270 Proactive Prospecting 2 – Conquer Call Reluctance

Proactive Prospecting 2 – Conquer Call Reluctance

The hardest thing to do in business is to try to engage with someone you don’t know, especially if they are in a position of power. Whether you pick up the phone to call them, send an email, or reach out via social media, it is too easy for them to ignore you. 

Call reluctance can afflict salespeople at inopportune times. It can spread like a virus. Symptoms include extreme procrastination, severe distractions, and failure to block out a time and place for prospecting. If left unchecked, call reluctance can be fatal to your career. 

Here are two strategies for tackling call reluctance: 

Overcome Fear of Rejection

In his book The Success Principles, best-selling author and success coach Jack Canfield says: 

“Rejection is really a myth. It doesn’t really exist. It is simply a concept that you hold in your head. . . . some will, some won’t; so what—someone’s waiting.” 

Don’t take it personally. The faster you progress past the “No” and “Not interested” responses, the faster you will reach those prospective customers who are waiting to engage with you and who are interested in improving their business. 

Ignore the Sound of Silence

It is too easy to give up when a target customer is unresponsive. It is too easy to quickly assume that they are not interested, that they are too busy with other projects. If you are not getting return calls or messages and there is only silence on the target customer’s end, do not give up, because . . .

. . . silence does not mean NO. It just means silence. 

Don’t worry about why there is silence. You don’t know the reason. Just stay focused on your regular follow-up. Your persistence could eventually get rewarded. 

I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com 

269 Proactive Prospecting 1- Seek Warm Introductions

Proactive Prospecting 1- Seek Warm Introductions

Entire books and sales training programs are dedicated to the subject of sales prospecting, including information on the best ways to dig for gold, how to be productive in prospecting efforts, the best cold-calling techniques, the best ways to make them warm calls, the best executives to call, and even the best time to call.

Building expertise in prospecting boosts your ability to generate new opportunities that build your sales funnel, and is vital to your success. I encourage you to find the best book titles that relate to your business and master the prospecting approaches within.

While this briefing will not examine this topic in depth, here are some proven techniques for proactive prospecting. These will be discussed in the next 3 briefings

Seek Warm Introductions

Warm introductions to a prospective customer can be much more productive than cold calls. Ask for referrals from your loyal customers. Ask them who they know who might be able to enjoy the same benefits your customer has achieved by working with you. Ask your customer to make a proper introduction. Obviously, the referral must be for a prospective customer who is not a competitor.

Find out who the outside influencers are in your target customer’s decision-making and strategic initiatives, including: 

  • Strategic partners who help shape the customer’s strategies, such as management consulting firms, complementary solution providers, and other service companies with whom you can partner to gain access. 
  • Members of the customer’s board of directors—you might find that a board member is also affiliated with another one of your loyal customers, making a connection highly relevant. Provide a summary of the benefits you achieved for the board member’s company and ask that it be presented to your target account at the next board of directors meeting. Make sure that your topic is aligned with the target account’s need.

I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com 

268 Partner with your team

Partner with your team

As a team, we win together. 

Some sales professionals operate like they are lone rangers. They target their accounts and work their opportunities alone and often fail to engage other team members who can help. This is short-sighted and leaves them missing out on getting assistance when they need it. 

Several members of your team can help you solve problems and win more deals.  

  • Your Sales VPs and Company Executives – they are often interested and available to help on deals; their involvement could help you improve your company’s position by showing to your customer that your executives are engaged in their success. Take your executives up on their offer or seek them out to engage with your customers… but be sure that you prepare your executives in advance so they understand the situation. 
  • Your Sales Manager – can be your mentor or your coach as you navigate through working your territory plan, your account strategies, and your action plans. Leverage their experience in working with your customers. 
  • Your Sales Colleagues – You can learn from other members of your sales team, so collaborate with them where it makes sense and pay attention to what works for them.

Champion basketball player Julius Erving was one of the greatest professional basketball players to play the game. ”Dr. J.”, as he was called, was a wizard on the court, known for his elegant style, and performing feats that were never before seen with the basketball. 

Dr. J. was always on a quest to get better, and he said that he watched other players, anywhere; on television, at college games, even on the playground… because, he believed that you can learn from anyone.

And that’s also true of salespeople. 

I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com 

267 Exalted Experiences

Exalted Experiences

You will occasionally run into a rough patch when nothing in your selling efforts seems to be going right. Perhaps your opportunities  have stalled and your forecasted deals look weak. Prospective customers are not returning your phone calls or responding to your emails. Maybe this lasts a couple of days, or a couple of months.

Don’t hang your head or stop working. Don’t get frustrated. Don’t waste time on worry or other non-productive activities. 

This is the time to change your mindset. 

You can do that quickly by calling up your Exalted Experiences. “Exalted” means “Raised” or “Elevated”. 

“Exalted Experiences” are those that bring back the memories of  positive experiences.  

This is the time to look inside your being and call up those times when you enjoyed success… when you conquered your competition… when you exceeded your goal. Think about what you did or how you felt to create that Exalted Experience. Your demeanor will rapidly turn positive. 

Look back on times when you were making great progress advancing sales opportunities, when what you did resulted in developing a prospective customer into a buying customer; and when you celebrated those glorious wins. If you are new to your sales role, call up an Exalted Experience that was a positive memory in your life: your graduation, your conquests in sports, or other competition; your interviews for the job that resulted in you winning that coveted sales job… Your reminder of those  times when you climbed that mountain, overcoming adversity along the way, and demonstrated how good you really are!

Infusing these Exalted Experiences into your mind can fuel your winning attitude by creating the mindset you need to win. 

Then you can focus on transferring your positive energy to tackle the task at hand. 

I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com 

266 Negotiations 5 – Planning to Win

Negotiations 5 – Planning to Win

Create a plan to win. Don’t go into negotiations unprepared.

Here are 5 elements of a good negotiations plan.

1. Understand what you want as the desired outcome, what you will accept, and what are the related parameters.
Understand how strong your relationship is with your customer and what is their win. And about your buyer, what is their goal? Will they try to create multiple levels of negotiating? If you give too much too early, you might have nothing left to give when you are finished.

2. Brainstorm on how you can establish value on both sides (make it a win-win), while maintaining a mutually beneficial relationship. Identify potential areas where you can give something while getting something in return.

3. Before resorting to cutting price, identify alternatives. Reduce scope if possible.
Reiterate the business issues you will solve and the value your solution will provide – and the danger in reducing the scope. You can remind them “If we reduce the scope, we won’t be able to achieve these benefits.”
Know when it is time to walk away… this can be difficult, but no deal is usually better than a bad deal.

4. Lead your negotiating session. Remember to apply Equal Business Stature (you learned this in a prior briefing). Plan the agenda and work to control the agenda. Just letting the buyer take over and run roughshod over you is a sign of weakness where the buyer will surely try to take advantage and attempt to take a huge bite out of your profit.

5. Map out your customer’s organization – who are advocates, who are neutral, and who are potential adversaries. These personalities could either help or hurt your positioning.

No matter if your negotiation is large and complex or small and simple, create and execute a plan so you don’t cave during the negotiation.

I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com