So you convert four prospects out of ten. Does a 40% success rate mean you are wasting 60% of your marketing budget? No, but maybe some sales training could increase your rate to 60% – and that would up your turnover by 50%!
Here are a few tips that may prove valuable
Get yourself into the proper frame of mind. You can’t expect to do a good job if you are still fuming about the idiot who cut you up on your way to the appointment. Let go of the day’s frustrations and concentrate on the customer.
Find some common ground. Sometimes this means talking about (or letting the customer talk about) last night’s football or the awful state of the country before getting down to business. Just don’t let it get out of hand!
Clearly identify the customer’s need. It’s a cliché but don’t try to sell the drill bit – sell the hole!
Use their words, not yours. Sometimes we get carried away with our own clever jargon. If the customer wants ‘plenty of loft space’, don’t turn it into ’30 square metres of unobtrusive storage solution’.
Paint attractive word pictures. Ask the customer to ‘imagine yourself driving through the countryside in your new convertible on a sunny day’.
Use positive reinforcement. When the customer himself talks about the benefits of ownership, don’t be tempted to add lots more features – (s)he knows what (s)he wants. So just agree and ask for the order.
Put yourself in their shoes. Try to see things from the customer’s viewpoint; ask yourself, ‘Would I buy it from me?’ If you can’t convince yourself ….
When they suggest a feature they want, ask questions. ‘Why is that important to you?’ The more you ask, the more you will understand what they are looking for and the better you will be able to match your product to their requirements.
Always be credible. Don’t make outrageous claims. Most customers can spot them and the ones that don’t come back looking for refunds when they discover the truth.
Be prepared to say no if you believe they are making a mistake. It’s awfully hard to turn down a sale but they will thank you and probably become your most loyal customer in the future.
I’ll be honest with you, creating leads is great, but it is also a nightmare if you don’t have the skills to convert them into sales. However, most of the business owners I meet don’t consider themselves to be good at selling and most have done little training; they try to workout everything themselves.
Do you think that it’s possible to gain those valuable sales skills?
I think it’s like putting your head in a hole in the ground like an ostrich does! Wouldn’t it make sense to work on improving your sales and marketing skills on an ongoing basis?
Here is why …
Psychologists recognise that there are four stages of competence in any skill area. These are:
1) Unconscious Competence: You totally lack knowledge and skill and are totally unaware of the need for training – or the skill.
2) Conscious Incompetence: You discover there are skills you need and you may know that others are more competent than you.
3) Conscious Competence: You’ve acquired the new skills and knowledge. You actively put them into practice and gain confidence as a result .
4) Unconscious Competence: Your skills have now become habit and you perform tasks without conscious thought or effort. You’re on autopilot and your confidence is at a high level.
So my question for you is: Where are you when it comes to sales and marketing skills?
If you’re better than most small business owners, then you’re at a Level 3 in some areas and Level 2 in others. But even if you’re at the top of your game, there’s still a bit of Level 1 lurking around somewhere. It could be on LinkedIn, or to do with SEO or defending price.
Let’s face it, no one gets 10 out of 10 for everything that they need to know and the skills they have in sales and marketing. But the truth is – a lack of skills and knowledge is leaking money from your business each and every day.
Here are just some of the leaks:
Your website is not converting. This is because you don’t understand CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation).
You’re leaking referrals. You could be wining referrals from 40% of your clients, but you have no system in place and so your numbers are round the 10% mark.
You don’t really understand LinkedIn and you are leaving a pot of gold sitting there, just waiting to be asked for.
You are only converting 20% of your meeting into sales because you have never done any sales training; yet if you just got your conversions up to 40%, then you would double the size of your business over time.
So take action to improve your sales skills and conversion rates NOW!
Enabling you to sign up to a free social media dashboard to use it as you wish.
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Social Media Management
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And wouldn’t it be fantastic to know what is working and what is not? Wouldn’t you like to know which Tweets and posts are getting read and which ones are getting clicked on; also what time of day gets more people to click and go to your website, as opposed to other times of day?
Sign up at this link in order to give it a try. Signing up is free, or you can upgrade for only £14.99 per month.
