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Sellers
11Afraid of being too pushy in sales
I hear sellers and business owners tell me they “Don’t want to be too pushy” at least 5 times a week. Trust me, if you have to say that, you’ve never been “too pushy”. Many of us have had negative experiences with salespeople that have a bulldozer mentality. They’re not afraid to run over you...
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11When do you lose customer trust
Have you ever started talking to someone and then a “look” comes over them? They pull back a little, maybe cross their arms or turn their body away from you. You’ve just lost their trust. What was it you said or did that triggered their distrust response? It could be something you’re doing or saying...
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113 Productivity Hacks for Salespeople
A while back, I gave away a bunch of copies of Jill Konrath’s new book, MORE SALES. LESS TIME. I tied those giveaways to an offer of a free consulting conversation about the struggles business owners and sellers face to be productive in this stressful and ever distracting “shiny object” environment. My purpose was two-fold:...
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11Ditch this terrible sales advice
Part of understanding the negative feelings out there about sellers is reconciling the fact that much of the sales advice out there preaches manipulative and controlling sales practices that leave customers skittish, untrusting, and gun-shy about sellers’ intentions. Which is why buyers don’t return our calls, shrug off our emails, and work hard to ignore...
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11Coach's Wisdom for Sales Pros
Right about this time of year, my husband gets a bit giddy and you’ll hear him humming, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” No, he’s not an early Christmas shopper . . . his glee is boiling over because it’s FOOTBALL SEASON again! Between now and pretty much the Super Bowl, there are...
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11Order Takers vs True Sellers_ 5 Signs You've Got Fake Sales Reps on Your Team
Way back when I started my first sales job, I had a pretty tough product to sell. I’m sure you’ve heard me mention this one or two dozen times, but I was selling advertising for the WORST TV station in the market. We had to really hustle and get mega creative to earn our customers...
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11Taking notes on “Selling” from Cooking Competitions If you’ve had young children, you’ll feel my lament over those awful cartoons with the characters and theme songs that take root in your adult head like uninvited weeds in your brain garden. From the mouse to the purple dinosaur to the little girl who yells everything and carries a backpack – there are dozens of children’s cartoons that contribute to the world’s adult beverage consumption. Thankfully, my children have graduated from most of those cartoons. The occasional obnoxious Spongebob Squarepants and TMNT (that’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to you) still show up from time to time but for the most part, my Jr. Associates have fallen in love with cooking and baking competition shows. They love the idea of challenges and all the tricks and turns, sabotages, and the pressure cooker that all the contestants are in. As we watched our favorites this weekend, I listened to my children talk about what they would do differently, other strategies they would take, or how they would explain their dishes another way. After the 3rd or 4th episode of Cutthroat Cupcake Chopped Academy (a mash up of all the shows), I started to think about the similarities of the pitfalls in cooking competitions to where we see mistakes in sales and selling. Strangely, though no surprise to those of you that know me, in this relaxing down time, I couldn’t help but build some sales coaching analogies from these entertaining battles. Today, I have made for you . . . Four Ways Sellers Can Avoid Ending Up In Hot Water - Listen to what’s important. Many a sale and a challenge have been lost by not listening to what’s TRULY important to those making the decisions. When cooking contestants don’t build their strategy around satisfying the criteria they will be judged against, their success is compromised from the start. Going through the discovery process is critical with your customers to understand not only what they want, but how they will be making decisions, what their success metrics look like, and ultimately, how they want to go through the buying journey. Miss this key component and you could quickly be eliminated as a potential provider. Don’t serve the status quo. Just as cooking shows challenge the skills and creativity of contestants, buyers want sellers that bring them different and creative solutions to their problems. Stand out from the competitors by highlighting what makes you different and focus not on your capabilities, but your competencies, and results that you’ve proven for similar clients. True contenders don’t show up with the easiest dish or the most common ideas. Challenge yourself to serve your clients something different. Don’t die for your perfect plan. Sometimes, in cooking, as in selling, we’re thrown a curveball. A mystery ingredient in a baking challenge might be the equivalent to a potential customer asking you to work with a smaller budget or a shorter time frame. I’ve seen this blow a hole in many a sales pro’s “perfect plan” and they never quite recover because they’re not able to be flexible or go outside the box for resources or solutions. Listen to your customers, consult your team, play to your strengths, and adjust and adapt to the circumstances so you can meet your client’s needs. You may not be able to solve all their challenges on your own but you can track down other resources or collaborate with your customers to customize the opportunity just for them. Don’t tank your presentation. Part of the pleasure of these pressure cooker contests is the moment of judgment for competitors where their efforts are weighed and measured against the expectations of the judges. We’re rooting for the contestants, for we know all they’ve been through and how they fought to get their final product ready for presentation. And this moment, many battles are won or lost by how the contender steps up and presents. Confidence or lack thereof is the first place to lose. Fear of rejection or fear of walking away empty handed can be off putting to customers. It detracts focus from discussion and emphasizes desperation. Some contestants lost the judges when they start inventing fancy names or try to distract from their presentation’s potential flaws. Buyers, just like judges, see straight through those tricks. Calling any dish “deconstructed” means you are missing ingredients or couldn’t pull it together in the end. Glossing over incompatibilities or dodging objections annoys customers and discredits your trust and credibility. Be transparent with your solutions and present your offers confidently. Next time you’re up to bat with a prospective new client, think about the pressure cooker of one of these cooking or baking competitions. Keep your eye on the prize by truly listening to what problems your customers are asking you to solve and confidently adapt to their needs and delight them by serving them their own unique solution customized just to their tastes. Until next time, stop hoping, start cooking SELLING! -sks PS - Jumping from the kitchen to the office – if you feel like you’re losing your battles at any one of these points, contact us. We can help you understand your customers, deeply differentiate your offers and profoundly connect with your audience to earn trust and sales quicker.
If you’ve had young children, you’ll feel my lament over those awful cartoons with the characters and theme songs that take root in your adult head like uninvited weeds in your brain garden. From the mouse to the purple dinosaur to the little girl who yells everything and carries a backpack – there are dozens...
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11Seller, C-Level, Meetings, Opportunities, Top Line Sales, Lisa Magnuson
In the first of the Sales Fails series, our sales pro gave the advice to “Stop Hiding Behind Email” in order to build relationships, earn trust and close deals faster. This week’s expert advice comes from the founder of Top Lines Sales, Lisa Magnuson, Top Line Deal Coach. Lisa’s advice is a great recommendation for...
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