Spend More of Your Time Selling

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The majority of people in the sales force spend an average of no more than two hours out of their day actually selling.

This fact is astonishing for two reasons. One, how do we as sales people manage to meet our goals. And two, why on earth are we in sales to begin with?

The lack of hours spent selling in our work week is understandable. Lets face it. The paperwork alone can take up half of your day. Not to mention the phone calls, the problem solving, putting out fires, etc.

There are many challenges to be faced throughout the day.

Why is this? Why does this happen?

It is all believed to be a mind set, and a very dangerous one at that if you plan to survive in the world of retail.

Because problem solving and handling customer complaints is a difficult challenge we must face on a daily basis, we automatically believe that this should take priority over our selling, because we see the selling as fun and rewarding.

All the other issues can be stressful, so we tend to want them out of the way so we don’t have to worry about them.

Yes, dealing with current customers and building the relationship is very important, but your goals don’t go away. So we must obtain new customers through new sales.

Probably the key ingredient to spend more of your time selling is time management.

Put together an action plan for each day of the week where you allow at least four hours of your day to be spent selling.

It is very easy to put an action plan together, but it is extremely critical that you stick to it in order to succeed.

Another key ingredient to spending more time selling is delegation. If you have the luxury of a staff, why not delegate some of the operational issues to other people.

Plus, you know the rush you get from a sale, the thrill of closing the deal. This can have a psychological effect on your work day. Making a sale is a great feeling and certainly out weighs the depressed feeling that comes with dealing with operational issues all day.

Remember, you are a sales person, and it is very important to spend the majority of your time selling.

There is not a problem that your current customer is having that cannot be fixed by either you or the person you delegate it to. So concentrate on sales.

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Increase Sales With These Innovative Tips

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1. Show your prospects how much enthusiasm you have for your product and business. If you’re convincing enough, they will be enthusiastic too.

2. End your sales letter or ad copy with a strong closing. It could be a free bonus, a discount price, a benefit reminder, an ordering deadline, etc.

3. Please your complaining customers. You can refund their money, give them a discount, give them a free gift, solve the problem quickly, etc.

4. Make your customers get excited about your business and they will tell their friends. Give them a free vacation certificate, a coupon, etc.

5. Give your prospects extra confidence so they will order. Use endorsements, testimonials, a strong guarantee or warranty, etc.

6. Build your opt-in list by allowing your visitors to sign up for a free e-zine, ebooks, software, contests, sweepstakes, etc.

7. Give your prospects or customers a breath of fresh air. Don’t be afraid to design your web site and ad copies different from everyone else.

8. Allow your customers to get part of your total offer right after they order. If you have to ship the item, make one of your bonuses available online.

9. Write and submit articles to e-zine publishers or webmasters. If you want it to be published, it should be like an article and not like an ad.

10. Show your prospects that you are an expert, because authority can persuade people to buy. You could publish an article, write an ebook, etc.

11. You could cross promote your product with other businesses’ products in a package deal. You can include an ad or flyer for other products you sell and have other businesses selling for you.

12. When you ship out or deliver your product, include a coupon for other related products you sell in the package. This will attract them to buy more products from you.

13. Send your customers a catalog of add-on products for the original product they purchased. This could be upgrades, special services, attachments, etc. If they enjoy your product they will buy the extra add-ons. 14. Sell gift certificates for your products. You’ll make sales from the purchase of the gift certificate, when the recipient cashes it in. They could also buy other items from your web site.

15. Send your customers free products with their product package. The freebies should have your ad printed on them. It could be bumper stickers, ball caps, t-shirts etc. This will allow other people to see your ad and order.

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Sales Techniques & The Death of The Sales Call

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Sales techniques

A Google search on sales techniques or strategies (including more specific searches like a search on real estate sales technique or prospecting techniques or marketing tips or motivation strategies) will yield over a million results instantly. Even with so much information at your finger tips it is not any easier to perfect your sales techniques or advertising techniques. Even when you refine your search to terms like sales closing techniques, motivation techniques, presentation techniques, sales skills, and so on and so forth, it is rather hard to narrow down your search any further from among the million odd articles.

