A quality relationship is what sells in the business environment. We previously spoke of one major error made by many businesspeople, and that is settling for an immediate sale. Changing the thought will dramatically drive better results. Foremost, give consideration to the distant vision of you prospect. At the same time, reflect upon expected long-term results stemming from your seller-client interaction.
By striving first to build the relationship, you find the better-qualified candidates and with whom you will work well. Getting to know the person(s) making the decision on both a professional and personal level will enhance your results. In the end, it is the human connection that gets the sale.
But do you also wish to get repeat sales, referrals and testimonials? Should your answer be “Yes”, then take the time to speak in-depth on the envisioned outcome for you and for them.
To get the conversation started on the right footing is to first focus on the big picture. As answers are slowly provided, ask more pertinent questions concerning each topic. As an example, you might simply ask, “What are your long term goals?” A sub-question would be, “How would you prioritize these?” This could be followed by, “Please explain the reasons for prioritizing this way.”
Asking these types of questions demonstrate you are not there to simply sell something. Instead, by taking the time, you show that you are genuinely interested in what the other party is trying to accomplish, and deliver the subliminal message that quite possibly you are able to be of service. Drilling down on the questions further demonstrates wanting to provide the best service possible. This is where the key ingredients for making a sale, relationship and trust, begin to take root.
Get permission upfront to take notes as you speak. Explain that the details are important and you wish to capture everything shared. The sales technique is to capture their words. You may find this a repetitive statement but this technique is important enough to be included as a reminder.
Questions may then progress to acquiring a stronger hold on their thinking: “How do you see our product and/or service fitting in with those goals? What are you expectations each step of the way? What will your expectations be after implementation?”
By asking all of these questions upfront you will stand a greater likelihood of converting the prospect to a new client. Just as important, you will know precisely how to best work with your client.
Avoid the disappearance act
The next big error many businesspeople make is to disappear once the sale is made. Most likely their confidence is low in regard to maintaining a satisfied customer. Assuming your delivery of goods and services do live up to expectations, from the client’s standpoint, you face the next round of qualifiers to earn repeat business.
Phase two of building your relationship should incorporate making yourself available to address potential problems, answer questions, and offer further consultation on solutions as needs arise. Success comes more easily to those who are able to put themselves in the shoes of their prospects and clients.
All of the suggestions above greatly enhance your success rate for securing repeat business, referrals and testimonials. Your personal brand may become “The one salesperson I trust”.
Your clientele transforms into your salesforce, thereby gifting you the Smooth Sale!
Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale, LLC, (800) 704-1499, www.smoothsale.net.
Open View Labs selected Stutz to be in their “Top 25 Sales Influencers for 2012.” Elinor authored the International Best-Selling book, “Nice Girls DO Get the Sale: Relationship Building That Gets Results”, Sourcebooks and the best selling career book, “HIRED! How to Use Sales Techniques to Sell Yourself On Interviews”, Career Press. She provides team sales training, private coaching and highly acclaimed inspirational keynotes for conferences. Elinor is available for consultation.