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Not Every No is a Hard No | Not Knowing the Difference Costs You Sales Orders

Not Every No is a Hard No | Not Knowing the Difference Costs You Sales Orders

Sales rejection is a killer.

And I know.

But what dawned on my last week is that lots of sales people suffer from it and that many more of them are carriers.

It’s just a hot bed of sales rejection germs…

Sales Rejection | Are You Infected or a Carrier?

Check out these symptoms:

A genuine belief that a buyer will say no to your offer.

Sometimes praying that the buyer will say no quickly so you can update your sales pipeline and move on to the next sales prospect who you also expect to say no.

You have a tendency to either close to early, before you can guarantee a yes or…

Maybe you close to late, by which time the buyer has forgotten why he was even talking to you…or

You don’t close at all because you’d rather have some sales pipeline of questionable value than an empty pipeline

When your prospect does say no, you take that no utter something about keeping in touch and end the call, update your CRM and move on

How many of these symptoms have you got?

Is it fatal yet? I ask because sometimes we call catch sales rejection, might just be for a day, a week, a month, may just be when we hand out with certain people…but the first step to recovery is recognising we have it, and then how to cure it.

Because there is a cure.

Sales Rejection | The Story of Stephen.

I see Stephen 4 times per yr as part of a sales audit I do for a national client. Steve is a top performer. He’s the guy I ask everyone to chat with if they’re struggling with sales.

Firstly, because he’s a really nice guy, but also because he treats his prospects and his sales pipeline with respect

Steve tells it like it is. He challenges when he needs to, is great at listening, asks fanatstic questions.

BUT the reason Steve consistently smashes his sales targets, his cross sell lead gen, his up sell, and the reason why his average sales order value and customer lifetime order value is higher than anyone else is because Steve know s how to handle objections.

At this, he is a GOD!

So, having spend the week with Steve and his colleagues I move on to do some preliminary work on a sales turnaround project ready for next month.

Faced with a failing sales function, and some real anti-sales, almost sales prevention, selling techniques during sales call review, I couldn’t help but ask myself, when it comes to sales rejection…

What Would Steve Do?

Here’s the guidelines Steve uses for handling objections, minimising sales rejection and turning that sales rejection into an order and an invoice.

Here you go:

Steve only asks for the order when he knows he’s going to get a yes.

So, Steve reduces the times he can get hit with the Sales Rejection virus.

Until that point when Steve asks for the order and expects to get a yes, he uses that time by being a very valuable person to the buyer.

During which, Steve is simply asking questions.

Steve gets the buyer to clarify their thinking.

He challenges some of the buyers believes about Steve’s solutions.

Steve is also working with the buyer to help the buyer understand the cost of not buying. That’s a cost not just within his own business, but within the buyers, competitive market.

After a while, the buyer sees Steve as a very valuable person to talk to.

In fact, the buyer often calls Steve to have a chat about some aspect of the industry, competitors.

The buyer is interested in Steve’s thoughts and views.

It’s almost like the buyer has forgotten Steve is there to take his money off him!

What Else Would Steve Do?

That’s a good question.

Steve never takes the first ‘no’ as and actual ‘no’.

That would never occur to him to take the first ‘no’ and a final sales rejection.

When Steve hears ‘no’ from his contact what his brain does is flip it immediately into…’I’m not sure at the moment, let’s talk some more and then ask me again’

Do you know how much difference that makes to Steve’s sales performance?

Huge amounts, so let’s take a closer look.

‘I’m not sure at the moment, let’s talk some more and then ask me again’

Ok, so how does Steve flip this?

First of all, let’s understand that Steve, wasn’t expecting this response, because, as above Steve doesn’t ask until he’s sure he’ll get a yes.

So the first thing Steve needs to do is look at where the mismatch is, because obviously he and the buyer aren’t on the same page any more.

So maybe he asks…

Ok, so the time’s not right at the moment. What needs to change, for everything to slip into place so you can go ahead?

Now, think about what this question encourages the buyer to do, and how Steve can benefit from this.

Then perhaps Steve asks, 

Right, thanks for that. I understand where you’re coming from now. You know we talked about you losing £X K every month you didn’t have this solution in place? How viable is it really, as we sit here today, knowingly writing of a loss of 6 months worth of £XK whilst you get these other elements sorted? Instead, together, lets find a better work around than this?

What Steve’s just done, because he’s already calculated the Sales ROI for his buyer before the sales close, is be able to quantify the money lost due to waiting

In doing that Steve’s asked the buyer in the nicest possible way…’Are you TOTALLY insane’.

But the buyer won’t hear that. Instead he’ll see Steve trying to help him save money.

What Steve has also done, is make himself part of the fix with the buyer. Now they are a team. It’s a peer to peer conversation – not a battle of wills in a tense sales arena with the buyer running scared as happens here: Anyone Seen My Buyer?

But it doesn’t stop there

And it doesn’t stop because the buyer has given Steve an insight into what the blocks are, now Steve needs to challenge the buyers thinking and reframe those blocks as something else, maybe milestones, gateposts but certainly not full stops in the sales process.

Steve now goes into a counsellor mode with the buyer, where his job is not to provide solutions, but just to ask his buyer the right questions.

Steve wants his buyer to come up with the solution.

And, Steve wants his buyer to have clarity on that solution.

Steve wants his buyer to own the solution, because, when that happens the buyer doesn’t say no to his own ideas!

What Doesn’t Steve Do?

He certainly doesn’t take the first no

He doesn’t take the second or third no either

Doesn’t offer to leave the buyer to take up the conversation with a competitor

He doesn’t say ‘ok, I’ll update my file and give you a call in 6 months to see if anything has changed’

He doesn’t burn sales leads and opportunities

Why Does Steve Refuse to Catch Sales Rejection?

That’s the killer question in this.

Why does Steve not fold at the first no and so many other sales people just accept sales rejection as part of the job?

Because Steve has a single focus that means he’ll never ever be a sorry victim of sales rejection, and her’s why:

Steve never progresses poor quality sales prospects through his sales pipeline…he cuts then loose when he realises either the prospect is not a fit for his solution or the solution is not a fit for his prospect buyer.

What this means is, that by the time the buyer is ready to be closed, Steve knows its a great fit, there is huge value for the buyer and that the buyer knows this.

Which means it’s not about shoe horning a solution in, it’s simply working out the the final details based on a foundation of great advice, trust and education.

