One of my clients that has me on retainer asked me to help them in getting an important potential customer’s business.
I agreed to go with their sales representative for a scheduled sales call.
The sales process
I feel very comfortable in sales since I have been on both sides of the selling process. I have been in sales and as a business owner and business executive I have been solicited by many sales representatives. Throw in my extensive training in understanding human behavior and my belief is that selling is fairly easy.
From our meeting we were able to gather very valuable information and left there with an agreement that as soon as we could clear up one area we would be placed on their preferred vendors list.
Secondary to this agreement we obtained what this person’s greatest need was in the area of services my client provides. And as an added bonus we found out his “pet peeve” in his dealings with our competition.
How were we able to accomplish so much in 30 minutes (we ended the meeting – he didn’t have to)? By following a few basic rules of effective selling – namely:
Be respectful of their time
Make your time count by focusing on THEIR needs. Prepare prior to your meeting, and already have a good idea what you want to focus on BEFORE you arrive.
Ask good questions
This is so important. For example, a few questions that we asked included:
- What is your greatest need at present in your job as it relates to the type of services we provide?
- What is the thing that causes you stress or aggravation in dealing with people in our industry?
- What do we need to do next to move the process forward in getting approved to do work for your company?
Listen more than you talk
Guess what we spent our time on during our meeting?
Educating the customer on how we provide the services identified as his greatest need to other companies and how we can fill that need. We then emphasized how our company handles the situation that “peeves” this customer to assure him that they won’t have that problem when they give us their business.
Before your next sales call take the time to identify what information you wish to obtain. Then, with a little planning, you can create a tailor made set of questions for each potential customer or company.
A successful sales call always has the next step identified and a time table for it to be accomplished.
For example, after you find out what you can do to move the process forward you ask when they would like to schedule a follow-up meeting and if possible set the next meeting date before you leave.
Do you know the greatest need and biggest peeve of each of your customers?
If you don’t NOW might be a good time for a visit with a few focused questions.
And if you would like help prior to making a presentation you can call or click the button below to contact me. Also, I am a member of the National Speakers Association and available for speaking engagements!