What Makes A Great Salesperson?
This is a loaded question and one that does not have a perfect answer. Everyone will have (and should have) their own definition and sales tips of what makes a salesperson great. However, we've recently interviewed our own customers and many of them agreed that a great salesperson:
- Listens to the customer
- Maintains focus
- Makes sure that the prospect is comfortable with the product or service
In this blog post, we'll break down each one of these value points and how it can help you sell effectively.
Sales Tip #1: Listen To Them (Figure Out Their Pain Point)
If you’re lucky enough to get to the point where your prospect hasn’t:
- Hung up on you
- Called you names and hung up on you
- Told you that they are "busy and will call you back."
Then you’ve hit prospect gold. This means that your prospect is willing to, at the very least, give you the time of day to hear you out (if you need help getting to this point, check out this great article). However, this is the moment where you blindside them and completely surprise them. They’re expecting to hear a pitch from you. Instead, you take the most important action you may take during the whole customer relationship: you listen. Listen to the prospect as they talk about the highs and the lows of their day and anything else they want to talk about. In the end, this conversation will give you insightful knowledge about the prospect’s behavior and pain points. Once you know both their behavior and paint points just by listening to them, you can easily transition into how what you are offering provides the solution they need. Not only is this an easy transition to the next stage of the conversation, but, your prospect will truly feel valued because you took time out of your day to listen—a personal touch that many companies fail to provide.
Sales Tip #2: Focus Only On The Problem The Prospect Has
After you’ve invested time listening to your customer, you’ll likely assume that it’s time to focus on selling. And, you’d technically be correct, but, you need to ask yourself: What are you selling on? Are you selling on:
- The whole toolbox of products and features your company offers?
- On your prospect’s pain points?
Selling the toolbox comes at a different stage of the customer relationship. You sell on the toolbox after you’ve established a customer relationship (usually around the 3rd or 4th touch point post first sale). However, in the early stages, it’s important to focus only on the pain points. This will help you tell the prospect what he or she wants to hear. Nothing more, nothing less. If you say too much in the early stages, your prospect may get lost in the sea of features or products and overlook the simplicity & effectiveness of your solution. You will have lost their attention and potentially their business. If you don’t tell them enough, the prospect will begin to doubt your ability to provide the solution they need. By addressing their pain points, you can be sure that you are providing the right quality and quantity of information. This focus on your end will be shared with your customer and lead to a clearer and simpler path to a sale. Inc.com has a great blog post about how to approach and identify your prospect’s pain points
HubSpot also provided an insightful video about how to help you diagnose pain points your customer may not know they have.
Sales Tip #3: Make Sure Your Prospect Is Comfortable With The Product
Don’t force your prospect to purchase when the conversation is over immediately if they’re not ready. Be flexible. If your prospect needs extra time to think through the conversation to understand the product, respect that and schedule another phone call, meeting or demo. Understand that flexibility means being willing to take the steps necessary to assure the prospect that the product you offer is truly the one for them.
For example, we are frequently told that having 1-1 demos/training sessions with our users is not scalable. This is because each session takes about 45 minutes and we offer it to ALL of our users—regardless of if they are a big team or an individual user. However, we decided that the demos can’t be cut out of our sales process because it is a crucial value-adding step that some of our customers need to experience. We understand that it is easy to get stuck with a monthly subscription for something that you know nothing about. Before you know it, you’ve paid $500 or more for a product you never actually understood. Our demos not only reassure our users on the value they are getting but also equips them with the proper knowledge to use the tool effectively. If you want to go the demo route, watch these videos on best practices.
Although the information I’m writing about isn’t earth-shattering breaking news, these sales tips are core concepts that can easily be forgotten. We need to:
- Listen to our customers.
- Focus on the pain points
- Make your customer feel comfortable with the product
How do you define a great salesperson? Feel free to reach out and provide us with sales tips!