Steve doesn’t carry low level prospects with a vague interest in buying with a low value payback on his solutions. He leaves those to the other competitors in his field.

Sales rejection, and the potential to be subjected to sales rejection starts at the very beginning of the sales qualification process.

Steve knows this.

That’s why he has the best sales conversion rate. The highest average sales order value, the biggest lifetime order value. Why he smashes his cross sell lead generation target and why CSI score is the highest in the team.

Discover How You Can Avoid Sales Rejection Too

You can join us on or bespoke or open B2B sales training courses – you can check out the dates for the Sales Improvement Workshop here

Or,  to embed a B2B sales training course and continuous sales improvement culture into your sales function, take a look at TurboCharged Sales

To discuss how to build a productive, efficient and high performance sales team, call Carol on 0779 002 1885 or email carol@mortonkyle.com 

Sales rejection need not be a sales killer but leaving handling sales objections to the end of the sales process definitely increases the chances of experiencing the symptoms which could so easily be avoided.

 

 

3 Sales Questions No-One Uses Any More

3 Sales Questions No-One Uses Any More

So, your’re a progressive sales person, you understand the concept of ask great B2B sales questions and then listen.

And, it works, you’re doing ok.

Great.

Now, you can kick these 3 B2B sales questions out of your tool box.

No-one uses these any more, and I’ll explain why now.

B2B Sales Questions to Avoid:1

What Keeps You Awake at Night?

Never ask the prospects this.

I was with an MD a few weeks ago, and up until I went in, he’d done the sales training for his team, and this was his favorite question to have his sales team ask their prospects.

NO!

In today’s sales arena, the sales person should have a fair idea of what’s troubling the decision maker before they even start.

Sales people do their research before they get to the prospect.

Now, well prepared, well researched sales professionals will now use their very precious time with the decision maker to demonstrate value, explain how they’ve solved challenging problems, in fact this same problem, for many people in the decision makers industry.

They’ll use the time to explore impacts, challenge the buyers thinking maybe, reframe the problem and potential solutions, explore details.

One think they won’t do is ask the buyer what’s causing him to lose sleep at night.

Likewise:

Tell me about your industry and what’s happening now?

How competitive is your industry sector?

Instead:

If you’re really looking to add value and bring an additional dimension to the prospects thinking, you’ll need to get comfortable with telling the prospect three things:

What key problems you’ve solved

For who

And how

So any questions you ask should be geared around driving curiosity so that the prospects response is ‘ you know, we’ve been struggling with the same thing…tell me how you did it’

B2B Sales Questions to Avoid:2

Tell me about your business?

For the same reason as above, a well professional sales rep knows that this question is redundant if he’s done his research.

You should know the prospects market place before you tip up and waste his time.

Instead, you might want to ask about market conditions versus particularly strong competitors within the buyer’s space, new market advanced and the implications to the buyer’s organisation, legislative changes because this is an easier way to get the prospect to give you all the information you need…before you deliver your disruptive position.

Diagnoses before analysis just makes you yesterdays sales has been.

B2B Sales Questions to Avoid:3

Tell me about your competitors

You must know who their competitors are and how the war is being waged then you really need to think about how much value the buyer is getting from talking to you.

Unlike a few decades ago when a buyer expected you to know not some much about his business, industry and sector, that’s not the case anymore. The sales person is not the one needing educations.

Buyers, and wait for this, expect to be educated, informed and entertained by the sales professional.

Summary:B2B Sales Questions to Avoid

Selling has changed.

Sales people are catching up…or trying to.

Get rid of with old sales techniques, tired sales scripts, dated sales pitches so that your buyers miss all the value they could gain from you.

Happy Selling

Carol

If you’re currently reviewing your sales training or sales coaching needs and would like to discuss how to improve your sales results contact Carol on 0779 002 1885 or email carol@mortonkyle.com

Likewise, if you know your sales function has huge sales potential that’s not being fully used. Or you’d like to improve sales performance but just don’t know where to start, or if you’d need to health check your sales function, then take a look at or Sales Insights Service 

Free Sales and Business Development Insights.

Sales and business development insights into your inbox every Wednesday. Great for team meetings, sales training sessions and daily huddles – register here – totally free – The Advanced Business Achiever

When Is A Sales Person Not Really A Sales Person?

When Is A Sales Person Not Really A Sales Person?

When they can’t deal with sales fails from buyers!

There are some sales fails you can’t avoid.

Your buyer gets whisked away by an alien space ship and is never heard from again.

The prospect wins the lottery 2 days before he was due to send you the purchase order and he’s now only contactable via his broker.

Or even worse, your sales prospect has found a new religion and is giving up the rat race…and to send you the purchase order he promised would cloud his karma for years…

We’ve all been there!

Sales Fails Happen

And most of them are avoidable.

They just need a bit of backbone.

A dose of gumption.

Some carefully prepared responses.

An ambition not to be messed around or have you time wasted, and not to be taken for a ride.

A voice!

And guess what…no sales person ever died from having any of these

Unlike the many sales careers which have died as a result of not invoking the above.

So, which is it to be?

Do You Deserve the Job Title Sales Person?

Because if you’re falling for any of the prospect lines below then I’m afraid the computer says NO!

Let’s test it out.

Great sales people, professional sales people just don’t tolerate the sales fails…

  1. Send me some information
  2. Call me back on Friday
  3. I need to discuss this with my partner
  4. I have to get three quotes
  5. We’ll buy in two months time, the time is not right now
  6. We don’t have the budget now
  7. We’ve bigger things to sort out now, so we like your product/service, but the time is not right
  8. We like your competitors product better, so we’re going with them
  9. We’ll stay with our current supplier, thanks for all your help and work to date
  10. What discount can I get?

So, are you falling foul to these sales fails?

Hearing these sales lines from your prospects and saying ‘ok, talk soon’, putting the phone down, updating your CRM with the same shoddy sales lines and moving on to the next call?

Are you?

Wake Up. These Sales Fails Are Killing You!

Do you even know how much money you are leaving on the table.

How many ripe sales prospects you’re leaving there for your competitors to pick up, just because they might be a bit more sales savvy that you?

Even worse, you’re burning sales leads.

And even worse than that, you’re wasting time.

That’s the killer trifecta in sales – Time, Money and Opportunities. All going up in smoke because you won’t, can’t don’t care enough to push back.

