with them

Following up with a lead and then putting that person on hold is another common mistake I have come across. Although your reasons for putting your customer on hold may seem very important to you, your customer will find it to be annoying regardless of your reasons. So be sure to set aside a time to call your lead when you know the interruptions will be few.

So the next time you receive a lead, act on it immediately, let your customer know that you are happy to work with them, speak clearly and avoid interruptions, and watch your sales productivity increase.

Understanding Sales Recruitment Services

Undoubtedly, employees are the backbone of any business! Regardless of the size and the renown of your company, the efficiency, profitability, and longevity of your business are directly proportional to the professionalism, seriousness, and implication of your employees. In order to achieve and maintain a solid and prosperous business, you have to make sure that you are surrounded by loyal, trusty, dedicated, and hard-working employees. This rule is even more prominent in marketing, as every single action of your employees can trigger a pronounced increase or decrease in your profits! Thus, during the process of recruiting new members for your business, you should account for a wide range of personal traits and abilities in your future employees.

Apart from a satisfactory professional training level, your employees should have good communicational and interaction skills, good negotiation abilities, good decisional skills and so on. These traits can only be revealed during job interviews and testing periods. Elaborate individual evaluations are very time-consuming and few business owners can afford the luxury to personally assist in the process of recruiting new employees. The solution is to either assemble a reliable recruitment team that can take care of the recruitment process in your place, or better yet, asks for the help of a professional recruitment service.

Lots of businesses are nowadays turning to Sales Recruitment Services in order to find well-trained professionals with minimal time and effort. There is a wide range of reliable Sales Recruitment Services on the World Wide Web that can take care of all the aspects of employee recruitment in exchange for a previously established fee. If you simply don’t have the time to personally supervise the process of employee recruitment, online Sales Recruitment Services are the best solution to your problem!

Once you have requested the help of a certain Sales Recruitment Service, you will be asked about the nature of your business and the exact profile of the salespersons you need in order to complete your business team. According to your instructions, the service will then take care of every single aspect of the recruitment process, frequently providing you with feedback regarding the progress of the recruitment program. You will quickly start to receive appliances from well-trained professionals in the branch, allowing you to choose the salespersons that best fit your business. You also have the freedom to access the database of contacts at any time, in order to find the best candidates for your offered job vacancies.

Sales Recruitment Services are effective means of finding the most suitable candidates for your business. With the help of a professional online Sales Recruitment Service, you can enter in contact with a wide range of suitable candidates with a minimal investment of time and effort. Whether you are looking for a salesman, advertiser, telemarketer or a sales executive, territory manager, business development manager, or sales director, online Sales Recruitment Agencies can quickly fulfill your requests!

The Secret Ingredient That Creates The Sales

The internet has become a huge mall with little ally ways and secret entrances all over the place. There are a huge amount of sales websites all vying for the same attention. Indeed a highly competitive market. Marketing skills and writing have become more and more important to the marketing of your products and will become increasingly so as the internet increases in size.

Don’t be under the illusion that now is too late, there are millionaires made every day and there will still be made twenty years from now. Advertising your site and product is a small part of marketing, the secret ingredient is in the pitch, whether a landing page, opt-in, or sales page.

Funny enough it has been the same for as long as you possibly can remember, from the first radio commercials, print commercials up to the latest in HDTV, it has not changed, what has changed is the jargon, the language, and the way people perceive the world around them on a daily basis.

The way you write your sales pitch, where you place which word, how long must it be, what do you say, how do you say it, what guarantees do you give, how good do you make it sound, what is the perceived value, what does the buyer get, why or why not ad bonus products, what about the price.

The buzzword niche has now been around for a while, and in most places, you will be taught that to get good business you must find your niche. For most this is easier said than done, think about it while you walk the dog, it may help but it won’t resolve the issue at hand.

Many new internet marketers make the same mistake, including me, when you start out, you want to sell everything to everyone, make millions of dollars and retire on the beach watching whatever you enjoy watching. Many just throw in the towel after a while and that depends where they can push their patients to, others last a bit longer and as these leave new recruits eager to do the same join the party.

A vicious circle indeed and it seems that just a few at the top are making it. Many well-known marketers are making it, but there are many more who remain quiet and anonymous that are raking in millions. It is up to you if you want to be well known or not, but use the right secret ingredient and you will be raking in the cash.