A Crisis of Individuality

The more one depends on the strategy ‘gurus’ or experts whether online, in books or wherever, the more one loses that individual touch, those carefully tested out personal skills and strategies. And it is this quality—individuality—that is very important in the environment we now live in—one of extreme competition. Your buyer would be looking out for that something extra, something off the beaten track, as it were. There are going to be numerous conventions, seminars and the like; breeding conformity. The gut feeling that makes you successful in dealings is your key to success. The important thing is to follow your instincts rather than blindly emulate the jargon spewing sales advisors.

Pick and Choose

That is not to say that all such sales tips should be avoid—far from it. Do learn from as many sources as you can but without forgetting your own self, because that is what makes you different from l the rest of the huge crowd. Business dealings depend on trust. So it is important to focus on your human side. Only then can you convince the other person that it is going to be a fair deal. As some put it, "the trust factor that is the bedrock to any sales or selling relationship". It is here that modern sales strategies fail. Their failure lies in their negligence of the human elements. To be convincing and to build up trustfulness, you have focus on your own personality rather than worrying about various external factors.

Focus

The focus, and we simply can not say it too many times, should be on making your buyer feel good, convincing him, ergo, trust building. Selling is essentially, when reduced to its elementary, most basic precepts a deal or a pact between two like minded people or parties. Let us also not forget that trust goes a long way. The same buyer, if and when convinced and satisfied with the sales, will come back and maybe also bring in other buyers. This is a very fundamental precept of the sales technique. And the one on which you can always fall back up on in times of trouble!

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How to Get the Most out of Your Next Conference

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Success in your career depends upon how well you manage your professional development. A prime source of this development comes from being a member of a professional association that relates to your career. As a member, you can attend conferences where you advance your skills and meet people who can help you.

Some people, however, treat conferences as a paid vacation. They party, they skip sessions, and they return home with little more than a stack of receipts. That costs them (or their business) money and contributes nothing to professional growth.

Here’s how to get the most out of your next conference.

1) Start With a Plan

First, make a list of your goals for attending the conference. For example, this could include the information that you want to gain, the relationships that you want to deepen, the people you want to meet, and the things that you want to buy. Also, make a list of questions that you want to have answered while you’re at the conference. This list will help you focus on your personal agenda during the conference and will maximize your chances of returning with something of value.

Then, scan through the program to select those sessions that will help you the most. These could be on topics that teach skills leading to a promotion, help open new opportunities at work, or answer important questions about your career. If many valuable sessions are scheduled at the same time, then select your first and second choices. You may find that one of the sessions has been canceled or filled (sold out).

Highlight your top priority sessions so you can sign up or arrive early. These sessions generally have such great value that they justify attending the conference, and you want to make sure that you’re there when they start.

If your boss must approve attending a conference, use your plan to justify your request. Be sure to include explanations of how the information, relationships, and participation at the conference will enhance your value to your company. Wise leaders always support someone who relates a request to the benefits that come from it.

2) Work the Plan

While at the conference keep your list of goals and questions in mind. Begin each day by checking your list and identifying those goals that you can achieve during that day. For example, some sessions may provide information that answers some of your questions.

At the end of the day review your list and check off those goals that you accomplished. If you discover new opportunities, then add them to your list of goals. And if you find yourself stuck on reaching a goal, seek out a senior member whom you can ask for advice on how to achieve it.

3) Meet People

Often the greatest benefit of attending a conference will be the relationships that you start while there. These relationships can become sources of information, friendship, and job opportunities.

Thus, make it a point to meet new people. Instead of spending all of your time with friends or colleagues, go off on your own. Join other people for meals. Sit next to them during the sessions. Start conversations while walking between sessions. And be sure to ask for a business card. Then you can add that person’s contact information into your contact database.

