Achieving Pro Status in Your Selling Career

achieving pro statusYou may do everything else masterfully but if you can’t close the sale, you might as well be a professional product demonstrator instead of a salesperson. The real pros in selling have certain skills and habits that make them stand out above average.

Here’s a Personal Inventory Evaluation from my book, “Sales Closing for Dummies™.” Read these 16 statements and see how close you are to achieving “pro” status.

  1. I have an ongoing personal plan for self-improvement. As the late great Earl Nightingale said, “If you’re not growing, you’re dying.”
  2. I have achieved mastery over questioning strategies to the point where I can keep the communication moving toward a closed sale.
  3. I listen more than I talk. We all have two ears and one mouth. They should be used proportionately.
  4. I understand and read body language fluently.
  5. I build time for planning into my daily schedule. Fifteen minutes invested in planning at the end of today will save me an hour of time tomorrow.
  6. I know at least four test closes for each of my products (or product lines). [Read more…]

In It to Win It Amazon Best Seller

in it to win itI recently joined a select group of fellow business experts to co-author the book,
In It To Win It: The World’s Leading Experts Reveal Their Top Strategies for Winning in Business and in Life! The book was released by CelebrityPress™ – a leading business book publisher.

In It To Win It: The World’s Leading Experts Reveal Their Top Strategies for Winning in Business and in Life! was released on Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 and features entrepreneurs and professionals from around the world revealing their top secrets on an array of subjects ranging from health, wealth and marketing, to business success.  Some of the topics covered in the book include meeting client expectations, luxury home marketing, growing your virtual business, keys to highly successful marketing leaders, thinking like an owner, re-engineering your sales force, the psychology of sales and creating loyalty, among others.

On the day of release, In It To Win It reached best-seller status in four Amazon.com categories – reaching #2 in the Direct Marketing category.  The book also reached best-seller status in the Small Business & Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship categories.

After such a successful release, I was fortunate to be recognized by The National Academy of Best-Selling Authors™, an organization that honors authors from many of the leading independent best-seller lists.

Order Your Copy of In It to Win It

Ten Steps to Professionalism in Sales

professionalism in salesTo demonstrate professionalism in sales, you must truly become dedicated to your craft. A  professional is a person who has dedicated him or herself to a career — regardless of the field. It’s the opposite of an amateur. Professionals also make more money; could there be a relationship behind that fact? You bet. In selling situations, and in life, the way you present yourself plays a big role in how people think of you and how much people pay attention to what you say. A dedicated professional commands more respect than a casual amateur. Always.

Step #1. Your Attitude.  Are you a professional? If so, let everyone know it. If not, maybe that’s why you’re not as successful as you would like to be. [Read more…]

The Sales Slump Stops Here

Have you ever gone into an emotional slump? A financial slump? A performance slump? Of course, you have. No matter how good your attitude, and no matter how resolutely you confront your difficulties, there will be days when things do not go right.

In my sales training seminars, I teach a 10-step system to cure slumping, whether in business, or in our personal lives. Here they are:

  1. Become highly skilled at what you do. If you haven’t perfected your knowledge and skills, how can you say you’re slumping? Practice, drill, and rehearse to get to the highest level you’re capable of, and you’ll be impervious to slumps.
  2. Burn the past. The past is dead, so get rid of it. [Read more…]

How to Eliminate “It costs too much” When Selling Financial Services

After you’ve met new potential  clients and established rapport with them is the time to qualify them not only as to their needs, but as to their expectations regarding making a financial commitment to their futures. When you establish early on what investment range they would be comfortable with, you can eliminate the stall that move untrained financial services advisers and representatives encounter — “It costs too much.” [Read more…]

Closing from a Distance

In the past, most companies divided territories by geographical area. Today, many salespeople specialize in particular products or services and concentrate on clients who have needs that match the products no matter where they are on the planet. So, companies are more likely to claim as your territory any client who has a need for your specialty. That means your client base may well be anywhere in the world. If that’s the case with you, you’ll do very little face-to-face selling and a whole lot of remote closing.

What do you do when you’re not able to close face-to-face? Well, when you close from a distance, you call upon your skills as a closer and rely on the wonders of technology like phones, fax machines (yes, some industries still find this a successful way to do business), the Internet, email, and express or overnight delivery services. [Read more…]

Less is More

Most people think that in order to persuade others, you have to be a real good talker. You have to have “the gift of gab,” “a silver tongue,” or be a “natural born salesperson.” The truth is just the opposite.

The true professionals—the successful people in sales are great listeners. What are they listening to? Their potential clients telling them their wants, wishes, needs and fears…and what they want to own. Yes, people will pretty much tell you what they want to own, if you’ll only give them the chance to speak. All you need to do is get them started. Then you simply guide the conversation along the lines you know it needs to take in order for you to determine needs, qualify and close the sale.

[Read more…]

Creating a Consultative Environment in Selling

Once all of the rapport-building is done and you’re ready to get down to business, it’s important to set the tone for your time with these clients. I suggest creating a consultative feeling by using a legal pad to make notes. In some types of selling, this doesn’t make sense, but it is helpful if you can do it. When you make notes of their concerns or other details they are sharing, the potential buyers feel that you’re truly interested in them. They feel you care enough to pay attention to their pain points. [Read more…]

Financial Services Guidelines for Asking Questions

Three Guidelines for Asking Questions

Because asking good questions is such an integral part of good selling I’ve given the matter a lot of study and thought over the years. I’ve boiled down all that knowledge into three basic guidelines.

Guideline #1. Establish a bond before you attempt to control the process with questions. Establishing rapport is essential because people want to do business with people they like and trust. They’ll never get to the trust issue if they don’t like you. There’s no need (or reason) to attempt to become “best buddies” on the spot, but it is important that your prospect comes to like you very early in the process. This is one of the reasons for the brief chit chat that takes place before the selling begins. [Read more…]

Getting More Business from Existing Clients

getting more businessIn my comprehensive selling skills book, How to Master the Art of Selling, I teach three ways to get more business from existing clients (Chapter 18). I like to think of it as “expanding your sales volume.”

One system for expanding your sales volume covered in that chapter involves using your imagination. Keep thinking of ways to add-on accessories, warranties, extended programs and additional products. Share different uses for your product or service with your existing clients. They may only have thought about using it for a single purpose. When additional benefits are recognized, additional needs may also come to light.  [Read more…]