When you begin a customer sales call, be it in person or over the phone, you want to make sure they feel welcome, comfortable, and that they are treated like gold, not as a statistic.
If you’ve ever been standing in a line at the post office, you know the bad feeling when it comes to your turn to be waited on, and the postal worker yells out “next?” This type of service is more akin to moving a cattle herd along than in building a long-term client relationship.
All great sales organizations will establish daily, weekly, and monthly goals for each of their sales reps.
These figures are numbers that we must meet, and this push to achieve adds an applied pressure to our daily work. This might make it easy to lose sight of the fact that it is the customer who is the most important thing when it comes to our company’s existence. Without clients, companies die.
Below are three tips to ensure that your customer feels appreciated by you and your company, and not viewed as just another number:
1. Address your customer by name they preferred to be called, and use it frequently:
My insurance career started in the senior market. Each prospect was always older than me. My natural instinct was to address them as, “Mr. or Ms. (Last Name).” This shows a great amount of respect for most clients. I still naturally do this for clients of all ages. Calling someone by their name commands their attention, but it also personalizes the sales process. This will put your relationship with your customer on a personal level, and clients like to know that they are remembered beyond just another transaction. It gives them a feeling of importance with you, and your company.
2. Get to know your client personally by discussing non-business topics:
The sale should be about the sale, but it all comes down to a person dealing with a person. There is more beneath the surface of your customers than just the business that they do with you. People enjoy talking about themselves a little, especially topics such as family, their company or job, their pets, hobbies, and children. In most industries you will come across these personal interests during the qualifying questions. Elaborate on them a little, and you will build a better bond with your clients. This is also a great way to get to know your customer, and build a strong relationship with them.
3. Establish your sales process, but don’t rush through a sale:
The last thing the customer wants is to be hurried through the process. Sales is the engine of your business, but people are your fuel. You cannot treat your prospect as if you are moving through an assembly line. The process of your sale is extremely important to be adhered to, but it still must be malleable to fit the needs & understanding of the client. Match their pace. Their understanding. Their comfort level. When you have completed the sales call (whether it was closed or not) recap the transaction with your customer. Ask if there is anything else you can do for them, or if they have any questions for you. This is an opportunity to solidify your position as the expert, and give them the information on your company’s products which you feel would benefit them. The last thing you want to do is get them in and get them out.
A strong business relationship is a great opportunity to obtain all of your customer’s business as well as the business of all of their friends and relatives through referrals. Treating clients as you would treat one of your friends will grow your book of business far quicker and longer lasting than treating your customer like a statistic.
Remember to keep it simple. #thisaintrocketsurgey
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