By Matt G (The Sales Corner)
There’s one search happening on Google that seems to bring a fair amount of traffic to The Sales Corner. The search is “Sales Probing Questions.” The people searching these terms are generally looking for information on how to establish the correct questions to ask their customers. They are looking for magic tools to help them decide what are the right questions or not. I wish I could tell you what questions always work, but the truth is that you have to deal with a lot of trial and error in any sales environment.
The goal is to increase sales or marketing visibility. In order to do this effectively you need to remain in constant production. The problem is that a lot of sales people, don’t know how to go about this in a way that’s beneficial, and doesn’t waste their time, or the customers time. Often times they get burned out.
Here are five Sales Probing Questions below that you can use to immediately start to impact your customer relationships. As a sales rep I pride myself on knowing my customers and what their problems are, and what makes them happy. You’ll find benefit in the same!
By: Mark Dembo (The Sideroad Blog)
In his classic book, “Think and Grow Rich“, Napoleon Hill discussed the eleven secrets of leadership. Recently, as I was reading the book, it occurred to me that the attributes of strong leadership and effective selling have a tremendous amount in common. After all, to be really successful in sales, you need to be a leader, both within your own organization, as well as to your clients and customers.
To paraphrase management guru Peter Drucker, a leader is someone who not only does things right, but who also does the right things, while helping others do the same. The same holds true in sales: how better to serve your clients than to really know and understand what they do, and to truly help them do it better?
With that in mind, here are Mr. Hill’s eleven secrets to leadership, as they apply to leadership in selling.
By Melissa Madian ORACLE | eloqua
“I know I need to be unique and different when talking to customers; but I don’t know how?”
I had just finished running a sales training session for a group of major account reps, when a colleague came up to me and very quietly uttered the above quote. He was clearly embarrassed, lost and distraught. It got me thinking: if he was willing to sidle up to me and admit this distress; how many others were feeling the same but were too shy or embarrassed to come forward to talk about how to address it?
By Brian Walsh (Business 2 Community)
Know Where You’re Going. Understand Where You’ve Been.
If you want to truly understand how you can help your client, you need to assess what you know. A call with someone you’ve never met before is very different than one where you have some background. This may seem like an elementary point, but I’ve seen way too many salespeople approach all their discovery calls the same way. As a result, they miss opportunities to change their conversation in a way that connects them to buyer value drivers. The prep is critical for many reasons, and it starts with two simple questions:
- Where am I in the account?
- Where am I not?
Remember the “Who”
Effective preparation doesn’t end there. A lot of salespeople make the mistake by only asking those questions. They focus their discovery only on the account white space, or if it’s a new account, where they think they have the biggest chance of making a sale. That information is important, but you need to consider the “who.”
Research from CSO Insights shows that three or more individuals are involved in the final B2B buying decision. Your challenge as a salesperson is to articulate your solution’s value and differentiation in a way that shows the business impact to each of these decision makers. You won’t be successful in showing your business impact to this key group if you don’t follow an effective discovery process.
People who lead teams often get so busy that they lose focus and struggle with the dynamics of the personalities and talents they manage. David Dye’s book, The Seven Things is a well-written, SMART, and genuinely helpful resource.
- Mary C. Kelly
Productive, energized, and innovative teams are critical to your success. In The Seven Things Your Team Needs to Hear You Say, author David M. Dye shares practical and encouraging tools you can use to cultivate engaged, responsible, and results-oriented teams. Whether you’re a new frontline leader, a small business owner, or a veteran manager, The Seven Things Your Team Needs to Hear You Say will inspire you to inspire your team. You don’t need buckets of charisma – they just need to hear you say these seven things.
Buy It Now!
By Mark Hunter (“The Sales Hunter”)
Success in sales does not go to the one who has the lowest price. Nor does success in sales go to the one who has the best customers. And, success in sales does not go the one who has the most intelligence.
Who really achieves success in sales? The people who practice integrity with every person with whom they come in contact. There is no substitute – no alternative – to consistent integrity.
By Lori Richardson (Score More Sales)
Think of the skills and attributes that make you great in sales:
- You need to be a language expert – being able to convey great messaging
- You need to be a listening expert – hearing what is said and not said with potential buyers
- You need to be an organizational expert – working your own plan and the plan your boss expects you to work
- You need to be an inter-generational expert – understanding how to reach and connect with all ages of buyers
- You need to be a sales expert – in basic sales competencies
- You need to be a negotiation expert – understanding when to know what to say to your customers
- You need to be a psychologist – since this is such a people business
It’s as if you need ten or twelve books of knowledge to help you win.