What the hell kind of sales person are you?

Wow, way to go, broke, time poor and scrambling for sales leads.

Sucks to be you!

Sales opportunities trickling through your fingers…

Stop It. Now. No More Sales Fails

Join us for one day and discover how to consistently handle all potential sales fails.

Discover how to flip the sales fails that are now costing you time, money, opportunities, respect, career advancement and critically strangling your earning potential.

This is for all sales guys who are tired of being messed about by sales prospects and buyers.

Are you ready to say goodbye to mediocre selling?

You can also sign up for our weekly sales and business developments newsletter – The Advanced Business Acheiver

You can also check out our self study sales improvement package – TurboCharged Sales

Happy Selling

Carol

0779 002 1885

carol@mortonkyle.com

Join is The Sales Improvement Workshop and discover how to deal with the sales fails that are crippling your sales potential.

And, just  in case you do get to the stage where you’re sending out sales quotes and then your buyer disappears (yes, yet another one of those sales fails) – check this out What To Do To Stop Your Buyer Going AWOL – Following Up Sales Quotes

 

 

Cold Calling Techniques – So Your Buyers Love You

Cold Calling Techniques – So Your Buyers Love You

Cold Calling Techniques? Really, but I get most of my business from inbound leads, so then why do I need to do cold calling?

And that’s a fair question.

But at some point you’ll need to move that nurtured lead out of the social media play ground, so you can move it on to your sales forecast via your sales pipeline, so he can eventually make friends with your accounts team.

Or, maybe you’ve spotted a firm you’d really love to work with? The fastest way to cut through the noise is to pick up the phone and get chatting.

You might have read about cold calling is dead? That’s the message from by people who are bad at it. Ignore them.

It’s still the number one skill you need in sales if you want to make things happen. Fast.

Especially if you’re looking for an injection of high quality and qualified sales opportunities into the sales pipeline.

Listen, I’ve audited sales functions, in firms that have questionable futures. Lack of new business, closely followed by low sales hunting focus, will kill any business.

Don’t let it kills yours.

Roughly translated, if you’re waiting for your email to ping, your tweet to drive business to your sales pipeline. Your LinkedIn profile to set the world alight. Or your business page to deliver enough business for your firm to consistently grow, alternatively you think existing customers will feed you enough business, well, then you really need to read this…

Cold Calling Techniques For Self Starters

Well, cold calling has changed, but the name hasn’t! Cold calling, and cold calling techniques have definitely grown up as the sales and marketing spheres have merged, so what does that look like now?

Research is Key!

No one needs to be calling a cold prospect any more. It’s the fastest and easiest way to tell the sales prospect that you’re a lazy sales person…

Cold Calling Technique 1: Research all of your prospects and their firms.

Numbers Don’t Matter. Contacts Do!

5 full blown sales conversations per day with a business, the decision maker, the referrer or the influencer will trump 20 calls with low rank juniors who try to convince you they’re the decision maker.

That’s where your research comes in to play…you won’t be easily fooled or distracted and you’ll not be filling your sales pipeline with wanna bees!

But what’s even better?

10 full blown sales conversations!

Cold Calling Technique 2: Don’t confuse an increase in call quality with a decrease in call quantity…do both to be really sales smart.

Quality Matters. A lot.

Stop calling firms where you can see no fit. So, it seems we’re back to research again, BUT, research companies where there is a fit and discard others. Reflect on some of your best customers, are they in a particular niche, sector, industry, location? Are there more firms out there in the same sector, who could possibly use your services?

Cold Calling Technique 3: Always be researching, looking for niches, scanning the industry press, awards pages, news…and try to do it outside of core selling time.

When reviewing your cold calling techniques, you’ll also need to consider the following:

The prospect is expecting to speak with an expert advisor…someone who knows their business, is curious, is able to respectfully disrupt the prospects current thinking, potentially solve a quantifiable business problem using a solution with a robust ROI

The prospect is expecting you to listen to him. Not broadcast. Ask intelligent questions and assess the common ground and value in continuing the conversation in more depth.

Cold calls have a bad rep…with everyone, so get cute about negotiating gatekeepers or even better, avoiding them all together. Use your networks to facilitate worthwhile introduction and warm ‘cold’ calls.

Don’t waste time, because unless you can get the gist of your value to this prospect across in 20 seconds then you’ll likely be on very shaky ground. Creating value fast is critical. Have you got your super fine tuned intro so you’re not the bumbling idiot asking the prospect if they had a great weekend?

Cold Call Techniques – Your Mind Set

Your mid set is critical to your success, so

Welcome the Rejection

Do this because the faster you get to no, the faster you can start to unpack the prospects thinking. Most prospects will say no at least three times before they say yes. And that’s ok, but only as long as you continue after the first no.

Influence and Persuasion

This is no longer about what you say about yourself. It’s about what everyone else is saying about you. Make sure you can name drop, reference and refer to your experience in the industry in a relevant problem solving capacity

Peaks and troughs in your sales performance?

This is a sign that at some point your got comfortable. A sign you didn’t keep up with the research and cold calling, new business development. Maybe you got busy. Perhaps you earned a good bonus. Maybe you lost your cold calling mojo…depending on your sales cycle, this will hurt you. If you want solid stable sales performance then keep up with the research, and with the cold calling and the pipeline filling, because there are no short cuts.

Keep away from the negative people in your sales team.

This is you, living the life you want. Listen to the losers, the moaners and see what that does for you sales mojo.

To set your cold calling, new business efforts on fire, come and join us The Sales Improvement Workshop – run as an open course or in your business as a bespoke course.

You can also book your Free Sales Health Check

Alternatively if you’re looking for a focused new business development b2b sales training course to embed into you business check out TurboCharged Sales.

You can also sign up for our free weekly sales training, straight into your inbox, keep ahead of what your competitors are doing, remain current with whats’s new in cold calling techniques, claim your free subscription to The Advanced Business Achiever 

Happy Selling

Carol

carol@mortonkyle.com

0779 002 1885

Anyone Seen My Buyer?

Anyone Seen My Buyer?

Chasing sales quotes, that all important following up the sales quote, now let me ask you this: how much of your very valuable time do you waste chasing sales quotes? 

How much does it wind you up that you even have to chase sales prospects to place the order once you’ve done all the hard work?

Why do buyers make sales follow up so hard for you?

Once you’ve gone though the whole sales cycle.

