A recent Sandler Training survey revealed that nearly 70% of working Americans agree that the key to getting ahead in life is to learn how to sell yourself.
What does that mean for recent graduates? Learn how to sell yourself early in your career to stay ahead and put yourself on the right career path. And there's no better time to start selling yourself then during your first professional, post-college interviews
Many salespeople are too eager to make presentations – are you? They view them as opportunities to establish the value of their products or services by demonstrating their unique aspects. You can't establish value, however, until you have determined which aspects, if any, are relevant to the prospects' situations.
Clients and prospects tell on a regular basis about how they spend 5 - 20 hours a week preparing proposals for business they are "hoping to get;" however, most of the time their efforts are unsuccessful. Why are we compelled to provide proposals when our 'gut' tells us we are wasting our time?
Let's explore some of the reasons we feel inclined to provide proposals:
The prospect asked for it.
'If I don't provide the proposal I definitely won't have a chance at getting the business.
Have you ever killed a sale by bringing up an irrelevant feature to your prospect? Something you, or probably your marketing department, thought you prospect should know about before they signed up?
At Sandler, this is known as "painting seagulls in your prospect's picture." Unfortunately, your seagull can quickly turn into an albatross.
Traditionally trained salespeople who sit through hours of product training before being let out in front of prospects can't wait to share all their product knowledge when they get in front of anyone, qualified prospect or not
Sales isn't for the faint of heart. You don't just encounter negativity on a fairly frequent basis. In many cases, it is your job to sniff it out and address it immediately. Sandler Rule #3: "No Mutual Mystification," deals with an issue that often plagues sales professionals – "happy ears."
Why should we buy from you? What makes you different than my current _______? Why should I invite you in to see me? We are already doing business with you so why should we look at this new product /service?
Sound familiar? A bit tired of hearing this? Get used to it. This is simply what customers and prospects say to sales people. And we can't fault the prospect/ customer for asking the question. They don't have time to waste, and they need a good reason to spend time with salespeople who know how to sell value-whether through a meeting or to view a new product or service
The prospect said no. That's the end of the sales process, and you've somewhat succeeded in a sense that you at least got an answer. It's not a "yes," but your job is technically done now, right? According to Sandler Rule #39, you should think again.
If you simply differentiate yourself as saying you're "the best" sales professional out there, then you can look forward to clients and prospects who will wander around to see if one of the millions of other "bests" out there are cheaper. This rule is simple. See what your competition does, and then make sure that what you do is incomparable. Having a unique game plan will help set you on the path to one-of-a-kind success.
I propose a ban on proposals! I find them to be an enormous waste of time as no one has ever in the history of sales purchased anything solely based on the proposal.
We unwittingly taught all prospects that they simply have to ask and we will provide them with all the information they need in order to deal with their problem
Whoever said talk is cheap didn't know much about sales. Talk-too much talk, that is-can cost a lot.
This is a difficult lesson for many sales professionals to learn, and that's understandable. People in sales tend to have outgoing personalities. They enjoy good conversation, and the longer they are in sales, the better they get at making small talk, establishing an emotional connection with the prospect, and driving a conversation toward the specific end of closing a sale