Practice the Six Cs to Master Sales Conversations
In a business environment where in-person contact is increasingly replaced by remote or digital modes of communication, cultivating strong sales skills is still important, especially for small businesses. In fact, a continuous learning program for salespeople is more important than ever, precisely because we all have reduced experience with in-person communications.
To help you and your team boost your effectiveness in sales, start with the following six Cs to master sales conversations.
Confidence comes from knowing you’re prepared for the task at hand. Not everyone is a born salesperson but, with practice and preparation, you can feel more comfortable engaging with customers. Just like young athletes become better players by putting in hours and hours of training, salespeople become more effective when they invest time in reviewing and updating their product/service knowledge and rehearsing their pitch.
When a salesperson demonstrates a deep familiarity with the product/service they are selling and can answer — or knows someone in the organization who can answer — every question a customer raises, the customer’s level of confidence in the business product/service rises exponentially. On the other hand, when a salesperson demonstrates a lack of knowledge about the product/service, the customer may walk away and look for a more informed vendor.
Coaching and formal sales training programs are highly beneficial at any experience level. Refreshing existing skills and learning new techniques can boost a salesperson’s confidence and keep them at the top of their game.
The Golden Rule — treat others as you would like them to treat you — is the foundation for establishing strong and lasting customer relationships. Always put yourself in your customer’s shoes and aim to deliver the sales pitch you would want to hear yourself. If your customer is part of a business organization, be sure to be polite and professional to all employees, not just the decision-maker.
Clear communications help the customer make a quick decision. Don’t make the customer work to find out all the details they need to know to make a buying decision. Providing all relevant information in an engaging, concise, and coherent presentation helps make the customer feel like the buying decision is a “no-brainer.”
Context covers a broad spectrum of details that are part of a 360-degree view of the customer relationship. Understanding context includes knowing their pain points, business environment, trends in their industry, laws and regulations that affect their business, and more. If your customer sponsors community events, support and attend these social opportunities so you are a familiar face. Demonstrate an interest in all aspects of their business, not just the sales relationship.
When it comes to sales presentations, one size doesn’t fit all. Take time to customize your pitch to demonstrate you understand a specific customer.
When you have conversations with customers, weave in details that are specific to that person or their organization. It’s critical that your messages, whether verbal or written, don’t contain information that the customer will find irrelevant. They may dismiss your entire message if they feel you don’t “get them.”
Even if you haven’t made a sale to a customer, or it’s been a long time since that customer made a purchase from you, keep calling and sending emails on a regular basis. Focus on maintaining a relationship and keeping them informed, so the customer remembers you when their need for your product/services arises.
If you would like to learn more about how this might apply to your business, let’s talk: