Five Strategic Selling Techniques That Will Improve Your Closing Ratios
The only thing that is consistent in the competitive landscape of the global marketplace is that things are constantly changing. While supply and demand will constantly shift, the one thing that won’t ever change is the need to implement strategic selling techniques. Strategic selling is about learning to focus your formal and informal initiatives to gain new business in your prospective market.
While we have all read countless tips for strategic selling initiatives, it’s interesting that most people forget the two main goals of any sales process. The first goal is simple: Get into the head of your customer. As a salesperson, you need to understand your target market inside and out. Goal number two is a bit harder: Create a sales strategy or recipe with a process that is always visible, logical and repeatable for continued success.
Keeping those two primary goals in mind, let’s take a look at five frequently overlooked strategic sales techniques that can greatly add to your sales game and help you improve your closing ratios:
- Start with who you are and focus on what is right in front of you. Have you ever heard one of your parents say, “Don’t try to be something you are not”? The same mantra applies here. What most people tend to miss in strategic sales is that prospects are often closer than they think. By putting a foothold down in your real life, or spending time with your existing contacts on social media, you will often find that new sales are at your fingertips. Not only do people like to have a firm understanding of who you are, your existing network often knows much more than you think they do. Some of the best salespeople I have ever met are constantly connecting with other people to establish a firm identity, reputation and social network. Once that is established, climbing into new territory is much easier because you already have support.
- Forget fancy industry terminology and focus on H2H (human-to-human) communication. The most attractive person in the world is a confident person. It can be incredibly hard to remain confident if you are throwing around big words or trying to impress people with fancy industry terminology and expertise. Often, like most things, the answer is as easy as KISS: Keep It Simple, Silly. Strategic selling is not about getting fancy—it is about creating a winning process. A winning sales process remembers that people follow people. Even more to the point, people follow CONFIDENT people.
- Segment leads by deal size for maximum efficiency. While not all salespeople are good at cold calling or generating their own leads, all salespeople need to prioritize deals they have in their pipeline. One of the basic principles in sales is understanding the difference between the effort it takes to close a small deal versus a larger deal. Typically, the larger deal just takes more work. When hunting both “rabbits “(smaller sales) and “elephants” (larger sales), a strategic sales professional will learn to aim for a ratio of about 80% rabbits to 20% elephants. By focusing more time on the rabbits, salespeople can ensure they continuously meet their sales quotas.
- Ask for the sale AND the referral. All sales start with one simple question: “Do you want to buy my product or service?” The truth is a lot of people actually forget this over time. However, another equally important principle people tend to forget is to go after the low-hanging fruit! “Do you know anyone else who may be interested in my product or service?” is an equally strategic sales question.
- Engage prospects and clients for feedback. A strategic sale does not end when the sale does or does not close. A great strategic seller understands the importance of feedback. Not only does feedback help you find out why you lost a sale and what you could do differently next time, it can also alert you to another low-hanging prospect that may generate a sale. Quite often, retention is that new acquisition. By simply engaging your prospect or client, you can become aware of other products, services or add-ons that may turn out to be of interest.
A strategic sales initiative really is only as good to the extent that it is repeatable. While it can be tempting to get lost in the complex world of strategy, sometimes upping your closing ratios is as simple as remembering to apply steadfast, proven rules to your game. As we watch people get too complicated with diets or other plans for success, one by one we see that over the long haul, slow and steady wins the race. For more information on proven best practice sales and marketing techniques, please visit us at ZINFI.com.