The old sales tactics taught and used by many salespeople in the past will not work in the new economy.
If you're going to succeed in sales during the current economic situation and in the coming three to five years, you're going to have to adapt a new way of selling.
These skills are not new to the top sales people. They are the same skills I learned and mastered. The same skills that took me from barely paying my bills back in the early eighties to a six figure income in a matter a three months.
The top sales people in the new economy will have five key skills:
* Empathy with their client
* Long-term relationship-building skills
* The ability to work with people in other departments of their company
* In-depth knowledge of the market
* A dedication to customer service
Let's dive in and look at each one in-depth:
The sales people who will succeed have empathy with their client.
The dictionary defines empathy as; the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another.
In layman's terms, it means you need to be able to put yourself in your clients shoes. You need to look at things through their eyes, feel how their feeling and genuinely care about what's important to them, putting your own ideas and feelings about what's right for them aside.
There's an old saying, people don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care. So get yourself out of the way and start genuinely caring about what your clients are saying and what their not saying to you.
The sales people who succeed will have long term relationship building skills.
Many sales people and companies for that matter spend more time and money getting a client than they do to keep them. That is so backwards. From the time you first make contact with a client you should thinking long term relationship. Once a client has purchased from you and they like and trust you, they are more apt to purchase more from you and to become ambassadors for you.
When you develop the kind of long term, friendly relationship with your client and they are singing your praises to everyone they know, the business of sales gets so much easier.
As you may already know, it's a great feeling when the phone rings and it's a current client calling to give you a referral or better yet it's the referral calling you want to make a purchase.
The sales people who succeed will have the ability to work with people in other departments of their company.
You need to have good working relationships with all departments of your company. Remember, your all in this together working towards one common goal, to make the client happy so the company turns a profit. People in other departments are not the enemy as many sales people treat them.
You never know when you might need a favor; a faster delivery, so extras added to the purchase, some one to work a little late to get your order out, who knows what you might need from another person in your company some day.
And as the old saying goes, it's a lot easier to get something with honey, than it is with lemon. So stop being a lemon.
The sales people who succeed will have in-depth knowledge of the market.
There's no better way to differentiate your self from everyone else who sells a similar product or service than to know every thing that's going on in your market.
Do you know what your competitors sell, how much they sell it for, or what their customer service is like? Are there any new trends?
Dig in, do your homework and find out everything you can about your market. Many times the sales person will the most knowledge about the market ends up winning the sale, regardless of price.
The sales people who will succeed have a dedication to customer service.
The sale does not end when you collect the check or the order form is signed. It continues on after the sale through the delivery process and for years and years to come.
Remember, your building long term relationships, so get involved in the entire process. Don't leave every thing up to someone else in your company. Stay involved, even if it's only to communicate with the client. This kind of follow up will pay off in increase repeat and referral business.
Master these five key skills and you are on your way to being one of the sales people who thrives now and in to the future.
Ignore them and you may very well become one of the casualties of our current economic situation.
These five key skills are the backbone of the way I have sold for the last 27 years and the basis for all my training products and services.