Ready, Set, Go! 5 Absolutely Easy Ways to Sell Better
Having turned the page on our 2015 calendars, we are now moving headlong into the New Year. Many business owners and entrepreneurs will cast their eyes on growing their business and associated revenues in 2016. Some will start the year with baby steps towards accomplishing their goals while others will take giant leaps. Some will do more of what they have always done (and expect different results!), and yet others will seek out new and improved ways of building on last year’s victories.
What about you? What do you plan to do? It is often the “little things” rather than massive marketing and sales campaigns that can make the biggest difference in your sales results.
Here are some important steps on your road to success for 2016 and beyond:
Be a Better Listener
One essential attribute of any successful salesperson is the ability to listen. Sure, it seems like a no-brainer. Yet how many times have you suffered through a sales pitch where someone talked your ears off without ever letting you speak? It’s all too common and for some an irrepressible habit. Your job isn’t to go hoarse pitching your business; it is to probe effectively and insightfully and then carefully listen to the responses. Only then can you align what you offer with your prospect’s wants and needs.
If you learn to ask the right questions, a prospect will tell you everything you need to know for how to best address their wants and needs. It makes little sense to throw out benefits and facts about an aspect of your business for which your prospect has neither the need nor interest. It’s rude and a waste of their (and your) time. When you craft your list of questions and target them to your specific audience, your sales presentations will improve greatly.
Mine the Gold in Your Existing Database
Everyone wants new clients, of course, but finding and opening up a new account is sometimes an exhaustive, time-consuming hunt. The fastest return on sales time can come from your existing clients and/or dormant accounts. These are companies and individuals with whom you already have a relationship. They trust and appreciate your work (or should!) and will be happy to return if you’re available. Ask yourself if you have done a good job cross-selling and upselling your existing clients. Are you “leaving business on the table?”
Outsource and Delegate
This is the year to finally admit to yourself, “I can’t do it all!” Instead of burying yourself in all corners of the business, develop resources to assist you where your own skills or knowledge are lacking. Most entrepreneurs have a strong “shirt-sleeve” mentality and true grit, two character traits that are undeniably important for building a business. As a people and project manager, however, your job is to delegate tasks that are better executed by a person or team of talented professionals. The mission-critical aspects of the business must be implemented by you.
It’s terrific to be optimistic, but sometimes it’s more important to just be honest. Some ideas won’t work, you tried but not hard enough, that “solution” is a failure – it doesn’t much matter what is causing the delusion, what’s important is to clear the cobwebs and see the facts. Taking an honest appraisal of a situation can be gut wrenching and difficult to handle. The only way to break through to success is to recognize what is impeding it in the first place. Lying to yourself might cost you the success you deserve.