Category: Guest article

Guest Article: Disqualify Sales Prospects to Facilitate Sales Cycles

Guest Article: Disqualify Sales Prospects to Facilitate Sales Cycles

By Michael Halper

As a sales person needing a commission and to hit quota, we are usually in a mode where we are telling sales prospects why our products are the right product for them. But if the sales opportunity is not moving in the direction or at the speed that you would like, it can be powerful to do the opposite and disqualify the prospect by questioning if our product is the right fit for them.

New Car Example

Let’s take an example of a new car shopper to display how this could work. The prospect has been looking at cars, done the research, completed the test driving, and narrowed the choice to one car. She has expressed interest but is hesitant to move forward to the next step in the process which is to purchase.

At this point the momentum and speed of the sales cycle has slowed so the sales person has three options:

1. Do nothing: The sales person could do nothing and let the prospect manage the speed and direction. This can lead to getting stuck in “idle land” which could result in more time being wasted on both sides and increase the probability of “no decision”.

2. Push harder: The sales person could push harder and try to sell more aggressively to the prospect. The risk here is that, if there is internal confliction going on in the sales prospect, then by pushing harder could push them away.

3. Disqualify: When the sales person notices the hesitation and confliction, they can disqualify by mentioning that maybe the purchase is not right. After this is done, if the purchase is a good fit, the sales prospect will begin to respond by selling on why it is a good fit and get through their hesitation.

As you can see from those options, disqualifying a prospect when they show resistance or hesitation can be a very powerful sales tactic. Below are some of the key benefits from doing this at the right time in sales opportunities:

Improve Momentum

When you do this on a qualified prospect with genuine interest and authority to buy, when you push them away by disqualifying, they will typically come back by selling you on why it makes sense. By the prospect selling you, this can take a deal that is either not moving or moving backward and create new momentum.

Uncover New Information

When a sales prospect begins to sell you after a disqualification, you will stand to uncover new information as they will likely communicate in their own words why it makes sense and that could uncover new details on their needs and how they stand to benefit.

Establish Credibility

By disqualifying a sales prospect, you will take a huge stride in the area of establishing credibility. This is powerful as the typical sales person will opt to be more aggressive in a scenario where they sense hesitation. By you disqualifying, not only do you stand out from the competition, but you also appear to be putting the interests of the prospect before your own interests of closing a deal.

Michael Halper is an ICF certified coach that works with individuals and organizations helping to drive growth and improvement. For more information about coaching and development visit Compass Coaching you can read more about Disqualifying Sales Prospects or Sales Coaching.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Michael_Halper

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Guest Article: LinkedIn Profile Tips – The 10 Mistakes You Want to Avoid and Why

Guest Article: LinkedIn Profile Tips – The 10 Mistakes You Want to Avoid and Why

By Neal Schaffer

A lot of people tell you what you should be doing, but what about what you shouldn’t be doing?

LinkedIn is the place to not only find others but also to be found. And that is why you need a LinkedIn Profile that not only helps you get found but also will entice people to contact you once they view your profile. I see many people making fundamental mistakes that actually work against them in this aspect. If you’re going to spend time putting together a LinkedIn profile, I assume you want to maximize your chances of being contacted by the right people, right?

With that in mind, I have created an easy-to-understand list of a few things to check for with my reasoning. If it sounds like an exercise in search engine optimization, you are on the right path. Just like any website owner, you want your LinkedIn profile to stick out and be found!

Enjoy my LinkedIn Profile Tips!

1. Not Displaying Your Personal Photo

I wrote an entire blog post about why you should include your photo in your LinkedIn profile, but it all comes down to having social media credibility or not. There are too many fake profiles on LinkedIn, so you want to show that you are real. If you have taken the time to complete your LinkedIn profile, why wouldn’t you display your photo? It just raises too many potential questions. And company logos or photos of pets obviously have no value here

2. LinkedIn Profile Headline is Not Branded Enough

See that space underneath your name? That is your “Professional” or Profile Headline. It will appear in search results next to your name, as well as next to any questions you ask or answer. It is, in essence, your elevator speech in a few words. Are you just putting your title and company name here? Don’t! This is the place where you need to appeal to anyone who finds you in a search result to reach out and look at your profile. Your Profile Headline is the single most important piece of real estate on your LinkedIn Profile, and you need to brand it as such.