So for how long am I still going to be ranting on about the secret, or maybe it is my sales ploy, who knows?. Well, let’s let the cat out of the bag and not keep you in suspense any longer. You cant buy the secret ingredient. You are it. You just need to develop yourself using the right information.

What this means is that your product, book, sales letter, or email needs to be unique to yourself. That is how your product will stand out from the rest. Just duplicating someone else’s work might bring you some success but the real success lies in you. Like any game, before you can get those tricky moves going you need to do the basics right. Learn the basics and the rest will follow.

Do not believe that you are not a writer. For some, it is harder work than for others, but if you intend to be a successful internet marketer and have those vacations at the beach, every moment spent will be worth your while.

Setting Realistic Goals

When we make a sale or take one step closer to meeting our goal, we are overcome with a feeling of achievement which motivates us to sell more. I’m sure that anybody who is reading this article has been in a situation where they may have been given unobtainable goals from one of their bosses, sales managers, or some higher up somewhere in the company.

When goals are given that are unrealistic, the mission is doomed from the beginning. It immediately gives a feeling of despair to the sales team, which can be devastating to morale. The sales team will do their duty and work as hard as they can to obtain the goals, but when they fall short, they will have feelings of failure and will be reluctant to move on.

Simply stated, unrealistic goals, take the fun out of selling. A personal story. During my years in the banking industry, I managed a sales team in a small branch inside a grocery store. This is what is known as In-store banking. It was estimated that seven thousand people came through the grocery store where my branch was located on a weekly basis.

With that statistic, my sales team was given a goal of opening up six checking accounts per day, among other things. This would be a monthly goal of one hundred and eighty checking accounts per month. To me and my team, this was highly unrealistic.

Then, In-store banking was brand new to the banking industry, and these goals were being handed down by people who never once stepped foot in an in-store branch. Please understand, I am not bitter about this, I am just stating the facts, and believe this to be an ongoing problem with companies.

This problem works both ways. Sometimes the goals being handed down are not enough, and a sales team will fall short of what their potential could be. Needless to say, my sales team never met their daily, weekly, or monthly goals. We did, however, fight the good fight and manage to hold our own. But morale was never what it should have been.

Every six months my team and I would attend the semiannual sales rally, where we would sit and watch as the other branches so proudly accepted their awards for meeting their goals. It pained me to watch my team walk away empty-handed knowing that they worked so hard.

My point is, when goals are being set, they need to be realistic and obtainable. The more you or your team reach their goal the more motivated they will be. Once you are reaching your goal at a steady pace, challenge yourself or your team, and raise the bar. Challenge them to reach higher on a daily basis.

Keep in mind, when you raise the bar, keep this new goal realistic as well, you don’t want to become overconfident and put your goals out of reach. One last thing. The goals that are being set, should be put in place by a person or people who know you, your staff, and your demographics. Not by somebody in an ivory tower.

If they are not being put into place by the appropriate people, suggest this idea to someone in your organization that you can trust. This article may be reproduced by anyone at any time, as long as the author’s name and reference links are kept intact and active.

Selling Success: Using Testimonials to Boost Your Numbers

If you’ve ever watched QVC, Home Shopping Network, or seen an infomercial, you know about the power of testimony. It’s our experience that your sales will increase when customers are seen or heard testifying to the benefits of your product or service

It helps potential customers to imagine themselves as proud owners & users of the product or service you offer. They want to experience the same benefits as the person who made a testimony to it. The best way to get prospective clients to buy from you is to introduce them to other satisfied customers. Since you won’t be taking customers around on sales calls testimonials will take their place

To do this, first, you will need to ask your best customers whether you can interview them about the positive experience they’ve had with your product or service and record it either with a digital camera or a tape recorder. Be sure to inform them how you’re going to use the information so they can be at ease knowing that you’re going to be using their words and images in front of prospective customers. Once you have this, in a digital format, incorporate it into a PowerPoint presentation and playback to prospective customers.

For example, maybe you know a situation where the cost of your product or service was initially an issue for a customer and they instead decided to buy from a low-price competitor. After discovering that the selected vendor wouldn’t be able to deliver, the customer came back to do business with you. They realized that the low price paid in the short run would actually cost more in the long and the value of providing quality and service is worth the extra money.

