Sales Tips for the Optimal Salesperson

This page is dedicated to helping you become the best salesperson you can be. These one minute sales tips will help make you more effective and earn more money. Each Tip is a single actionable nugget designed to move you toward effortless high performance … In short to become the Optimal Salesperson.

New Year’s Resolutions Are a Waste of Time

New Years resolutions are a waste of time. That is, they are a waste if you only do it once per year then forget about them two weeks later. Goal setting and commitment are NOT a waste of time. In Fact, they are a necessary and invaluable part of your growth as a salesperson. BUT, (and it s a big BUT) you have to do it consistently throughout the year. Set goals, review progress, stay committed or renew your commitment. It is not a once a year thing.

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The Two Group Technique

 

A simple direct way to determine if the prospect has a compelling reason to buy is to define two groups and ask them to put themselves into one or the other. This binary choice leaves no doubt whether they have pain or not IF (and only if) you set up the groups correctly. It is a simple technique just define one group that has pain and one group that doesn’t and ask you prospect to put themselves into one or the other. This video illustrates how it might sound when you say it to a prospect.

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Don’t Argue With Your Prospect

This may seem like an obvious point, but

you may be arguing with your prospect and not realize it. This sales tip discusses how your prospect may view your interaction as a debate and explains how that will defeat your purpose. Remember that your main purpose is to find pain, and pain is emotional not logical. Getting stuck in a logical “discussion” may cause the prospect to harden their position. If that happens you may find it hard to move the sales process forward. 

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Are You Confident Enough To Be Humble?

Confidence in your ability and in your solution is necessary to be effective in selling. However, confidence can be interpreted as arrogance if you are not careful. When you are in the discovery phase of the sales process you need to be humble enough to ask questions with a sincere curiosity to understand the perspective of the prospect. Anyone can uncover the intellectual aspects of the problem that the prospect has, assuming that they have one. Only a person with the humility to understand that they do not know how this problem or situation affects the prospect personally will be effective at uncovering the real compelling reason to buy. Humility is required to refrain from prescribing a solution while they seek to understand the personal pain of the prospect. An ability to anticipate the problems the prospect might have coupled with the humility to ask questions, is essential to earning the trust of the prospect and truly qualify the opportunity.

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Declaring Your Honesty is Not Always the Best Policy

 

Honesty in a salesperson is to be expected. However when a salesperson utters the phrase “to be honest” before making a statement or answering a question it throws up a red flag in the mind of the prospect. He or she thinks “wait, what about the other things she told me, was she being honest then?” In most cases this is just a verbal tic. You say it without thinking and without meaning it literally. Sometimes it is just a way of being apologetic about what you are going to say. But in any case just eliminate it from your vocabulary. It may not be easy, but earning trust is hard enough without throwing questions into the prospects mind needlessly.

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Never Say “Trust Me”

 

Trust is important in Sales. However, one way to way to hinder your ability to develop trust is to use the phrase “trust me”. the immediate reaction of most people when they hear that is to ask themselves “why is he saying that?” the best way to develop trust is to be honest and authentic. Have a conversation with the prospect and you will develop trust naturally. Trust is something you earn. It grows over time. It is not something you have to ask for. And if you have to ask for it, your prospect may become suspicious of your motives.


Image courtesy of: purplejavatroll

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Look For Personal Pain

Salespeople who only focus on the problem the organization is having can miss the factor that is most likely to motivate the prospect to take action or to authorize purchase of your product or service.  Prospects are motivated by personal pain more than merely a problem that needs to be solved. Personal pain can be defined as how the prospect feels about the problem at hand. The first step is to understand the problem of course. the second step is to uncover how the problem affects the person you are talking to. but the most important step is to get the prospect to share with you how he or she feels about how the consequences of the problem affect their life. A company may be less efficient because of an outdated CRM. However consider two separate situations one in which the VP of Operations is focused on upgrading the manufacturing equipment and another in which the President has just informed him that the slow CRM is costing thousands of dollars in lost sales and told him his job is on the line if he doesn’t get it fixed. In which case does the CRM salesperson have a better chance of making sale? Yet most salespeople fail to uncover the real motivation and focus on show how good the CRM system will perform. The winner will be the one who gets to the real issue – the VP’s job security.

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Is Prospecting a High Enough Priority In Your Day?

It is never a crisis to make a sales call. No one ever gets a call saying “I was on your list to cold call today. You didn’t call and I am ticked off about it.” Sales calls get pushed down in priority because proposals, internal meetings, management reports, and even lunch present themselves as higher priorities during the day. If adding new prospects to your pipeline is important to you, then put prospecting time on your calendar and don’t move it, don’t cancel it and don’t forget it. Treat it like an appointment with your biggest prospect – It just may turn out to be just that. 

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The Only 4 Outcomes You Can Accept

Eliminate wasted time and increase sales by recognizing that letting prospects “think it over” is not an option.  There are only four acceptable outcomes for any sales call. You either get a “yes” which is a great outcome. Or you get a “no” which is not as great but not as bad as it sounds. You can get the prospect to agree to a clearly delineated action to happen at a specific time in the future. This is also OK they explicitly agree to a specific action at a specific time. Tacit (unspoken) approval of vague actions at a nebulous future date are not acceptable.  If you don’t get one of the first 3 acceptable outcomes then you must get a lesson in what you did wrong. If you don’t learn from your mistakes you are bound to repeat them and you will stunt your growth as a sales professional. If you get  enough lessons and apply them on subsequent calls you will eventually master the profession of selling and become the optimal salesperson and achieve effortless high performance.

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Call higher in the organization

Call higher in the organization. The higher the person in a business, the more pain within the organization they are aware of. If you call on someone in a particular department, they may only be aware of the pain in their department. Your product or service may not connect with their pain. However, the president of the company may know of four or five other departments in the organization who could benefit from your solution. The higher up you go in the organization, the less objections you may encounter. Why? The executives are aware of more problems your solutions can solve that are prevalent throughout the organization. There is another reason for why you should call higher in an organization? Your own courage and strength. It’s easier to call on a clerk or an assistant. However, calling the chief executive officer requires more confidence and self-assurance. Call on people at the top of an organization – you’ll be more successful.

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