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Greg Nanigian and Associates, Inc. | Braintree, MA

Sales Training

In our most recent blogs, we’ve been reviewing Negative Reverse Selling and how it is very effective in creating great bonding and rapport with sales prospects. Negative Reverse Selling is a way of saying and doing the opposite of what the prospect expects from a salesperson, disarming them and creating trust with them. One of its more compelling techniques is called strip-lining, a method of using reverse questions to get the prospect talking, and you keep "throwing more line and let them swim". However, you need to do this step right or it could backfire on you. When you do it correctly, prospects feel like they are...

It’s been over thirty years since David Sandler introduced the concept of “pain” as the core element of a selling methodology—the Sandler Selling System®. Pain represented the prospect’s collective reasons to buy a product or service. Sandler chose the term not only for its connotation physical discomfort, emotional distress, or something troublesome—but also for its relationship to one’s motivation to take action. Psychologists note that people take action to either seek pleasure or avoid pain. Of the two, they suggest that avoiding pain is the bigger motivator.

Have you been tempted to offer discounted prices or fees in an attempt to win the business? Have prospects asked for discounts, promising to give you the business if the discounts are granted?

Logic suggests that “more prospects” will lead to more sales. While that may be true for some salespeople, for many others, “more prospects” actually leads to fewer sales. “Prospects” is undeniably the essential element in the sales process. However, the quality of the prospects and the pattern of interaction with them after the initial contact will determine if the sales process leads to closed sales…or closed files (and fewer sales). What accounts for the difference?

Scheduling appointments with prospects is hard work. You not only have to arm-wrestle with gatekeepers, but then you have to contend with voice-mail. But eventually, whether by sheer persistence or a little luck, you get through to the intended prospects and you schedule appointments. All of those efforts, however, are wasted if you’re not properly prepared for those appointments.

Sales is a profession where, on a daily basis, we deal with adversity or it “deals with us”. A salesperson’s role is always about making changes. Yet Sales can be extremely rewarding, profitable and gratifying, but that does depend on how well the salesperson deals with the adversities of sales. So, here are a few suggestions on how to alleviate, deal with or eliminate the stresses that can be caused by the adversities of sales.

You have an inventory to take, a phone call to make, and a report to write. But instead of diving in and getting the tasks completed, you put them off. “I’ll get to them soon,” you tell yourself. But your definition of “soon” and Webster’s definition have little in common.

Not all “fine-tuning” activities are driven by procrastination. Some people have a need for perfection. They’re not ready to take action until everything is perfect…every contingency has been identified…every twist and turn predicted and appropriate actions planned. They put off implementation until everything is perfect. But it never is. So, the planning continues and the “doing” never begins.

Whether you are a small business owner or sales manager, you should take advantage of sales coaching. Once a salesperson understands that sales coaching can help them to make more money and have more fun, it's inevitable that they'll want to introduce their sales manager or sales trainer to the concept, too.

While people can change and grow in skills, they tend to be uncomfortable with both. So, what do you do about helping people to work through the discomfort that comes with change for personal growth and skills development? Here are four steps that can help you, whether you are introducing a new training program, application software, company policy or compensation plan.

Ask salespeople to list their least favorite selling activities, and you can count on “prospecting” being at the top of the list. And, the least favorite of all prospecting activities is unquestionably making cold calls.