When looking at prospecting, you can see it as a science with statistics to analysis and art, a talent for how a sales rep communicates with a prospect. To become one of the best sales reps you need to learn both the art and the science of prospecting. Here are some tips to get you on your way.
Know your target audience
There may be up to 6.8 people involved in any one sales process and they could be spread across different departments. Those 6.8 people working in different departments will have different objectives, standards, and priorities. As you can imagine, it is going to be difficult for these people to prepare correctly for the prospecting process. Neglecting this area leads to a generic sales process.
It is important to know all the people who are making decisions in the process in each stage of the sales cycle. It needs to be adapted to meet the requirements and resolve the issues of each person in the process, regardless of their area of expertise. And it also needs to be suitable for the first person you make contact with, up to the person who will sign the contract.
Be determined and eager to make calls
It now takes more than double the attempts to contact a prospect than it did in the past. With this in mind, it seems senseless that we only try to contact someone twice. This shows that there is a lack of determination and drive to get sales.
One of the things sales reps need to overcome is the unease when making cold calls. 92% of customer interaction happens over the phone. People are used to both cold calls and interacting over the phone. Millennials are so used to communicating by all means other than calls, it is uncomfortable for them. By overcoming the awkwardness they are opening themselves up to many more opportunities.
…But don’t overload your audience
Microsoft performed a study that showed the average person will lose concentration after just 8 seconds. We are flooded with calls, email, and social media messages. If you only have 8 seconds to capture someone’s attention, you have to be quick and smart.
A common error made by a sales rep is to give to much information, their audience gets overwhelmed with information and they lose attention, the sale is normally not made.
Rather than going straight into the information, try to find out the problems your prospect has in order to start a conversation. Your initial goal should be to create a relationship instead of forcing the sale. Once the connection is made, it will be easier to close the deal. It will also be easier to close the deal if you have done your research and know your target audience.
Videos are an incredibly effective and professional way to capture the attention of the prospect, more so if it is high quality. Using a video provides a visual demonstration of the product in a way that words cannot convey. Businesses using videos have reported an increase in revenue of 49% faster than their competitors that don’t. This makes sense when you consider that the brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text!
Millennials are a generation of video. They have never had to shift through documents and it is necessary for sales reps to attract them to the product in a way that they are accustomed to. What is more, a sales video doesn’t have to take a long time to make, especially thanks to sites such as Vidyard.com and Hippovideo.io.
Perfect the follow-through
While you might think you are overdoing it, the follow-through has to be unrelenting without crossing the line. Statistics suggest that for 80% of sales, a minimum of 5 follow up calls are necessary but 44% of sales reps give up after the first.
Follow-ups don’t have to be just phone calls, messages, Linkedin and emails are all follow up methods that can transform a prospect into a customer. If somebody asks you to contact them at a later time or date, don’t assume this is a brush off and give up. Be patient and remember to follow up at the time that is suitable for the prospect.
To be successful in the art and science of prospecting, it is crucial to know your audience, to gain their attention straight away and to build a strong relationship. Paying attention to the first step and using technology while lead the way to making determined follow up in order to close the deal.
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