The sales environment today is very different than it was 10 years ago. The new age of sales means that people do business and purchase things very differently than in the past. Author Lisa McLeod discusses sales principles that are still true today.
- It's a new age in sales. We know that purpose-driven salespeople outperform the old school quota-driven reps. The environment today is very different than it was even five or 10 years ago. So one of the big differences is your buyer now has the Internet in the palm of your hand. Another difference is we know more about the psychological underpinnings of sales, more so than ever before. So if you ask some of the old timers about sales, there are two things though that they'll tell you that were true way back then and are still true today.
Number one, sales is still at the heart a relationship business. Actually with the Internet, even more so, because all the facts are already online. The whole point of meeting is to create that relationship that adds value. That's why you should care very deeply about your customers and their goals. That knowledge, that drive, that's what propels your business forward. In the face of challenging negotiations or changing conditions or obstacles, make sure your focus is on adding value to customers.
That's what creates a trusting relationship. So the second thing that is still true in the world of sales is your reputation matters. It's actually even more true today than ever before. Because you see poor behavior or being manipulative, or being unprepared, it not only ruins your relationship with your buyer, but now thanks to the web, they can broadcast their less than stellar experience with you out to the entire world. But the fact that your buyers can share their experiences is not a bad thing, especially if you're a purpose-driven salesperson.
Because imagine being a buyer and being interested in a product or service. You're doing your research online and you come across a review that says, "wow, this salesperson was so insightful. "This incredible salesperson was focused "on my needs and my goals. "They created a big win for me." How do you feel if you're that prospective buyer? You're gonna be inclined to have a call with that salesperson. That incredible salesperson with the amazing online reviews can be you if you sell with your reputation in mind.
can be you if you sell with your reputation in mind. But there are a couple of things that have changed. If you ask the old timers in your business what the purpose of sales is and what it takes to be successful, they might tell you a few things that you need to ignore. One thing you might hear from some more seasoned reps is buyers only care about price. I gotta tell you, that's almost never true because if buyers only cared about price, they'd just buy it off the Internet.
They do care about price, but what they really care about is results. So someone who tells you that it's all about price and that the only way to win is to be the cheapest, that is a person you need to stay away from because that person has been absolutely commodotized by their buyers. You don't want this to happen to you. You have a bigger purpose than just being the cheapest. Your purpose is to improve your customer's condition, and to do it in the biggest, boldest way that you possibly can. You know, the second thing you might hear from some of the veterans in your industry is that product knowledge is the most important thing a salesperson needs.
a salesperson needs. Now product knowledge is critical. You've got to be well versed in your offering, but keep in mind you are no longer the sole source of information. Again, your buyer can just do the research online. Your buyer probably knows a lot about your offerings by the time you're meeting, so they don't want to waste their time with you demoing all your product knowledge and going through all your videos. You know, recent research from our client, Hootsuite, suggests that 70% of the buyer's journey is now done online.
So what does your buyer need from you? They need your ability to translate all of that knowledge into the impact that your offering will have on the buyer's organization. See the new game in sales is not about smoozing. The purpose of sales is to improve the customer's condition. Your job as the salesperson is to bring that purpose to life in every interaction that you have.
In this course, Lisa outlines key techniques to find and leverage your "noble purpose" and connect with customers on a deeper level. Learn the three key elements of a great call opening, when and when not to use a pitch deck, and the secrets to creating a sales process that can flex with different customer types. Last, she provides advice to develop yourself professionally, such as how to talk to senior leaders and position yourself as a strategy partner instead of a pitchman, when and how to take your boss on a sales call, and how to network effectively. Use these tips to close bigger, close faster, and make your work more meaningful.
- Selling with noble purpose
- Sales as a fast track to leadership
- Making the first call
- Avoiding sounding scripted
- Recovering from a bad call
- Working with your bosses and senior leaders
- Networking and being coachable