If you’ve recently started your own business, and are seeking to increase your overall sales revenue — or if you currently wish to fine-tune the current practices of your established company — you may have found yourself seeking an intangible formula to ensure that your sales goals are not only met and sustained, but hopefully, surpassed. Yet, while there may not be a singular remedy for achieving financial success, the notion which depicts sales as a rare or elusive talent must be quickly disregarded. Rather, it should be treated as a job skill as any other, with techniques and strategies that must be implemented, practiced, and mastered.
Fortunately, there are certain practices that can assist entrepreneurs and business owners in improving upon their sales tactics, and ultimately, their results.
1. Keep peace among your sales team. Without a cohesive team, there are very few sales techniques that will prove triumphant for your organization. An every-person-for-him/herself is a mindset that often, and unfortunately, results in the type of competition that does not foster a healthy collaborative attitude. According to Hampus Jakobsson, CEO of Brisk, an organization which helps companies find efficient sales paths, “Creating synergy within your sales force will lead to increased communication, peer teaching, [and] information sharing as it pertains to customers and leads and, ultimately sales”. He continues to explain that regardless of the size of your company, “teamwork will always trump rivalry in the long run”. Complimenting and noticing the small feats of individual members of your sales team along the way will increase engagement and feelings of value among the team as a whole.
2. Listen and pay attention. Whether we are assuming how others will respond to a common inquiry or presuming the outcome of a particular circumstance, we are not truly listening to, or taking note of, potentially important situations. It’s quite easy to remain on autopilot during our daily business routines, but, as stated by Patrick Bet David, author and teacher of entrepreneurship and personal development, “When we listen, we learn. We find out about hidden opportunities, we discover unmet needs, and we unearth potential problems before they happen”. He continues, “Doing this removes all obstacles to making a sale… Once all that is out of the way, the sale happens, revenues come in, and relationships are built”. When salespeople overlook the obvious out of habit, they are missing out on prospectively lucrative opportunities for themselves as well as the entire organization.
3. Focus on the customer’s concerns. It’s more than likely that you built your business based upon the particular needs or wants of a certain demographic. Perhaps you felt that this group was not receiving the proper consideration as far as your product or service is concerned. Therefore, you are naturally equipped with solid solutions to the common problems and considerations of your clientele. While this is a laudable attribute, you may not necessarily want to lead with your solutions until identifying your potential customers’ specific issues and concerns. The greater majority of the public prefers a personalized experience with companies with which they choose to do business. Take note of the individual concerns of your prospective clients first, empathize with their viewpoints, and then offer your solution through the capabilities of your product or service. According to Jakobsson, “This will make [customers] feel more invested in your solution and provide clues as to how you should be positioning your wares”.
4. Directly address your communications. Many sales people will send a general email or direct marketing invite for potential clients to try out their product or service. However, whenever possible, take the time to personalize your communications to prospective customers with whom you have built a rapport. Although, according to Jakobsson, this is often not enough, “If you are taking the time to write a personalized message to a prospective client, make sure he or she knows it. Include private anecdotes, discuss how your product or service would benefit this person specifically or perhaps touch on personal experiences that can be applied to this person’s business. Don’t ever let a customer assume an email is just an automated direct marketing outreach if it isn’t”.
The sales process is often a trial-and-error progression. Yet, as competitors seem to materialize quicker than ever before, it’s crucial that entrepreneurs and business leaders are not only alert to the practices of their team, but involved in creating and implementing the sales strategies that will lead their organization to the top.
Stewart, Cooper & Coon, has helped thousands of decision makers and senior executives move up in their careers and achieve significantly improved financial packages within short time frames. Contact Fred Coon – 866-883-4200, Ext. 200