When it comes to selling there are some serious do’s and don’ts you should be sure to always follow. These should be things that become automatic to you, that you never have to think about because you’ve trained yourself to be the best. The list is surprisingly simple, but so very important to the success of your small business.
DO put forth a professional image
Like it or not, people are judged by their appearance within the first few seconds of meeting someone. It’s absolutely vital that you dress accordingly. Present yourself as a professional. Show you care about your business and how it’s represented. And it’s not just the clothing, make sure you’ve put yourself together. You can’t just roll out of bed, throw on a suit and fly out the door with your hair looking like David Bowie in the 80’s. Take pride in every aspect of your appearance. I can promise you your potential clients will take notice.
DON’T have poor manners
Chewing gum, using nasty or inappropriate language, talking negatively about your competition, acting rudely, basically anything your mom would not approve of when sending you off to school as a child should be avoided. It’s common sense stuff, really. Use your manors, and act like the polite and polished professional that we are all capable of being.
DO use (and improve) your listening skills
We all love to be heard. We love to feel important and like someone genuinely cares about what we have to say. Apply this to how you treat your prospects and you are guaranteed to see success. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and listen to their needs as intently as you’d want a salesperson to listen to your own needs. On top of improving close rates with this method, you will also find that you don’t have to waste your time trying to sell them on things that don’t matter to them. Focus on fulfilling their needs and you’ll be golden.
Never, ever lie. It never pays to lie! Don’t lie about your competitors, don’t lie about your pricing, don’t lie about your services, just don’t lie! Period. Breaking trust in any relationship is a sure sign of a future (if not immediate) crushing death of the relationship altogether.
DO your homework
Preparing for a meeting with a potential client can mean life or death for the deal. Get to know your prospect before ever meeting them. Do a little bit of “Google stalking”. Check out there website and learn everything you can about their business. Find them on Linkedin and learn about their experiences and interests. And don’t forget to prepare for your presentation! Winging it doesn’t look good on any salesperson and your prospect will see right through you. By coming into the meeting prepared, you will be able to ask more meaningful questions and your prospect will know that you genuinely care about their needs.
DON’T hand out your business cards
I don’t mean don’t hand them out at all, I just mean don’t hand them out like parade candy! Not everyone wants your business card, so quit flattering yourself. And handing it out when it’s not asked for means you care about you and what you can get, not what they need. By only handing out your business cards to people that ask for it, you’ll know they really want it. Don’t forget to ask for their card! Every time, ask for their card! Now, if they asked for yours, you can send a followup note via mail, email or phone simply saying it was nice to meet them. This opens the doors for future conversation and hopefully a future sale!