6 Ways to Improve Your Entrepreneurial Prospecting Skills
Entrepreneurs and sales professionals care a great deal about their clients — just like a doctor cares – about the well-being of his clients.
Moreover, just like a great lawyer- you should ask relevant questions without judgment to ensure that you deliver the best solution possible to resolve your customer needs even if you must refer your prospect to your competitors.
Always, think in term of doing what’s right first and foremost.
High-performance sales organizations drive productivity because they empower their people to do what’s right all the time.
Have you ever visited a doctor who says hello, then went on to explain his credential time in business specialty and began immediately prescribing the treatment without asking you a single question.
Alternatively, maybe your visit to an attorney who spent most of your meeting probing you about your financial ability to pay your legal fees rather than listen to your story. And the current problem you are facing.
The above scenario sound observed of course, we assume that no respectable doctor or attorney will behave that way. A good doctor will spend much time interviewing you and examining you before prescribing any type of treatment.
A reasonable attorney will spend a significant amount of time questioning and listening to your story without judgment before exploring and evaluating all available legal options to handle your case.
These professionals understand the power and value of asking the right questions to understand your situation before even thinking about a remedy or a solution.
Yet, many salespeople and entrepreneur consider themselves professionals, they hardly ask any questions at all, before starting pitching a generic solution that they believe it might be the right thing for your problem.
According to Gongs analysis of 519,000 discovery calls, there is a direct correlation between the number of questions a salesperson or an entrepreneur, ask and the chances of success. Whether a salesperson or entrepreneur has to pitch his product or business solution to a client, government agency, a bank or a group of investors. Being prepared and asking key questions is vital to gain trust and permission to continue the conversation.
Asking 11 to 14 questions throughout the discovery call is more effective than asking 5 to 10 questions. Issues related to the potential client business pain-point and objectives, often lead to establishing trust and close business.
You should know that effective questioning should be evenly dispersed throughout the meeting, not just one time you start shooting questions like coming from an arrow one after the other one. No, no, no. That’s not the way to go about it.
So at the beginning of the session, ask questions. As questions throughout the conversation that you have with your client. The uses of collaborative words and client engagement in the process produce the best result you can hope for.
Always ask why, only a few sales entrepreneurs if you will. Take the time to dig in deep to understand business challenges, the motivation behind it. What are the priority that the specific client or prospect try to accomplish?
Decision makers love to talk about their business. They love to talk about their accomplishment and love you, to listen to them. So they have specific expectations from you as a sales professional and entrepreneur. As a subject matter expert, you should show that you genuinely care about their needs and wants.
You need to ask questions, of course, and questions should be like the following. For example, what are the current challenges you are looking to solve right now, Mr. Customer? Or what is the area that needs immediate attention from us? What differentiate your strategy from others in the market?
What kind of competitive advantage do you currently have that you feel is being diminished or maybe accentuated? How could we potentially make you look better in your market? What are you trying to accomplish with the adoption of this specific solution, Mr. Customer? What is your goal in the short-term or long-term.
These kind of questions allow the customer to express themselves. Client are often more eager to find a business solution that will resolve an operational gap and allow the business to gain a competitive edge.
Customer centricity is vital to win business. And it should be all about helping the client first. The sale should become an extension of solving a business challenge. Not a self- centered way to move products, hit your quota or make a commission check.
We understand this is a byproduct of rendering service, but it should not be your focus primarily. Additionally, listen, listen and listen a bit more. Listening is key to building a relationship.
Listening is key to establishing report. So please do not allow your inner chatter to take over your listening capability. It’s not time to worry about your potential client objections, excuses and every legitimate reasons. Do not engage in selective listening. You can always separate essential fact and assumptions from the superficial at the very end.
So keep asking questions and take good notes, just like a good doctor or lawyer would. Evaluate the symptoms of the problem, but strive to identify the root cause of the problem. You cannot solve what you don’t precisely know.
Additionally, always recap the essence of the challenge the prospect faces, that is important. Recap the essence of the challenge the prospect face, caring salespeople, or entrepreneurs take their time recapping the list of current challenges that need resolution.
A customized business solution that discuss current challenges will need to be established, explained in detail before implementation. Remember that clarity, transparency and empathic listening coupled with flawless execution creates repeat sales or long-term relationships. Remember one thing that is absolutely vital, your brand is more important than any sale you will ever make.
Again, your brand is more important than a sell. This is a truism for professional salespeople and entrepreneurs. It’s the key to your success. Salespeople. entrepreneur reputation and integrity often dictate the level of the repeat business and success, you should always act in the best interest of your customer.
Never sell the wrong solution to make a deal. If your solution does not fit your potential client needs. Never hesitate to refer your potential client to another vendor whose business solution might be a better fit.
A great doctor will refer you to another specialist when your situation is beyond his or her scope of expertise. So please do the same. Help your potential client improve their situation. They are hiring you to solve their problem. So great relationships are built in a moment of crisis, you must always see around the corners and forge long lasting relationship with your client and competitors.
Even, if you prefer to operate alone, always think long-term that is absolutely key. Remember that potential clients have unique businesses that require a variety of customized unique solutions. Your company might not always have the right business solution. In this case, be honest, be transparent, and never force a sale that will tarnish your reputation along with your own company. Once you diagnose the ail or the problem, prescribe the right solution. Including competitors solution as well.
If you don’t have the right solution, then follow up to ensure client satisfaction. Happy client will refer business to you primarily because of your honesty and integrity. Additionally, always, respect your competitors. Never bad mouth, your competitors because it will come back and bite you. I believe that the market is comprised of good companies and people that are looking to add value just like you are.
Therefore, you should respect and admire your competitors contributions to the local economy. Embrace the mentality of continued optimism by referring potential client You cannot serve to your competitors. Keep good relationship with your competitors, and there is plenty of room for growth for everyone.
Remember, there is always a potential that you might lose your job, or your company might end up working for a competitor. So build good rapport ahead of time and do it through goodwill, your selflessness will trigger reciprocity leads back when your competitor solution do not meet their prospect need. In other words, one hand wash the others helped me today, I will help you tomorrow.
Plus, it doesn’t cost you anything at all. This business maturity will benefit everyone involved, and it’s a win-win forward thinking approach. So in conclusion, as a professional career salesperson, you should care just like a doctor would, or an attorney would, about the well-being of your client or prospect.
Moreover just like a lawyer, you should ask relevant questions without judgment to ensure that you deliver the best solution possible, to resolve your customers needs. Even if you must refer your prospect to your competitors. Always think in terms of doing what’s right first and foremost.
High performance sales organization drive productivity because they empower their people to do what’s right all the time for the benefit of their customers, community and shareholders as a whole. Thanks for listening.