It’s a lot like the old saying about eating an elephant (one bite at a time). Selling is a lot like that and takes a number of steps to reach the end goal.
At every stage of the sales process we need to be clear about what we are trying to achieve. The goal is to move the deal forwards – closing only comes at the end. We shouldn’t get hung up about closing (although when we get there we shouldn’t forget to ask for the PO!).
For example – if you are prospecting for new customers, offering products during your first contact itself might backfire. They have to get to know you at least a little before they can trust your advice on a purchase decision. Always remember people buy from people they know, not from strangers.
As we build relationships, we also need to build trust. One good way of doing that is to ask questions and show that we want to know more about our customer and his situation. In IT sales the customer’s situation will include business and technical needs, so build some knowledge and confidence in both of these areas. We do not need to be a business or technical expert, but we do need to hold credible conversations around these requirements.
One can develop a very clear picture about the next step in the sales process and can track success even before we sell anything. Winning small battles along the way will pave the way for you to eventually win the war.
- Gaining commitment for a follow up call – that is a win.
- Discovering an upcoming project – that is a win.
- Finding new contacts – that is a win.
Once you are in the habit of winning, great sales results will definitely follow. Contributed by our inside sales star Sarbojit.