I encourage you to introduce yourself to the speakers. They were invited to speak at the conference because of their expertise in your profession. Thus, they can become valuable resources for information, assistance, and referrals. The best time to meet speakers is right after they finish their presentation. Introduce yourself, offer a brief compliment on the presentation, and ask for a business card. Of course, if you meet them again at the conference, use this as an opportunity to talk further.

4) Apply What You Gained

When you return home, set aside an hour or so to review the notes that you took while at the conference. You may want to schedule this on your calendar before you leave for the conference.

Review your notes, identifying the main ideas. Then convert each of these ideas into an action on your list of things to do. Once you finish the list add a completion date and assign a priority. Recognize that this step converts everything that you learned, collected, and gained during the conference into tangible benefits for yourself and your company.

If you are an employee, I recommend writing a report for your management. Document the key ideas that you gained and describe how they can be applied to your work. If you’re an independent, you may still want to write such a report for yourself because this formalizes what you gained from the conference.

5) Be Grateful

When you return home, write thank you notes to the people who helped you at the conference. This simple courtesy sets you apart as an exceptional person. I especially recommend writing notes to:

1) The leaders in the association. They worked hard to organize the event.

2) Members of the staff who helped you. These people can help you get the most out of your membership.

3) The speakers. This could start relationships with experts and celebrities in your profession.

4) New friends. This makes you memorable when you meet again at the next conference.

Use a conference to immerse yourself in the society and the technology of your profession. And then apply what you gained to advance your career.

By Sales Tracking Portal [Free Online Sales Tracking Software]

Keeping Sales Simple

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For those of us working in the exciting world of sales, we are all too familiar with the pressures of meeting our daily, weekly, monthly, or quarterly goals. This pressure can sometimes cause us to lose focus on the simple things that made us successful to begin with.

When we make a sales presentation, it is all too essential to look and sound the part. A professional appearance and product knowledge are to very important ingredients involved in sales.

But don’t ever loose sight of the fact that sales is supposed to be fun!

A personal story . . .

I can remember a time a few years back, when I was managing a bank branch inside a supermarket, otherwise known as In-Store banking.

At that time, we had daily goals that we were required to meet, and those goals were unit and dollar driven. It was a fast paced environment and every technique we could think of was incorporated into our sales. Nothing was taken for granted.

Including the simple stuff.

One particular afternoon I received a phone call from a woman who informed me that she was new to the area, and she was shopping around for a bank.

We had a pleasant conversation, and I explained to her all of our products starting with our free checking, and ending with our more exclusive products.

Once the conversation was over, she thanked me and told me she would consider us.

I thanked her as well, and ended by telling her my name again, and that she could ask for me, if she decided to come in.

The next day, that same woman walked into my branch and asked for me, she reminded me of the conversation we had the day before, and than proceeded to tell me that she came in because I was so nice on the telephone.

The fact is, I was really nice on the telephone, I knew I had a potential customer on the phone and I killed her with kindness. Not because I was being slick, but because it was easy, it was simple, and I had fun doing it. And it worked.

There was no selling involved in that conversation. I was just being a nice person.

Salesmanship is important, but people want kindness to.

My point is, take some of the pressure off of yourself and start having fun! Be nice, smile. It is not always necessary to act and speak so professionally, it can come off fake, and worst of all boring.

So starting tomorrow, take a load off, roll up your sleeves, smile, laugh out loud, and most of all have fun and keep it simple!

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Business Cards with a Big Bang

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Ever felt how wonderful it is to have your name in print for the first time? This is not just any ordinary printing with your name and details in them. They are your own business cards. Any other of these cards would contain names, addresses and contact numbers. That would be the typical business card.

