When you go to make a sales call, what’s going through your head? Is it, “The client is going to love this!” or is it more along the lines of, “I need to make this sale.”? The purpose of sales calls has quite a bit of influence over of whether or not the sale will end in your favor. The last thing you want to hear before you start your pitch is, "Is this a sales call?" Lisa Earle McLeod’s article, “Do You Have a Purpose? Or Do You Just Sell Stuff?” highlights that sales reps with a “noble sales purpose” are more successful than those who only have money on their minds.
Determining the Purpose of Sales Calls
Having a purpose of sales calls that goes deeper than money sets you up for success. It means you are not jumping into your sales pitch blindly. Sales reps who are just after money will set up sales meetings with any prospective customer that they can get ahold of in an attempt to sell a product. When you start scheduling sales calls without doing your research, the majority of the prospects you talk with probably won't even need your product or service. As a result, those sales reps waste the time of everyone involved. When a sales rep doesn't know specifically why a prospect could be interested in their product, they will begin listing all of the benefits of their product or service in the hope that something will strike the client’s fancy. Again, without doing prior research, that probably will not ever happen. What's worse is if the prospect catches on to the fact that you didn't do your research. If they know you only have a sale on your mind, they'll resent you for wasting their time.
Do Your Research
The purpose of sales calls should be to benefit your client’s company. When that is the case, you will have done some research into your client and will know what his or her goals and/or needs are. Once you have that crucial information, you will know exactly what to offer your client and what to say in your sales pitch. This thorough preparation makes all the difference in success rates because you are providing clear value to the prospect right away. When the value is clear, you're proving that you care about helping the prospect instead of just focusing on the money you could make. Not enough sales reps do this, so you'll stand out from your competition, as well.
This success extends beyond your initial sales call. Who do you think clients are more likely to set up meetings with: a salesperson who has demonstrated that they knows the company well enough to offer something of worth or one who had previously come in with a product or service that obviously wasn’t a good fit for the client’s company? Having a noble purpose of sales calls will earn you a good reputation among your clients and they’ll be more willing to hear/buy from you again. And you won't hear the question, "Is this a sales call?"
So, ask yourself, “Does my selling purpose go beyond making a profit?” If the answer is no, you have some research to do!