Here’s a classic for anyone to read and understand. Everyone is a sales person. It all depends on what level. The greatest sales people are kids. They don’t take “no” for an answer and are relentless in their pursuit to get what they want. I’ve memorized this personally frontwards and backwards as my late great mentor and trusted advisor would always spot check me on this.
Top sales producers have a few things in common. They ask questions skillfully and listen carefully. They balance empathy and ego throughout the process. They don’t tell prospects what they are doing wrong, they compliment what they are doing right and add value throughout the entire sales process. They are decisive. They are deeply knowledgable in every aspect of what they sell. They are relentless. They are very passionate about what they do.
Caution: People can smell “sales breathe” a mile away. Don’t start selling until you have steps 1 and 2 done, and in some cases, don’t start selling until you get deep into step 3. The sales process is an art form and every prospect is a unique canvas.
Here are the 7 steps to every sale:
1. Establish Rapport – People buy from people they like. For some individuals establishing rapport is very easy to accomplish. “If you want to be interesting, be interested” is a great line to understand. Getting prospects to talk about them and their business establishes great rapport. Going two levels deep is asking the prospect what they do now, and what they were doing before now. Saying the prospects name is also a great rapport builder. Remember, its not about you, its about them. Get a good feel for the pace your prospect is talking and the tone they are using and match it. Mirror neuronic connection is a great rapport builder well when you match your prospect’s frequency.
2. Find the Need – What pain, problems or challenges is the prospect having? In most cases, finding the need is easy when the context is about their business and if you did a good job establishing rapport, they have already told you and you need to make it clear that what they told you is a need they would be interested in.
3. Build Value – Educating clients on the features, advantages and benefits of your product/service is important in building value. “Price is an issue in the absence of value.” When a prospect is just looking for a price, just note that people are pre-programmed to just ask that and continue to focus on the value proposition.
4. Create Desire – This is where for most sales people, it gets sticky or can feel unnatural. Make it objective and be aware of the context inside the subject matters thinking. Be expressive and passionate about why this will impact the prospects business, life or in general. The one with the most passion wins.
5. Overcome Objections – There are many tools and techniques sales people use to overcome an objection and it depends on the product or service you offer. The word “but” is a common word to look out for and be prepared to handle anything that comes your way. Make it a point to agree with the prospect’s objection and be witty with your comeback. A “no” is simply a way of saying, “I don’t have enough information to make a decision yet.” #witty is just your character in pursuit of the goal.
6. Close the Sale – I find it very odd that sales people simply do not even ask for the sale and its usually from a lack of training. Just ask leading questions or ‘yes’ questions and follow the path that best guides you and your prospect. Remind them of their previous answers and answer any other question they may have.
7. Follow-up! – This is key to being a great sales producer. Following-up shows that you care. You should have a follow-up plan that extends a 2 year period. In the beginning, it should be the same day, then two days, then 4 days, then 7 days, then 10 days, then two weeks and onward similar to a Fibonacci spiral. Top of mind awareness is the number one goal of marketing and following-up simple does just that.
Go back to step one and read through it again. Comment below and I will answer any question(s) you may have. Sales is perspective, it’s attitude, and on a daily basis, it’s a muscle you constantly build.