The basics of selling
Nice and friendly: they buy from you because you are the person they want to be with, you are the person they would like to go for a drink in the pub with and so on. It is like a social thing, like being a friend, they call you to buy the product instead of somebody else, because they enjoy your company.
Great sales people are good at making friends.
This means you need to have good social skills.
This is not about you taking control of the conversation, or being pushy in any way. This is about being nice to people so they enjoy and would like to come to you.
Promote the product: Showing them the good sides of the product, all of its features, advantages and benefits. Need to be enthusiastic about it.
Give them the information: just like people go to an experienced doctor because he can solve their problems, have great experience and knowledge. People come to you because you will be able to solve their problems related to what you do, have great knowledge and experience.
Believe in the product
To be able to sell something, you have you to:
– believe you are helping people by providing it.
– be excited, enthusiastic and passionate about it.
– believe in it.
– confident, or people will not believe in you.
Need passion and enthusiasm about a product or service to be able to sell it.
Everything is one, so if you believe in it they will too. If you do not believe in it, they will not either.
It’s a bit like how if a singer is interested in and loves what they’re doing, other people will as well. This is not from an ego point of view, they love the thing itself, it is that they love the thing they are doing.
Enthusiasm is infectious.
If a person has total confidence in themselves, other people will have confidence in them as well.
Sales people can use self-confidence to make other people believe anything. For example, even an actor who can’t sing can use self-confidence to convince an audience that they can.
If you have total confidence in your ability to do something, other people will believe you can do it because of your confidence in it.
If a person has total confidence in what they are selling, other people will have confidence in what the sales person is selling as well.
It’s often found that someone who is very new selling a product and doesn’t even know a lot about the product or service, does very well selling a lot of them. They manage this because they’re very confident that the product is good, and that is enough to make it sell.
If the sales person does not have confidence in the product and themselves, how can the customer have any.
Studies have shown when when people decide which CEO to hire and how much it is worth paying them, they are affected more by the candidate’s confidence than their performance. The same with people on television who recommend which stocks you should buy, people judge them by their confidence, more than their past performance of picking winning or losing stocks. ‘If they are confident, they must be good’, they trust and believe that confidence.
There are sales people who have started out selling a product they are new with and so know little about. The sales person has lots of confidence, so sells lots of the product, even though they have little knowledge to say great things about it.
Confident that it is good, reliable,will do the job, it is great etc. Also that you are those things as well.
The best way to gain this confidence is by doing a good honest job, selling a product or service that does that as well and does what it claims, so it is all based on reality. Then by increasingly having the experience of you doing a good job and that the product of service does a good job, you will gain confidence in yourself and the product or service.
Steve Martin the comedian says people think that he is a confident person in his act, when he is actually not a confident person. This is because he acts like a confident person.
It’s an act, he’s acting.
Make friends with people
Make friends with people. People buy from people they like and trust.
People buy by from people who are like them.
Have fun with it.
People want to buy from people they like. They want to have a nice experience and working with someone they like is important for that.
Then people will want to give you business and buy from you
People buy from people
People buy something because they believe in the person who is selling it and that makes them believe in the product.
If the sales person does not bother about their appearance, the unspoken message is ‘How on earth can they bother about anyone else?’. If they cannot look after themselves then how can they look after others.
Less experienced sales people often get obsessed with their catalogues, written materials and other documents. However a good salesperson knows that none of these really matter compared to if the customer likes and trusts them.
Customers buy from the salesperson if they like them and think that they are good. The catalogues, reading materials and so on mean relatively nothing to the customer, compared to if they like and trust the salesperson.
Once they like you, they will want to buy from you. Once they trust you as they feel they know you, they will believe that the product bus service is good.
If they like the salesperson, they will buy whatever product the salesperson has, including when they come back with other different products. They that product because they like the person. Buying is an emotional thing.
If the customer, looks like they are not going to buy. Maybe they will think about it or look around to see what else is on offer elsewhere. Just keep having a chat with them. It can be about the weather, cricket, life, children etc., nothing to do with the product. The customer will think you are not selling. However you are. You are building a personal relationship, they are getting to know you and so then they will trust you. Once this happens, they will buy from you as they will also trust you on what you are selling.
The salesperson also needs to seem like an expert who knows what is going on, is highly trained, knowledgeable, clever, capable and has been doing it for many years.
For many cold calling sales people to motivate them, they need to have a mental image of what they are working for. To help this they may put a picture on their desk of what they are working for, an example may be a specific model of car they wish to buy in cash.
People will buy because you are providing what they want. Therefore it is your job to find out what they want and serve them with it.
People buy because of the service, so it is your job as a person to serve as well and nicely as possible.
Do not make it that you are selling to them, make it that you are helping them.
The conversation is not about what you want, which is to sell them something. It is about you seeing if there is anything you can do for them.
Good manner and personality when meeting a client is what wins people over. After all they are unlikely to actually have an idea of how good you are until you have worked for them – if clients leave then it will be for good reason.
Smooth talkers get ahead. So to be smooth (soft) means not being hard on people. For most people this means need to say what clients want to hear and that normally means not confronting them by saying they are wrong.
