Selling for a living is challenging. There is constant pressure to reach sales targets, customers and prospects who are demanding, and changes in the marketplace to deal with. But there are also incredible highs.
If you want to experience more of those highs and are serious about maintaining a long-term career, here are 14 things you should never stop doing.
If you do nothing else but prospect for a new business every day, chances are you will always be busy and seldom experience peaks and valleys in your sales.
2. Improve your skill.
Professionals in many industries need to regularly upgrade their skills. Selling is no different. The marketplace has changed and what worked five years ago is no longer relevant. Make the time and invest in regular self-improvement programs (workshops, conferences, books, audio programs, etc).
3. Listen more than you talk.
People who listen more, learn more. The more you learn the more effectively you can position your solution or offering.
4. Establish clear call objectives.
Whether it’s a face-to-face meeting or telephone call, you need to have a clear objective of what you want to accomplish. Note: Closing the sale is not an objective.
5. Create plans.
Create a business plan for every day, week, month and the entire year. Write down what sales you want to achieve, then determine what daily, weekly
and monthly activities you need to execute to achieve your goals.
6. Study your products.
How much time do you spend studying and learning your products? Do you know the key differences between yours and similar products? Do you know how each product will actually benefit a customer?
Effective sales networking means
attending the events that your key prospects attend.
8. Ask awesome questions.
The ability to ask great questions, tough, probing questions and penetrating questions, is one of the most effective ways to increase your sales.
9. Deliver great presentations.
Don’t confuse this with the ability to stand up in front of several hundred people and deliver a keynote presentation. The key to delivering a great sales presentation is ensuring that it addresses your prospect’s main issues and that it focuses on their needs and objectives, not your agenda.
10. Adapt your approach.
Do you ever consider the personality style of the other person when planning your sales presentation? Do you know if your prospect prefers correspondence via email, texting, face-to-face or telephone? Is your prospect a 35,000-foot-view person or does he or she like to know every detail?
11. Set high goals.
People with the highest goals tend to achieve the most. Are your goals challenging and motivating? Do you even set your own goals or do you simply take what’s given to you by your boss?
12. Be persistent.
Four or five years ago it would take an average of seven calls to connect with a new prospect. Now it’s a safe bet to say that it can take as many as 12 or more just to make that first contact. You need to be diligent and persistent.
13. Forge relationships.
Developing and maintaining great relationships with prospects, customers, friends and other people in your network is one activity that will always pay off.
14. Show respect.
I have seen firsthand how poorly some sales people treat gatekeepers and receptionists and it always disappoints me because I am a firm believer in treating people with respect and dignity. Yes, that person may only be the receptionist in your eyes but they often hold the key to the Presidential Suite. Treat them accordingly.
If you consistently apply and execute these strategies you will definitely see an increase in your sales.