“Everyone lives by selling something.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
Whether you like it or not, selling is a skill that is critical to the way society works. Everyone has to sell something to survive, be it you selling your good, service or even yourself in job interviews and college admissions.
So how do you sell? Well, first things first, it doesn’t come naturally, contrary to popular belief or your salesman friend “John”, sales is skill developed over time and of course by gaining experience.
What you can’t-do is become the number 1 salesman of your company tomorrow. What you can do is use these tips to help speed up the process of becoming Number 1 salesman.
It is surprising how many salesmen neglect this and start out with their customers on the wrong foot. Now don’t get me wrong, the salesman lowers the level of trust with a potential client not because they are untrustworthy themselves but because the way they’re interacting with the client just lowers trust levels naturally.
For example, instead of saying something false and negative about the competitor’s product- show the customers the review for their product and compare them with the reviews you get for your product. Visual confirmation will allow the customer to see that you are telling the truth.
The example above is not the only one that is applicable during your sales pitch; try to change the way you’re speaking with the customer or improving your body language to reflect trust and openness. As soon as you establish trust you have a better chance of closing the sale.
Know Your Product
Say you’ve built trust and the customer is all invested in what you’re selling. The second step, naturally would be to be aware of the intricacies of your product, how it’s different from your competitors, what’s the unique selling point and so on and so forth. In the simplest of terms, if you don’t know what you’re selling… you’re not going to be able to sell much. If you don’t know the benefits of your product, you won’t be able to constantly remind the customer about how your product is exactly what they need. If the customer asks a technical question you won’t be able to answer it leading to a drop in your credibility which ultimately reduces the trust you built initially. Essentially selling without knowing your product is like clapping with one hand, kind of impossible and also counter-intuitive.
Don’t be a salesperson
Let’s face it; the rap that salesmen and women get is a terrible one, mostly a slight bit of distrust. As established above dis-trust is the first and foremost obstacle you have to overcome during the sales process so even when you’re just trying to do your job an excess of professional selling techniques like constantly trying to close the sales or what they call ‘slick patter’ and you’re not sure of the outcome, just stop trying to be a salesperson and genuinely try to figure out how to add the value to the other person’s life, be it with your product or without it.
Don’t take it personally
Selling involves developing relationships with clients and prospects; it’s just a part of the job. However, while you can care about the customer, your career, and your firm, it is important not to take the final outcome of the sale to heart as overthinking can and will shatter your confidence and take away from the job you love and need to be good at to make the money to survive. Don’t take it personally, it’s just business.