Apr 30, 2021
I used to worry quite a bit about my sales practices early on in my career and often rehash my mistakes and beat myself up for not making one more sale or one more cold call. If it were close to the end of the month, I'd worry about making my sales quota or tomorrow's big presentation. Finally, I realized that yesterday's gone and tomorrow's yet to be born. I only have the day, so why not live and work like it is the only day that matters - because it is the only day that counts!
Salespeople - What's in a Name?
Many salespeople have a negative perception of themselves. When I first started selling for 3M Company, my title was sales representative. Over the years, I've seen all kinds of names given to sales representatives such as sales executives, sales consultants. While these are fine, there are some names that I don't particularly like, such as marketing representative, business development manager, or relationship manager.
Because salespeople have a negative connotation, they feel ashamed or don't want to have the word sales be in the title of their sales job. However, this is a self-defeating mindset. When you travel through life with a negative perception of what you do, you're probably not going to be very successful.
How Sales Provide Value
The truth is selling is providing value, but when people confuse sales with people who are forcing unwanted products, services, and opportunities on them, sales get a negative rap. Don't allow guilt to perpetuate what you do. Be proud of what you do. People love to buy.
When you are authentic, listen, solve problems, be generous, be honest, build relationships, lead well, and demonstrate gratitude, humility, and compassion. You have the basic building blocks of a salesperson that brings value.
Solving Pain Points for Clients
Clients and customers want solutions; they want practical and workable ideas from character and common sense. Studies show that customers who buy are indeed likely to buy again from the same person, but only if they see value in doing so. Price, by the way, is hardly ever a bargaining chip.
The best customer service, follow-up, and relationship-building will increase your sales. When you make a sale, you're making a connection with someone. The sale opens the door. Walking through that door into the customer's business, life and future is what drives more sales. Think of that first sale like it's the first date. You've met, talked, exchanged time, ideas, resources. Do you want to continue the relationship and see it as a connection?
Be the real deal with authenticity. Many of us pride ourselves on the ability to spot a phony, but we fail to realize that our prospects can sometimes spot a fake. You may look like the real deal, but you have to be the real deal. Walk your talk and keep promises you make to build trust under-promise and over-deliver. Always do what you say or do - no excuses. Give your personal best, whether it's a small client or a large corporation.
Finding Success in Sales
Success is 90% preparation and 10% persuasion and sales. Customers will often show up knowing the features, advantages, and benefits of your products and services. They've done their homework on the Internet, and they've read all the good and bad things people said about your company. Be ready to answer questions your clients will have about your product or service.
Listen in as we talk about the six sales principles I live by, the importance of being prepared before a sales pitch, and why you want to take responsibility for your mistakes.