Preparation is of utmost importance when going to battle. Could you imagine showing up to a gunfight with a knife? Or going to nuclear war without a gas mask? You might as well sign off on your own death certificate. And this my friends is the way many people approach sales calls. They show up unprepared or improperly prepared and they’ve all but lost before they even started. So how can you prevent that happening on your next call? Follow these simple steps:
- Do some background research on your prospect. Find out what they like and dislike. See what their company’s overall mission and vision are. Attempt to discover what has worked well (or not) for them in the past in your area of expertise.
- Refine your skills. This may sound ridiculous for those of you who have been in your business a long time, but it is wise to do. Make sure you are in top selling form. This includes presentation, delivery, and product/service knowledge.
- Plan for the best. If the client asked you to buy right there on the spot, are you ready? Have clear next steps spelled out should the customer determine to move forward. I have actually seen salespeople unprepared to make the sale in these instances so don’t think it doesn’t happen.
- Plan for the worst. How will you deal with that and what will be your plan of attack moving forward. Often, the worst outcome you can imagine is rejection and if that’s the case, will you fumble to try and win the prospect back or will you accept rejection and move on. Neither are best, so prepare properly.
- Bring huge ears and a tiny mouth. For sales people, this is so difficult. They want to throw up all their features and benefits. This is both unwise and can come off very unprofessional. Listen to what the prospect has to say and take tons of notes. Don’t have immediate answers for every question. Allow there to be moments of silence so you can both gather thoughts and formulate intelligent responses.
To some of you these may sound so simple but I addressed them today because I’ve seen many sales people take knives to gunfights. If that was you, thankfully you didn’t die the last time so you have the opportunity to learn from past mistakes, grow in this area, and claim victory the next time you meet with a prospect.
Did you know I offer both one-one-one and group sales training? Whether you want to work on one small area you need improvement in or you want to complete my entire series, I have something for you. Let’s chat! You can call, email, or fill out the simple form by following the link below.