This blog is about marketing, and today we’re going to talk about the most fundamental aspect of marketing – how to sell. As a business owner, you undoubtedly know quite a lot about how to sell, and have likely been selling something, in one form or another, for much of your working life. However, it never hurts to revisit the basic, and maybe you’ll pick up something extra that you missed along the way.
In short, the keys to effective selling are knowledge and effort. If that sounds overly simplistic, allow me to explain a bit further.
Know Yourself, Know Your Customer, and Know your Competitor
The first step to successful sales is having a full range of knowledge, about your own company and product, as well as about your customer’s needs, and your competitor’s company and his products.
Every single time that you talk to a customer, you should start the day by researching their company. Strive to never give the same sales pitch to two different customers. Research each customer individually, and look for ways that a relationship with your company can bring them a unique benefit.
When customers are confronted by a salesperson who truly knows what they’re talking about, and who truly understand both their own company and the wider industry, they are automatically less defensive, and much more likely to walk away from the conversation one step closer to making a purchase.
Put in the Effort
Even more important than sales knowledge and techniques is putting in the full effort required to close a deal or make a sale. Never treat a customer like someone who you can do without; every time you make a sales pitch, you should tell yourself that there is no failure – that the company is on the line and you absolutely have to make this sale.
This is doubly important if you’re no longer directly involved in the sales aspect of your business, and you rely on others to do it for you. In your hiring and training processes, ensure that motivation is your primary goal. Never hire someone for sales based on their knowledge of the industry, however encyclopedic it may be. The determining factor in the success of a salesperson is their motivation level, and ensuring that they’re going out every day, meeting with clients, and taking the risks required to make sales.
These may seem like fundamental issues, but it is the fundamentals that make sales, and making sales makes companies.