Aug 16, 2016

GET MORE BUSINESS


You have got to retain the customer. No matter how secure you feel, you will continually lose customers. How?

Your principal contact leaves and goes somewhere else, or is sacked, or left the company to be replaced by a person who does not know you and for whom you are not invented here. This means you have to sell yourself in all over again. Of course, the customer may become a useful contact at his or her new place of work. The objective is to ensure a steady flow of new business. The strategic way is to structure a method of developing business and stick to it, even in good times. Make developing new business one of your main goals. Considering Goals start behaviors; consequences maintain them where a Goal is dream with deadline.

MAKE THE CONTACTS

You have to see the right people – a lot of organizations or potential customers. Not everyone will buy, so you must see many in order to increase your odds of doing business. The objective is to identify the right people to contact – aim as high as possible- decision makers, buyers, users and influencers... The strategy is use trade directories, read the business magazines, news and look for opportunities and taking best advantage of effective usage Electronic media. Further developing your own mailing list of key people, their personal assistants, phone numbers, E mail address etc are more useful. Get listed yourself – people do phone. You can also make at least ten prospecting phone calls a day. But most important is, be nice to people, especially secretaries and PAs and key decision makers. The factoid is you don’t have to be nice to people on the way up if you know you are not coming back down again.

RISE ABOVE THE NOISE

The object is to communicate in a memorable and effective way – have something unique selling proposition. The strategy you are using relevant and original communications. Further be there when your customers need you; anticipate needs. The factoid is according research; consumers are exposed to 1023 advertising impressions everyday, of which they only remember twelve favorably one day later. That means 85 out of 90 messages are wasted.

GET TO KNOW PEOPLE

Here the objective is to make an appointment with the right person (aim high) to show your work, to identify opportunities and to leave a positive impression. The strategy is here use simple actionable device like, reply back cover with stamp, giving your E mail id with all details of contacts, small appropriate gift that demands a note of thanks, or any company recommended suitable gift etc. Next keep follow ups with phone calls, set a date and confirm by mail or fax whichever is convenient. Avoid reconfirming an appointment on the same day – it’s too easy for people to cancel!

SHOW THEM WHAT YOU OFFER

The object is to show work that could prompt a deal and show your USP. Here the strategy is using real examples and present them in person. Show them the most relevant order; don’t show everything. Further, highlight aspect relevant to the audience in the room also use examples to prompt questions that drive needs. Be loaded with application/case histories to demonstrate knowledge and experience with controlling the meeting.

You are only as good as your last screw up.

SHOW YOU ARE A GOOD BUSINESS PARTNER

The object is eliminating the fear of unknown and to show your cooperative nature, but that you are not a yes person. Use strategy to seek earliest possible involvement, at the pitch level, if possible. Offer to work on speculative approaches for them, ideally for a fee – leading to the job. Describe how you like to work, ask questions, show interest and take notes. Asking smart questions shows you are smart more than saying you are smart.

FOLLOW UP OBJECTIVES OF THE CALL

The object is to thank your contacts for their time, leave a good taste, to confirm points discussed, to reinforce key selling points that surfaced and to fatten your file. The strategy using here is to send letter next day and send something else in two months or so. Help people to get the good feelings they want about what they saw and heard.

KEEP IN TOUCH WITH DECISION MAKERS

The object is to keep in touch without being a nuisance, to talk to the decision maker, not the PA, to probe for opportunities, and to develop something that requires follow – up. The strategy using here is to develop a reason to phone, and a reason to phone back. Send notes, clippings, mails or faxes. Make them want to talk to you and socialize. It’s not the third call that wins the business. It’s more like the twenty – third! 67 percent of business deals are concluded out of the office.

STAY TOP OF YOUR CUSTOMER’S MIND.

The objectives to be the first person your prospects think of, to be accessible, and to be knowledgeable. The strategy using here is to develop ways to keep in front of them like speeches, turn the speeches into magazine articles, and conduct research; involve them in it. Further it is more important to build a network of journalists who write about your success- phone them with ideas; they need them. Here the cross –pollinate is network in related areas, phone with ideas that are not related to your selling something. Be the second best informed person on their business. The factoid is if you say something with enough authority, in a few months it’s going to be quoted back to you.

