5 Massive Sales Mistakes Your Company May Be Making

Companies are becoming more and more customer centric. Why? Because the culture of purchasing has changed drastically over the last few years. We no longer live in a quality vs price society. We focus more on brand identification, solutions and our place within a "tribe" of consumers. Therefore, the old ways of selling are no longer applicable in todays marketplace. 

I'd like to take a look at 5 Massive Sales Mistakes Your Company May Be Making to help you avoid these mega pitfalls and create a successful sales department.

1. Assuming The Sale

At some point within your sales cycle it may be clear that a prospect will become a customer, after all that is the goal. However, we run into major problems when we make assumptions regarding sales and cold (sometimes even warm) leads. The person you're calling has no idea who you are, what you are selling or why they would want it. Assuming that a prospect will buy your product simply because you believe in it or because you are a great sales person lets your potential customer know that your intend to sell them whether they want your product or not. 

This creates a relationship in which your clients and potential clients do not believe that you have their best interests in mind. Rather, they believe that you only care about the money they may or may not spend with you. The real answer here is to do your research, narrow in on your target market and find and provide solutions they will actually want, need and use.

2. Scripted Sale

Scripted sales calls are probably my least favorite of all. The caller is usually apathetic and robotic in their delivery and once sidetracked from their script, totally lost. The problem with scripted sales calls is that they don't really look for solutions. They are a well crafted list of tactics designed to lure your prospect into saying or doing exactly what you want them to. This leaves your leads feeling as though they have been tricked into purchasing something they may not have needed or really wanted. 

Scripted sales also do not account for all of the potential consumer questions that may arise during the sales process. The solution here is not more word tracks, it's product education. Educate your sales force about your products and services. Let them know what are and are not acceptable buzzwords and phrases. Get them as excited about your product as you are and let them sell. It is ok to provide your callers with outlines and ideas, but word tracts that must be followed to the T will be noticed immediately by the prospect and will start the sales process off on a bad foot.

3. Pushy Sale

Want to ensure that your business never sells a thing and becomes one of the companies that closes its doors within the first five years of business? Then be pushy. Shove your products and services down your leads throats and do it in a forceful way. People want to feel as though they are in control of their decisions, especially when their money and potential success of their business are on the line. This kind of sales tactic is guaranteed to leave a bad taste in your prospects mouth and ensure that they will not sign on with you, ever. A potential customer who may not be able to afford your product now, but is seriously interested, will go elsewhere if you become to demanding or pushy. Don't just jump right out and ask for a credit card every time you explain a package. Listen and then provide solutions, then listen some more.

4. Hangup or Buy

Sales quotas are not bad, but we must be realistic when setting them. Expecting unrealistic call quotas from your sales force can have very adverse effects on the overall quality of your team. To few and you could be missing out on potential revenue, to many and you wind up in a buy or die situation. A buy or die situation is one in which your sales team pushes to make the sale happen as fast as possible (which is unrealistic in most cases) or get the caller to hang up on them so they can move on to their next call. This is not the result you should be aiming for. This again leaves potential buyers feeling as though all they are is revenue and if they're not that, you'd rather they be nothing at all.

5. Devaluing The Product

It's great to have multiple packages to meet buyers where they are. This is a very healthy business practice which creates the possibility of larger returns over a wider market. The problem arises when we start devaluing the products and services we have in order to make a sale. I was once on a sales call in which the seller started out offering the product at $900 and ended up at $99 by the time the call was through. Yes, there were minuscule changes in the package, but they were small enough to let me know that the $900 we started out at was not the true valuation of the product and that I was being had.

If your products and services are good and the market dictates that your price is acceptable, devaluation begins to drive into your buyers mind that while you believe in this solution, your trying to take the most you possibly can. It slowly breaks down trust, which is vital for any life long customer relationship. Remember, multiple solutions are great, devaluation is bad.

Trust, Respect, Solution, Conversion

Selling in todays market can be difficult. Though you may have noticed a common thread running through this article which could drastically effect your sales process in a positive way. It's trust, respect and solutions. You need to build your prospects trust and you do that by genuinely caring for them and the needs of their company. Respect is seeing your potential customer as more then just revenue. They are a real human being with needs that may be met by your products or services, treat them that way.

Finally, you need to realize that you are providing them with solutions to problems they may or may not know they have. You are not just turning a profit, you are building life long customer relationships. An Account Executive with CellAHome summed it up fairly well when she said "I'd rather find a solution to their real need. Otherwise your just pushing to piss someone off." 

Have we left out anything? Let us know in the comments below!