3. LinkedIn Status Update is Not Appealing

This is that “What are you working on?” box that I refer to as a “Status Update.” Assuming someone finds you and looks at your profile, chances are they are going to be looking at what you write here simply because that it appears just underneath your Headline Profile. What do you write here? Many people in transition note that they are looking for a job here. What do you use your LinkedIn Status Update for? It is part of your branding exercise, and it should be something appealing that will both inform the reader of your latest activities as well as hopefully add to, not subtract from, your LinkedIn Brand.

4. Don’t List Enough Companies You Worked At Or Schools Attended

One of the ways you are found on LinkedIn is through searches on company names or schools. If you are only listing your current company and/or not even displaying your college, you are missing out on potentially being found. Check this out: I did my Junior year of college abroad in Beijing nearly 20 years ago. I had been out of touch with all of the 15 or so Americans that were there that year. Two of those 15 have found me on LinkedIn! And another high school friend who I lost touch with found me this week on LinkedIn. They would not have found me had I not listed my Junior year abroad school and high school name on my profile. Companies are even more important in that there are potentially more colleagues that may be trying to find you or recruiters trying to network with you! You may be missing out!

5. Not Having Three LinkedIn Recommendations

This is the same as not having your personal photo on your LinkedIn profile. Why? When you sign up for LinkedIn and first fill out your profile, LinkedIn recommends that you write three LinkedIn Recommendations. You need to do this in order to get your LinkedIn Profile to 100% Completion. Job postings on LinkedIn similarly require three LinkedIn Recommendations. These recommendations can only work in your favor, so why don’t you have at least three of them?

6. Too Few Connections

This is a topic for debate, but too many people have too few connections on their LinkedIn Profile, and thus are not getting found. The idea is simple: when you do a search you will see results from your network. And vice-versa. So the more connections you have the more search results you will appear in pure and simple.

7. Not Listing Three Websites

LinkedIn gives you the ability to list three websites on your profile. Are you taking advantage of it? Do you have a Twitter profile or other social networking profile that you want to advertise? Company website? A blog that you enjoy reading? Anything that you would want associated with yourself should be listed here. You will be adding to the search engine optimization of your own websites just by the fact that you list them here!

8. Not Claiming Your Personal URL

When you sign up to LinkedIn you are provided a public URL which you can then include on your email signature or wherever else you want to lead people to your LinkedIn Profile from. You can customize this when you edit your profile. Claiming your name here is one of the first things you should have done on LinkedIn. If you have a common name, make sure you claim your LinkedIn URL before others do!

9. No Branded Summary Rich with Keywords

Assuming that someone finds you in a search result, likes your Profile Headline, and isn’t scared away by your Status Update, the next most important part of your profile will be your Summary. This is the chance to fully brand yourself and ensure that any keywords that you want associated with yourself are found here. You also want to write something compelling, just as you would in the Executive Summary of your resume. This is your stage to tell the world who you are and what you can do! Utilize it to your fullest advantage!

10. No Job Descriptions

Even if you’ve listed positions at companies that you previously held, it means nothing if you don’t have any job descriptions. Job descriptions provide you the perfect opportunity to pepper your profile with keywords that will help you get found. Why aren’t you taking advantage of this?

Did I miss any that you’d like to share? Let me know! And if you didn’t make any of the above mistakes, congratulations! Your LinkedIn Profile is in good shape!