DO IT ALL THE TIME

The objectives never to let day go by without some prospecting activity. The strategy is making even a quick phone call while you are waiting to meet someone else. Remember it’s a numbers game-

Keep making the calls and you will develop the business.

And never forget to ask for at least three referrals. The fact is I know it works in practice, so let us see if it works in theory.

Jul 28, 2016

SALES TIPS AT YOUR FINGER TIPS


Salesmanship is an act persuading the prospective buyer to buy to commodity or services. It involves that process of convincing prospective customers about the superiority of the product, so as to persuade them to purchase them. Thus, it refers to the sincere and skillful presentation of accurate information about the products by the salesman to those who are in need of these products in such a ways as to effects a sale such products.

Salesmanship is different from selling. The word selling is used in a much narrower sense and denotes the act of transferring the ownership of goods or services to a buyer. This is a very easy task. But the scope of salesmanship is much wider than that. It is the process of convincing a prospective customer about the desirability of some article, service or idea and persuading him to buy or accept it. In the modern days selling has become the most important activity of any business.

The success of a business depends upon effective and efficient selling. But effective selling has become a difficult problem. Selling over the counter is not enough to ensure success. It is only giving what the buyer wants.

Demand and markets have to be newly created. In order to do this, the salesman requires a scientific approach to the problem. They must know the art of salesmanship. True salesmanship does not mean selling at any cost. Selling by using high pressure tactics or buying playing on the ignorance of customers is not true salesmanship. Selling in this way is not only ethically wrong but it also harms the reputation of the business in the long run. Therefore, true salesmanship means persuading a prospective customer by sound and factual agreements in such a manner that he is really convinced of the quality of the product and the desirability of buying it and not merely carried away by the flood of arguments. Therefore, importance of salesmanship need not be stressed too much. It is very valuable not only to manufacturers and the various middle men but also to the consumers and the entire community as well. The benefits that accrue to them are given as:

A true salesman acts as a friend and a guide of the consumers and supporter and aid of the producer.

Salesmanship has made large scale production feasible and profitable.
It has helped the producer to reduce to the cost of production and made the goods available at a much lower price.
It widens the market for the goods of the producers.
It increases the rate of stock turnover. This helps to eliminate or minimize the chances of economic stagnation.
It increases the employment by increasing the business activities and thus increases the income of the community.
It helps the consumers to consume those goods which will best satisfy their wants. Thus, salesmanship has become the lubricating oil for the wheels of trade, commerce and industry.

Salesmanship is a highly skilled profession. Therefore it demands a very high degree of efficiency and good qualifications. The pioneers of salesmanship have framed certain principles. An intelligent salesman should try to study these principles, put them into practice and improve his weakness. Though it is difficult to lay down precisely the qualities that will exactly fit all types of salesman, he can lay down some common requisites of a successful salesman. They are Knowledge of self and one’s own sales personality. They are knowledge of one’s product and its utility. Knowledge of one’s firms its philosophy and its policies. Knowledge of one’s customers, their nature, temperament etc. Knowledge of techniques of selling goods. The duties and responsibilities of a good sales people are…
The main function of a salesman is to affect sales, increase sales and maintain the reputation of the firm.

He should be honest and loyal to his employers as well as to his customers.

He should act as a guide and a friend of his customers.

He should attend to the complaints of his customers immediately and redress their grievance as early as possible.

He should take keen interest in sales promotional activities.

If he is a travelling salesman, he should prepare a tour program plan every month and cover the area allotted. He should collect the bills from his customers if the goods have been sold on credit. He should prepare daily and weekly report and send the same to his superiors.
He should collect information about the creditworthiness of the customers and send the same to his superiors for further action. He should attend the meeting conducted by his employer for intensifying the sales promotional activities and for discussing such other problems concerning the business of the organization. All such activities are depends upon the size of the industry, the manufacturing capacity of products and type of industries. But selling strategies are same considering the terms and conditions, policy and activities of the company.

SALES TIPS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS! TIME TO EXPLORE!


