I find that keeping things simple keeps the stress down. That rule applies to selling. Here are some simple ideas that will also help you sell more.
1. Sell to the easy prospects.
You might have many different types of prospects like most salespeople. You may also find once you do the analysis that it’s easier to sell to some prospects over others.
I recently met with a client to develop his selling strategy. His product is in solar energy. His prospects were both city governments and large private companies. I asked him to describe the process for selling to each of these different types of prospects.
The sales cycle to government was much longer. It was a bidding process so the opportunity to influence the decision was harder. The decision makers were risk averse and doing business with his company would be perceived as risky.
Private companies needed and wanted his technical expertise. They were willing to pay more for it. The sales cycle was shorter, too.
I said to my client, “So it sounds that it’s easier to sell to private companies.” He said, “Well, now that you mention it, it is.” My recommendation was to begin to focus his selling on private companies and work on government accounts later once he had a proven record. It would be easier and he would be more successful.
Which types of business is easier for you to sell? Focus on selling to them.
2. Everyone is always watching you.
Do you think people don’t notice your work? They do.
I remember the talk of a manufacturing plant. The receptionist told me the story of the salesman who was obviously late for his appointment. The receptionist knew because she heard the screeching of his wheels as his car raced into the parking lot.
With windows across the front of the building, the salesman turned track star was running into the building while he was trying to put his suit jacket on and holding his suitcase. The receptionist told me that he was the plants’ afternoon entertainment. He was the joke at the plant for a week later.
Who knew that so many people would be seeing him? Certainly not him. You never know when people are watching you. Always assume they are.
Even if they aren’t watching you in public, in today’s world they are likely to see what you write on Facebook or other social media. Be careful what you say.
3. Business is like a Ferris wheel.
Just remember that when you’re in power that some day you might not be in power. Always treat everyone with respect. I learned this when I left the oil business. One of my business associates was someone who I didn’t care to work with. He had a habit of talking down to other people. His projects were important while other people’s were not. I didn’t enjoy working with him. It probably showed.
The person who I didn’t care for when I worked in the oil business was the same person I had to sell to when I started my sales training company. You probably figured out what happened. No, I didn’t get his business.
Had I been able to do it over again, I would have made more of an effort to get along and be more understanding. You have the opportunity to avoid making my mistake. Consider everyone a possible ally and treat them accordingly.
Confucius once said that life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. Keep your selling simple and resist the urge to make it more complicated.