This post on cold calling was originally published on Dec 19, 2016 and updated with current material on June 19, 2019.
I was reading a blog post put out by another sales trainer titled “7 Ways to Make Cold Calling Easier”. It got me wondering, where do these tips come from? Were these ideas formulated by this trainer or were his insights rehashed from basic advice you can find anywhere? Was his advice based on empirical data, or was it based on opinions from his experiences in sales? And at that moment, I had an epiphany. This wasn’t the first time I came across a basic ‘tips to cold calling’ post. And it wasn’t the first time I was turned off by an article like this.
Here’s something I noticed about good salespeople. During their presentation, in particular when they are delivering their prescription to address the challenge, a good salesperson will have the awareness to recognize buying signals, warning signs, and objections. It’s these signals that will lead us into the next phase of the sales process, the dialogue. Continue reading →
As salespeople, we have to use forms of evidence to help convince, persuade, and influence the buyer. Remember, everything from here on out relies on the three elements of our Specific Interest Statement: presenting our solution, referencing the primary interests, and appealing to their buying motive. Now that we have that foundation, we need to climb our way to the top of the mountain over obstacles using evidence, practical applications, and showing the benefits of our prescription. Continue reading →
Quite a few salespeople are of the mindset that they can fast-talk their way through a sale presentation. But In a previous post, we saw how incorporating a visual demonstration made the difference between a mediocre sales performance and selling excellence.
So keep this sales nugget in the back of your mind: Telling is not selling. Continue reading →
Once the salesperson has diagnosed the problem correctly, they need to present the right prescription in such a way that it persuades the buyer to see value in the solution or opportunity. As salespeople, we need to gain the high ground in order to overcome doubt quickly and effectively.
And what inherently overcomes doubt? Evidence!
Check this out this sales example and discover what’s revealed in the process. Continue reading →
One thing you have to remember when you’re standing in front of your prospect is that they perceive everything you say as suspect. After all, you are the salesperson. You’re supposed to say good things about your product or service. That’s why we coach our clients to answer one of the critical questions in their prospects’ minds – who says so besides you. Sales testimonials will do that for you.
Here’s a tip: If you make a claim about your product or service, your prospect will have doubts. If someone else make a claim about your product or service, your prospect sees the claim as more credible.
When we performed sales in our call center days, I encouraged my sales team to gather testimonials from their customers at every opportunity and to get those clients to print out the testimonial on their letterhead. My team then assembled those sales testimonials into a 3-ring binder. This became a tool for every salesperson when they went to a prospect and performed their solution presentation. The client then had physical evidence that someone else, a peer in their industry, was backing the sales team in their efforts.
This concept isn’t new. In car sales, sales managers have been posting pictures of happy, satisfied customers standing next to their new vehicle for years. Letters of recommendation are a variation of this principle. And if you attend any webinar that is selling a service online, you’ll notice the speaker trots out several sales testimonials from happy, satisfied clients before they make their closing statement. The latest hype with online reviewers like Yelp is simply the digital incarnation of this principle.
Sales Training Exercise – Sales Testimonials Exercise
Here’s your assignment this week. Contact 10 of your best customers and simply talk to them.
Why they bought your product or service
Why they decided to do business with you
How your product is currently performing
If they’re satisfied with their purchase
How the product or service has impacted their lives professionally and personally
You want to know everything about how your product or service has changed their situation.
There are three reasons for this:
First, you need a reason to reconnect with your customers. Many salespeople don’t call their old customers back until they’re ready to sell them something new. While that may be a reason to call, it certainly won’t make your customer feel good about the interaction.
Second, your customers need to remember why they did business with you. They need to reconnect with how you were a problem solver and how your product changed their lives.
Lastly, ask them to write a testimonial for you. This testimonial will highlight everything you just asked them: the challenge they faced before your offering, how their situation changed after your offering, and the impact it’s had on them personally.
These sales testimonials are a powerful form of evidence that you can use to support your sales process. Now you have a response to the question that’s in your prospect’s head, “who says so besides you.” And it gives you more credibility when advancing your sales process.
Are you currently using evidence in your sales process? Want to know if your knowledge of the sales process puts you in the game? Take our online sales evaluation here and determine if your sales process gives you an unfair advantage over your competition!
The Role of Sympathy and Empathy in the Sales Process
Here’s something I learned in my past about the roles sympathy and empathy play in the sales process. Keep in mind, you are sitting across from your prospective buyer because you want to help them solve their problem, not become a part of the problem. Continue reading →
In the last post, I wrote of using your questions not only to get your prospect’s attention but to also keep their interest by selling to the gap. I also wrote that your meeting is shaped by the questions that you ask, the order you ask them and how you ask them. As I’ve said before, sales is an away game – it takes place in your prospect’s mind. So, you control the pace of the sale by getting in your prospect’s mind, focusing their attention on the challenges they face, and leading them to a place they want to be. A vital piece of this process is talking like your prospect to increase rapport. Continue reading →
Lance Tyson is an industry leader in sales training, development, and management. Selling is an Away Game is a must read for any sales professional, sales leader, or aspiring candidate in the industry.
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