Your professional selling skills training focuses primarily on two activities: getting up to the bat more often, and improving your batting average.’ Getting up to the bat’ is defined as a quality sales call. ‘Improving your batting average is closing the sale, or getting a commitment to an action that leads directly to a close.

These selling practices enrich yours customers, your sales people and shareholders/directors. They are based on the consultative nature of the sales person’s job. Any company salesperson, or his successor, has a continuing relationship with the customer, particularly after the initial sale has been made. This approach is the persuasive teaching of customers--- with the customer’s doing 80% of the talking—to own what is being sold. This is very persuasive and effective, yet it is low key. It can be learned and used by anyone and is not reliant on the salespersons personality.

The great and strong strength of any company is its Sales Forces. A great company has built its business through different selling strategies and activities, legions of salespeople, like you, have imaginatively solved maintenance problems, giving the customer an economic value far in excess of their investment. Company will develop a rich legacy of consultative selling skills. The following written sales tips and activities and selling practices, captures our selling legacy, yet modernizing our approaches for the competitive realities of today. The following program me was built by me (sales/marketing/business consultant) and is designed so you can reach even higher level of customer service, enhance your professionalism, and earn more money.

The material teaches and reinforces selling strategies and techniques in every page. Although it is recommended that you studied the program approximately in the way it is arranged.. And as it is introduced to you over time.. You can study any content area independently. You can literally pick up your text at any page for any activities. Throughout this program activities selling techniques are illustrated with suggested approaches. These are suggestions. Please adopt them to your own style. However, do not fall in to the trap of replacing these approaches with ineffective, but comfortable technique. A sales person provides an important business and societal- beneficial function. You materially lower your customer’s overall costs of doing business. Our skills, in combination with selling skills and enormous support, speed assembly reduce scrap, prevent downtime, providing good product and improve your customer’s ability to compete. So, in a very real sense you are selling money. That is an easy sell, if the customer is educated to the savings. The educational process is a challenging job of the professional salesperson. You must overcome the barriers of ignorance, unawareness or being unconvinced (note: do not interrupt “Ignorance” as lacking intelligence. You customers are smart they just may not know the total capabilities of your selling skills/company) the education process also requires problem identification accurate solution selection product demonstration application, benefits quantification, and test or trial. These and other steps have to be performed by you.

YOUR SELLING TIPS.


Consequently, the customer is buying you, the professional, consultative salesperson, as much as he is buying the money saving you are able to give your customers these benefits, and more, because of the quality and integrity of your products your company, your people and solution.

Please study and practice the content of this program every day. This will strengthen your ability to handle objections, improve your listening skills develop your business, increase your customer base and closing skills, and so on.

Suggestions for program improvements and good selling ideas to add are always welcome. Your comments are welcome.






Apr 4, 2016

SALES & MARKETING FUNCTION

SALES & MARKETING FUNCTION

A Salesperson must be an all-rounder. He must know the real facts of the company and company’s activities regularly. He must understand the functions of the Marketing Department which is closely related to his department. He must also know the marketing strategy of the company and try to implement the same in his sales career. For this he will have to gain basic knowledge of this department. Therefore, I would like to suggest few ideas on marketing shortly.

SELLING

Selling is the direct confrontation between the company and its customer.

Management is fundamentally about direction and control. Selling is no different.

All Sales People, particularly those in large companies, present a basic problem: they enjoy spending their time doing what they know best with the products that are easiest to sell, and selling to those customers who are easiest to sell to, direction, management and control are needed to ensure that selling time and cost is spent where it is more effective.

THE SALES FUNCTION

The direct sales effort should ensure that staffs cover the territory where the customers are located. The number of sales staff depends on the number of calls needed to service the existing customers, regain the lost customers and sale to the potential customers.

Any management has a responsibility to promote the use of sales techniques and ensure that a disciplined approach produces value for money.

THE MARKETING FUNCTION

The effort of marketing should be geared to rigorous examination, investigation and promotion of the market for company’s goods/services. It should ensure that the company has sound, verifiable data on how its customers and the rest of market are changing and should be aware of competitors.

Marketing activity should support sales with research and promotion and ensure that sales resources spend much time with the customer. Through research, marketing can also help product development.

