Browse Tag

asking questions

Quit Focusing on Selling Products and Build Value

SQC smallThe strange thing about value is that most of us could not say what value is, but we do know it when we see it.

My sons took judo lessons when they were younger. They made it to the yellow belt level before other interests took over. After high school they took the path that most of us do by joining one health club and quitting, joining another health club and quitting, etc. They would join the club depending on what special was being offered. Then, at age 19, my youngest son was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. You have heard about the importance of exercise and eating right, but at the same time, I don’t believe any of us truly understand it until we are faced with a disease like diabetes. My son understood. He quickly adapted his diet and began to exercise. The balance of medicine, insulin, diet and exercise paid off. His diabetes was under control. read more

How to Sell Your Customers More of What You Sell

SQC smallYou know the issues; you see how you have the solution but the problem is your customer doesn’t.  You’ve tried all your closing tactics and nothing is working.  It’s as if they are immune to your efforts.

So it seemed to Phil as he explained during one of my sales training sessions.  Phil sells machine tools and he shared his frustration; “I have this customer who buys a new piece of machinery every two years like clockwork.”  “My problem is that he rotates his business between vendors.”  “I can’t seem to get him consistently purchase our machines even though we have proven to be the most efficient.” read more

When and How to Use Your Sales Collateral Material

Problem:  Early on in my career, I was the king of sales sheets. That was the term we used for all our marketing material.  I made sure before I left for the day my briefcase was loaded with all the latest material. I wanted to be armed for anything a prospect would throw at me. We had a file cabinet in the back of the sales room where all the collateral sales material was stored; each with its own labeled slot.  One day I was excited because I had a full day of sales calls with prospects I’ve been working to get in front of. Excited, until I went to our marketing cabinet and found the slots empty! Checking in with the sales secretary, she informed me that the copier was broke and she would not be able to print more until later that day. Now panic set in. I had my presentation all set around these materials and now I was armed with nothing! read more

Set the Trap… for Yourself!

SQC smallProblem: Jack had been with the company for only two years, yet he was considered their most technically competent salesperson. He was the “go to guy” when the other salespeople needed someone to talk to about solutions, specifications, and competitive information. He was an expert when it came to product knowledge, yet he had the worst closing rate and was the lowest paid salesperson. read more

Beware of What you Send Before Your Meeting

SQC smallProblem: Dennis was the VP of Sales for a medium sized application service provider and was concerned about the high number of appointment cancellations his reps were getting. As an example, he related something that had happened about ten days before. Apparently Richard, one of his reps, had made an appointment with a prospect that looked like they’d be a good fit for the company. A day after the appointment had been made; the prospect called back and asked that the rep send “some information” about the company prior to the meeting. Richard felt that this was a good sign of interest and complied, sending a fairly extensive package of information. It contained spec sheets on some of the products, a partial client list, company history, several recent news releases, etc. Then two days before the appointment was scheduled, the prospect called and canceled, saying that they had looked over the material that was sent, and they felt that a meeting would not be necessary. This, explained Dennis, happened too often. read more

It’s Seldom About Price

SQC smallProblem:  One of the most common objections salespeople get is about price: “That’s a bit more than we were thinking about paying.” “Your prices are kind of high.” “That just doesn’t fit our budget” are typical comments. Salespeople tend to be very aggressive in their attempts to overcome price objections and begin dropping their price to get the sale. And, more often than not, once the price issue has been “resolved,” another objection comes to the surface. Sometimes it seems to be a never-ending circle of objections from the prospect. read more

Eliminate Mutual Confusion

SQC smallProblem:  Ever go on a sales call where there seemed to be little structure, where both parties seemed to be on different pages, where expectations were not met, and little was accomplished? Even worse, you expected something positive to occur but simply got a luke-warm response such as, “I need to think it over. Call me in a few days.” Opportunities are squandered and the buyer seems to be in control. read more

Begin With the End in Mind

SQC smallProblem: The biggest challenge salespeople face is closing more business.  Typically, the problem is not the lack of closing skills per se, but rather the job they’ve done prior to the presentation and close.  Would anyone disagree that the better the prospect is qualified, the easier the close will be? read more

Stump the Gatekeeper

SQC smallProblem: Sara was becoming increasingly frustrated in her efforts to reach the decision makers when she was prospecting. Time after time access was blocked by the gatekeepers and information gatherers. It often seemed like there was a conspiracy to keep her from speaking to the top-level people. She had tried various tactics, but nothing was working. Now her sales were suffering. read more