Often when we think of sales, we envision the old Hollywood image of sleazy salespeople. We have become conditioned to frown upon and ignore pushy salespeople, these are the people trained to sell quantity. I have somehow managed to get on a call list, when I answered the ‘potential spam’ call, first I was surprised that there was a human at the other end of the line and that it was not a recording. The person was polite and asked how I was doing. I said “whatever you are selling, I am not interested, please take my number off your list.”’ The person did not listen, their response was “great” and they continued to read from the script. When I again said I wanted my number removed, they hung up on me. I feel for these people, they are doing what they were trained to do. To meet a sales quota and to read from a script. Sadly, they have not been given the correct tools to be successful. One of the greatest challenges for many is closing the sale.
A good sales executive gets farther by nurturing relationships with clients. In the book “Reinvention made easy” the author Jim Mathis said: “Nobody buys what you and I sell. They buy on the VALUE they perceive.” Closing the sale is the most neglected step in the sales process.
The best sales executives have learned to show their customers the ‘VALUE’. Customers seek answers to a problem. A good salesperson will show how the product or service you offer will make their life easier, they sell the VALUE. For example, Domino’s Pizza does not sell good pizza, they sell fast delivery. The value they offer is fast delivery of hot pizza.
To have growth, all employees need to learn how to describe the VALUE of the product or service. For example, the Chamber of Commerce is not selling memberships, we connect people and businesses together. The value we offer is visibility for the company and opportunities to give back to their community. Building relationships and selling the value is what closes the sales.
5 Tips to Close Sales:
1. Know your WHY
Understand your company’s offerings in products/services. Have a clear message.
2. Pitch the Solution
Consumers purchase products or services to solve a problem. Know the ‘VALUE’ that you provide.
For example, some businesses renew their Chamber membership annually because they value, they receive is credibility their business receives for being a chamber member as well as the visibility just for being listed on the online member directory.
The best salespeople have great relationship building skills. They listen to the customer and ask questions.
In 1958 Ford motor company released the high-end luxurious car called the Edsel. However, the car was a flop because the consumers thought it was ugly. In 1964 they premiered the Mustang as the first fully customizable sports car and it is still a success today. Ford learned from their mistake with the Edsel, they listened to consumer complaints about the look and design of the Edsel and introduced the Mustang.
Listening to the customer and asking questions allows you to understand their problem. Ask a long-standing loyal customer why they buy your product or service. Their answers may surprise you.
4. Ask for the Sale
The biggest reason sales are not closed is because salespeople fail to ask.
I was visiting with a non-chamber member, during our conversation I asked the owner why they were not chamber members. The owner looked at me and said “no one has asked”. How many opportunities are missed because we just don’t ask? Keep in mind if they turn you down it is most likely because you not provided the ‘VALUE’ to them.
5. Arrange the Next Steps
Set your customer up for success by providing the resource and information needed to implement. This means to follow up and ensure the customer has the tools needed to succeed.
No matter your job title, you are an ambassador for your company, which means that when you tell others about your work you are a salesperson for the company. Be sure that you share the VALUE of the products and services with others. It takes everyone working together for growth.
6 effective sales strategies to close deals faster. (2014, September 16). Retrieved from https://www.inc.com/adam-heitzman/6-effective-sales-strategies-to-close-deals-faster.html
Brudner, E. (n.d.). 25 closing phrases to seal a sales deal in 2020. Retrieved from https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/closing-phrases-seal-sales-deal
Mathis, J. (2011). Reinvention made easy: Change your strategy change your results. Morgan James Publishing.
Wiggins, A. (n.d.). How to close a sale: 7 closing techniques & why they work. Retrieved from https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/sales-closing-techniques-and-why-they-work