Even if you’re calling on the right people, if you do or say the wrong things, you’ll spend time and money on opportunities that don’t pay off. Here’s how to help ensure that you don’t accidentally lose the deal:
- TWEAK #11: Research the competition. Once a lead is completely qualified as a prospect, then the prospect is going to buy, either from you or your competitor. Therefore, increasing your “conversion rate” for a fully qualified lead is always matter of outselling the competition. Ask the prospect who else is calling on them and if there’s a threat, accelerate your sales activities to compensate.
- TWEAK #12: Hone your sales campaign document. The most frequent reason sales reps are outsold is that they didn’t talk to the right people – and the competitor did. In many cases, the losing sales rep failed to research and therefore understand the prospect’s actual decision-making process, and who would play what role in that process. So don’t assume you’ve got it right from the start. Make changes as you learn more.
- TWEAK #13: Increase the number of meetings. It’s common practice for sales reps to communicate with a senior decision-maker at the beginning of the sales cycle, and then revisit that connection at the end of the sales cycle, in order get final approval. However, if your contacts are limited during the middle of the sales cycle, you may lose track of what’s going on. Be in regular communication with decision-makers so you always know what’s changing inside the customer account.
- TWEAK #14: Improve your follow-through. Many deals have been lost simply because the sales professional forgets to follow up on a commitment. If you make a commitment, log it in your schedule, and make sure that you do it, no matter what. Follow-through is the only way that a potential customer can learn to trust you, and that makes the customer more likely to buy.