Marketing finance means the funds required for the performance of the marketing functions. Thus finance required for marketing is meant for holding the stocks of goods and for meeting the costs of buying and selling. It is said that money on credit is the lubricant that facilitates the marketing machine. Financing of marketing may be broadly discussed under two heads:

1) Financing the business enterprises and

2) Financing the consumer or consumer credit.

Business enterprises requires two types of capital viz, permanent or fixed capital and current or working capital. Fixed capital is required for purchasing capital equipment. Such as land, building, plant, machinery etc. while working capital is required to meet the recurring expenses during production and marketing activities such as purchases of goods required in production or for resale, payment of wages and salaries, other operating expenses and the extension of credit to customers. The producing enterprise requires relatively a huge amount of fixed capital while the marketing enterprises such as wholesalers, retailers, commission agents, brokers, cooperative societies or sales department of a factory or mill require relatively a large amount of working capital. Of course the marketing activities also require some fixed capital but the amount is relatively small. It is very common to find that land and buildings are mostly rented and not owned by the marketing concerns. Therefore it is necessary to discuss here the various aspects of the current finance or working capital which forms the major portion of the total capital of the marketing enterprises.

There is also another type of finance known as consumer credit. It refers to the financing of consumers or granting credit to the consumers.

MARKETING FUNCTION

Selling is the most important function of marketing. Its main object is to dispose to the goods at fair prices, nowadays production is carried on a large scale in anticipation of demand and markets for several goods have become complex and competitive. Therefore, modern selling requires selling efforts such as finding out prospective buyers, informing them about the availability of the different products for sale and persuading them to going for these products and satisfying their needs. Thus, selling in modern times has attained much importance.

FUNCTIONS OF MODERN SELLING

Modern selling usually involves for the following functions:

1)Product planning and development.

2)The contractual demand creation.

3)Negotiation and,

4)The contractual.

A sales person can easily convince the potential buyers by adjusting himself with the needs and types of buyers.

A sales person can contact a large number of prospective buyers and directly appeal to them and explain all the good qualities of his products and convince them as to how his products are able to satisfy his needs.

He can also give any technical advice as may be required by the users.

He gathers information about the market conditions. The attitude of the consumer towards his products, the feeling of the consumers about the firm which he represents and about their requirements which have not yet been met by his products. When the salesperson sends this information to his management, this information will be very useful that company to produce goods as required by the consumers. When the salesperson sends this information to his firm, this information will be very useful to that company to produce the goods as required by the consumers.

He can show samples and make demonstrations which are quiet essential in the selling. He can also deliver the goods to the buyers and make collections of bills from them and thus establish goodwill of the seller.

He can also render after sale services such as installation, repairing, adjustments etc. However, there are certain limitations in this method:

It is very expensive, personal calls are expensive and unless the unit cost is large, the cost maybe prohibitive.

It is often difficult to get expert and trained salesman.

Demand creation, operation and effective management become very difficult and costly. Therefore personal salesmanship is recommended in the following areas: In the case of a new product, In case the market for the product is concentrated, when the price per unit is higher, when the demonstration is necessary and when purchases are made in frequently.

ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN

Advertising campaign should be regular and effective. They rely on the correct message, choosing the best medium and good timing. The message must relate to what the customer wants and what the company needs.

The medium must relate to the ‘public’ in question. A costly material campaign to two customers in particular localities may be far less effective than direct mail or local advertising.

Finally, research and analysis of previous sales – peaks can assist in choice of timing a campaign.

CREATING A STRUCTURE

An organization must be sufficiently structured to ensure that it satisfies the needs of its customers at a profit which satisfy its own needs.

The sales and marketing function in any company should be as structured as the other functions but should not stop the development of ‘products champions’ and ‘super sales people’

GOOD CUSTOMER RELATIONS

Good customer relations are essential for the success of a business. They are achieved by:-

Good customer service.

Product margins which meet the company objectives and give the customer value for money.

Relevant product development and innovation to meet customers’ future needs.

Regular sales calls and entertainment proportional to sales potential.

BAD CUSTOMER RELATIONS ARE DUE TO:

Poor Customer Service.

Product seem as poor value for money.

No interest in customers’ future needs.

Insensitive credit control procedures.

