Contributed post –
No one is born a natural salesperson. A good rep makes it look super easy, but actually, an excellent sales performance means that they are likely to have spent plenty of time honing their skills and continually working on them to help better their prospects.
If you are a first-time sales rep, or perhaps you are looking at going back to basics, here are some of the foundations of successful selling.
Identify your goals
Always start at the end and work backwards. Knowing what your goals are and measuring your performance against them is the most important thing that you can do when starting out.
How many customers do you need and in what time frame? How many leads do you need to meet that number? How many connections do you need to make to generate that number of opportunities? These are just a few of the things you may want to think about before you start the sales process.
Recognise that sales are a process
Selling something is a process, one that is more scientific than artistic. You need to look at it as a process, one that is scalable; otherwise, you are likely to be missing out. Sales are always changing, but the fundamental process will forever remain the same. You have to attract customers by establishing their needs and interest in whatever it is that you are selling, address the inertia and determine the timeline. How you move through that funnel, however, is unique to you or your business and the client. Treat every sales transaction the same, and you could easily miss something.
Build on learning opportunities
Great businesspeople always grab hold of every opportunity to learn and develop, and even if you appear to be a natural, you can always learn more. Sign up for negotiation skills training, find a mentor or shadow someone with more experience than you and see what you can learn. You may find that you pick up key phrases, rapport-building techniques or closing strategies that you can adapt for your needs.
Measure everything that you can. Remember those goals that you set at the beginning? Make sure that you are continually looking at them and analysing your performance against them. Will you hit your numbers? Are your closing techniques converting leads into customers? If not, you need to find a new strategy. Don’t wait until it’s too late to reach your targets this month. Measuring as you go means that you can solve problems as soon as they begin to arise and potentially turn things around.
Make sure that you are selling to the right people.
Before you start your sales pitch, make sure that you are reaching out to people who will have an interest in what you are trying to sell. What you do not want to be doing is wasting your valuable time on people who are never going to buy your services or product. Do your research before making the connection and only move forward if there appears to be interested.