In An Entrepreneur Blog we believe there isn’t a magic formula for being successful in the sales process. However we do believe that there are several elements or secrets out there that can make the process much better and make more sales with time. We’ve talked of some of those secrets, including security, knowledge, experience and the sales speech. Today I will add a new element to this equation, one that many times is ignored and that we usually don’t address correctly: blocks in the sales process.
When we’re trying to make a sale, especially one that requires times and effort, we can hit at anytime a roadblock. Our first task is to identify this blocks and the second is to address them. You must understand that these situations are normal and that they can occur for many reasons, many of which are outside our control. Whatever the reason is, our mission as salesman is to try to change the situation and overcome the roadblock.
Many times when we hit a roadblock, there isn’t much we can do about it. But a good salesman knows that these obstacles exist and his creativity and work can overcome anything (or almost anything). For example, lets say you’re in the middle of selling a product or service and your client tells you he has found a cheaper alternative. One alternative, that is if you have the power, is to reduce the price of your offering. But you must be careful with this, as I explain in the following paragraph.
Before making any cession to the client, you have to analyze what you’re selling and what he is seeking. For example, if you’re selling apples and a rival company is trying to sell at lower price oranges, there is no point of comparison. Sure, they’re both fruits, and they’re round, but at the end of the day there are two very distinct products. Another example occurs in the automobile industry. If you’re selling a high-end car, such as a Mercedes Benz or a BMW and your client gets an offer by a low-end Chinese manufacture, there isn’t really a point of comparison.
In such a case we have to show our client that the products are very different. If for example, our product has a high status, a great warranty or something that’s worth the money, we just can’t reduce the price, as the client wants. We might loose the client, but many times is better to loose him than to sell our product at a price beneath the market price.
Our client can be reluctant to accept our reasoning. We have to try hard to change his mind with facts and our high value offering. But if this is not enough, we will probably loose the client. You have to understand this a normal phase of the selling process and learn from this experience.
If you find a roadblock, you have to find a solution. If there’s no solution thank the client and keep going forward. However always keep in mind that a good speech and a great relationship with the client can go a long way.
Image taken from Flickr.com