Working in the ever changing world of sales, one knows that not one person has the ability to close every deal opportunity. Chances are that you want to improve your numbers, both for personal fulfillment and for professional reasons in order to earn bonuses, commission and opportunities for advancement. If you already have good sales and communication skills, how can you improve and make them even better? Read these tips to help you move forward in your sales career.
How To Locate a Decision-Maker Within A Company
To ensure that you can close a sale, you first have to determine that you are talking to the right person who is also known as the decision-maker. This step can be more complex than you think because at many companies, there are several people involved when it comes to making purchasing decisions. To give yourself the best chance of success, you can target the person with the most influence.
The best way to find this person is to ask a gatekeeper within the company itself, such as a receptionist. You can help the gatekeeper determine who exactly you need by asking insightful questions like:
- “Who should I talk to?”
- “Who makes the final decision on projects like this?”
- “Who makes recommendations on these types of decisions?”
- “Who signs off on the budget?”
These questions are particularly important because there are different levels and types of decision-makers:
- Traditional Decision-Maker: This person makes the final decision when it comes to purchasing the product. It is often ideal to speak directly to decision-makers, sometimes they may be difficult to reach. In turn, you can rely on the expertise of their subordinates in order to make recommendations.
- Influencer: These people do not make the final decision but will advocate for your product if they like it. Influencers often have authority but not enough to sign off on the purchase. They might have a vested interest in the product. For example, managers in the department that will use the product on a daily basis.
- Budget Decision-Maker: This person authorizes the purchase by signing off on the financial budget. Depending on how purchases are approved, this person can be the same as the decision-maker or another person.
Five Things That Influence The Decision-Maker
Once you determine who the decision-maker is, influence them to purchase the product or service by connecting with them directly. You will need a great sales pitch but the lead is more likely to do business with you if they can sense a great connection with you personally. The following tips can be used on existing contacts in order to convince them to renew or add products and services. By continuing to work on your communication skills, you can then increase your figures and chances of getting a promotion or raise.
Improving Your Voice Skills
It is not just what you say, but also how you say it. This is particularly true for phone calls when leads are unable to see your face and view body language. Some employers pay for voice training for sales associates but you can also take steps to work on it yourself, for example by avoiding fillers like “um” or “okay”. Have a trusted family member, friend or colleague listen to you speak and give you feedback on your pitch, tone and volume.
Use Specific Numbers and Examples
Incorporate the storytelling technique into your demo pitch by using specific and illustrative examples of how your products have helped other clients.Make sure that you are allowed to share that information. You can describe the positive results with numbers, statistics, graphs, photos or anecdotes.
Make The Decision-Maker Feel Important
One of the most effective sales tips is to make the lead feel important which in turn will create a positive association with you. You can incorporate techniques such as using their name, complementing their business strategies, making statements like “I know you are really busy...” and asking them about how their day is going.
Focus On Solving A Particular Problem
You now know what you can gain from using these sales tips. When you want to close a sale, focus on the customer. How will the product benefit them? If you take the time to research their challenges, whether by asking them direct questions, reading about their competitors or staying informed of current market trends, you have a better chance of closing the deal.
Master Presentation Techniques
If you are making the sales pitch in person, incorporate common presentation techniques. Study the best techniques for body language, eye contact, placement and posture. Even your handshake is important.