According to the Radicati Group’s February 2015 study, there are approximately 205 billion emails sent on a daily basis. To extrapolate this figure further, that means that an estimated 2.4 million emails are sent per second and an impressive 74 trillion emails are sent per year. These figures represent the number one challenge that sales associates face in any industry — how to connect with potential customers when they are being bombarded with marketing messages on a daily basis.
Overcoming Sales Challenges
There is an old adage that states, “money makes the world go round.” Well, this saying should be adjusted to, “sales make money, which makes the world go round.” Overcoming the following sales challenges will help you to more easily connect with your intended audience so that you can build meaningful business relationships that inevitably result in additional sales.
Challenge #1: Breaking Through The Cold Call And Email Blockade
The first challenge that many sales associates face is the cold call or email. This challenge can be easily overcome when you turn the “cold” aspect into a “warm” lead. Start by researching and getting to know your potential lead before you even pick up the phone or hit send. To do this you can implement the following tips:
- Follow your lead on social media so that you have a built-in talking point.
- Read their bio on the company website. The bio will tell you if they prefer “John” vs. “Jonathan.”
- Know the top headlines for their company and / or industry. For example, if you are approaching someone in the technology sector, you should be up-to-date on the top five news stories.
Challenge #2: Listening Not Selling On The Phone
Don’t hijack the conversation by over selling. Instead, take a moment to listen. Chances are within the first 30 seconds of the conversation your potential customer will reveal the problem that they need resolved. If you listen, you will be able to accurately speak to their pain points.
Challenge #3: Sending Marketing Materials That Are Actually Opened
Creating powerful marketing materials is a challenge that many sales associates face. You need to ensure that your marketing materials not only sell your company’s products or services, but that they can be easily digested and grab the customer’s attention starting with the all-important subject line. To further enhance your materials, make sure that you track open, click-through, and response rates.
Challenge #4: In-Person Meetings
Selling in person via a demonstration is an entirely different ballgame. To overcome this challenge implement the following preparation methodologies:
- Practice in front of the mirror to analyze your body language and delivery.
- Practice in front of your company’s interns to gain their perspective.
- Practice in front of someone who holds the same job title as your potential customer.
Challenge #5: Impressing The Client
When the day arrives that you finally need to close the deal, you need keep the following mantra in mind, “the client has already made up his or her mind.” At this stage of the sales process you should have presented all of the information that you need to convince the client’s mind. Now, your only job is to guide them towards the metaphorical finish line. Assure the client that they have made the right decision by choosing your company and services. If the client hasn’t made this decision, then you need to approach the situation from a lessons learned mentality, which means that you should find out why the client didn’t choose you, so that you can adjust your sales pitch for the next opportunity.
Through the above insights you can and will overcome five of the most common sales challenges. Remember that practice makes perfect; the more time you spend as a sales associate, the easier it will be for you to close a deal from start to finish.