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The Sales Process

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No matter what you're selling, every sale follows roughly the same pattern. It's a rare sale that doesn't include each of these steps in one form or another. In order to succeed in sales you need to master each one of these stages. If you're weak in one or more areas, you might survive as a salesperson but you won't thrive.
  1. Managing Your Sales Cycle
  2. Prospecting and Lead Generation
  3. Setting Appointments
  1. Qualifying Prospects and Making Presentations
  2. Addressing Objections and Closing the Sale
  3. Asking for Referrals

Managing Your Sales Cycle

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Understanding the sales cycle is crucial to controlling it. And controlling the sales cycle is how you can build yourself of a steady flow of sales, instead of enduring the feast-or-famine lifestyle common to salespeople.

Prospecting and Lead Generation

Alphabet block

Finding leads is the basic building block of sales. After all, if you can't find anyone to sell to, you're not going to make many sales! Old sources will frequently dry up temporarily or even permanently, so it helps to have at least two or three major lead sources.

Setting Appointments

Cold calling is a little easier with a good headset

Once you've got your lead list in hand, you need to get in touch with those people and make appointments. Many salespeople prefer to cold call over the phone, but you can also call in person, send email or even mail out sales letters.

Qualifying Prospects and Making Presentations

Become a sales hero

The qualification stage usually takes place at the appointment itself, although you can also qualify briefly during your initial contact. The idea is to confirm that your prospect is both able and potentially willing to buy your product. Once you've qualified them, it's time to make your pitch. Keep in mind that you're not just selling your product... you are also selling yourself!

Addressing Objections and Closing the Sale

Handshake

Before you can close the sale, you'll need to address your customer's objections. Once you've done so, always wrap up an appointment by asking for the sale. The prospect won't ask YOU.

Asking for Referrals

More referrals means more sales

This is hands down the most commonly neglected step. Too many salespeople are so relieved to get a sale that they grab their things and race out the door the second they get the chance, for fear the prospect will change their mind!

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