Stop Selling and Start Leading
Let’s face it. Sales can be intimidating if you’re someone who cringes at the thought of pushing a product, cold calling, or delivering a pitch. You’ve been “sold” before in a used car salesman way, where every conversation becomes a hard sell situation. It’s a turn-off, and Reuben Swartz explains why this approach just isn’t all that effective.
Sales is actually about building real relationships with clients, calling them for regular catch-ups, and listening to their challenges. Swartz is the founder of Mimiran customer relationship management (CRM) software and host of Sales for Nerds Podcast.
“If you don’t think of yourself as a salesperson — you’re just a small business owner who happens to be responsible for revenue — and you try to mimic someone who spends 50 hours a week selling for 20 years, you’re gonna drive yourself crazy, not have any fun and not be a great salesperson either,” he says.
So this is great news for anyone who doesn’t like to “sell.”
Swartz explains how to turn sales pitches into conversations in this Accelerate Your Business Growth episode.
He adds, “tailor meetings to suit your style rather than forcing conversations with template-like delivery. You’ll feel more comfortable and less like you’re having to fake it.”
Sales, Your Style
Not exactly sure what your style is? Swartz suggests asking these questions:
- Are you better at one-on-one chats or speaking in front of a big audience?
- Do you shine in small group meetings?
- What areas of business are you interested in expanding? (You’ll attract prospects with mutual interests.)
Turn Conversations into Connections
People know when they’re being sold to and will tend to back away from hard pitches. Instead, let the conversation flow. Swartz offers this insight in his podcast that you can put to use to develop long-term relationships that result in repeat business.
- Be curious and take an interest in prospects’ personal lives. Listen and ask follow-up questions.
- Avoid a script — it’s O.K. to go off-topic. Let the prospect guide where the conversation goes. The point is to have a real conversation and build trust.
- Be patient with yourself. “I’m not expecting every conversation to be the most amazing interview in the history of mankind. I just want to connect with people,” Swartz says. “I”m not trying to meet a certain quota. I want to reestablish relationships I’ve let dry out on the vine and make new relationships in a more constructive, deeper, more authentic way.”
Stay Ahead of the Learning Curve
Swartz offers these and other hands-on, helpful business development insight on Accelerate Your Business Growth, a podcast hosted by business and leadership coach Diane Helbig. Find out how to grow your company by listening to informative interviews with some of the sharpest minds in business. Tune in!
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