As we continue our 10 Days of Christmas countdown — and 10 resolutions for the new year — remember this truth: Time spent preparing for the sales call creates the success of the sales call.
This has been my contention for years, and it’s more true than ever in today’s challenging selling environment. Many salespeople are getting fewer opportunities than ever. Thus it is even more important to build the habit of thorough pre-call preparation before every call.
Whether you sell over the telephone or in person, the majority of the pre-call preparation needs to be focused on the value you will bring from the point of view of the customer.
The word to focus on is “THINK!”
Idea: As we head into the beginning of a New Year, it is an opportune time for you to have deeper conversations with your customers about their goals for the upcoming calendar year. A great way to engage the customer might be something like this: “Help me understand what it is that you MOST want to accomplish in the upcoming year?”
List a series of topics (and corresponding questions) that you would like to see covered on each of your sales calls. Where would you like to see the conversation go? What answers from the customer would best help you build your case of value?
In my experience, if you do not decide in advance where YOU want to go, then the customer will often take you to where THEY want to go… and too often that means discussing price!
Photo by Calsidyrose, via Creative Commons 2.0