Not everyone is naturally gifted at sales conversations, and that’s okay. For many, it can feel awkward and uncomfortable to sell yourself and a product to a prospect you barely know. I get that
But the thing is, sales conversations are important to the growth of your company. Sales conversations are exactly how you create consistent revenue all year long. They are how you connect with those people who already want and need your unique offering.
I see a lot of salespeople falling into the same trap. You cannot afford to keep making the same mistake over and over:
- You talk too much, leaving the buyer with the impression that you don’t understand their business, their industry, or their needs.
- You grill the buyer with questions, making them feel like they are a part of an interrogation.
- You talk too little, letting the buyer control the conversation.
- You are over eager, and the buyer can smell your desperation a mile away.
- You talk about your products and services as if they are commodities, leading the buyer to buy based on price.
- You are unprepared, and the buyer wonders why they are wasting their time with you.
- You are uncomfortable talking about money, and the second a price objection comes up you cave and start discounting.
The fact is there are endless way ways to mess up a sales conversation, and most salespeople make major mistakes each and every they engage a prospect.
Below are some keys steps to leading masterful sales conversations right now:
How To Improve Your Sales Conversations
Build a good rapport:
Before you begin to ask questions to get your prospect to open up or talk about how you can help, you need to build a good rapport. The truth is people buy from people they like. Focus on building a tangible relationship and you will find your sales conversations going much more smoothly
Uncover aspirations and afflictions:
If you’ve ever read any piece of sales advice, you know you need to ask questions to uncover the prospect’s pain. That’s a given. What most advice doesn’t include is how to harness the power of aspirations. Your job is not only to uncover the prospect’s needs and pains, but it’s to also uncover their aspirations and goals. Get your prospect to open up and share their hopes, dreams, and desires and then show how you can help them achieve their goals.
Make the impact clear:
If you don’t make the business case, you won’t make the sale. You can do everything else right, but if the prospect doesn’t see the value of your solution (and you’ve got to be very clear with what that value is), they will not buy it.
Paint a picture of the new reality:
This goes hand in hand with points 2 and 3. Once you know the prospect’s needs and goals and the tangible impact of alleviating these pains or attaining their goals, you must paint a picture of what their new world will look like. How will it be better? In your sales conversations, help them visualize the other side and build excitement around it.
Balance advocacy and inquiry:
Sales conversations require give and take. You have to get the prospect talking so you can fully understand their situation. You also need to take what the prospect says and communicate recommendations based on your expertise to help them see how you can help. In each and every sales conversation (yes, this includes capabilities presentations and demos) you have to balance how much you talk and how much you listen.
Build on the foundation of trust:
Trust is the foundation of sales success. A buyer will not open up and share their needs if they don’t trust you. A buyer will not believe in your solution and that you can do what you say you can do if they don’t trust you. A buyer will never see the full value of what you propose if they don’t trust you. You will not win the sale if they don’t trust you.
The only way to master your sales conversations is to practice. Practice to yourself in the mirror. Practice with friends and family. If you screw up with one lead, then learn from it and move on.
With time and dedication, sales calls will become much more natural. And when you follow all of these tips noted above, you might even find that you enjoy them!