Be A Topnotch Salesman in One, Two… Ten!
Being a salesperson is a tough job. You have to meet with different kinds of people. You have to talk to them, tell them about yourself and your product.
Then, there is the stereotype about salespersons: that you are glib, smooth-talking individuals who care about nothing except their own commissions. People think of you as pesky and persistent hound dogs.
In striving to be a topnotch salesperson, the first thing you need to do is to break this bias by striving to put forth a win-win situation.
Here are some strategies in becoming the best salesperson that you can be:
1. Look good
This does not mean that you have to undergo a cosmetic procedure to rearrange your face. Doing so might even be harmful since people are intimidated by individuals that are just TOO beautiful.
Find clothes that fit you. Loose clothes give the impression of being unkempt. Think about it: How would you convince a prospective buyer to talk to you if you look shabby and disheveled?
Wear a watch. The watch will tell a person that you are someone who value time.
People always tend to warm up to friendly looking people. A smile makes you look approachable and friendly.
But then, beware! Too bright a smile will make it looked forced and unnatural. A good trick is to think of something nice that happened to you before approaching any customer. This will bring about a soft smile that the customer would likely reciprocate.
Remember that people notice a forced smile right away. This makes them edgy and defensive.
3. Know your product
The greatest error any salesperson can make is not to be familiar with his product. How can you persuade someone to buy them if you cannot elaborate on its features?
People will ask questions about the product. The key here is that you have to be able to answer them with confidence and sureness. Try out the product yourself and be more effective in telling people about the benefits of your product.
You also need to know the advantages and disadvantages of your product. For example, if your company is selling different types of whitening creams, tell the buyer what is the difference between these products and why one is better than the other.
4. Read Up
Aside from knowing your product, you need to know your competitor’s product. You need to be able to emphasize how your product works better than the others available in the market.
You also need to know the trends. Learn the needs and wants of specific groups. Be acquainted with the features that they desire so that you could use this in promoting your product.
5. Find joy in challenges
Have you ever played chess? Do you remember that triumphant feeling after you outsmarted your opponent with a well-thought strategy? Well, you can apply the same thing with selling.
There will come a time when you will come across that stubborn and unmovable obstacle. The problematic customer is one who shoots down every proposal, every sales offer. He is one that asks countless questions yet refuses to buy in the end.
You should not look at the situation in anger or despair. This would just make you bitter and will affect your sales talk. Try to look at the situation as if you are in front of a chessboard. You need to plan and set up a strategy.
6. Be punctual
If you have a meeting with a customer, don’t EVER be late. Tardiness will tell your customer two things: 1. That you’re not the kind of salesman they want to associated with and 2. You are not interested in making a sale.
Always wear a watch and be aware of time. Keep in mind that these people are making time for you in spite of their busy schedules and be grateful for that fact.
Arrive at the meeting place 10-minutes early. This will give you time to compose yourself and run through your mental list. This would also give you time to look around and observe your surroundings, as these might give clues about the kind of people you are about to meet.
7. Ask them what they want
You get to the heart of the problem by asking them what they desire. You cannot force a product to a person if he does not actually want or need it.
After they give you a rundown of what they want, answer with the list of products that meet these requirements. A customer will be the more interested if he has options to choose from or alternatives.
8. Be persuasive, not persistent
Yes, persuasion is the key point in sales. However, persuasion is not the same as persistence. If you keep calling them, or showing up at their work place uninvited, saying the same things over and over, people are going to hate you.
Try different tactics every time you talk to them. Lay out the advantages the sale will have for them and for you. This will make it a win-win situation that they will most probably find hard to resist.
9. Make friends and keep them
Okay, so you made a sale and a big one at that. Be grateful. This doesn’t mean the relationship with your customers ends. It would actually be ideal if you were able to keep a friendly association with them. This will ensure you future sales and deeper relationships.
10. Handle criticism well
You also need to learn how to take criticism. Sometimes, when people are angry or edgy, they tend to say things they do not mean. The key here is not to take everything personally.
If a buyer is stubbornly refusing to talk to you, do not immediately jump to the conclusion that he hates you. He might have ill feelings towards the company as a whole and not to you as a person.
Also, do not think of criticism as something that will drag you down. It should actually motivate you to work harder.
Being a topnotch salesperson will not just happen overnight. It takes practice, patience, and strength. Keep going and keep trying and you will become the best that you can be.