The best kind of customer is one you can give you a testimonial. Then, should you encounter another prospect that voices similar concerns, you can simply say “ I understand how you feel and other customers to felt that way. In fact, here are some comments from a customer who had the same concerns you have now “. Once you play the PowerPoint presentation, they can see exactly what you mean.

Ask your best customers to talk about the benefits they receive from using your product or service. If you have a number of different testimonials, you can always use the one that best fits the sale scenario. One sales rep we know shows pictures of customers using his product. A picture of a happy, satisfied customer is worth a thousand brochures (and a lot less expensive).

Nothing sells better than truth and you can get closer to the truth and when it comes from someone who’s had a real-life experience with you, your product, your services, and your company.

Good luck

Sell Services Online

Is it possible to take a normal offline service business like a legal practice, private medical practitioner, or even a real estate business and make money with it from the Internet?. As someone who’s been doing this since 1996, I say the answer is a resounding “YES”.

If you are a business owner or even an affiliate marketer, you know how hard it is to make a living online. Many so-called Internet Marketing gurus will tell you that the only way to make money online is to create your own information products, hype them up with a completely fictitious sales letter and then sell via Clickbank, allowing an army of keen and eager affiliates to do your marketing for you.

Whilst that can and does work, there are other paths that are equally successful. I know from experience, having made my living online by using my own websites to promote other people’s businesses. The business I chose was service-oriented. The reason for this is that a service business typically has a low overhead in order to provide the service.

I found that they were more willing to provide me with a larger share of the fees I was able to generate. The key is to use sales language and “speak” to the business’s clients in a language that they understand and respond to. For example, there’s no point using a 5-page sales letter when you’re trying to sell the services of a conservative legal practice – it just won’t work.

The other key thing is to build the website in a way that looks to be providing objective advice. People like objectivity when they are buying. The sites I tend to concentrate on are business-to-business sites. I just don’t like selling to individuals, as they have less money to spend and are infinitely fussier than a corporate buyer who typically just wants the facts.

My approach works and through various websites, I have attracted the business of quite a few household name clients for my clients. The great thing about the way I do business is that I don’t necessarily have a client when I build my websites.

Instead, I build a website based on a certain topic and then quite literally build a business around it. The sales copy doesn’t have to be blistering hot, it just has to be convincing and contain a strong call to action for the reader on the particular web page.

Make that call to action strong enough and the customers will come knocking on the door and there will be no need for cold-calling. The website does the selling for you. Of course, it’s not just down to the sales copy. There are a number of tools that can be used very effectively in order to make selling services online extremely easy.

Sales Techniques & The Death of The Sales Call

Sales techniques
A Google search on sales techniques or strategies (including more specific searches like a search on real estate sales technique or prospecting techniques or marketing tips or motivation strategies) will yield over a million results instantly. Even with so much information at your fingertips, it is not any easier to perfect your sales techniques or advertising techniques. Even when you refine your search to terms like sales closing techniques, motivation techniques, presentation techniques, sales skills, and so on and so forth, it is rather hard to narrow down your search any further from among the million-odd articles.

A Crisis of Individuality
The more one depends on the strategy ‘gurus’ or experts whether online, in books, or wherever, the more one loses that individual touch, those carefully tested out personal skills and strategies. And it is this quality—individuality—that is very important in the environment we now live in—one of extreme competition. Your buyer would be looking out for that something extra, something off the beaten track, as it were. There are going to be numerous conventions, seminars, and the like; breeding conformity. The gut feeling that makes you successful in dealings is your key to success. The important thing is to follow your instincts rather than blindly emulate the jargon spewing sales advisors.

Pick and Choose
That is not to say that all such sales tips should be avoided—far from it. Do learn from as many sources as you can but without forgetting your own self, because that is what makes you different from l the rest of the huge crowd. Business dealings depend on trust. So it is important to focus on your human side. Only then can you convince the other person that it is going to be a fair deal. As some put it, “the trust factor that is the bedrock to any sales or selling relationship”. It is here that modern sales strategies fail. Their failure lies in their negligence of the human elements. To be convincing and to build up trustfulness, you have to focus on your own personality rather than worrying about various external factors.

The focus, and we simply can not say it too many times, should be on making your buyer feel good, convincing him, ergo, trust-building. Selling is essentially when reduced to its elementary, most basic precepts a deal or a pact between two like-minded people or parties. Let us also not forget that trust goes a long way. The same buyer, if and when convinced and satisfied with the sales, will come back and maybe also bring in other buyers. This is a very fundamental precept of the sales technique. And the one on which you can always fall back upon in times of trouble!

