We have been sharing a 4 week series on Selling for Success…and also discussing the 6 step sales process…
The 6 key steps include:
1. Research-know your business and industry inside out…then know what drives your customer, truly seek to understand their challenges and issues and then figure out a way to solve those challenges and issues.
When you do, you have something to talk about and offer to your prospects and clients alike!
2. Learn how to prospect. Network, cold-call, use your social media to get traction and build trust with prospective buyers, learn to write in magazines and online publications that reach your audience. Become host of your own podcast or YouTube channel. There are plenty of ways to reach your market and raise awareness as to how you can help your clients benefit!
Use your prospecting to get the meeting.
Step 3. Use the meeting to really understand your clients wants, hopes, goals, needs, challenges and problems…then determine if you can help them and if you both are a good fit to work together.
If you get a green light, then you want to develop a rock solid proposal or quote that talks to the needs and budgets of your client or prospect.
The Discovery session is a chance (Step 3) to ask critical questions of your client to assess the need, the fit to work together and if it is in your best interest to collaboarte and do business together.
Now, let’s move on to Step 4…this is when you present your proposal or business case to the client.
Work on a top level follow up appointment where you can present your ideas, solutions, and quotes in person.
Make your presentation to the client based on the information gleaned in the “discovery” or third stage. I ask for the sale in the presentation phase too and if I bump up against objections I clear them one at a time and run through each objection until none are left.
I have a little method for handling objections too. It includes wearing your “HATS”.
H—Hear the objection out. Don’t judge it, don’t solve it…just listen.
A—Accept it…it’s your client’s issue, not yours.
T—Thank the client for pointing it out and ask them to give you ideas to solve the objection.
S—Solve…ask the client for a solution that they are looking for, that way you can decide if this is a fair deal or a bad deal to get into…
Once your objection is complete ask if there is anything else that needs to be resolved before moving to do business together. Then ask for the sale!
I always recommend you present in person, because someone can lie over the phone or perhaps even “shop” you around with an email quote, but when you are in front of someone, the eye contact you make is vital to the sale. The eyes never lie. Plus, if the client is holding back you can ask them to come forward with what is holding them back from deciding. This is where you solve and handle objections!
Now, step 5 in the process is to do the work… and be your word about it. You want to align yourself well with your clients. To a point where they trust you as their “Go to advisor” or the “Service Provider” of record!
Step 5. Commence with the work. Do the best job you can. Ask for feedback; ask to stay in touch and nurture the relationship along the way. You lose clients because you lose sight of staying in touch.
The 6th step is to nurture the relationship…
Once your customer buys, it should not be bye-bye!
Case in point…I am at a tire store, getting new tires. They asked me my budget and then recommended a decent set of tires for the price I needed. I agreed, then let them know I’d be teaching up the street until 3 pm and would return to pick up the car and pay for the tires then.
Sure enough I did. I paid, I got my car and drove off. All was good, I got the tires I wanted at the budget I had in mind and paid by interac and drove away.
Now that tire store forgot to do something that cost them future sales and business!
They forgot to ask me for my information and if I would like a reminder about coming back to do a balance, rotation and alignment…that their customers mattered and keeping customers safe is really important to them!
Nope, they let me walk.
They didn’t ask to stay in touch or to let me know that in 3 years time when I need new tires, that they could let me know of any sales!
They let me go!
They missed about $1000 in future sales, by not asking to stay in touch! Plus, if I was super happy, I would have referred more people to them.
They let me walk.
Please take note, don’t let your customers walk!
I feel there are 6 critical steps you need know about and work on consistently when it comes to selling…
We spend a ton of time chasing after a new client, but we fall short on maintaining the relationship and there is an old joke that goes like this…
A man dies on Friday morning and sure enough, he’s at heaven’s gates waiting to get in. But when he comes to meet St. Peter, St. Peter explains that a big mistake has occurred, and he is three days early. Since his time isn’t supposed to be up just yet St. Peter has a suggestion…
St. Peter: Oh, man…you’re early dude…
Man: Now what?
St. Peter: Well, I suppose we can send you back for the weekend…but I am warning you it all ends Monday morning at 8 a.m.
Man: Okay, thanks, St. Peter…
So, the man goes back for the weekend and lands on a beautiful island, with all he can eat, all he can drink, a swimming pool, picturesque ocean views, palm trees, beach volleyball, hot looking women, hot looking men…and he just has a blast all weekend…
Sure, enough 7:59 a.m. Monday morning arrives, and he’s beamed back up to heaven. St. Peter welcomes him back and asks…
St. Peter: How was the weekend?
Man: Oh, wow, it was gorgeous! It was paradise! Thanks a ton St. Peter and do you think I can go back there for all of eternity?
St. Peter: Well, no…we need you up here; there is lots of work to do up here…
Man: Please, St. Peter, please…
St. Peter: Okay, suit yourself…
Sure, enough the man goes back down…only this time he confronts a totally different scene. Fire, death, decay, famine, war and he see’s a guy in a red suit and pitchfork running about and asks him…
Man: Hey, hey, what gives? On the weekend, I was here, and it was paradise now this is like hell…
Devil: Well, yes, of course, on the weekend you were a prospect. Now you’re a customer!!!
So, you get the idea, we treat our prospects wonderfully, but we lose sight of our prospects once they become customers…don’t lose that connection, providing that connection is still mutually beneficial.
Our next series will start in a few weeks, until then Happy St. Patrick’s Day and Happy Spring this coming week!