Is Your True Focus on Your Customer’s Satisfaction?

Without being corny today, I have a very important question for you.

Is Your True Focus on Your Customer’s Satisfaction?

This is a very telling question and your answer will give you insight into your degree of b2b sales success. You must take a moment and answer the question, even write it down. The reason for writing it down is to gain complete clarity regarding the reason you are in the b2b sales business. And, the answer should have something to do with your customers – creating an improvement or making their life better in some way.

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What Sales Development is Needed Today?

This is one of the most common questions I get from both Sales Managers and Sales People. What types of training and development is most important today for success in B2B sales?

Well, here is a short list of what not to be learning more of today…

  • Overcoming the gatekeeper
  • Handling Objections
  • Trial Closes after identifying any Problem
  • Asking more Pain Questions
  • 1001 ways to close
  • Learning manipulative questions or other techniques
  • how to read a power point presentation

Okay, I realize some of you know these tactics do not work in serious b2b selling and definitely not with higher level decision makers. So what should you be learning if you want to improve your b2b sales results?

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Are You a Vendor or Business Advisor?

This question is one of the most important questions you can ask of yourself. Self assessment regarding how your customers and prospects think of you as a b2b sales person.

If you are referred to as a “Vendor” it is an indication you are selling too low in the customer organization. Therefore, loyalty is limited to your last price quote. There is no compelling reason for the buyer to open up to you with important information or issues to assist you in formulating a plan of action to help this customer. Why? Because the customer feels you are just one in a thundering herd of sales people pushing the same products and services. Their is no differentiation in their mind between you and any other b2b sales person.

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New Year’s Commitment to You – the B2B Sales Person

Today’s post is a little different from all my previous posts. However, if I am committed to helping you achieve higher results during the coming year – well, it’s time to discuss everything that is important and then you can choose which course you want to take.

Personally, I have noticed a change in the b2b sales marketplace. Buyers and Decision makers have less and less time on their hands to meet with and discuss what we have to offer. Other changes have occurred that are even more taxing to our attitudes and ego – things like reserve auctions, internet shopping for things we sell,  RFP overload, and constant shopping of prices designed to minimize our profit margins.

Truthfully, we created some of this due to a lack of selling skills, pushy attitudes and talking too much about our products, services, solutions and offerings. In doing this too often, we created a commodity environment where our customers and prospects could only find one thing to differentiate on – PRICE. Yikes! We shot ourselves in the foot and then only admired our marksmanship. So what can you do?

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Success Mindset #4 – It’s All About the Customer

This is the fourth of a four part series on Success Mindsets for greater B2B sales success. When you use these four mindsets wisely and often, you will join the ranks of the B2B Sales Superstars.

The Fourth Success Mindset is…

It is ALL About the Customer

This Success Mindset should be well known and used every day, except it is not used by the vast majority of the b2b sales people I speak with today. Why? Because most b2b sales people are focused upon the sales of their product or service rather than the needs or desires of the customer.

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Success Mindset #3 – Practice Makes Perfect

This is the third part of a four part series on Success Mindsets and how you will win more often when you use them correctly.

The Third Success Mindset is…

Practice Makes Perfect

This is the most over looked of the success mindsets. Why? Because it takes effort and discipline to think like a real winner.

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Ten Fatal Flaws of B2B Sales Presentations to Avoid

Sales Presentations remain the top method or skill you need to win over prospects or to take a customer to the next level of success. Therefore, it is an area you need to focus your attention. Learning how to make superior presentations means also knowing what not to do during your b2b sales presentations.

To assist you I want to share the Big 10 Mistakes people make during actual sales presentations. These mistakes lead to losing the business, sale or the account. Remember, your credibility is on the line every time you make the most of each opportunity – making certain to avoid these ten mistakes…

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Be Frank in Your Discussions about Tough Issues

One of the issues with new b2b sales people is the lack of frank or candid dialogue with a prospect or customer. Now understand I’m not saying you should be combative or defensive in your talks with prospects or customers – what I am saying is you must get to the meat of touchy issues or potential problems or setbacks.

Too often I see b2b sales people attempting to be politically correct or something – it just frustrates me when I witness it.

Look the Sales Superstars don’t dance around tough topics, they attack them head on and direct. Let me clarify something here – you can be direct about a topic and be wise regarding how you say it. Being direct and rude does not get you a victory in this game – you will lose your credibility and rapport.

Looks like we are back to the rapport, trust and credibility thing again. Building rapport is all about building trust which when used with experience and expertise leads directly to credibility. You must take the time to develop these soft skill issues before charging head long into a touchy or difficult subject.

So assuming you have build rapport, trust and credibility, you are now ready to deal with any other issues you have learned about through your questioning skills. So what are some of these tough or difficult topics?

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Are You Curious Enough?

Regarding sales people, one trait that I have noticed with the best sales people – including the sales superstars – is the trait of being curious. Why is curiosity important?

Curiosity is the natural need to discover reasons or just information about things we see, hear or touch during the day. For sales people, this is a very positive trait because a curious sales person is one who will ask more questions. More questions leads to new discoveries and information that can impact the progress of the sales process.

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Business Acumen is Necessary Skill for B2B Superstarsrs

Step Two in our series of steps to becoming a B2B sales superstar is about Business Acumen. Many people ask, ” what the heck is business acumen?” Well, it’s a term used regarding your knowledge of business philosophy and how organizations survive or thrive. It all about understanding exactly how a company makes money. So how does business acumen impact a sales person’s success?

In the world of business to business (b2b) selling, it is one of the most critical factors for success. How well  can you place a financial value on your product or service solution? Also, Return on Investment (ROI) is used by the customer as a tool to make a buying decision.

During a sales development workshop I was presenting, one of the top sales people in the room suddenly realized that his customers had been asking him for ROI assessments so the finance guys would sign off on several large contracts. Having come through the traditional sales ranks, he didn’t realize the importance of business acumen – the ability to figure and show financial results to a customer – for larger or major sales.

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