Friday, June 24, 2011

Sales – Every Conversation is a Sale

I seem to have got the initial-contact thing down pat. I have no problems in phoning a CEO and getting them to meet me for lunch.

I seem to have gotten the delivery of a product down pat – everything from initial specifications down to signing off on delivery.

It’s the Bit in the Middle that Fails Me – the Sales!

I am told that I’m a great salesman.

As a trainer I know that I’m always selling a new idea, a new way to do something. I’m good at that.

I am moved to a major decision after a fortuitous business tweet from Michelle Romanica ( @Mromanica ) in which she wrote “I'm finding Eric Loftholm's short clear tips on closing sales very helpful 21 mini video clips: easy to follow & implement

I signed up for the 21 once-per-day video clips (4 minutes or less each, so far), and it got me started on a new way of thinking.

It also triggered my memory of Darla Campbell’s talk at the AIC with the punch line “There’s always a sale”.

I have decided to focus on my sales skills to the extent that from now on:

  • Every telephone conversation results in a sale.
  • Every email conversation results in a sale.
  • Every face-to-face conversation results in a sale.

What is a “Sale”?

Note that in this context a “sale” isn’t necessarily (indeed, rarely will be) a dollar sale. But it will mean that I have moved my correspondents forward, closer to where I would like them to be.

Note 1: While I was writing this my literally-next-door neighbour phoned, did I want a lift to the polling-booth? The polling booth is in the school next door; I could lob a rock into their yard. No, I said, we should walk, so we walked there. And back. I sold her on the idea of walking.

Note 2: While I was writing this a valuable contact phoned, apologizing for not responding sooner. Perhaps she could get a manager to meet me in a few week’s time. “No problem”, I said, “but I’ll be downtown Wednesday if you’d like a demonstration; I already have one scheduled and could fit you in at a time convenient to you”. My contact sounded enthusiastic, so I made another sale.

Note that we are not confirmed for Wednesday, but I did manager to steer her towards a meeting in two days time, rather than one in two weeks time.

It’s a small start, but it is encouraging.

Talk to Me !

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