Last week we tackled the first 7 Sales Stoppers on the list. You can check out that article HERE.
This week we want to eliminate the next 7 along with some of the very real factors that derail the sales process and cause you to waste time and lose business.
Let’s dive into Sales Stoppers 8 -14.
- Poor Prospecting Techniques
One of the first keys to sales success is to ensure you’re singing your song to the right audience. Your time is one of your most precious assets so it’s important that you don’t waste your time talking to people who were never going to be a buyer.
All prospects are not the same and it’s important to make sure your prospects have not only the need for what you offer, but also the means to pay for it.
A great way to avoid spinning your wheels is to implement a screening process. By asking a few carefully crafted questions, you can quickly determine whether a lead is worth pursuing or not.
- Carrying Sales Rejection With You
Ultimately selling is an energy exchange exercise where prospects either become more or less energised by you. Sales rejection is an inevitable part of the sales process. The fact is, NO ONE wins 100% of the business. For a myriad of reasons, a prospect may choose to go with someone else or not go ahead at all. What’s important is when you hear NO, you don’t carry that disappointment with you into your next sales call.
If you don’t want to increase the likelihood of negatively impacting your next sales opportunity, it’s critical that you don’t carry rejection with you. The prospect in front of you is the only one that matters and they deserve to see you at your best.
The best thing to do when someone says no to your offering is to understand why it happened and identify anything you could or would do differently in the future. Then let go of the moment and move confidently into your next sales opportunity.
- No Sales Preparation (Plan of Attack)
As the saying goes, “Fail to plan and you plan to fail.” An all too common sales stopper people encounter is one that was completely avoidable. If you fail to do any research about your prospect before you step into a sales meeting, then you are significantly diminishing your chances of success.
The answer here is simple. If you don’t want to stumble at the first hurdle, do your homework. You don’t have to invest hours of your time, but you do need to do some basic preparation. Take a look at the company’s website and annual report or marketing materials.
Nothing will kill a sales opportunity faster than when a prospect turns to a salesperson and says, “So what do you know about our business?”. If your answer is nothing, I was hoping you would tell me, don’t be surprised if the only thing they tell you is where to find the door.
- Lack of Sales Tools
If you were a handyman and were called out to do a job, chances are you would take your toolkit with you. Similarly, a sales professional (business owner) needs to ensure they are armed with some sales tools.
Beyond a company website, what tools do you have available to you to help demonstrate that you have the ability to do what the client is wanting?
Prospects are a lot like a casting agent who is looking for an actor who will be perfect for the role. They have a picture in their mind of who or what they are looking for and the service provider who best fits the bill will win the job. Having access to sales tools that demonstrate you have worked with a similar client or industry type before, helps build confidence and trust and quickly demonstrates your specific expertise.
- Ignoring Testimonials
Testimonials are a fantastic way to demonstrate the type of results you are able to produce. I think that many people have dismissed testimonials as a waste of time, but that’s because they either have poorly written testimonials, or they don’t know how to properly leverage them.
An example of a worthless testimonial is one that say’s that you are warm, friendly and professional. While these are all worthwhile attributes, they say nothing about the value you create.
If you want to boost your sales results, don’t ignore testimonials – upgrade the ones you have and use them throughout your sales process. A great testimonial should reflect an example of overcoming a common pain or problem and provide (where possible) some specific results or outcomes.
- Not Looking Like a Professional
If you sent a world class salesperson into a boardroom sales environment dressed in a pair of board shorts and a singlet, do you think his or her chances of success would be diminished?
We judge books by covers and therefore we need to make sure that our appearance is placing us in the best possible light. This doesn’t mean you need to run out and buy a suit. If a suit is not your thing (like me), you can still dress in a manner that represents you authentically but doesn’t cause the prospect to lose focus on you.
If you look sloppy and as if you don’t care with your appearance, chances are prospects will extend this to also cover how you will likely do business as well. Like it or not, your image matters.
- Failing to Pace Your Prospect
Body language is part of the sales process and includes the concept of pacing. When you fail to pace your client, you unwittingly create a disconnection between the two of you. Pacing looks at things like the speed you speak at, tonality and body positioning.
When you pace well, you fall into a rhythm with the prospect and become a mirror of their style. Effective pacing creates a feeling of being in sync with the other person and creates an invisible connection.
When you pace well, prospects will feel unconsciously connected to you. When you fail to do it, they will not feel like you are on the same page and therefore not the person they are looking for.
Okay… so that’s 14 down and 7 to go. Next week we will eliminate the final 7 Greatest Sales Stoppers so we can make sure you are able to maximise the value of every sales opportunity and lead that comes your way.
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