Selling is Just a Conversation
So many people find the prospect of selling themselves or their business terrifying. Many business owners would prefer to do anything except pick up the phone and ask for business. Much less have a conversation.
What is it that makes selling so scary?
Is it fear of rejection? The fear of looking or sounding stupid or underlying fear that what you have to offer might not be good enough? But guess what- selling is just a conversation.
Whatever it is that’s holding you back from making those calls or going up to people at networking events, there are a few simple things you can do that will make your life a whole lot easier.
Selling is a six-step conversation:
A sales call or meeting is just a conversation. It’s a conversation with a purpose, but it’s still just a conversation between two or more people who might potentially want to do business with you.
As with all conversations, it needs to be well balanced between talking and listening. If you’re selling something, then you need to be listening for about 60% to 70% of the time and talking a great deal less than the person or people you are selling to
Ask great questions. Use the time to find out about them, their business and what problems they currently have that you might be able to solve. People love talking about themselves and their businesses, so the more you ask about them, the happier they’ll be.
Listen. Really listen. Don’t just listen and jump in with your offering at the soonest opportunity. Take your time to digest what you’ve heard and really think about whether you have to offer will be of use to them. The most powerful thing you can do as a business person is to say to a prospective client ‘do you know what, after hearing what you need, I don’t think our product or service is right for you right now.’ You’ll earn huge respect for this and probably win more business in the long term.
Approach the call or meeting with a small intent. Don’t go to the first meeting thinking you’ll get the big contract signed. Go to the first meeting with the intention of building rapport, getting to know each other and working towards an agreement that you have what they need. A step at a time will take the pressure off you and you’ll automatically relax.
At the end of the call or meeting, agree on the next steps. Ask how the client or customer would like to proceed. Suggest a couple of next steps, write them down, put the details into your CRM system (see our courses on Fuel My Business) and then make sure you follow up as promised. Keep in touch. Even if someone says no today, if they like what you do, then keep in touch every few months or so, making sure you agree to this with your client.
Just keep doing that with people you’ve identified as your target market and you’ll make sales. Absolutely guarantee it. You simply have to find the people who want what you have and keep speaking to them. Don’t rely on social media, don’t rely on email, all these things are too easily ignored. Pick up the phone, meet people and chat.
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