When you know the sales prospect has a reason to buy from you.

When you’ve done a benefits analysis.

Presented the Return on Investment for them.

Then they disappear.

No response to your sales follow up…

Gone.

Straight off the face of the earth.

Plus, your sales forecast now looks like fiction. Better yet, your sales manager is looking at you like your desk belongs to someone else, or will do shortly!

All because the buyer didn’t play ball when you followed up your sales quote.

We’ve all been there.

It’s a reality with a real pain point for lots of sales people at some point in their career.

Following up the sales quote should be the easy bit…right?

Nope. Think again!

Consider this:

What percentage of your sales pipeline and your sales forecast just disappear into the sales black hole every month, or every quarter?

How many good solid deals sales orders you thought were nailed on,  actually just fail to make contact with you when it comes to signing and getting the order form back to you?

And how much time, and how many calls do you make chasing deals you know you should get, if only the buyer would do their bit as agreed?

And what would it mean to you to be able to get rid of this problem once and for all?

Curious?

Read on, because chasing sales quotes should be the rarity not the norm. So if you do find yourself being ghosted by your buyer when chasing sales quotes, then something needs to change.

Fast.

Chasing Sales Quotes: The Truth About Following Up the Sales Quote.

It’s a job you have to do. Chasing the sales paperwork is part of that job, but really, should you need all those phone calls, the emails, the conversations with their secretary?

But you console yourself because this is the final sales push, you simply have to do it because it’s the last thing you need to do before you get the order.

And, its a quick call. How much trouble is it to place a quick call to follow up that sales quote?

You’ve done all the hard work, you just need to clear the paper work and get the signature.

Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah…..

But you know what?

I hate it.

I hate it when a sales person tells me they’ve sent the quote and will chase tomorrow.

Even more, I hate it because at that point I know (and the sales person knows) that the buyer might just go AWOL.

And that the best follow up to the best sales quote might still come to nothing.

It happens.

Now, ideally, you’d have closed on the day (making the sales follow up redundant), got the order form signed, shaken hands and just scanned a copy to the buyer for their files. That’s how it should be done.

But, sometimes that’s just not possible.

So the buyer has a chance to disappear!

All you hard work hanging there…and you’re still chasing sales quotes, getting zero response.

It’s Not Always Bad News…

No, of course not. Some sales prospects do really get abducted by aliens. Others find a new religion. Some win the lottery and some even (I know this is tough to hear) will go with another provider…

But the truth is the disappearing buyer is such a pain because it’s cost so much to get the buyer to that stage of quoting.

You see, the buyer is bailing at the wrong end of the sales funnel. The expensive end!

By the time the sales prospect is at this stage in the sales cycle they have cost you a small fortune, plus lost time and depending on your average sales order value and the duration of your sales cycle, they may also have cost you an  unidentifiable sum in terms of opportunity costs…

It’s a nightmare.

The skill – to save time, sanity, money is to get the buyer to bail early on, so if you are following up sales quotes then you know your dealing with serious buyers, professional buyers who are on the same page as you, respectful of your time and efforts.

The second nugget…is give yourself the choice to decide the sales prospect is got of good character, likely to disappear, and attune your sales actions accordingly.

And make these decisions early.

The earlier the better.

Right at the beginning of the sales process ideally.

That way, you’ll know, that by the time you have the buyer at the chasing sales quotes stage, that you are actually both on the same page.

And you won’t need to do any chasing at all!

How to Avoid Having to Chase Sales Quotes EVER!

It’s simple.

Just put yourself in a position where you don’t need to be chasing sales quotes. Just stop it!

Check this out. It’s our Sales Improvement Workshop – How To Sell a No-Brainer – How High Performing Sales Teams Close More Sales

Because it’s the fastest way to discover how to avoid putting yourself in a situation where the buyer can give you the runaround. Ever again!

And listen up because this is a key area where sales people create their own living hell.

Stuck in a loop of following up sales quotes, chasing sales prospects who are avoiding you, distracting you from filling your sales pipeline, progressing good prospects through your sales funnel.

And, you can avoid this pitfall so easily, just by giving yourself sales information and choice.

For example, some sales people, not you obviously,  take sales prospects through the whole sales process, investing heaps of time, money and wisdom, when the prospect REALLY should have been rejected at the beginning of the sales process.

Yep, some sales people don’t ask the tough questions at the beginning of the sales process. The tough but fair questions that would define the QUALITY of the sales prospect.

For some reason, they feels it’s ok to load all the hard sales graft until the end of the sales process…crazy! Don’t put all your focus on having a great sales quote follow up process right at the end of the interaction.

Qualify that sales prospect in or out the sales funnel. Right at the very start of the sales process. Before it’s too late.

Don’t be one of those hit and run sales people who don’t use BANT as often, diligently, effectively as they should.

Because you know what?

Following up sales quotes is high risk. It costs lots of money. And it’s not always successful.

AND a serious buyer is expecting you to ask those questions in BANT!

As well as many other information gathering and sales profiling questions.

And you lose heaps of credibility with the sales prospect when you DON’T ask those questions.

If you’re not asking those qualifying sales questions of the prospect, you’re telling him you’re not serious about your role, so you’ve given him permission to not be serious either!

Think about that. You’ve given the prospect permission to yank your chain and mess you about!

You’ve given him permission to ignore you when your following up the sales quote.

Why would you do that?

At the very minimum, the absolute minimum, you should use BANT.

Sales people who don’t BANT, or they BANT weakly, which means just checking the prospect has a pulse! (for more details on BANT hit this link – More About BANT), typically complain the most about their buyers going AWOL during the sales process.

Sales people are masters of their own fortune…if only they chose to exercise that right! And that doesn’t mean chasing sales prospects who don’t think you even deserve a response!

Look, even when some sales people that do BANT, uncovering a less than perfect prospect, they will often put up with less than perfect answers because they fear what will happen if they get stringent with the sales criteria they use….oh no, an empty sales pipeline!!!

Nightmare.

But have some self respect here. Protect you, your time, resources, skills.

So, instead of a night mare instead I prefer to look on it as a blessing, because now  we know that, we all focus our time and attention on Perfect Prospects and leave our competitors to pick up the ‘almost fits’.

Let the competition take the costly risky prospects and try and make them fit.

But some sales people see being choosy about who they sell to as bad news.

