To me, job titles don’t matter. Everyone is in sales. It’s the only way we stay in business. – Harvey Mackay
Every day of our lives, we’re selling something to someone. It can be anything from ideas on where to eat, what to do, or even in a customer meeting. There are 7 tips that can be the difference between making a sale and being rejected. For instance, currently I am selling insurance. It is probably one of the toughest sells, considering most people I contact already have insurance and are satisfied with their current company. That is where these 7 tips come into play and if you execute them correctly, you will close your next sale through the power of human persuasion. If you do not take the time to care about your customer, your competitor will do that for you. Here are my 7 tips on how to land your next sale.
The reason I put listening first is because it is so easy to do, yet every day we walk into situations and talk first. When sitting across from a big client, you should be allowing them to do most of talking. We were given two ears and one mouth, so we should be doing half as much talking as listening. When you start to really listen, you learn to identify the other person’s problems and you can find a way to help solve their challenges. We’re here to help solve problems and not to make a customer buy something they do not want.
Confidence is key, there is a difference between confidence and arrogance. When you are confident people trust you and they believe what you have to say. Having confidence is where a lot of people struggle. A social scientist demonstrated this through an experiment – before you get up to give a speech, if you make yourself bigger, you will be more confident. If you stand up and make yourself big by expanding your arms up wide, along with a power stance, feet spread apart, you will gain confidence. That means next time you walk into a sales call go to the bathroom first to make yourself big and you will gain confidence.
- COMMUNICATE CLEARLY
Anyone in sales understands that when you deliver a message, it has to be clear and precise. You cannot beat around the bush. You have to say what you are selling and why. When you articulate your words well, people respond to that in a positive fashion. If you mumble or talk softly, people do not respond. Communication is a skill that can be learned, so work to give speeches and write as frequently as possible.
People love talking to people who are upbeat and smiling. Smiling is very contagious and it brings out a relaxing mood in all of us. Smiling can also keep a conversation going in a positive direction. The pure emotion and energy from smiling at someone can really turn the customer’s day around and really make them enjoy the experience of working with you.
Humor makes any tense situation into a more relaxing one. When going into a sales meeting, the other party already knows you are trying to sell them something and they might be resistant. However, as humans we love to buy. We can break through the tough exterior of the customer with a simple joke. Humor, when used right, usually sets me up to ask for the order or the sale.
- DON’T TAKE THE 1ST, 2ND, OR 3RD NO
The dreaded “No” that is involved in all sales – yes we can handle it and we keep going. You will hear No more than Yes, but I am trying to help you change that. It usually takes about three No’s before you reach a Yes. When you hear the word No, all you have to do is take a deep breath, reevaluate the situation, and go from there. So many times I have heard No just to dive deeper, to see what the customer truly needed and got to the Yes. “No” will be the hardest thing to handle but you have to push through it and keep going.
- LEAVE THROUGH THE BACK DOOR
When you close a big deal, do not make it public. When you make things public, a competitor will be close by to see what you did right. Instead, close your sale and leave through the back door, where you won’t be seen. We’re businessmen and women and you should not be making it easy for competitors to figure out what you’re up to. Too many big companies publicize their big sales, just to find a competitor has come in and undercut them. Close your sale and quietly leave through the back door.
With these tips you are now prepared for your next meeting with a big client. When I sell, I use all of these strategies, but the one I use most is listening. If you talk more than your customer, you have lost the battle. Follow these tips and do something great. As always, remember life is too short – stand out and be different.