Selling is still a contact sport.

May 16th, 2012 by Michael Page

Social media, the Internet, blogging, tweeting and inbound marketing are new-age tools to help with an old-age challenge: selling. Yes, your potential customer still shops, does research, uses Google and visits your website; however, when it is time to buy they still reach out and connect with someone. So selling is still a contact sport.

Whether it is an inbound lead or an outbound connection, the key to winning in the marketplace is to close more opportunities than your competition. As an owner or leader of an organization, you invest a significant amount of resources to produce opportunities and fill your pipeline; however, if you are not closing a significant amount of those opportunities, you need to invest in a better selling/closing team. Competition is fierce, prices are competitive and the economy is not an excuse. Several traditional and non-traditional companies do what you do. Consumers choose to invest in organizations that they have confidence in and make them feel comfortable. They form a connection and that connection is led by your human talent.

When a consumer is evaluating your selling talent, it is all about the connection between the buyer and seller. He or she has to “like” you, have an ease of communicating with you, and believe your solution will address his or her challenge. Your talent needs to be confident, engaging and willing to ask for the order. Sounds simple doesn’t it? The idea is simple; however, having the right talent who will and can close opportunities consistently is the challenge.
To meet this challenge you need to understand:

• Your customers and why they are buying from you (Survey)
• What type of contact they are comfortable with (Survey)
• The strengths and weaknesses of your sales talent (Sales Assessment)
• Why you lose opportunities (Lost reviews)

A baseline assessment of your talent will help you build a winning and engaging team. It will help you hire and keep the best talent. It will also help you evaluate your investment in training the talent you intend to keep. Building a winning team that can consistently close opportunities is about having the right talent. You can insure you have the right talent by connecting with and knowing your talent.

Selling today is just like selling yesterday, it is still about the customers. Customers have more avenues to gather information and opinions about your product and services. They also have more options to invest their money in. However, if they connect with your company, you will win the majority of your opportunities. That connection starts and ends with your sales talent.

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