A sales person also needs professional ability as that will be evident in the first interview.
Be an expert
Need to be able to answer the customer’s questions expertly and fully.
The customer is speaking to the sales person because they want information to learn about the product. So need to have good information, that is intelligent, to show you really are the best in the trade.
A bit like a person will go to the best doctor who has the best knowledge, information experience, treatments, can explain them.
This means the customer is best off speaking to the sales person and not another, because they will come out with the best, highest quality information and solutions for their needs.
A salesperson must not push, control or take things by force from the customer, in the long term it will stop them from returning.
The job of the salesperson is to understand the customers needs, some of which the customer may not even realise they have.
It is sales by seducing the customer, so they want to be with the sales person and want to buy the things from them.
It is about finding out what the customer wants so they want to come to you.
With enough passion, people will believe anything. So deliver the sales message with passion. However do not be aggressive.
People are drawn to happy, inspirational and uplifting people. That’s why people watch fitness videos and they’re done by people who are like that.
People will get enthusiastic about whatever you are enthusiastic about. So if it’s something they’re not interested in, they will get enthusiastic about it because enthusiasm is contagious. They will be interested in watching you do it and so on, because you’re so enthusiastic about it.
That’s why people in the industry they’re enthusiastic about do well, because they’re enthusiasm is infectious.
This is how evangelists work, they are so enthusiastic about something it’s infectious.
Make it personal
When does salesman is communicating with a customer. He or she has to think about that individual customer needs and wants.
It means that it is a personal thing for the customer. The salesperson is personally thinking, emotionally and physically there for, concerned about and serving that particular person.
Even if they serve loads of people each day. They look at each person individually as they care.
So the sales person’s responses are for that particular customer’s nature, needs and concerns.
This is totally different to a sales person using scripts or pre prepared sentences. It is a personal relationship where the salesperson cares about that individual human being.
The language that use is for that individual person and they are not saying the same thing to everyone. It is a personal relationship between two people.
Whether it is a cover letter for a cv, a public relations person approaching a journalist to try and get them to cover a story. They do not just send out the same letter to everyone. They think about each individual person their requirements and write to or call each person accordingly.
Of course in reality this is balanced out by how the sales person has done this many times before and so often does know which words to use and when to use them.
Being personal means genuinely open about yourself and your life. Being open and let people know about your personal life and you personally. This makes it personal and real.
Of course let the customer to talk and listen to them, because people like to be the one that talks. This is often because the customer likes to be in control and voice their opinions. A sales person that just talks about themselves and does not let others talk is irritating.
People are worried about not getting ripped off and want to be assured that they are getting the best. That is why people buy from where they have bought before, recommendations, friends and from brands they know and trust.
Once trust is gone, it is gone. If it does go wrong, take responsibility, fully apologise, be totally open about how you messed up. A good apology says sorry without any get out clauses and takes responsibility. Explain what went wrong, why, what you will do to ensure it does not happen again and how you will put things right.
Never lie, as once you are caught out the trust is gone, they do not believe you any more.
A sales person uses all they can to promote and create trust. Being totally open and transparent is a good start.
If there is a fact or product that the customer already knows is good and true. If the salesperson says something that conforms to that fact, then the customer will think that everything else they say is true as well.
For example, if the salesperson recommends a product that the customer already knows is good, the customer will think that everything else they recommend must be good as well.
Need to ask the customer what they want and what they are looking for.
The sales person needs to find as many ways as possible to ask and find this information out. Other ways of putting this maybe by saying ‘we will do whatever it takes to get the sale and your business, what do we have to do show and prove you to achieve this.
This is so the salesperson can supply what the customer wants, prove it does what they want and provide what they need.
The customer may say things that the sales person does not agree with, even think that the customer is wrong.
If the customer’s views differ with that the salesperson, the sales person may feel that their ego is being attacked because their product is being disrespected or the customer disagrees with them. The sales person needs to be focused on getting the sale, change things to fit the customers’ wants and not get pulled down by this useful information.
Demonstrating the product
The salesperson needs as many opportunities as possible, to demonstrate the product and service to the customer. Just talking about it may not be enough, they have to prove it.
This can be from as many angles as possible, First is showing the product and service, then other ways is showing how it is supplied and getting them to talk with existing customers.
Really getting to the places and environments that the customers will be using the product, so they can see how the product or service will work in a situations that they will be using it.
This means encouraging the customer to spend the time and effort to see these things.
It is very easy for the salesperson not to bother to encourage the customer to really do these things and so see for themselves how the product and service really does work. This is often because it is more work and hassle for the salesperson.
If people see and experience it, they will believe it.
Constantly find ways to demonstrate to the customer that the product or service works.
For example when Marcus Lemonis was selling cleaning materials to a hotel in the show ‘The Profit’, he went to one of their hotel room and cleaned it to show how well the cleaning products work.
When selling food to a buyer at a restaurant, the buyer thought that their customers would not buy those kind of foods. So in front of the restaurant’s food buyer, he went up to their customers and asked them to try the food. The buyer then saw that their customers liked and would buy it in their restaurants.
Find new ways to get the customer to try and see everything about the product or service.
