It could be that a percentage of your sales, pre- or post-covid19, have been lost because of a lack of control on the part of the salesperson. In fact, it can occur—and often does—that the sale can spin out of control, right from the start of any sales cycle.
How and why does this happen?
Let’s walk through a typical example. You are selling a software package and receive a lead from a buyer at a company looking for a product like yours. You reach out to the buyer, and once you have her on the phone, thinking you’d better “strike while the iron is hot,” go right into your pitch as to why your product would be the best for her company.
Your prospect patiently listens. She asks a few questions, which you rapidly answer, but jump right back into the pitch. Not far into the call, the buyer suddenly says, “You know, I have another call coming in that I have to take. Sorry.” And off she goes.
You email her, trying to set up another time to talk. She does not answer. You try calling her again—voice mail. You hear from her no more.
As you can see, your sale spun right out of control from the start. How did this happen? She was interested! She took your call, at least the initial one. What went wrong?
First, let’s define precisely what control is. As far as sales go, control is the ability to guide your prospect in the right direction. It includes caring enough to maintain the discipline necessary to present your product or service using a pre-determined sales process.
That discipline went right out the window at the beginning, when you decided to immediately launch into your pitch. That pitch falls some distance into the sales process—it is the Education step. You ended up skipping the Contact and Interview and Qualifying steps and went right into Education.
Let’s find out why this was such a deadly error, and why that sale is completely lost unless you apply some Sales CPR to it and run it back through the proper sales process steps.
The result of the Contact and Interview step is: You have established real communication and developed enough trust that your prospect is willing to disclose to you what they are truly thinking.
A major result of the Qualifying step is: You know all the reasons why the prospect should buy, from the prospect’s point of view.
Once those are in place, you then go into the Education step. The result of the Education step is: The prospect knows that your product or service will exceed their expectations, and they are inspired to take action to obtain your product or service.
As you can see, the only “action” your prospect took was to get you off the phone, as rapidly as possible. Not the action we are looking for! That is because you did not take the time to interview her and bring her to the point of disclosing what she was truly thinking.
Only by doing so could you then have qualified her by discovering why she should buy, from her point of view—because she was willing to tell you what she really thought.
Only then, armed with that information, can you go smoothly and successfully into the Education step.
That is how your sale can spin out of control from the beginning!