There’s a very real chance that as you’re working through your sales process some of the fundamentals of selling are missed or overlooked. It happens to even the most seasoned sales professionals.
If you’re like many entrepreneurs I speak to, you hate the whole thought of selling. Something I’ve heard a thousand times…
“But Theresa, I don’t want to come across so pushy.”
Let me tell you this, if you’re pushy, you’re NOT (not yelling, just emphasizing) selling.
Professional sales is helping people solve a problem and helping them make their life easier. Period.
Every successful entrepreneur has master the selling process and you want to be successful, right?
So, let’s get back to the fundamentals of selling…
When you have an awareness of the each component or pillar of selling, you can be sure that your process is thorough and as a result more effective.
Let’s take a look at the eight fundamentals of selling, so that you can see where you need to brush up on this necessary entrepreneurial skill.
Prospecting is the process of finding and/or identifying leads. It’s the first part of the sales process and is defined as, “the process of reaching out to potential customers with the goal of finding new business.”
It’s usually a process, rather than a single step, and it transitions people from leads to customers, thus pulling them into your sales funnel.
The presenting process is where you meet with a prospect and work to solve a problem they are facing and persuade them to buy your product or service. A successful presentation ends with an agreement to move forward together.
During the presentation process you might talk about how you’ll work together, why your products or services are different, and how you’ve helped other people/companies with similar challenges achieve their goals.
Is your presentation not exactly a TED Talk?
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The discovery process is an ongoing process that begins during your initial contact with a prospect. The goal is to ask questions that help you learn more about the client so that you may better position your products and services to solve their needs.
Additionally, you can leverage the discovery process to retain clients.
For example, you might talk about what additional needs they have, and what could be improved.
What makes your organization, products, or services different from your competition? You have to know how you’re different so that you’re able to position your benefits to your prospect and customer when you’re talking to them, and as you learn more about their needs and challenges.
If you aren’t fully versed in how you’re different (i.e., better) than your competition, then you will miss opportunities.
Many people believe that the negotiation process is a conversation about price. It can be, but more often than not it’s about creating a win/win situation where your prospect perceives that they’re receiving value.
Depending on your prospect’s needs and goals, value may be delivered in turnaround time, customer service, training, and other “intangibles” besides or in addition to the cost of the products or services.
Do you cringe at the thought of having to negotiate?
Learn How to Change “Fear of Negotiating” Into “Love of Negotiating”
6. Developing Business Acumen
Like many of the fundamentals of sales, business acumen is a core component that is utilized throughout the entire process – from prospecting to nurturing customers. It’s about knowing how your business works, and how your client’s business works, too.
As you gain experience, you’ll begin to recognize patterns and identify ideas that are worth trying.
7. Managing Change
As your industry changes and your clients and prospects needs change, so too does your approach to the sales process. As you gain experience you’ll develop the ability to act as a change catalyst so that you can foresee the need for change and be proactive rather than reactive.
Successful business owners complete a SWOT Analysis to forecast and plan for industry shifts.
Leadership is a skill that can be developed over time. The stronger your leadership skills, the better able you’ll be to guide your clients, lead your teams, and lead your client’s team – even when you have no formal authority.
The fundamentals of selling begin with knowledge. As you gain experience as a sales professional, you’ll be able to integrate your knowledge and skills and become even better at communication and connecting with your audience.
What you can do right now…begin by looking at your existing process and skills and take note of where you can make positive change.
Your success is my business!