I don’t, I just see it as now I have free resource to invest in worthy prospects…

In a nutshell…if your prospect is going AWOL after you’ve done the hard work, then the buyer was never really a buyer. The prospect was never really serious about buying. And, all you’ve done is educate him.

Do you get paid for being an advice line? Is that how you earn your sales bonus?

You made a bad prospect call and you’ve wasted your time…and you won’t get bonus.

What more incentive do you need to change your mode of operation and get wise to the time wasters in your sales funnel.

Oh, and your sales pipeline is falling apart around your ears (sound familiar?) Well, it just adds insult to injury.

Sales Winner Don’t Waste Time Chasing Sales Quotes

Sales Winners close hard on the day and then leave it.

When sales winners close hard, they know that the buyer is onside and is serious about buying.

Plus, when sales winners close hard, their buyer is expecting them to close hard. The buyer is serious too, he expects the sales person to be the same.

Chasing sales quotes excessively is for losers. Just remember that.

Why would you want to sales stalk a prospect who had no interest in engaging with you?

Are you a Sad Sales Stalker?

Sales Winners read the signs and move on.

But you can only do that if you’ve closed hard all along the sales process.

Following up each of your prospect contacts with some level of mutual advancement towards the logical conclusion. An order.

Because a sales close doesn’t happen at the end of the sales process.

Closing a sale happens all through the sales process – from the first interaction and in every interaction. Moving commitment on at every step, sales advancement at it’s best (as opposed to ‘just touching base’)

You can only do a hard close if you’ve made one unshakable decision. You’ve decided and committed to qualify at every stage of the sales process.

This alone means you’ll never be left with handfuls of sales quotes to follow up.

Have you been closing hard all through the sales process?

Do you close at each stage so that the buyer understands what you’re doing?

Chasing Sales Quotes and Winning

This process of continual qualification relies on you knowing the following very early on in the sales process

  • That your buyer is the sign off guy and not the influencer/referrer
  • Your Buyer will line up the budget he needs to buy from you
  • The buyer is suffering from a problem you can solve, and therefore has a big need
  • That you have the skills and backup to solve this problem better than anyone else that the buyer is talking to
  • That the buyer’s need is sufficiently painful for him to invest money in having you provide a solid solution
  • Where they need to sort a solution within a predicted time span because the cost of not doing this would cause even more pain and increased financial cost
  • That they have an ideal time frame for solving the problem, and satisfying the need
  • When they have shared the decision making process with you
  • They’ve shared the buying criteria with you
  • So that you understand the stakeholders involved, their agendas, the potential competitors, and any external factors that could disrupt the buying process
  • Where you understand the criteria your solution will be judged against…and by whom, and when
  • That you understand what event/s could disrupt the buying/decision making process

Here’s a sobering thought…if your buyer is not prepared to share this information with you, then you’ve got yourself a tyre kicker. You deserve everything you get if you pursue the sale…feel free to wrap up as much wasted time as you like in following up worthless sales quotes

If you haven’t got the bottle to ask the tough questions…again, you will suffer the consequences of that course of action, so see above

Disappearing Buyers Go AWOL For a Reason

Don’t let the reason your buyer goes AWOL when you’re chasing the quote be because they used your proposal to batter down the quote from their incumbent.

Or they used you to yank their current supplier back into line

Maybe, they just wanted to pick your brain.

Or maybe the buyer wanted to pass your quote to a competitor.

Maybe even worse, just thought it might be interesting for you to pull together all the info they needed to inform the board regarding what solutions are out there…

Now if you fell for any of those buyer tricks – you really are a mug.

Get yourself booked on How to Sell – How High Performing Sales Team Close Business

If you’re investing in the buyer and the buying/selling process, make sure it’s not all one sided and you’ll never need to chase a sales quote ever again.

Happy Selling

Carol

0779 002 1885

carol@mortonkyle.com

P.S. you can subscribe to our free Advanced Business Achiever. You’ll get weekly sales and business development insights directly into your inbox (all SPAM free). It’s great for sales coaching, sales mentoring and sales training, daily briefings. Just try it out, just hit the link, there is an unsubscribe button if it’s not for you…

P.P.S. if you’re looking for sales training or sales support to increase your sales team results – call for a confidential chat…

And if you really want to increase your sales results – check out TurboCharged Sales and I know chasing sales quotes won’t be an issue for you…

Final chance – Don’t Be a Creepy Sales Stalker … 

Instead spend your time chasing sales quotes that are worth it, and get rid of following up sales quotes just because you didn’t qualify hard and fast at the beginning of the sales cycle.

Why Sales BANT is Not Enough

Why Sales BANT is Not Enough

What is Sales BANT?

BANT is covered in almost every article on how to close good quality sales, appointments, demonstrations, meetings.

For those that haven’t come across it before here’s the basic premise – the person you’re engaging in the sales process needs to be qualified against the following profile

Budget – are they the budget holder? Is the budget available for this purchase providing the solution satisfied the need?

Authority – does this person have the authority to make the decision to buy? r are they a referrer, or person of influence?

Need – is there a need for what you are selling? Has this need been sufficiently quantified as being big enough to justify an investment

Timing – has the timing been agreed? Providing the solution is suitable to satisfy the need, has the sign date been agreed?

A typical BANT usage might be something like this…

Ok, Mr Buyer, just so I get some insight into how we’ll proceed can I just ask you, have you already got budget signed off for this purchase or does it need to go to the board? (Budget)

Great, and will it be your decision alone as to buy from me, or will you be making broader recommendations to the board? (Authoity)

Ok, understand, we’ve agreed that our solution can deliver what you need in terms of X, Y, Z, we agreed those are the critical and crucial criteria for you going ahead, and that our solution will alleviate the issues we’ve identified in X, Y, Z? (Need)

Excellent, and further to (the next action) you’ll be able to send the purchase order number across so we can get delivery for the week after next. (Timing)

Excellent thank you.

Obviously, this is a top line BANT summary. I encourage sales professionals to use BANT all though the sales process.

We cover it in more detail in all of our sales training courses and sales coaching programs. You can contact me for more details on carol@mortonkyle.complus it’s a subject we regularly reference in The Advanced Business Achiever – just hit the link for your free copy

Magnify the Power of Sales BANT

BANT is only part of the story. It’s an important part. However, on it’s own the power of BANT is very restricted, it’s a shout into the wilderness. It’s one hand clapping.

