Copyright (c) 2007 Drew Stevens PhD
Many selling professionals and even entrepreneurs are constrained with trying to meet their weekly and annual goals. Times are difficult and challenging and the need to meet quota goals is stressful. There are a number of things one can do to help ease the pressure and ensure they meet goals.
Feedback – One of the necessary rules of selling is constant feedback from management. It is flabbergasting to me when employees do not understand their goal placement midway through the year and even more disconcerting when management communication only occurs in the fourth quarter. Feedback is vital for continued success.
Metrics – It is interesting to view how sales are measured, some in calls per day, earned commissions and goals by management. It is vital that selling professionals must be involved in this strategic process. Management derives numbers based on stakeholder value yet might not be familiar enough to denote territory growth. Second, sales must never be measured in calls per day. Once former client drives its sales team to make 50 calls per day. Professionals are prohibited from making personal calls. One will get stressed and burn out quickly. To combat attrition, sales cannot be measured in call production but rather the true value- sales. If a selling professional makes quota after five calls does this denote failure. Rethink your selling metrics.
Selling as Sport – Selling your business or your firm’s product required unending passion. It is baffling to find selling professionals that believe they work an eight-hour day. Selling is a profession and a sport. You must love what you do and love what you sell. The latter denotes that selling is a twenty four hour 365-day process. While it does not mean you cannot turn off and relax in order to be the best in your field you must be selling all the time.
Differentiation – Today’s selling professional must be more astute and different from the competition. There is way too much of it. To be heard over the pandemonium, it is paramount for selling professionals to be different. For one, refrain from cold calling everyone does it and no one is successful. When was the last time you noticed a wealthy cold calling insurance agent? Refrain from networking events. Too many professionals frequent events to visit old friends. That is for the weekend. Attend events that will garner opportunities for business. Be artful and discover new opportunities to be different from the crowd.
Reach Decision Makers – The greatest challenge of any business professional is meeting with the person that can make the ultimate purchase decision. Refrain from spending too much time with people that will not or cannot provide opportunities. Your first question during the prospecting stage is to decipher who the decision maker is. Ask the question, “How is a decision made within the organization”. Or, “Who in your organization is responsible for making the ultimate decision?”
Closing – Too many professionals find it difficult to ask the question, “Do you want to buy one”? Sales are made with closing. Get immediate commitment. It is vital that you ask the question. “Is there anything preventing our working together at this point?” or “How quickly are you ready to being once you review the proposal?” Gain commitment and close quicker.
Value – Prospects are more willing to accept you if you come prepared to assist them with value. Speak to them from the understanding of the value you provide that corrects the current client condition. Prospects seek remedies to current pains and better and faster sales will come by illustrating how your product/service improves the condition.
Customer Loyalty – Loyal customers return, consistently and regularly. Loyal customers tell others and loyal customers make your job easier. When you service clients from inception through sales to service you enthrall them with opportunities that create memorable emotions. Consumers act on emtion, the kind that makes the experience acceptable and memorable. Prospective clients will flock due to word of mouth and the buzz that surrounds you.
Selling today is similar to climbing a mountain with swim trunks while carrying a tiffany glass. You must be more agile than you competitors and more aggressive too. Differentiation sets you apart from competitors. Dissident attitudes and behaviors garner attention and instigate change. If sales are stalled, instill change and create new results!