Sales pitches these days are a bit more complicated than in the past. Today’s customers are savvier and competitors are more numerous. This means that for a sales rep, there’s little room for mistakes. Marc Wayshak, in a recent Entrepreneur article, points out nine “rookie” mistakes. While these mistakes ARE typical among newcomers to the field, it’s likely that industry vets also are guilty of at least one.

“Once you cut these…sales behaviors out of your sales approach, you’ll notice a dramatic uptick in the number of sales you close,” Wayshak writes. Check out a few highlights from his list:

Sounding “salesy.” Cut out that stereotypical sales tone when speaking with prospects. Sounding overly enthusiastic and loud comes across as inauthentic. You will put your prospect more at ease with an easygoing, friendly manner of speaking. Not sure of what you sound like when “selling?” Record your next sales call to find out.

Making it all about you. Even with the best intentions, reps often get carried away discussing their product or service. Instead of going on and on about you, center the conversation around the prospect and his or her needs, goals and challenges.

Qualifying every prospect. It’s tough to turn away potential new business. But sometimes, a prospect just isn’t a good fit for you and your company. You waste valuable time and energy when pursuing an unqualified prospect.

Failing to schedule the next step. After a great first meeting or phone call, you need to set the next one in stone. If you finish the call with “talk to you soon” or some other vague closing, you are missing a great opportunity.

Do any of these, or the others in Wayshak’s article, sound familiar? If so, banish these “mistakes” from your strategy ASAP!

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