Very simply, BANT tells you that you are in the right position(or not) and you’re talking to the right person (or not) and you have some steer on the buying/decision making process. This is really important when you’re chasing quotes, really important. Ask anyone who has been randomly chasing the prospect who disappears once the quote has been sent. Hit this link  Anyone Seen My Buyer? – if you want to have buyers chasing you to buy from you

So how do you really amp the power of BANT?

You do this…

You combine BANT with Sales ROI (for more details on Sales ROI just hit this link to discover how High Performing Sales people work Sales ROI)

How to Combine Sales BANT and Sales ROI

Concentrating just on the Needs section in BANT.

Need is the most powerful motivator for change. Whether that’s to amend behaviours, persuade someone to buy a product/service or simply make different choices…

Those decisions are all driven by need. The bigger the need, the faster, easier, more compliant the buyer will be during the buying process

So, if you can create a powerful enough need with your buyer, then you have a huge motivator to use with your buyer to help them select to take action. To take action fast. That makes a big difference, especially if you’re working in a highly competitive space (and who isn’t working in a competitive market?)

8 Key Ways to Increase the NEED Factor in BANT Using Sales ROI

  • Fully explore the current ‘pain’ points associated with the current solution
  • Explore what those pain points have cost the buyer in the past
  • Extrapolate, realistically, what those pain points could cost the buyer in the future if nothing changes (this is the cost of doing nothing)
  • Remember that the pain could be pain other than financial. It could be stress, loss of clients, brand damage, reputation, ill will among colleagues who have to pick up and solve the same problems again and again or failure to comply with authority etc
  • Once you’ve fully explored the past and future costs, add them together…that can be quite the motivator in itself!!
  • Next, look at some blue sky thinking. Note – you’d be totally weakening your NEED factor if you look at the blue sky scenario building before exploring the pain, since people will typically do more to escape pain than seek pleasure.
  • Knowing the Pain/Pleasure Principle, check out some what if questions…what would it mean to your business if you could do X? What would it mean if you never had to deal with that again? How would you feel if you could illuminate that issue all together? What would that mean to your bottom line? What would that mean to your work relations? Your client relations? Whatever is relevant…
  • Next, go back to the pain position and summarise the cost of doing nothing.

So, when you come to ask your Need based questions in BANT, they might sound something like this…

Ok, understand, we’ve agreed that our solution can deliver what you need in terms of increasing your brand reputation with your customers after some of the issues you’ve had before, will allow you to have total confidence in the promises you make to your customers, and will really improve the relationships in the warehouse and customer service teams since they won’t be taking as many complaint calls… we agreed those are the critical and crucial criteria for you going ahead, and that our solution will alleviate the issues we’ve identified in losing the X account at Xmillion per yr, losing part of the Y contract at Y million per yr and having the Z tender going back out to review? 

See how powerful that statement is now you’ve fully quantified the prospects position if they do nothing?

(As a separate aside, just consider how easy it is to chase a quote once you’ve identified this level of need!)

Why Does Using Sales ROI with BANT Help You?

Because using one without the other is just one hand clapping. You’re going through the motions but nothings really happening, compared to what could be happening!

If you’ve gone to the trouble of speaking with the key decision maker, then the next task is to motivate them to take action. BECAUSE motivated buyers take action, they take action quickly, and they see value (which helps you protect your margins)

Some people might call it persuasion, and that’s ok, but either way, think of it as making it easy for the prospect to say yes! Making it easy for the prospect to make a decision. Making it even easier for the prospect to make a fast decision (because that means your competitor can’t sneak in at that last minute!)

That way you’ll be creating a real no-brainer sales proposition…and let’s face it, who says no to the no-brainer proposition?

What’s Next?

Try it out.

You’ll wonder how you ever closed without it. You’ll also start to understand why some of your sales didn’t close when/how they should.

Happy Selling…enjoy!

Carol

0779 002 1885

carol@mortonkyle.com

P.S. If you want to get sales and business development insights into your inbox weekly. Stuff like this to help you with your sales pitch, maybe sales coaching, daily sales huddle or sales meetings. Sign up here for The Advanced Business Achiever – totally free (and SPAM free). Give it a try, you’ll definitely get some benefit. It’s a nice little fast read digest of hints and tips to help improve sales results and sales performance…

P.P.S. Check out more Free Sales Improvement Guides here – free and instant downloads

 

 

 

Engaging the Perfect Prospect is the First Stage in Making a Profitable and Fast Sale

Engaging the Perfect Prospect is the First Stage in Making a Profitable and Fast Sale

Engaging the perfect prospect right at the beginning of the sales process is one of the most fundamentally overlooked elements of a successful sales process which concludes in an order.

I see too many new business development efforts, lead generation research and sales forecasts fall part because of poor initial sales qualification. This means 4 key things:

None of which are good if you’re looking for predictable sales results

Engaging the Perfect Prospect – Prospect Qualification is Key

To get some insight into why – check out Why Sales BANT is Not Enough and understand what good, ongoing, results orientated sales qualification looks like.

Because here’s the truth, when you get to the point of closing a well qualified prospect, it’s easy. The whole process is easy.

Selling to Your Prospect Shouldn’t Be Hard Work…

And if it is you really need to ask yourself why that is.

Now this may seem controversial, and maybe it applies to some business sectors more than others, but as someone who has been a sales person (and still is) and someone who has managed/coached/trained/developed thousands of sales people, then I believe that it’s not your job, or best use of your time to convert every single prospect you interact with.

Let me give you an example.

You’ve done your research, identified the key decision maker, understood their business, challenges, issues, pain and the implications of those.

Not wanting to be unprofessional, you’ve assessed the value they could derive from speaking with you.

You’ve dug around and feel there is key leverage there, definitely enough to warrant a good conversation.

In a nutshell, you’ve done your due diligence and now your ready to start engaging the ‘perfect prospect’ for your product…you know what value you bring to the table and are keen to understand the perfect prospect in more detail so see if the fit is as good as you think.

Now…

The Perfect Prospect is….Anything But Perfect.

In fact, your perfect prospect is closed minded, obstructive, blind to evidence, deaf to logic and totally head in the sand.

Now, you could say that’s his choice. And, you’d be right.

But in the paraphrased words of West Wing president Jed Bartlett…

Let Him Stand There in his Wrongness and be Wrong!

Because…You are not the idiot converter!