One of the biggest mistakes made by most business is leaving referrals to chance.In other words, not having a referral marketing system and instead relying on the fact that you ‘do a good job’ to encourage people to refer you to others.And some people will do just that out of the goodness of their own heart.Others however, will think you always look busy and probably don’t need any more business.Whilst others may just not take the time to think about who to refer you to, because they are so busy.
My point is that “if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail”.Or, more accurately, you never MAXimise your referral possibilities.So you must plan.
Let’s have a look at the numbers!Suppose you have 100 clients and your plan is to ask each of them once per year for a referral.Let’s say that as a result you get 100 referrals (note – some clients will not give you any referrals, whilst others will give you 5 or 6).
Then let’s say that because of the quality of referrals in terms of leads you convert 50% of these into sales.What has just happened?You have just grown your business by 50%, with no marketing risk whatsoever.
So how can you MAXimise this?Well let’s get a little adventurous and say that we are going to ask for referrals twice per year, or even four times per year.I am sure you get the picture.
Then when you have thought about your current clients the next question to think about is who else will give you referrals?
This list could include:
Prospects you did not sell to
Sports club members
Your suppliers (especially those who benefit if you sell more)
Your bank manager
Your PR or press contacts
Your marketing advisors, designers
Companies selling similar non competitive products into a similar market as yours
The list goes on and on.
So, what are you going to do about Referral Marketing?
How many times are you going to ask for a referral?What are you going to say?Who is the best person to ask?How are you going to train them?What is success?In other words, what would a good target of success be for this Referral Marketing plan?Could you set a target to win 10 referrals per month and to close 50% of those?
If you need help with referral Marketing, simply call The Prudent Marketing Company on 01256 345 556.
Each month, you will attend a one-day workshop plus a fortnightly Webinar.
The Prudent Masterclass Programme is a twelve-month marketing programme designed to help Marketing Assistants, Marketing Managers and those responsible for Marketing. The objective being to help delegates to implement proven sales and marketing systems to make your business work better. We analyse each part of your Marketing and automate and optimise what you already have in place.
We help get rid of what’s not working and increase the performance of what is. We help you develop a dynamic marketing programme and plan.
Whether you have a start-up or established business, you will benefit from this programme. Take a step back and work through a structured process.
The Programme is run by Steve Mills, The Prudent Marketer. Steve has worked with thousands of businesses in various industries for over 20 years helping them grow their businesses.
The Marketing Masterclass pulls together the best and latest ideas from thought leaders and trainers around the world. In this Masterclass, you will learn the key elements to successful marketing and by the time you finish the programme, you will have grown your business 30% to 100%.
Join the Marketing Programme NOW!
The programme commences on 8th July 2015. This is a twelve-month commitment and you will be asked to sign a contract agreeing to this twelve-month commitment. The reason we are doing this is because marketing is not a one off event but rather, a commitment to take action in order to get results over a twelve-month period. We want you to be part of a team of like minded businesses who are committed to help each other to grow.
Payment Option 1
The cost of the programme is £125 per month + VAT.
Payment Option 2
The second option is to pay up front. The cost of this is only £1,200 + VAT.
Payment Option 3
By choosing option three you get get to attend the programme and work with Steve half a day per month ‘one to one’ on your business. This is a tailor made service, working with Steve. The investment here is £500 + VAT per month.
The Return on your Investment
The ROI (return on investment) from this Marketing Programme should be in excess of £100,000 worth of new business won. However, the key is not the workshop, but rather the action you are willing to take, as a result of the workshop.
To book your place, call 01256 345 556, or click here NOW!
Importantly – Are you willing to take the agreed action to do so?
If the answer to these questions is YES, then we should speak. I’ve set aside some time for us to do so, on a one to one basis. During that time, I’ll evaluate your sales and marketing and work with you collaboratively to create an immediately actionable plan to increase your sales and profits.
There is no charge for this and there’s no catch. If you enjoy the conversation and get value from it, we can discuss you being part of my Prudent Marketing Academy, or us working together, for a longer term. If we decide to work together, then our aim will be to create a 10 to 100 times return on investment for you.
After our meeting, you will have some great ideas to grow your business. Or, perhaps we will start working together to grow your business. Either way, I promise you, there will be no hard selling.