Becoming a thriving sales executive is no easy feat. The job requires tenacity, industry and product focused knowledge, and a little luck. Individuals who have great success in their sales career often acquire, maintain and develop a few key skills. These skills bring a new level of customer service and problem solving to their prospective clients. Below you will find six crucial skills needed in order to be successful.
In order to achieve buyer-response selling, you need to have a deep understanding of the buyer. Once you understand your potential client’s frustrations, needs, and goals, then you can engage in responsive selling. Take time to learn a little about their personal life and what drives their decisions at work. Use the client knowledge to influence the sale. You will be able to offer the client something that is in line with their needs at a time they can use it. Being a buyer-responsive sales executive will take work and adjustments along the way, but ultimately leads to a higher quantity AND quality of sales.
Communicating is 99% of the job. If you have trouble communicating with clients, your numbers will be a reflection of that. Great sales managers choose their words carefully. They also make a point to be clear and concise at all times. This goes for all types of communication. You may have to deal with one client over the phone, in emails, in person, and through proposals. Focus on overall messaging at all stages of the sale.
Don’t forget about body language! You’ll come across difficult in-person meetings that leave you feeling discouraged. Even if your messaging is clear and positive, negative body language can send a much different message. Be conscious of this and match your tone with expressive body language. Start the meeting off with a confident handshake, make eye contact, and practice good posture. These small things send a big message and will be noticed.
Trust is a buying factor – plain and simple. If a client does not trust you, they will never buy from you. Focus on establishing trust early in a new client relationship. To do so, there are a couple things you can focus on. The first is transparency. Demystify your product or service for the buyer by educating them. Provide every client with the “how” and “why” information so they know exactly what they are purchasing. Ensure they understand your product/service and also you as a person. After that, simply be sincere. Genuine sincerity shows your commitment to the client. It also tells them you are there to provide solutions as opposed to simply making a sale.
Writing proficiency falls under the communication umbrella, but deserves a spot of it’s own on this list. Harnessing strong writing skills will serve you well at all stages of your sales career. An emphasis on writing can equip you with the ability to write better emails, come up with concise product materials, and improve presentations. As a strong writer, you’ll be able to simplify jargon industry explanations, turning the information into easily digestible materials for clients.
There are many aspects of marketing that directly apply to the sales process. For instance, in the marketing world, campaigns target individuals based on a variety of demographics. They are able to target an audience who have the potential to be interested in what the company is saying. Sales execs should be using this tactic when building their funnel. Targeting buyers based on demographics places an audience in front of you that is more likely to hear about what you have to sell.
Additionally, you can treat longer buying cycles as if it were a marketing campaign. You start with a prospect and determine a desired outcome. Once you’ve established goals, keep messaging consistent through every touchpoint with the buyer. Following this model, you become a personification of your company’s brand.
Prioritization of Prospects
This last skill is one to learn and implement early in your career. Prioritizing your list of prospects in order of buying potential and urgency of need will save a lot of time and energy. It also gives you a clear starting point and list to work with. As you become more experienced, you’ll get better at identifying the most qualified leads from your funnel.