Though you can guarantee you won’t be purchasing a vacuum cleaner from a traveling salesman at your front door any time soon, there are aspects of that type of sales relationship that we can still learn from today. With a bit of updating for the modern world, these techniques might be the key to setting you apart from the rest of your competition. Read on to learn how to incorporate some of these ‘old school’ tactics into your transactions today.
If you notice that there is a key decision maker who will be the one to determine if you make a successful sale or not, take the time to get to know that person. Before you approach, you can learn about the individual’s social media presence and find out about previous job positions, educational background, etc. Use this information as a conversation starter. We are all more likely to want to do business with someone we can make a personal connection with versus someone who is standoffish and brusque. If this method is impractical, get to know your clients by talking to them about their interests. Remember, getting a conversation started and being a quality listener who asks intriguing questions can be just as impactful as bonding over a shared experience.
Pick Up the Phone
If emails, tweets, direct mailings and other outreach are not effectively converting leads for your company, it may be time to pick up the phone. It used to be the only method of communicating and now phones often just sit on the desk ignored. Making a call might be the catalyst needed for the customer to buy, but if not you can also find out if the lead is still worth pursuing.
Put the Customer First
Rather than starting a conversation with a customer by telling them all about the features of your product or service, find out what experience client has had with your service or a similar one before. Have they never used a solution like yours before? Has a competitor already sold them and failed to deliver? By harvesting this information first you can better explain how your business is better, new or unique. If a customer is hesitant to give you information be prepared to provide hypothetical or real examples of people that have faced similar issues and used your product or service to overcome them.
Leave an Impression
Too often these days sales is a disconnected venture. You’ll need to go the extra distance if you want a shot at beating your competition. If your lead is using a competitor’s service offer to do the same work for free for a week or 30 days to show how your solution is superior. Sticking your neck out in a big way will make your company more memorable than another email pinging into an inbox. Even if a customer is interested in buying, an email can sit for days, even weeks, buried under more pressing items.