“We’re all in Sales” is the often-heard refrain here at Studio Center. Whether we’re selling goods or services or selling ourselves (my wife fell for it), at some point in our lives we are ALL in Sales! With SO much “Sales” in the world, there are going to be the obvious “Sales Mistakes”. These “Sales Mistakes” are costing businesses and individuals an untold amount of lost revenue, income and time! In my case, it could have cost me my wife (Did I mention that I sold her?)! All of the Loss is avoidable if you can consistently avoid these mistakes:
1. “NOT IDENTIFYING THE DECISION MAKER” - Millions of terrific presentations have been made to people who can’t say “yes”! Try asking, “Who, besides yourself will be making this decision”? You’ll identify any and all Decisions Makers WITHOUT insulting anyone!
2. “NOT GETTING THE BUDGET” - This is a Fatal Sin! You need to talk Money up front! Why waste anyone’s time? I like to say “We’re not even sure if we can work together until we get a budget range.” There are several guaranteed ways to get the budget but that’s for another Blog!
3. “FAILING TO PROSPECT” - This is a HUGE part of Sales. Maybe even 80% of it, yet people refuse to do it. Everyone is a prospect until you qualify him or her. If you want a successful career in Sales, start prospecting now!
4. “NOT FOLLOWING UP ON LEADS” - EVERY lead is a possible sale and long-term client until proven otherwise! It’s our job to follow up and qualify! DO IT!
5. “NOT FOLLOWING UP ALL OF THE WAY” - Follow Up is forever! WHY stop? People change, businesses change and your products change. If they have “Pain” and “Money”, stay in touch! It’s easy! Consistent and Relentless Follow Up will make you money!
6. “FAILING TO LISTEN” - Prospects will tell you how to sell them IF you let them! As they say, “You have two ears and one mouth, so listen twice as much as you talk”. Ask open-ended questions, paraphrase, agree and “reverse” but KEEP THEM TALKING!
7. “DOGGING THE COMPETITION” - Do NOT besmirch the competition! There are good companies out there doing what you do! Complement the competition and you’ll gain credibility. Then SHOW how you are better! Most importantly, LEARN your competition so you can talk intelligently about them!
8. “JUMPING INTO THE PRESENTATION TOO SOON” - WAIT before you pitch your product. You need to spend the entire first meeting asking questions, listening and learning! During this “Discovery” you can sprinkle in some provocative nuggets about your company and product but save the Pitch for the second meeting!
9. “NOT PREPARING” - You need to prepare for HOURS for EVERY meeting that you have! Go to their site. Google them. Stalk (not really) them on Social Media! Knowledge is power so gather as much as possible BEFORE the meeting! I prepare for hours and pour over a ton of data and only use maybe 10% of it. However, that 10% has made me a lot of money.
10. “FAILING TO GET A COMMITMENT FOR THE NEXT STEP” - After your “Discovery” Meeting, you MUST close for the next step. You must sum up your first meeting and lay out a plan for the next meeting or steps! FOLLOW UP in writing and lay it all out! We all have short attention spans now so don’t waste all of your efforts by letting the momentum of the first meeting die! Don’t let the prospect go “cold”!