Selling in the existing touch times is as important as it is difficult. Especially in B2B sales, where cold calling some very busy members of the C-suite often gets the seller no real response. Carving a career in B2B sales is not just about talking into a phone. It takes far more to achieve those projected sales figures, as well as progressive career chart.
People, in general are more receptive to those they know or can relate to and so it is vital for a sales person to build a relationship with the customer. It begins by putting a face to the name. An appointment to meet face to face can turn a potential buyer into a ‘hot prospect’ – someone who will contact you by themselves with a budget, looking to buy your product/service. This can be repeat sales or through a referral. Some crucial ways to achieve such positive responses are:
1) Quality Networking: Prudently, pick out about 5 to 10 key contacts. Get an appointment to meet them. Glean as much information as possible about the client. It isn’t just about selling a product or service but selling a value-added lifestyle that said product/service can offer the client. Sales representatives are a reflection of what the client will get from associating with the company and presenting oneself as a brand is important too. Putting your best foot forward, literally in this scenario is giving your clients that extra reason to call you and not some other sales person.
2) Referrals: Like any relationship, even a business one, needs careful nurturing. Keeping in touch fairly regularly helps built trust. If they trust you, they will happily refer you to others within their C-suite circle – both professional and personal contacts. Every new contact handled just as carefully will soon result in a solid B2B sales network. A solid network that translates into repeat sales as well as personal referrals by the contacts themselves is a huge boost to a career in B2B sales.
3) Public Speaking: Look into their eyes and talk. Invite them to join in with their views and questions. A free-flowing conversation will sell more than a sales pitch. The audience are the priority in this open dialogue because they are the ones you are selling to. Visual aids, slides, demonstration of the product – will help, but the crux of the matter is how well the speaker engages on a personal level with the audience.
4) Writing: Sales messages too are very important, therefore it helps to remember that the actual message shouldn’t be lost amidst jargon. Keeping the copy simple, to the point and in everyday polite language, almost like a conversation, will get more results. Respect the readers time. They need to get the message without having to resort to a dictionary. Specifying the benefits of the product rather than its features, again will sell more too.
5) Proactive content sharing: Having learnt about the client, in depth, it is easy to realise what kind of content would interest the client and designing it to suit their needs. Be it blog posts, white papers, newsletters, online forums or even through use of social media. Like any other marketing activity, content sharing too needs a strategic plan as well as consistent efforts in order for it to yield long term results.
For an exceptional career in B2B sales, it is the necessary to develop a personal connection and to build a cordial relationship with the customers, be it C-suite clientele or your own sales team.