ABCs of Selling
A fellow BNI member emailed this to me last week, and I thought it would be worth sharing:) Enjoy.
Not long ago, I was listening as one of my nephews practiced his ABCs. He had a little picture book that helped him remember what the letters stood for, and he studied it intently, determined to be the first in his class to know all the letters and words. With his determination, I knew he would master the alphabet in no time at all.
As he worked, I started thinking about what those letters mean to me, after a lifetime in sales and years of helping young hopefuls get started in their careers. I didn't draw pictures, but these are the words my alphabet book would include:
“A”vailability for your customers is essential, so they can reach you with questions, concerns or reorders.
“B”elieve in yourself and your company, or find something else to sell.
“C”ustomers aren't always right, but if you want to keep them as your customers, find a way to make them right.
“D”eliver more than you promise.
“E”ducation is for life-never stop learning.
“F”ollow up and follow through. Never leave a customer hanging.
“G”oals give you a reason to go to work every day. When you reach your goals, set higher ones!
“H”umanize your selling strategy by learning everything you can about your customers.
“I” is the least important letter in selling.
“J”oin trade organizations and community groups that will help you both professionally and personally, such as Toastmasters, chamber of commerce or Junior Achievement.
“K”now your competitors and their products as well as you know your own.
“L”isten to your customers or they'll start talking to someone else.
“M”aybe is the worst answer a customer can give. No is better than maybe. Find out what you can do to turn it into a yes.
“N”etworking is among the most important skills a salesperson can develop. Someone you know knows someone you need to know.
“O”pportunities are everywhere. Keep your antennae up.
“P”rice is not the only reason customers buy your product, but it is a good reason.
“Q”uality can never be sacrificed if you want to keep your customers satisfied.
“R”elationships are precious: They take time to develop and are worth every minute you invest in them.
“S”ervice is spelled “serve us” in companies that want to stay in business for a long time.
“T”rust is central to doing business with anyone. Without it, you have another word that begins with T: Trouble.
“U”nlimited potential is possible whether you sell computers or candy. You are the only one who can limit your potential.
“V”olunteer: It's always good to give back. You'll probably find that you get more than you give, and there is no shortage of organizations that need your help.
“W”inning doesn't necessarily mean beating everyone else. A win-win situation is the best of both worlds.
“X”-ray and catscan your customers so that you know everything about them-so you can serve them better.
“Y”ou is a word your customers need to hear often, as in “What can I do for you?”
“Z”eal is a critical element in your presentations, service and life in general. Let your enthusiasm shine through!
Some things never change-including the importance of knowing how to treat your customers and what really matters in your relationships. And as you can see, most of these items cover far more than just sales. Someday, I think my grandchildren will still be able to use my little alphabet book. Nothing would make me prouder.
Moral: Now you know my ABCs-sales skills from A to Z.