Working in sales can sometimes leave you feeling like you’re lost in space. It’s a griding and daunting endeavor with no clear end in sight. The little light you do see at the end of the tunnel seems so close but always just out of reach.
If you’re selling something niche, or even if you’re just new to the business, you need to be prepared for the general public to be wary of your efforts as selling today is harder than it has ever been, especially when it comes to face-to-face interactions. In fact, there is a high chance that most of your sales pitches will be met with a lot of skepticism.
When faced with such resistance, it can become difficult to maintain trust with your customers and close deals regularly. It’s not uncommon in sales to run into a slump or a roadblock which can make you question whether it was the right career choice for you.
However, all salespeople experience doubts about their abilities at some point in their careers, even the very best of the best. To overcome this temporary setback, you must learn how to change your perception of yourself. If you’re feeling lost, these four tips will help you ground yourself and move forward as a confident salesperson:
1. Sell to Yourself First
Most salespeople try to either craft a pitch in their head right before they meet with a prospect or come up with something on the fly during the meeting. While a rare few can pull this off, most salespeople who go in without a plan will stumble.
Once face-to-face, many forget what they had hoped to say, lose the flow of the conversation, say things that don’t sound as good as they thought, and seem come across as completely unprepared. This will often confuse, annoy, or even anger potential customers and make you seem like you have no idea what you’re doing.
It is important to properly plan your pitch. Write down any points you know you need to cover and anticipate questions the prospect might ask you. Then, find someone to practice with and go over it until it is succinct and engaging.
When practicing, try selling your pitch to yourself first by recording yourself with your phone and then watching it back. If your pitch doesn’t sound appealing to you, it likely won’t appeal to anyone else. Recording yourself allows you to watch your performance closely afterwards, thus allowing you to make necessary adjustments before you go toe-to-toe with a prospect.
You should also consider the flow of the conversation as well as how natural it sounds. While you don’t want to be too formal and rigid – as it would show a lack of passion – you don’t want to be too casual either.
Don’t use words – fancy or slang – that you otherwise wouldn’t use in a regular conversation. Don’t ever use any words that you’re not 100% sure of the meaning of. Remember, nobody likes jargon or cringey buzzwords so relax, stay within yourself, and keep the conversation flowing and easy to understand.
Finally, come up with ways to convince yourself that your services are worth it. If your product sounds like something you’d be interested in, it’s more likely to be of interest to others.
2. Really Know Your Product
If you don’t understand your product, you won’t be able to convince anyone of why they would want it. Research your product thoroughly and be prepared for any question your customers might throw at you.
There’s a very good chance your customers have already done their own research and are looking to see what sets you apart from your competitors. So, during your research, make a note of information and details the typical buyer does not have access to. If they have a specific problem, you must be able to demonstrate why your product or service is the solution.
3. Make It About the Customer
While it may sound harsh, customers don’t care about you, they care about what you’re selling. When crafting your pitch, keep the focus on why your customer may want your product.
If you can, do your homework on your customer and their business and tailor your pitch to their specific needs. Avoid generic pitches and always have a sincere desire to help the customer, answer their questions and show them proof your goods or services will do what they need them to do.
4. Quit Overthinking It
Finally, relax. You don’t have to know everything and not everything has to be perfect. Overthinking things may result in more mistakes and might make your pitch messy. Stay in the moment and show that you’re interested in helping them. If you’re well prepared, you’ll be able to stay more relaxed which will also help your prospect to relax. Without their guard up, you may just find it a lot easier to sell them on your product or service and seal the deal.