The Art of Sales, not by Sun Tzu

The Art of Sales, not by Sun Tzu

I just got back from a weekend in Fiji and while I was there I took some time to think about what makes an outstanding salesperson, I mean I’ve met a lot of great salespeople in my time at Crucial but only a few outstanding ones. I have also made it a personal challenge to always be improving my sales ability and through my own learnings and through this little quest I believe I’ve identified what I are the 5 key ingredients.

1. Control with Questions

An outstanding salesperson will be able to control a conversation with by asking the right questions, these are always open ended questions which usually trigger an emotion for the customer, build a better understanding of their needs or are leading questions that funnel the prospect towards the right solution for themselves.

2.Master Body Language and Human Psychology.

  • This is such an incredible topic and we could go on for pages about it so instead here are some questions and little facts for you to ponder.
  • Did you know that 80% of what we think, feel or want to say can be identified through our body language?
  • Did you know when dealing with men its best to stand or sit on an angle so that you don’t seem combative and with women you’re meant to stand or sit directly facing them?
  • If you knew that someone was visual would continue down the auditory route and talk their ear off or would you show them? Well there are triggers for this for example if you’re telling someone about a new product that you have and they respond with ‘I don’t see the benefits’ then you may just need to change your approach and let them SEE the product for themselves instead of hearing about it from you.

3. Be an Athlete

The outstanding salespeople are athletes. They train and practice before their presentations, they have coaches and they are continually looking to improve.

4. Call for the Close

The best of the best know how to call for the close. Did you that in most sales scenarios you will need to handle up to 5 objections so why not handle them along the way instead of at the end of the sales process? Here’s a cool little close that you can try which I learned from the master himself Tom Hopkins. The close is called the ‘Alternate of Choice’ and it goes like this

“I can have the fridge delivered tomorrow before the weekend for you or would prefer to have it delivered on Monday so you have some time to clean out your existing one over the weekend?”

Notice how I didn’t ask if they were buying the fridge but rather assumed that they were going ahead with the investment. Try it sometime and if you do get objections it’s most likely because you haven’t addressed all your prospects needs and wants so go back to your questioning.

5. Ask for Referrals

The best of the best always ask for referrals, this is really easy when you make it part of your sales cycle and they are usually the best leads to work with.

There are so many ways to close a sale but the most important thing to remember is that when you do you’re doing it with your customer in mind and not your own pocket because after all we as salespeople are here to find the best solution for the people who come to us.