Bad sales people
If a person is selfish, they just focus on what they want and not what the customer wants.
Signs of this are sales person believes in controlling the customer. They try to and wants to, control the customer, to get them to do what the sales person wants.
The customer will not want this dark controlling force, so will be repelled and not attracted to the sales person. So this will stop a customer from wanting to buy.
They selfishly want a sale, so they just look at their wants and not the customer. One consequence is they become aggressive with the customer as they just want to get what they want. However a good sales person makes it that the customer wants to buy from them, gives the customer what they wabt. So the customer buys as it is a pleasant experience for them and this aggression creates the opposite of that technique.
If somebody is asking you awkward questions, the best way to make them give up is be really really boring. They’ll get so bored that they’ll stop.
This is of course the opposite of what you want to do for selling, be fun, be life of the party and people will want to be with you.
Do all the fun things whether it’s music, eating, telling jokes, having a laugh and so on. This is why companies do corporate entertainment.
You have to be emotional about the product, why you love it so much and it means so much to you.
If the emotion and passions are there, people will think that it must be real.
Need to have powerful energy and emotions, then people will think it’s all real and genuine.
People go along with energies and emotions, not so much logic.
That’s why stories are really important for selling, they get people involved in the emotion.
People buy it because there’s lots of energy with what you’re saying, you do it with lots of energy. As there’s lots of energy it must be big, it must be brilliant.
It’s a big ball of brilliant amazing energy.
The energy is emotions, feelings, attitudes, and so on.
You have to be really excited about the product, then they will too.
You have to have the genuine emotion and feeling, you can’t fake it. People are moved by the actual emotion and feeling.
Without that they will find it all boring and uninteresting, so not want to engage with it and be involved.
All the paraphernalia of presentation and so on, such as graphics and so on, are about getting excited about the product.
All the hype that it is the most amazing thing ever. People are bored so they want something to dream abou, have fun with and get excited about.
The salesperson must think that the product is awesome, insanely great and be excited about it, then the customer will as well.
You have to use stories as people are interested in and like stories. They also learn and believe the lessons from them.
A good story has to get people interested by something amazing and sensational happening. They then have to wonder what will happen next and how the problem of the story will resolve itself.
The solution to the problem in a story needs to be something that they couldn’t have predicted, then they feel they have really learned something and it was a good story.
A story is when there is a problem, how will it be resolved?
Excited about the product or service
You have to be excited about the product, people want to be excited by things and it to be exciting, or it is boring and uninteresting, so they move on to something else.
Marketing materials with flashy graphics and so on are to make the product exciting.
If you use massive energy, such as emotions and feelings, people can’t help but get carried along with it.
People want energy, they want that and will go towards it like a flower going towards the sun.
However be careful selling a product that is not right for them for moral reasons. Also they will go away and the next day realize the product is not right for them and cancel the product or service.
That’s why you need string energies and emotions. Not to push people, but to create good and positivity, that is what people go towards. They do not want to be pushed around.
You are seducing people.
To be authentic you also have to be yourself or people will see through things and it won’t work. They will feel uncomfortable, it just won’t be working and they won’t know why, but this is the reason.
Caring about the customer
Eric Barstow of Painting Business Pro quoted a very successful salesperson and teacher who said ‘When you care more about the customer than you care about the sale, you’ll sell more than anybody else out there.’
A successful salesperson truly puts the customer first, even if it means losing the sale. This is because by putting the customer first they build more trust.
It’s about having customers trust you and so building this trust changes everything. It’s about taking care of people, not chasing money.
You have to have that emotion and feeling of caring about others.
It must be that you genuinely care.
You will go to the full length of whatever’s needed to make sure the customer is happy.
You will ensure everything goes smoothly and sort everything out any problems that may come up delivering the service or product. Then you can truly look them in the eye and give them a promise.
So you can believe in yourself, then the customer can believe in you.
Happy people sell
People like to be around happy people, so they like to buy from happy people.
They think that if the person selling the product or service is happy, it must be good.
So use a happy voice, facial expression etc.
Cold calling sales call centre CEO Nev Wilshire gets his staff to dance to music before they make calls to get them in a happy place. Then people they call want to speak with them as they’re so happy.
People buy from people that they like
There are many occasions when a new salesperson goes out with little knowledge of the product, but sells really well as people like them.
So be nice to people, the kind of person that the customer would like to have as their own friend.
Don’t tell people they are wrong, they don’t like that.
Listen to what people want and agree.
Don’t try and change people, people don’t want you to try and change them.
Don’t change their worldview, people don’t want to change and be told they are wrong.
Give them information that they’ll find useful and really like.
Listen to the customer, people like to talk, even if it’s not relevant to the product.
Let the customer feel like they’re in control, don’t try and control them. People don’t like other people trying to control them. People also like to feel like they’re in control.
Don’t show off, say how great you are and how you are better than the customer. Of course you need to say how great the product or service is, but you’re not showing off about yourself for vanity or egotistical reasons. Talk about how great the customer is and how much you like things about them.
Be interested in the things that they are interested in. Let them talk about what they are interested in, such as their hobbies and so on.