And, let’s face it, that degree of resistance is futile to fight against. You’d likely kill your spirit in trying.

Move on.

Avoid the world of pain associated with trying to convert the closed minded, those lacking vision, those without curiosity and those nursing an ego that will serve them as only egos can!

Because, your chances of getting a sales are dramatically reduced from the start, and the effort is rarely worth it.

Great prospects aren’t tough to do business with. They aren’t a walk in the park. But it won’t be a fight, or a battle of wills, a fight between egos.

Your perfect prospect doesn’t want to make your life a nightmare.

A perfect prospect wants to work with you. Engaging the perfect prospect might be challenging but it will always be productive.

There will be advancement during the conversations. Engaging the perfect prospect means will ask their tough questions, but they’ll also answer your tough questions.

There will be huge value in your discussions.

Mutual respect, and a win for both sides…

I Hereby Give You Permission

To walk away, no, to RUN away from the prospects who don’t see your value.

Invest in those prospects who value you, who value what you bring to the table.

Work with your perfect prospect and only your perfect prospect…because that’s where the rewards are. That’s where you’ll get a more than ample ROI on your sales efforts. You’ll save your time, your sanity and maybe your career.

Next Time You Think About Engaging with the Non Perfect Prospect….

Think about this. We all live in a Darwinian ecosystem. Just as spikes are a plant’s defense mechanism, then maybe a closed mind, ego and poor listening skills act in just the same way…

Either way, you’re worth more!

Happy Selling

Carol

carol@mortonkye.com

0779 002 1885

P.S. To receive free (and spam free!) weekly Sales and Business Development hints and tips directly into your inbox, register here for your free subscription to The Advanced Business Achiever.

If you’re looking for helping in finding and engaging the perfect prospect for your business then we have a range of training solutions to suit you, call for a chat 0779 002 1885

High Quality Sales Appointments | Fill Your Sales Diary with High Quality, Qualified Prospects

High Quality Sales Appointments | Fill Your Sales Diary with High Quality, Qualified Prospects

Sales Appointment Setting 

Sales appointment setting is where the magic starts – lots of high quality  and well qualified sales appointments means there is a steady stream of sales opportunities to convert into orders and invoices.

A full diary means plenty of opportunities, and is a key leading factor in predicting sales success.

A half empty sales diary is just that little bit more stressful. In fact, I’d take it as a flashing red light that something needs to change.

But, consistently filling the sales diary full of high quality, well qualified sales opportunities on a regular basis is a major challenge for many sales teams.

Some sales teams can fill the diary ok, but the quality is so-so.

Often sales teams suffer from high cancellation rates.

And some sales people just struggle to hit the that critical mass of quantity of appointments they really need for a great sales pipeline.

So, whatever kind of sales appointment setting nightmare you’re suffering from, help is here, because in just 1 day I can show you how to really boost the quality and quantity of sales appointments in your sales diary.

Because – the truth is – a hot sales diary means a productive sales pipeline….means more invoices!

High Performance Sales Appointment Setting – Creating High Quality Sales Opportunities

As an appointment setter/business generator in any organisation it all starts with you.

You open the door, you qualify the prospect, you assess their potential value, you tailor your activity to give a healthy mix of long term prospects and short term wins, you push over walls and barriers to set up the opportunities.

This  sales appointment course is ideal for you if you are looking for ways to increase your effectiveness by adopting simple methodologies that will yield an increased conversion rate of quality opportunities and fewer cancellations.

Disocver how you can get more from your contacts, reaching higher level decision maker contacts, with potentially higher level requirements, using enhanced telephone profiling and needs driven questioning.

Using these developed sales appointment setting skills you’ll effectively and efficiently boost your pipeline with good quality prospects. Delivering better quality appointments and more of them.

What’s Covered?

You’ll develop your thinking around:

  • The Profile of a Perfect Prospect
  • The Psychology of Buying
  • Pre-Call Preparation to Lower Defences
  • Creating Confidence, Credibility and Curiosity
  • What Are You Selling?
  • What Are They Buying?
  • Getting to Yes
  • How to Qualify the Prospect in Call
  • Becoming an Industry Consultant
  • 6 Stages of Qualification
  • 6 Key Objection Handling Techniques
  • Trial Closing and Testing Commitment
  • Minimising Cancellations

Sales Appointment Setting – Course Outcomes

At the end of the course you can go back to your desk focused, motivated and with the skill set to book high quality appointments whenever you want.

You’ll be able to:

  • Negotiate gatekeepers professionally.
  • Present yourself as an industry consultant and not ‘just the appointment setter’.
  • Engage in a well constructed conversation rather than a sales pitch.
  • Quickly establish the needs of the buyer.
  • Fine tune your sales message depending on the buyers needs.
  • Test their commitment to addressing their needs.
  • Use trial closes to build commitment.
  • Identify and create buying signals to validate commitment on key criteria.
  • Gain referrals, even when no appointment is made.
  • Successfully remove or minimise any objections.
  • Use the weaknesses of the competition to capitalise on your company strengths.
  • Minimise no shows.
  • Fill the pipeline with good quality sales opportunities.
Sales Appointment Setting Training – Course Duration

Fully bespoke to your business, your current hurdles and your current objections.

This is the fastest way to improve your sales appointment setting and see an increase in the high quality sales opportunities dropping into the sales pipeline.

Sales Appointment Setting – Fees

This program is delivered on an in house, totally bespoke basis – call to check availability and rates.

You can also check this out – Discover How to Generate High Quality Sales Appointments and to Fill Your Sales Diary.  It’s a very quick read guide to accelerate your sales appointment setting and improve both the quality and quantity of those all important sales leads.

Carol 

0779 002 1885 

carol@mortonkyle.com

P.S. to receive sales improvement and business development insights into your inbox every week which is perfect for sales training sessions, sales coaching and daily sales team briefs, then register here for your free subscription to the Advanced Business Achiever

AND…if you’re looking for an in house Sales Training and Sales Improvement course, then check out TurboCharged Sales

Why Your Buyer Turns Cold When You Start Selling…and what you can do about it.

Why Your Buyer Turns Cold When You Start Selling…and what you can do about it.

Business Development – Fly or Die?

There is no getting away from it, unless you are in a very specialist market, new business development and new business is the life blood of any business.

No matter how good your business is, if you’re relying on simply servicing existing customers then by definition your business may be exposed, over exposed some could say, to competitive forces.

