Each sales call is different because each client is unique. Different clients have different needs, wants and budgets – failing to acknowledge this reality will set you up for failure faster than anything else.
While Andy Albright and other leaders in National Agents Alliance encourage agents to have a “plan” when they go on sales calls, it is also important to remember to be flexible, allowing change in presentation and information, depending on each particular client’s needs, budget and personality.
Remember that your clients are people. You are asking them not only for their money, but also their trust – the way you behave will determine whether or not they trust you and feel comfortable investing money in what you’re selling. Remember that you are representing Andy, National Agents Alliance, and all other agents when you are working with clients.
Your clients will be able to tell if you are performing a pre-rehearsed sales script – so don’t do it. Cater each sale to the individual you are selling to, considering your client’s needs, budget and personality. All people do not work or think the same, so having only one script to fall back on is a recipe for failure.
Listen to each client closely – pick up on things like their interest level, whether or not they believe what you are saying, and how ready they are to close the deal. Some clients are interested from the beginning with their checkbooks in hand – listen to these people and answer any questions they may have.
If your client seems ready to buy from the get-go, answer only the questions he or she has. Don’t waste time going over unnecessary information or concerns that your client does not bring up – this invites more questions, consideration and doubt in what you are selling. If your client seems confident from the beginning, continue with that attitude by being helpful and confident in what you’re selling.
If your client is unsure from the beginning or raises a lot of questions, be prepared to answer the questions and assure your client that he or she needs what you are offering.
Inc. Magazine presented three client excuses and rejections all salespeople should be prepared to combat in order to assure clients of their potential investment:
- “I can get it cheaper elsewhere.”
- “I have a friend in the business.”
- “I did business with your company in the past and they were unprofessional.”
This is a common response from clients, but it may or may not be true. Do your research and find out the answer. If what you’re selling really is a great price, market it to your clients that way. If it is more expensive than some options but less expensive than others and has great coverage, highlight why the coverage you are offering is better than they could get elsewhere for less. Know your stuff. This way, you won’t be surprised and left without a convincing response. Be truthful and highlight the great qualities in what you and National Agents Alliance are offering.
Many people feel more comfortable trusting and investing with someone they know personally. While trusting the person you invest with is essential, friends and business do not always mix well. Highlight certain aspects of friends and business clashing, like the possibility of a ruined friendship if things go wrong. Remind your client that by investing with you, he or she can feel free to express concerns in service, coverage or price, whereas with a friend, these things might be uncomfortable to discuss. By investing with you, there is no worry of hard feelings or uncomfortable discussions.
It’s true that the first impression is a lasting impression. If another agent has misrepresented National Agents Alliance and Andy’s eight core values, that agent has more than likely left a bad taste in a number or clients’ mouths. By being aware that this is a possibility, you can be prepared to respond professionally, explaining that National Agents Alliance did not want to be represented that way and that the agent has been reprimanded or terminated. Clue your client in on details about Andy and NAA like the eight core values and other principles NAA stands for. Personally involve your client, asking him to put himself in your situation with his company. What would he do if one of his employees misrepresented his company the way that agent had – fire him? That’s exactly what your company did. Let him know that your job is to make sure he is treated right from now on. At this point, be more concerned with making things right than with making the sale. Your client will pick up on this and will be more likely to trust you.
Being prepared for statements like these allows you to change a client’s perception of National Agents Alliance. You are able to build the trust back when another agent has torn it down. Being prepared to respond to these statements will show that you are confident in Andy and NAA’s products and services, and also will show sincerity and good customer service.
Don’t be dumbfounded by questions like these – it is so easy to plan ahead. Being equipped with these responses can make a sale, even if your client was incredibly skeptical in the beginning. Remember to be personable and kind, making sure your client is comfortable and able to trust you.
These tips will prepare you for different kinds of clients you will encounter during sales. Being aware of these things in advance will make you stronger in your customer service and sales skills – take advantage of this knowledge and be as prepared as possible for your next sales call!