Neal Schaffer is an internationally recognized social networking guru helping companies and individuals embrace social media for personal and business applications. His experience in creating the Windmill Networking Blog – a social networking world that has become so vast in one year that it constitutes one of the widest read LinkedIn blogs world-wide-resulted in his upcoming first book Understanding, Leveraging & Maximizing LinkedIn. Schaffer is a highly sought-after speaker and consultant noted for his energetic and passionate presentations. His development of Windmill Networking and the LinkedIn potential parallels two decades of success in sales and business development in the technology sector, concentrating on the Asia-Pacific region He is the former Director of Sales, Asia Pacific East for Datapath, and Regional Vice President of Asia Pacific Sales for Espial. He earned a Bachelor of Arts from Amherst College in Asian Studies and is fluent in Chinese and Japanese. He resides with his wife and two children in Newport Beach, CA.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Neal_Schaffer

http://EzineArticles.com/?LinkedIn-Profile-Tips—The-10-Mistakes-You-Want-to-Avoid-and-Why&id=2769684

 

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Guest Article: The 3 Key Components To Grow Any Business

Guest Article: The 3 Key Components To Grow Any Business

By Kay R. Sanders

If you are in sales, have you ever wondered why you can’t seem to increase your sales results? There has to be a way to get predictable results! Right? The answer is yes; you can produce predictable results. In order to produce such predictable outcomes, there are three key components every sales person must consider to grow a business.

The three key components to grow any business are:

  1. Generating Leads
  2. Setting Appointments
  3. Converting Leads into Sales Presentations

Each component is a vital part of growing a business. It starts with generating enough leads or contacts of individuals who are in the target market and who would benefit or are interested in the product(s) or services a salesperson is selling. Without leads, a sales person would not have anyone to present their product or service! Next is setting up the appointment that creates the opportunity to present the product or service to individuals who would benefit and possibly would want to buy. Last but not least is the part where leads convert into sales presentations. These three components are the stepping stone in any sales process, and one would not work without the other.

The sales industry is one of the best industries to be in, with unlimited income potential and a lifelong job security. Salespeople are in high demand because every business needs salespeople to sell their products. Without salespeople, businesses would not be able to operate. Being in sales in not a bad thing, even though many feel bad or embarrassed about being in sales. Instead, be proud to be a sales person because you do can make a difference in people’s life’s with the products or services they are selling.

Every year more and more people start a career in sales. Unfortunately, many also quit the business because of one major obstacle: they don’t know how to sell! You see if you know how to sell and you know about the sales process, you have the potential to make a substantial amount of money. But the majority of salespeople start in sales with limited knowledge of how to sell. Their employers give them some basic training on what to say to prospect, and then they send them out with these words:

Go make a lot of calls and talk to as many people as possible since eventually someone will buy.

That’s just like throwing mud on the wall. Some mud sticks, but most of it falls off.

It’s the same in sales, if you talk to people without the knowledge of

  • how to approach them,
  • what to say,
  • figure out what their true needs are.

You are throwing mud on the wall. The majority of people say: “I’m not interested.” Occasionally you do get to make a sale but that’s probably because the prospect wanted what you were selling.

Selling is not always easy. If you’ve ever struggled in sales before, I can understand and relate to you. At the end of the day, in sales, you have to know how to sell. You have to know about systems that can assist you in the sales process. You have to know

  • what to say,
  • when to say it,
  • how to close,
  • how to handle objections,
  • how to set appointments,
  • how to build trust and rapport.

These are all skills that you have to know to be successful.

You also have to decide if you want to become successful and do whatever it takes to get where you want to be, meaning there will be sacrifices that you have to make to get there.

However, if you are not willing to make those sacrifices and take action, and you rather continue to argue for your limitations, guess what’s going to happen… you get to keep your limitations.

Fortunately, selling is a learned skill! If you want to become successful in your sales career, you have to do is learn new skills. Then practice, practice, and practice some more. You should be able to generate leads, book appointments, and convert leads into sales. Once you learn new sales skills and consistently apply these skills, you will quickly see a tremendous increase in not only your sales results but also your confidence and self-esteem. Nothing feels better than success, and anyone who sets their mind to it and does what is necessary to improve their skills can become successful.

Kay Sanders is a Sales Acceleration Coach who helps Network Marketers and Sales People to increase their sales results and take their business or sales career to the next level. Visit http://www.embracingsales.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary coaching consultation.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Kay_R._Sanders
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