So, for many, the skill the business displays in the field of new business development may fully dictate the value, growth, profit and market share of the business.

There is a clear and direct relationship.

Firms that are typically great at generating profitable new customers, generating new business, continuous new orders, and who can keep those customer happy and free from attack by competitors, by definition will enjoy greater business success.

So, if you or your business, are not getting the business results you want, need or feel you deserve, then take a look at the business development skills, focus and direction within the business.

10 Reasons Your Buyer Turns Cold When You Start Selling

Here are some of the reasons your business development efforts might be repelling buyers, instead of attracting them.

  1. You’re selling too hard, too soon, without fully understanding the buyers position.
  2. Your sales pitch is generic, lacking the nuanced detail required to convince the buyer you can deliver.
  3. The sales process and presentation you use is confusing, lacks flow, and/or is illogical, which just confuses the buyer.
  4. Your solution solves some of the buyers issues and concerns but not ALL of them.
  5. You don’t ask for the business, which means the buyer is again left confused.
  6. When the buyer asks a question, you act like it’s an objection and get defensive.
  7. You talk too much, and therefore don’t listen to what the buyer wants, simply assuming you know what he wants.
  8. You lack discretion
  9. Your sales pitch is neither educational, entertaining nor challenging, and so the buyer is no better off for talking with you
  10. You spend your pitch defending your firms position against competitors instead of detailing your expertise in a specific niche

Any one of the above can switch your buyer from hot to cold very quickly, how about if your buyer experiences a whole handful? Imagine the impact then.

Don’t Be a Business Development Disaster

  1. Take time to get to know your buyer, do your research
  2. Asking good quality questions is one of the key ways to make sure you and the buyer are on the same page…and stay there
  3. Take the buyer of a journey of exploration, challenges and insights – be a sales person of value
  4. Make sure you don’t start selling until you know all of the issues, concerns, challenges, buying stages, decision makers, budget, timescales and politics…
  5. Alway ask for the business. Always, even if it’s only an in principal yes. Likewise always ask for commitment from the buyer for the next stage
  6. Treat all questions, objections and comments as if the buyer is asking you to help him understand. This changes your mind set, your language, your attitude, your body language and your manner. From no on there are no such things as objections, only statements that seek clarity
  7. You talk for no more than 20%, the buyer talks for at least 80%
  8. If you are going to name drop, be very very careful about the details you disclose…
  9. Be an expert in your industry and be an expert in what your solution can do for your buyer, in his industry to solve his specific problem
  10. It’s your job to create such a pitch that your buyer sees you and your firm as a highly valuable partner/asset and one without competition. Acting to defend your position against competitors tells the buyer you’re scared

Business Development Summary

  • Don’t be just like every sales person that knocks on the buyer’s door.
  • Find a sales process that works for you and work it.
  • Be an expert in your field.
  • Understand that every single customer and buyer is different
What Next?

There is a whole world of skill in being a great business development expert.

You’ll find success comes easy, and the good news is, you only need to learn the skills once.

If you’re based in Sheffield or Yorkshire, then check this out – The Sales Improvement Workshop.

If you’d like your own specifically tailored sales improvement workshop – hit the link Fixed Price Sales Training

For a confidential chat about how to unlock the sales potential within your sales team, the contact details are below, call or email to book your confidential chat

Happy Selling

Carol

carol@mortonkyle.com, 0779 002 1885

p.s. if you’re serious about boosting your business development efforts then join us here. Totally free, no spam and you’ll get sales and business development insights straight into your inbox. Every week. Just hit the link The Advanced Business Achiever

Ready commit to being the ultimate sales and business development professional? Check this out TurboCharged Sales – the business development program for ambitious B2B sales professionals.

We Want Fully Qualified Sales Data!

We Want Fully Qualified Sales Data!

We Want Fully Qualified Sales Data!

‘If I’d had fully qualified sales data I’d have hit my sales target!!’

Well if this isn’t the battle cry of every sales team I’ve ever worked with then I don’t know what is.

It’s sales review time, whether that’s weekly, monthly or perhaps even daily in some instances and you, as sales leader, get the ream of typical excuses.

How often do you hear that it’s not the sales persons fault the numbers aren’t great….?

That they could have hit target if only….they had enough good quality sales data, more leads, fuller sales pipeline, marketing had been more supportive…blah, blah, blah

You’ve heard them all haven’t you?

But you don’t have to any more, because this is one problem you really can solve.

And that matters. A lot.

You and I know it’s rarely just a lack of fully qualified sales data that hurts the sales figures.

There is often a dash of sub standard activity, some lack of focus, maybe a bit of boredom and often a good spoonful of being out sold…

So when you do come across a problem – like the lack of fully qualified sales data and sales leads – and the solution then shouldn’t you take a look?

Is Fully Qualified Sales Data Really Available For My Sales Team?

Yes. Available for you today.

Hot leads? Yes

Data that shows you who is interested, what they are interested in, and their contact details.

Leads qualified to such a level that you know exactly what your pitch should be when you pick up the phone…

So, let me ask you, would that increase your sales conversion or not?

It’s THAT Easy to Get Fully Qualified Sales Data?

Discover more here and see for yourself just how easy it is to switch on this source of fully qualified sales data…

And if you think there is anything else out there that gives you a fraction of this much detail, then think again.

I know, with this kind of sales intelligence your sales team will hit sales targets faster. Faster and with higher conversions, and your ROI will be huge.

Just check it out. Ask for a demo to see how you can get the fully qualified sales data your sales team are looking for.

How Much Does Fully Qualified Sales Data Really Cost?

No where near what you think! I guarantee.

Just check it out – here’s the link – show me how to make my sales team happy

What Next?

Be prepared to be impressed.

I’ve used this system. Seen other sales teams use this system. I’ve seen how powerful it can be in supporting proactive and professional B2B sales functions.

I don’t recommend services or products lightly, but I’m recommending that this is a must for any business seeking a strong competitive edge in their market place, especially where speed is key.

You’ll also see huge benefits if you’re operating in a long sales cycle, a tender process or even the dreaded beauty parades that buyers like to run…

Information and insight give you competitive edge with the right people, when it matters, where it matters.

And…

If you need help closing those deals once the hot data hits you sales team. Check out our fixed cost sales training packages 

Happy Selling

Carol

carol@mortonkyle.com

0779 002 1885