Every stage of the sales process requires for you to think carefully about how you’ll approach the customer and the situation, also known as a sales strategy plan. Sometimes this can work against you, making you assume and calculate when really you should be reading the customer, the environment and the situation to really use tactics on the go.
American Football in general is a great example of using on the fly tactics to get ahead and get those valuable points, if the team can see a change that wasn’t anticipated they read, they learn and they adapt proving that in reality not everything can or does go as planned.
Using a good sales strategy plan when you’re prepping for a client meeting:
No over prepping
Meetings are vital part of the sales process. They allow you to pitch and align the product to suit the needs of the client – you can fully solve their problems with your incredible solution. However, how many times have you been up all night reading, learning, writing and basically trying to get every bit of information on the company and individual?
The same can be said with phone calls, both outbound and cold, there are many professionals out there that will spend the majority of the day piecing together information allowing them to answer any question and somehow link the product with anything that’s brought up, in hindsight that never works because a common condition kicks in – call reluctance – which basically means you over think, over prepare and you get rattled so much that you can’t place the call due to the fear of rejection.
The problem doesn’t stop there with over prepping, you end up losing endless amount of time trying to convince yourself that you need more information; you end up stressing out about time which you’re losing and then turning up to the meeting in a sweaty, disorganised mess!
The best sales strategy plan and sales process to counter this problem is to create a template for information gathering, this is trial and error and its down to how much knowledge you need, which will consist of data such as decision makers name, board of directors, history etc. Remember to keep it strict this and gather just the information needed to fill the template, this equals less stress and more meetings.
Use your emotion
The Superbowl is one of the most watched events in the world with 111 million viewers tuning in each year, so it’s safe to say you’ll see tears, shouting, laughing and screaming all being fuelled by the raw emotion of the event.
(We strongly advise against turning up to a meeting crying or shouting).
One thing that people say about new startups is that the best salesperson is the founder. They have the raw emotion and love for the product that no one else has so they instantly become the best sales tool the company has within the sales process.
Regardless, if you’re a member of the sales team or the founder, you should always look to have a love for the company and product otherwise without that you won’t be able to sell the solution. The solution consists mainly of your excitement, the clear ability to see the problem and give a detailed description of how it will fix it, the enthusiasm is always evident, but so is the lack of it too.
What makes using emotion for a good sales strategy plan, great? The fact that it doesn’t need to be rehearsed or practiced, as soon as you meet the client you begin to feel the connection with their problems; you then begin to paint them the picture of the masterful solution you can create. As you see the positives of your product, you can see how else it can be used unlike the team members who aren’t on the same scale of ‘I LOVE MY PRODUCT!’ Love and passion for your product or service goes hand in hand with the sales process.
You’ve got 10 seconds on the clock, the other team is winning by 4, the only option is to launch the ball up field and hope one of your wide receivers catches the ball with the potential to win the game.
This can never be rehearsed or practiced, the emotion that surrounds this single play can overpower the top athlete, much like top sales professionals who can & do get caught out by certain situations which were non-expectant.
It’s important to go with the flow and ask the closing question confidently and straight to the point during the meeting. Good or bad, the blunt question always gets the response you need.
‘So could we potentially, if you feel like it, go ahead with the deal at some point within the next 2 years, maybe?’ The signs of a rehearsed & unconfident closing question always gets a bit awkward especially when the ‘script’ has taken a couple of detours along the way.
Closing questions should always be to the point, never scripted, short and precise just so you stop wasting your time and that of the others.
A ‘potential’ deal is never going to be a closed deal; this is why you need to forget the fear of rejection, the inability to be blunt and just ask the simple question of ‘so can I have this deal?’ This should be a prerequisite within your sales strategy plan!
There are plenty of sports and sales similarities that can be made, and with the Superbowl being one of the biggest sporting events in the world it’s a great way to compare one emotional arena to the other. You soon realise that with the right mindset not all things in the sales process has to be scripted or picture perfect, sometimes the big events require you to be smart and think on your feet; win or lose you’ll learn for the next time out.
Does you sales strategy plan have an element of surprise and tactic like a sport? Share your experience via the comment box below.