Relax Your Customer

Relax Your Customer

One of the most important skills a doctor can possess is that of a bedside manner. In the same sense, it is important that salespeople possess the same type of skill, to be able to put their customers at ease.

Relaxing your customer is important to any type of sales situation you may find yourself in. Remember, think of the customer as a guest in your house, you are the host, so you want to make them as comfortable as possible in your house. The more comfortable they are in your house, the easier it will be for them to talk to you.

In sales, trying to persuade someone we have never met before to buy our product can be very challenging.

It can be challenging for a number of reasons, mainly the fear that consumers associate with salespeople.

The fear that we are all alike, comparing us to the unfair stereotype of the used car salesman. They are afraid of being convinced to buy something they don’t need at a price they can’t afford.

You need to find a common denominator with your customer, something you can both relate to, something non-business.

A non-business conversation is a great way to break the ice with your customer. We all want to make a sale, but when is it a crime to get to know your customer?

This is easier than you may think, people love to talk, especially about themselves.

So ask questions. Ask about their pets, their families, their work, and their hobbies.

When I was in banking, I managed a branch inside of a supermarket. Our daily goals consisted of going out into the aisles, approaching customers, and trying to convince them to bank with us.

We applied certain techniques to this type of sales that worked rather well.

For instance, the pet food aisle was a good place to talk to people, because people loved to talk about their pets. A simple question such as; “What kind of dog do you have?” would get them talking with the greatest of ease.

The junk food aisle was also a good place to talk to people. For some reason, the presence of candy and junk food put people in a good mood, and they were more prone to talk with a stranger.

One place we stayed away from, was the frozen food section because people didn’t want to talk where it was cold. Understandable.

My point is, people, love to talk as long as they can relate to the subject manner, so don’t be afraid to ask questions and get to know your customer beyond that of the products they need.

The more relaxed you can make your customer in your setting, the better of the two of you will be, and the more sales you will walk away with.

This article may be reproduced by anyone at any time, as long as the author’s name and reference links are kept intact and active.

Proactive Selling

This article distinguishes proactive selling from reactive selling and illustrates the technique and benefits associated with proactive selling.

Are you getting “no’s” bleed from customers saying no too often? Try asking questions that can’t be answered with a no. Try proactive selling.

Reactive Selling

Much of the time, we adopt a reactive posture with our customers. We “lob” a statement or benefit over the fence and wait for the customers to respond to the statement or benefit. Then we react to their response. Reactive statements include:

• “I’m calling to see if there’s anything we can help you out with today.” lob … wait … The response usually is “No, not today. Thank you.” Our reaction is “Well if something comes up….”

• “Last week I sent you our line card and I’m following up to see if you’ve received it.” lob…wait… The response usually is “Yep. But I don’t need anything…” or “I don’t remember.” Our reaction is, “Well, if something comes up…”

At the very best, many reactive sales call ends with the rep – not the customer – doing something. Reactive sales call result in the rep sending literature or setting up another phone call.

With reactive sales calls, you give up control of the conversation and reduce the possibility of making something happen.

Proactive Selling

Bring the customer into the conversation with an open-ended but specific question:

• “How familiar are you with our Pro-Act registry service?”

• “How familiar are you with our Inventory Elimination service?”

• “How familiar are you with the depth of inventory we stock?

This question should be targeted towards the customer needs but can be very effective for cold-calling as well. You retain control over the conversation and build the opportunity to qualify the customer.

In General

Also, don’t forget to:

• Begin each call with a specific Initial Value Statement.

• Confirm that you’re speaking with the decision-maker. “Are you the one who makes the decision to buy/sell…”

• Ask if this is a good time to talk for a few minutes.

• If the customer has done business with your company, thank them for their business.

And Finally…

Proactive selling won’t work for everyone and won’t work all the time. But when you’re feeling like you’re getting “no’s” bleed, try proactive selling.

(This information comes from Planning for Success, a module in Entelechy’s High-Performance Sales program. Check out this module as well as our 40 other modules, training tools, and eGuides at www.unlockit.com.)

Terence R. Traut is the president of Entelechy, Inc., a company that helps organizations unlock the potential of their people through customized training programs in the areas of sales, management, customer service, and training. Terence can be reached at 603-424-1237 or ttraut@unlockit.com.

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