Sales Tips for the Optimal Salesperson

This page is dedicated to helping you become the best salesperson you can be. These one minute sales tips will help make you more effective and earn more money. Each Tip is a single actionable nugget designed to move you toward effortless high performance … In short to become the Optimal Salesperson.

Best question to ask at a Networking Meeting

The best way to break the ice with a new contact at a networking meeting is to ask a question. But what question should you ask? It becomes obvious when you understand two facts. The first is that most people go to networking meetings to meet new people and they struggle with how to break the ice. The second fact you have to know is that most people are me-centered in their approach. That is, they come to the meeting hoping to tell their story to someone in hopes of attracting some interest. Knowing those two facts makes it is obvious that the best question to ask is “So George, what do you do?” When you ask them that gives your new contact a chance to talk about themselves, their favorite subject. You will have earned some gratitude from them and the new relationship is off to a good start. As you listen to them talk you can be listening for some pain that they might have and that will lead you to more questions and you will either quickly determine that they are worthwhile pursuing or not. And when it is your turn to talk, you can focus on the areas of need that they have exposed.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Kick start next year this month

The best time to kick start next year is December of this year. This month most salespeople are either struggling to hit their number for this year or coasting to the end of the year. Then the holidays hit, and the next thing they know it is January 2nd . Then they get started setting goals and trying to figure out how to hit this year’s number. Before they know it, February is here and 8.3% of the year and one third of the first quarter are gone. The best way to fast track next year is to get started now. Set your goals for next year and get yourself committed to achieving them. Develop your sales activity plan. Review your wins and losses from this year and compile your list of lessons learned and adjust your approach accordingly. If you do all of this before you shut it down for the holidays, you will be ready to jump right in when the calendar flips over and the new year starts. You can start making progress toward achieving your goals on January 2nd instead of February 1st. You will be way ahead of your competition and you will not be playing catch up all year. Make an early new year’s resolution “Next year starts NOW!”

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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You are what you believe you are

If you believe you can, or you believe you can’t … you are more than likely correct. To increase your chance of success, change your belief about what is possible, then do the work to achieve the goal. Here is a sample of beliefs you can change:
• Believe you can and should call on the CEO and you will be more likely to be successful when you do it
• Believe you are worth 25% more than you are currently charging, and you will get it when you ask for it
• Believe you can close bigger deals and you will act differently when bigger deals show up in your pipeline
• Believe you are worthy of bigger deals and more of them will come your way (you must look for them of course)
• Believe that people should trust you and they will (you must act in a trustworthy manner of course)
The list is endless, but you get the idea. There are physical limitations to this process ( you can’t believe your way to being 6 inches taller) but there are no emotional limitations.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Holidays are a great time to sell

“You can’t sell over the holidays.” “Nothing happens this time of year.” Etc. Etc., I hear this every year. It’s an excuse and a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you believe that this is true, you don’t work as hard and low and behold, nothing gets sold between Thanksgiving and Christmas. But I believe the opposite. People are nicer this time of year. Business people try to avoid travelling so they are at home for family events. There are many parties which are great networking events. But most of all it is your mindset that matters. So reset your beliefs and get out there and do the sales activity and follow your sales process and see what happens. At the worst you will set things up to get next year off to a great start.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Ask How

“How did this problem occur?” is a powerful question. It helps you get more context around the problem. It may give you clues as to what the solution is. It demonstrates that you know what you are taking about (actually not talking about). Likewise, the question “how do you make decisions?” gives great insight into the steps the prospect has to take to make a decision. Many salespeople ignore the all-important “how” questions and therefore miss a great opportunity to get the best information they can get. The added value of the question is that asking how something happened gets you more information and keeps you from talking for a while. It is very important to know what the problem is but knowing how it affects the organization or the person you are talking to is much more important. So don’t forget to ask “how” questions, it will keep you out of a lot of trouble.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Don’t overwhelm the prospect

