Upping Your Sales Game: Be Persuasive, Not Pushy
Even if you have been in a sales position for a while and are comfortable with what it takes to close a deal, you may still stop and ask yourself ‘Am I being too pushy?’
If you have ever had this moment of self-questioning, don’t worry you aren’t alone. Even the most accomplished sales leaders have asked themselves questions about their selling technique before. The good news is, being in sales doesn’t mean you have to feel you have to push customers into deals they don’t want or need.
You can sell without being pushy, and without underhanded tactics. Curious how you can change your thinking on the issue? Read on.
Make a genuine connection with your customers
A lot of what makes a good salesperson comes down to identifying a real need in your customer and being able to genuinely sell them something that will add value to their business and their life. However, you won’t be able to ascertain what this need is until you make a personal and meaningful connection with them on an individual level.
Learn to see beyond the concept of ‘selling’ something to your next prospect. Instead, aim to solve an issue or foster a passion that the customer has. By ensuring you have made a real connection you may have just secured a customer for life.
Share what you know
Many people are so used to being ‘sold’ to that they have forgotten how to listen when an answer to a real need is being presented to them. By sharing your personal experience with a customer you are helping to open their ears so they can hear what you are telling them: it worked for me, and it can work for you too.
You’ll seem more confident and self-assured if you can offer your customer a glimpse of what you’re selling, especially if you approach it as a secret being shared among a lucky few. Remember to keep it professional, but add a bit of the personal element to your sales pitch and see how your customers respond.
Tell a story, secure a sale
As human beings we love a good narrative. Our lives are built on telling and hearing stories. Introducing this approach into how you generate leads and secure sales can be the difference between your customer hearing boring facts and being inspired by the story. When presenting an issue similar to the one being experienced by your customer, immediately follow it up with a solution that worked for someone who was in their position.
Remember, many people are visual learners. Help get them to see the story from start to finish to create a picture that is comprehensive and complete. Just make sure you clearly indicate how the product/service you are selling changed the outcome of the story for the better.
Learn and train yourself to deal with stalls and objections
Naturally, even the best salesperson doesn’t always get a ‘yes’ on their first attempt. Often times the prospective client offers an objection – which is really a request for more information. Sometimes the prospect can stall or delay making a decision – which is really when he/she is looking for reassurance.
Skilled salespeople see both stalls and objections as opportunities to help the client buy their product/service with more knowledge and confidence in their decision.
Learn to accept and learn from your ‘no’s’
You’ve done the hard yards, listened to your prospects needs, weaved a tale of how what you have to offer is the answer they are looking for. Finally, you produce the offer and ask for their go ahead, deal with any objections and/or stalls, only to hear that the response is a ‘no’. Instead of retreating in defeat, remember that it is absolutely OK. You are never going to be able to maintain a perfect sales score, it just isn’t possible.
However, you can learn invaluable lessons from each ‘no’ you receive. Be aware of the body language of your prospect and note when their attention started to fade. Ask them, politely, why it is they have decided not to purchase. And finally, leave them with your details. You never know who may change their minds and when.