Increase Your Connections to Make B2B Sales

I’ve been observing and reading other sales experts rail on about how the sales cycles are increasing in length, how hard it is to get an appointment with a real decision makers, and how no one is returning a sales person’s phone call these days. Is this true for you too?

Personally, I had seen these things impacting our sales results over the past four years – the Great Recession seemed to accelerate the trend.

Yet, I have noticed one factor that seems to be gaining strength in our world of impersonal attitudes being displaced by the corporate wizards of purchasing.

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Four Major Mistakes when Dealing with Gatekeepers

Recently a sales team I was working with raised the question of how to deal with the Gatekeepers of the world. In previous training sessions they had been taught some of the old traditional techniques and tactics designed to overcome or by pass the gatekeepers.

The more we discussed the situation, the more I realized there are probably a number of b2b sales people making major mistakes in dealing with so called Gatekeepers. Gatekeepers are people who you need to nurture a relationship with if you want to be successful in your b2b sales efforts.

So, what are the four major mistakes made by old school b2b sales people? Here are they are, so simply avoid using these tactics if you want to win your b2b sales accounts.

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Use Success Stories to Create Interest in You

One of the best methods for creating interest from decision makers is to discuss success stories with issues, challenges or ways to increase revenues they are currently dealing with in their organization. Talk about getting their attention in a nanosecond.

Most of the b2b sales people are doing just the opposite. These smart b2b sales people are yakking about their products and benefits or wanting to set an appointment to discuss how to work together. These are old school methods and scream – “I’m a sales person and I want to sell you something!”

Decision makers today have NO TIME for pushy, aggressive or old school sales people. They want to work with business people who can advise them on the best practices and methods to reverse negative issues or accelerate positive results.

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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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