Be careful of how much information you give the prospect. If they become overwhelmed, they will stop listening and find a quick way to disengage from the conversation. You need the prospect to feel comfortable during your call. An over-energetic personality can unnerve the prospect. Too much information will confuse them. Having too much experience, education or background in the industry can intimidate the prospect. Being unnerved, confused or intimidated are not comfortable feelings for the prospect and they will try to get out from under that feeling. Since you are the cause of that feeling, they will politely end the meeting or stop listening or try to put you on the defensive with lots of demands or tough questions. So the lesson for today is watch how much information you give out and look for signs that the prospect is being overwhelmed. If you sense that they are, then just back off.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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If you’re not sure ask

Ambiguity can kill a sale. The prospect doesn’t want to commit to something, so they say they are “leaning toward going forward” with the purchase. The salesperson “hears” that and assumes that the prospect will most likely buy in the next few days. She forecasts it as a sure thing in her pipeline. Management makes decisions assuming that the sale will come in. Then the prospect disappears or they “change their mind” and decide not to go forward. Everyone is upset. This could all be avoided if the salesperson had actually made sure of what the prospect’s decision was in the first place. “leaning toward doing something” is essentially meaningless. The salesperson should have recognized that “leaning” meant nothing and followed up with more questions like “what does leaning mean?”. Or “could you tell me why you wouldn’t do it?” Or, almost any other question to get the prospect to commit to an actual decision.
The culprit here is the willingness of the salesperson to accept the ambiguity. Under oath, the salesperson would have to admit that they could not be sure what the prospect meant. So, they should not have moved forward with the sales call. The lesson is if you are not 100% sure, ask more questions until you are sure.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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It’s not about the need

Most salespeople (but not all) can get the prospect to tell them what they need. But few are skilled at uncovering why the prospect needs it. People don’t buy for need alone or want alone. We all have things we need and want but have never bought. Sometimes it’s a money thing, but most times we don’t buy because there is just not enough motivation to buy it. In other words, there is no “compelling reason to buy”. The compelling reason to buy is usually found by asking “why?” when the prospect tells us what they need. However, most salespeople are so excited to find someone who needs what they have, that they immediately launch into a presentation of the product or service. The better ones even go so far as to talk about money and the decision process. What both fail to do is to uncover why the prospect needs the product. The answer to the “why” question will most often lead to the compelling reason. For example, I may need a new car. If I “need” it because it has 50,000 miles on it and I am getting tired of it, that is one thing. If I “need” it because it has 175,000 miles on it and my mechanic has told me it my break down at any time, I will be more motivated to buy a new car. The first example is a reason to buy and the second is a compelling reason to buy. That is why the answer to the “why” question is more important than the answer to the ‘what” question.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Be Pessimistic

Be optimistic about the outcome of the sales process but you should be pessimistic about every step along the way. Optimistic people are generally happier and more successful. But being overly optimistic can get you into trouble. Successful salespeople are pessimistic enough to anticipate problems that might occur in the sales cycle as they move the prospect through the sales steps from prospecting to closing. An appropriate amount of pessimism allows them to see problems that might occur and ask the right questions or take the right steps to move the prospect around any obstacles to the sale that might occur. When the salesperson is overly optimistic, they think everything is A-OK and run the risk of being blindsided by events or obstacles that they should have seen coming. So be a little pessimistic, not about the outcome, but about the things that could go wrong with the sale.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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Don’t Sell

Presenting or pitching too soon in the sales call can turn off the prospect. If that happens they will stop hearing what you are saying though they will still appear to listen to your pitch. Your opportunity to build trust and rapport will be severely compromised. If you drop into sell mode before you really understand the depths of the problem, you run the risk of treating symptoms instead of the real problem. But, more importantly, you will trigger the prospect’s natural aversion to “being sold”. People like to buy. They don’t like to be sold too. That is why they stop hearing and why rapport is difficult to establish if you “sell” too soon. So, listen more. Understand the full scope of the problem. Sell consultatively and your sales call will go better and you will not trigger any automatic resistance from the prospect.

If you have a sales question you would like to discuss follow the link to schedule a call:
https://calendly.com/dancaramanico/callwithdan

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