3 sales techniques that will help you land your dream client
When I graduated from New York University way back when in 2002 (yes, I’m starring 40 in the face!) I dreamt of working in publishing. I loved writing and thought that the idea of working at a glossy fashion magazine was going to be simply dreamy. However, after a stream of interviews and offers of long hours for very little money, I began to research other job options. With a degree in Mass Media and Communications, I was confident that I could land a job in a variety of industries. But, I never in a million years thought that my very first job out of college was going to be in sales!
Just the word sales (especially telephone sales) left a bad taste in my mouth. I had visions of sleazy car salesman and annoying telemarketers reading off of scripts, but little did I know, this sales job was going to teach me some extremely valuable techniques and skills that would help me experience success in future positions and ultimately allow me to start not one, but two of my own businesses.
So, today, I want to let you in on three of these golden little nuggets that I am confident will help you land your dream client, no matter what industry you are in. Go ahead, grab a notebook, you’re going to want to write these babies down.
1 | become besties with the gatekeeper: Okay, so I don’t literally mean the gatekeeper, when I say gatekeeper. In this sense, I’m referring to the receptionist, the assistant or basically your first line of contact. Never, ever disregard this person for he or she holds the key to the decision maker - the individual who is going to decide to hire you or buy from you. So, become the gatekeeper’s friend. Be genuine, be kind and listen to this person because when the time is right, he or she will make sure that your proposal or product ends up on top of the pile, in front of the right person.
2 | eight is the magic number: Did you know that it can take up to eight “touches” to sign your ideal client? By touches, I am referring to emails, phone calls, store visits, smoke signals or any way you choose to reach out to your dreamie. I know how discouraging a “No” can be, but I am a firm believer that, in many cases, “No” can actually mean, “Not right now” which is why maintaining contact with your prospects is so important. Through these touches - of which not all should be “sales-y” - you will build familiarity and confidence, allowing you to develop a relationship and a certain level of trust. My recommendation would be to write out your list of “touches” in the order that you would like to “deliver” them. Extra bonus points for face-to-face visits and handwritten notes! Too many people hide behind their screens, so these personal touches will really help you standout.
3 | say what you’re gonna do and do it: This is easier said then done, but is probably the most important technique I have learned in my professional career. So few people actually follow up, so simply by saying what you’re going to do and then actually doing it will put you ahead of your competition. Did you tell someone that you are going to send a catalog? Go ahead and pop it in the mail ASAP. Did you say that you are going to call so-and-so on Tuesday? Put it in your calendar (with an alert!) and then, you guessed it, call her on Tuesday. It’s so simple and easy, yet so few people do it.
While these three techniques certainly are not mind-blowing, I promise you that by adopting them and making them part of your process, you will stand out amongst your competition. You will build a certain level of trust and confidence in your business, products and services. And, I can almost guarantee that, you will land your dream client.