Door-to-door selling doesn’t work. Cold calling doesn’t work. Emailing leads you have no relationships with doesn’t work. Being pushy and aggressive doesn’t work. Attempting to manipulate prospects into buying doesn’t work.
These are all old-school selling techniques you need to stop using right now. But…you probably know that already. Your sales are likely plummeting and you’re struggling to stay afloat because your outbound selling techniques that used to work wonders years ago, that you built your company on, just don’t work anymore.
Buyer behaviours have changed. These selling techniques won’t work on today’s informed, knowledgeable, and in-control prospects. You need to adapt to the way customers buy and sell to them in a way they’ll respond to.
Ditch your aggressive sales behaviours and use these highly effective inbound selling techniques of the twenty-first century instead.
1. Getting to Know Your Buyers
In today’s digital age, there’s no reason to call or email prospects cold. You have a wealth of information to leverage online. Use it to your advantage. Before you pick up the phone or send that email, spend time getting to know whom you’ll be speaking to.
Learn about the company. Learn about the prospect’s role in the business. Learn about the prospect’s needs, pain points, desires, and challenges. Learn the company’s budget.
You should even go further than that to learn more about your prospects on a personal level. What are their hobbies and interests? Have they recently received an award, written a book, spoken at a conference? You can learn a lot of personal information on social media that can help you engage with prospects and build real relationships with them—just don’t be creepy about it.
Prospects don’t want to feel like they’re just a phone number on a long list of leads. They don’t want to feel like they’re just numbers to you. Treat them like humans. Get to know them.
2. Become a Thought Leader
You know what’s even more effective than getting to know your buyers, though? Allowing them to get to know you. Prospects will be far more receptive to your call or email if they know you or your brand in some way.
Becoming a thought leader can help you get your audience familiar with your name and brand, so you’re not just a stranger calling.
Blog about your industry, use social media to showcase your expertise and experience, participate in a webinar, or speak at a conference. Get your name out there and show your potential prospects you’re an expert in your field. It will ensure you have more successful conversations later on.
3. Become a Social Seller
Social media isn’t just a marketing tool. It can be used for sales, too. Actually, it’s highly effective in this manner. You can use social media in sales in a variety of ways. As we mentioned above, you can use it to establish your thought leadership, increase brand awareness, and get to know more about your prospects.
But social selling can let you do so much more. It can help you engage with prospects on their turf. It can help you delight customers after the sale so you can gain repeat business and referrals. It can allow you to be seen as a consultant and advisor.
You can use social media to answer questions and participate in industry communities. You can use it to expand your network and build partnerships with allies who can bring you business. You can use it to move prospects down the sales funnel through the use of valuable content.
The benefits of social media for sales are virtually endless. It’s time to use it to its maximum potential, because it’s one of the top selling techniques that actually work with today’s buyers.
Instead of continuing to use old-school selling techniques that just don’t work anymore, get to know your buyers, let them get to know you, and become a social seller. Your sales will no doubt improve when you update your selling tactics to match the way customers want to buy.
Posted By Author Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist
Mike is the CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist at Square 2. He is passionate about helping people turn their ordinary businesses into businesses people talk about. For more than 25 years, Mike has been working hand-in-hand with CEOs and marketing and sales executives to help them create strategic revenue growth plans, compelling marketing strategies and remarkable sales processes that shorten the sales cycle and increase close rates.