These days, business cards are made into marketing tools to promote the owner’s business and a source of advertisement that serves as reminders for people reading them. As small as these cards may see, they have been a necessity for information getting since then. These have become the perfect equipment for entrepreneurs to be able to get clients and stay of their competitors.

As a marketing tool, these small prints need all the marketing strategy they can get to maintain effectiveness. Using all the right techniques with the modern machines, you have made the perfect business card. This would mean that you have gotten the attention of the holder. The next big thing to be considered is the content of the card. Does it appeal as much as the designs do? The most commonly overlooked marketing factor in business cards is the message that the card conveys. What does it say to the people reading them?

Having the perfect look and designs does not always guarantee customer response using these cards. It is important to note the words that are used to describe the business, its products and the services rendered.

To begin with, the slogan or logo should be able to make the reader isolate your card from others. People tend to just set aside these cards along with other cards and files, to be searched on later when the need arises. Making your card as unique and a standout would distinguish it from those others. When the time comes for it to be of use, something about the card that the readers have seen would come to mind and they would remember that certain card. It could be the printed words, or the drawings that are inherent in them, or a design that was stuck to memory. Or the contents. It gives them a good reason to choose and call you.

A bottom line that is irresistible would definitely arouse enough interest to set you apart from the rest. An example is phrases that offers discounts, new products and promos. These can guarantee customers coming and going back to know more. Putting motivational lines that opens the door for them to respond to you is also a must. It is best to not let customers left hanging in confusion as to what to do next after reading your cards. Guide them on what to do next by giving hints about it in your cards. There is always no harm in a bit of guidance.

Business cards may be small and seemingly insignificant, but they are also easy carriages. What’s more, they are continuously being passed on. You never know who its next holder would be.

By Sales Tracking Portal [Free Online Sales Tracking Software]

Back-End Offers – Make Real Profits

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Often the real profits lie in back-end sales.

Once you have a customer, you simply offer additional products, add-ons, upgrades, a super-deluxe version of the original product purchase with all the bells and whistles. The customer is already “sold” on the product or service, based on your sales material or presentation.

The back-end offer should supply the answer to “what’s next?” It should be related in some way to the original product, and the most successful back-end products are higher-priced accessories that makes it easier of better for the buyer than simply having the original.

A back end product should further enhance the product that the buyer intended to purchase. Whatever the original product does, a good back-end product will make it faster, better, more detailed, more complete or easier to use and benefit from – in essence it is far more helpful to the prospect in satisfying his wants, than is the original, more basic product.

Keys to Success

The success of back-end products can be attributed to having a captive, highly targeted audience who is definitely interested in achieving a specific result or solving a specific problem. The add-on product makes it easier to solve the prospect’s problem, quickly.

Another factor is to further sell the customer while he is still in the buying mode and while he is feeling good about solving a problem or moving closer towards a goal.

Examples

To come with examples of back-end products simply ask “What product or service could I also offer that would be a natural match for what my customer is buying now? A self-publisher could offer a booklet on a specific topic. As a back-end, he could offer the same topic covered in greater detail and presented in a multi-media format complete with audio cassettes, videos, manual and CD.

Opportunities for back-end or additional add-on products are easy to find. A shoe store can offer shoe buying customers, laces, polish, protectants or, other accessories, based on the type of shoe sold. Ever visit a theatre to watch a movie and not order popcorn, chips, soft drink, or some other refreshment? Those items are all back-end products. First you bought your tickets, then you went to the snack bar.

My local video store now offers “tape protection” as an extra option. It’s basically insurance against returning a damaged video. Since most videos rented out these days are new releases, tapes being returned in damaged condition are a rarity. Yet, many people gladly pay the extra twenty-five cents to “feel” secure. A clever new profit center for the video-rental industry.

How?

Always be mindful of products, services or ideas that your customers will willingly pay for. Anything that can make it easier or hassle-free for the customer, could be a good candidate as an add-on product. Convenience is a wonderful thing and many will willingly pay you for it.

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