Infrequent sales calls.

Low entertainment costs.

If the balance swings too heavily on either direction, the result is loss of profit.

CARING FOR CUSTOMER’S NEEDS

In preparing marketing strategy/sales planning for products and services, you will succeed if you concentrate on one thing – the customer. It may seem obvious to say that without customers, all other aspects of a business are superfluous.

Any business which does not satisfy its customer’s needs now and in the future, will cut itself from its customers and its essential life – support line. It should ask its customers (directly or indirectly).

What they think of the existing products.

What improvements/additions they would like to see.

What about value their money.?

Marketing nurtures are essential relationship between the company and its customers. Marketing functions define the methods by which a company selects the approximate mix of products and markets with which to achieve its objectives.









Mar 2, 2016

A NARRATIVE ON AN ENDLESS EFFORT

A NARRATIVE ON AN ENDLESS EFFORT

Years ago a famous confectionery manufacturing Company was the world leader and was occupying market in most parts of the world. As today, the company had huge production plants in various parts of the country. The largest plant was run by one of the most difficult-to-see managers in industry. The affairs of the plant kept him busy and did not like to see salespeople. In fact, his two secretaries were expected to screen him from salespeople.

As is often the case, the most difficult to see prospect is usually the most important potential customer, and is almost always the critical decision maker, especially on large sales. This was certainly true of this plant manager who had the authority and ability to spend millions of dollars of his company’s money.

One persistent salesman was determined to see the plant manager. He was convinced the benefits of his product would mean important cost savings for the plant. After great preparation and planning he began his sales call, but was rebuffed by the first secretary. After rebuff, he returned to the lobby and waited behind several other salespeople for another chance to see the plant manager.

During this time, he considered the first and second secretaries positions and objections, and practiced carefully phrased responses. As the day wore on he slowly made progress and alliances with the secretaries and was able to see the second secretary. Also as the day wore on his waiting time between forays in to the plant manager’s office foyer grew shorter. The other guys gave up, and went on their way. Finally at 5:00 pm the two secretaries were getting ready to leave, and the salesman said “Do you think it would be all right if I walked the plant manager to his car? And may I ask myself?” He got his audience with the buyer.

Twenty minutes later, after making an enormous and profitable sale (for the salesman’s customer, his company, and himself) he gathered his show materials to make a professional, no longer exist. The plant manager stopped him: Do you know why I bought from you today?”

“I bought from you today because you got in here to see me. Ordinarily, I don’t even talk to salesman. In fact, eight other guys tried to see me today.”

‘Yes I know,” said the salesman. “Those other eight guys … they were me.”

It clearly shows the salesperson’s skill, attitude, patience, goal, relationship and ability to handle the objections and situations in his entire sales call.

Marketing is the profitable identification, attraction, getting and keeping of customers. Marketing is the single most important act in an enterprise. Marketing determines product design, customer profiles, and target segments. Marketing pays the paychecks and provides growth to protect the company’s assets from inflation, and to give you opportunities.

SELLING IS THE MOST IMPORTANT EXECUTION ACT OF MARKETING. IT TAKES SEVERAL FORMS:


Advertising and public relations.

Packaging and direct mail.

Trade shows and seminars.

Using Software Technology.

Personal selling…. Probably the most important of the marketing mix in business-to- business selling.

personal selling includes:

Contacting of customers.

DETERMINING THE CUSTOMER'S BUSINESS AND PERSONAL NEEDS.

Showing and demonstrating your products benefits as it fills the business and personal needs of your decision making customer, and asking for the order, or getting a commitment to an action that leads directly to an order.

Success in selling is very similar to success in athletics. In addition to the importance of practice, selling is very much a numbers game. The difference between a .350 hitter in base ball and a .250 hitter is only 1.7 additional hits per week in a 30 week season. Yet the difference in compensation is $1, 000, 000 per year. The same kind of arithmetic hold true in golf, track, football and selling. In selling, like athletics, the difference between the superstar and the average is measured in inches, or in one more hit every 0 times at the plate. Selling is taking good shots. Taking the shots in selling is making the calls and asking for commitments. But as one of the hockey superstar says 100% of the shots I don’t take, don’t go in.