The large majority of salesmen and women don’t know how the prospect thinks or what he expects when the salesman calls. There’s a lot more to sales than understanding the products being sold and touting the advantages the product has to the buyer.
From start to finish, many customers would be far happier and buy more if the salesman approached his trade from the customer’s viewpoint.
Prospecting the Customer
The beginning starts with prospecting for the customer that is most likely looking for the product being sold. Too many salesman waste time calling disinterested customers. They don’t start by building a list of potential buyers and eliminating the unlikely candidates. Once the salesman has a good idea of who he’d best approach to garner a sale, he needs to do some research on the prospect before he can approach them. Once he knows that, he can tailor his calls to the prospect’s office to set up a meeting.
The buyer likes to feel that he has value in the salesman’s mind. He needs to know that the buyer respects his time and isn’t out for a quick buck. All good salesman do preliminary research to meet the needs of the customer.
Preparation for the Upcoming Meeting
Being organized is a key ingredient. The expert salesman prepares an agenda to cover all the points he expects to discuss at the meeting and emails that agenda to the prospect. Everyone is busy, so a well-organized plan projects professionalism and helps the meeting go smoother when it occurs.
Preparation means being ready to answer the tough questions the customer will ask during the meeting. The salesman has to feel as comfortable in answering pointed questions as he is in knowing about his products and what they do for the customer.
The Importance of Conducting a Sales Meeting
Establishing customer credibility is necessary. The sales meeting is likely to be tough as the customer is always skeptical about the salesman’s claims. So the salesman should have a list of clients he has dealt with in the past, along with contact information so the customer can call them up for information before he decides on making a purchase.
Politeness and respect for the customer’s opinions are crucial. A good rapport established early during the meeting helps smooth out differences and leads to an early agreement for both parties.
Communication and After Sales Service
It’s critical to keep the customer happy. Regular emails, phone calls, and messages help the customer feel important. It demonstrates that the salesman cares about the customer’s satisfaction. Many customers prefer to deal with a previous salesperson. But without regular follow-ups, the customer can’t contact the salesman for further purchases. Suitable methods include sending a newsletter, offers of new products or surveys the customer can fill out and send in.
The customer expects the product to work as expected. But many a salesman vanish with no way for the customer to reach him. Other than calls to the company the salesman works for.
These sales techniques apply to every product or service being sold. In the boardroom, the showroom floor or in the prospect’s home, professional salesmen and women use these techniques to increase value for their customers and put more profit in their pockets.