The most successful sales experts in the world don’t usually come across as salespeople at all. Instead, they focus on being experts who can solve key challenges for their ideal customers. In simpler terms, if you are in the business of convincing people to buy things, you need to be an expert at whatever you sell. Whether you are a salesperson for a roofing supplier, local dentists, or an HVAC company, it should become your job to ensure that your prospects know that you are an expert at what you sell. This means the idea is to come off as an expert rather than as salesy. Here are some keys that will help you in your journey to build a reputation as an expert rather than someone who convinces people to buy things. First, let’s take a look at what a sales expert is before looking at how to be a sales expert.
What Is a Sales Expert?
If you want to figure out how to be a sales expert, you first need to define what a sales expert is. A sales specialist, also known as a sales expert, is an individual who is in charge of selling to customers. Their goal is to try and grow sales and the company or business they work for. Due to their expertise when it comes to client details and market trends, a sales expert is often quite good at developing different systems and solutions that improve sales. A sales expert can also lead sales and market research. They can also work with different departments and teams to promote the company’s message and even work hand in hand with the individuals creating sales and marketing budgets.
Sales experts often act as the heartbeat of a network of suppliers, consumers, employees, and other professionals. Their job is to maintain the trust and the relationship between companies and different stakeholders. In most instances, sales experts are individuals who would have majored in fields like marketing and business, and they generally have excellent social, communication, and analytical skills. There are a lot of things that come into play when it comes to becoming a sales expert. Here are some tips to become the best sales expert in your line of work.
Stop Thinking Like a Salesperson
If you are looking to come across as an expert in your field, you need to stop focusing on being salesy. This means you have to shift your attention from trying to think like a salesperson. When your focus is on trying to be the best salesperson, you will generally jump at any and every opportunity to present your sales pitch. Instead, you need to slow things down and bit and listen if you want to know how to be a sales expert. The main focus should be to try and find out if your client is a perfect fit, to begin with. The most important factor when it comes to being viewed as an expert by your prospects is thoughtful intentionality.
You can think of what you want to try to do as adopting a doctor’s mindset. Instead of thinking like someone who wants to sell to any and everyone, you need to focus on asking questions to ensure that you truly understand the customer’s pain points before you make a diagnosis and recommend a treatment plan. You will never come across doctors who talk about finding incredible new procedures that they just can’t want to tell you about. You need to mimic a doctor’s approach by focusing on truly understanding the deepest frustrations of your prospects. Once you have achieved that, you can then recommend a solution.
Dump the P.E.P
The majority of salespeople are full of P.E.P. This is short for persuasion, enthusiasm, and pitching. Most of them have been told that this is the key to selling as many products or services as possible. Unfortunately, this simply isn’t true. If you find yourself spending a lot of time trying to persuade a prospect to do something they are not willing to do, then chances are they aren’t the best fit for your business. If you are too enthusiastic, people will view you as salesy and insincere. On the other hand, if you take time to understand the problems that your prospects are facing, they will view you as someone they can trust.
To take things a step further, you should be willing and ready to share the challenges you have observed. As a sales expert, you should have a lot of valuable industry information that can make the lives of your prospects easier. This will make it easier to capture their attention, and it will also increase your perceived value. For instance, if you are selling to law enforcement, you need to know what challenges they face. The same applies when you are trying to make a forklift sale. Sharing the information you have is a great way to start conversations with potential customers. You can also try to list some challenges that you have seen in their industry. This will give the potential customer something to relate to, and it will serve as a good launching pad for great discussions.
After sharing some common challenges you have seen in your prospects’ industry, you should also ask if any of those challenges ring true to them. In other words, you need to ask about their own challenges. When you try to find out what challenges they are facing, you will easily engage prospects, and this will encourage them to open up to you. If you can get a prospect to explain a challenge that they haven’t shared with someone before, it will be easier to immediately gain their respect. The good thing about this is you can then easily tap into this information and ultimately present ways to solve their problems.
You should also remember not to talk too much. As a sales expert, you must never talk for more than 15% of a meeting. Keep in mind that talking is not what puts you in control when it comes to sales. You gain control by asking great questions. You should also remember to use engaging body language and to ask thoughtful questions. Another great tactic would be to use small prompts like, ‘really?’ All of these are great tools that will keep the prospect talking. By following these rules, your prospects will view you as an expert and thoughtful listener.
Know When to Walk Away
This is one of the most important attributes you need to have if you want to understand how to be a sales expert. You need to know when to walk away. If your prospect doesn’t have problems you can solve, then there is no need to force them to buy your products or services. That just means they are not a good fit for you, and you need to move on. If you find out that a prospect is not a good fit, you should be willing to disqualify. The more time you waste on a prospect that’s not willing to engage, the less time you will have to chase qualified prospects instead. You will find that it becomes easier for customers to trust and respect you if you don’t try to push products they don’t need.
While there might be a time when you really need to make a sale so you can pay your bills, your prospects must never be able to tell. When you come across as confident and successful, your potential clients will believe you don’t really need their business. Instead, they will think you are only interested because you think the offer will truly help them. Confidence and relaxation are important to prospects. Having an air of success around you will make them think that you are established in your field. A big part of being successful in your industry is acting like you are what you want to be already.
Be Delightful and Enthusiastic
If you are looking to establish professional relationships with your prospects, you first need to make a positive first impression. As a sales expert, it’s important that you have a well-put-together appearance. You must also have an inviting demeanor. Apart from that, you must also be willing to put in the work. Even when things get tough, it’s crucial that you have the motivation to get the job done. This is what shows prospects that you are passionate about what you do. Apart from being friendly, presentable, and enthusiastic, you must also let your customers know that you are prepared as well. People always want to make deals with sales experts who come across as dependable, fact-driven, and prepared to answer questions.
Identify Your Buyer Personas
It’s important for you to get clearly defined buyer personas if you want to establish an effective sales process. Once you get your buyer personas, the next step will be to stick to them. That’s one of the ways you can be effective in generating sales. Having buyer personas will ensure that you don’t fall back on a spray-and-pray tactic. This always results in inefficient prospecting. Coming up with buyer personas is all about researching your prospects to ensure they are a good fit. It’s a process of knowing exactly who you are supposed to sell to and why.
As a sales expert, you must never let intuition guide you. You need to create an optimized process that will help you move as many potential clients as possible from ‘connect’ to ‘close.’ Going via the intuition route can cause things to slip through the cracks. If you want to be a high-performing sales expert, you need to know the state of every deal that you have in the pipeline. This will let you know what actions you should take next and when. You must also take the time to analyze your results. In fact, you should obsessively review key metrics so that you can make adjustments where necessary. If you want to be extraordinary, you need to have a consistent process.
Know Your Product/Service
Are you a salesperson for local pest control companies, solar panels, or auto accident law firms? To be an expert, you actually need to be an expert. Being able to sell is only part of the job. Understanding the services or products you are selling is the other part. Unfortunately, this is usually the under-appreciated half. In the past, making sales was based on snake oil and charm tactics. Nowadays, prospects have a lot of information at their disposal, so they won’t fall for tricks. It’s rare to find people who can be fooled easily. To gain the trust of people you want to sell to, you need to show that you are looking to add value to their lives. You can only do this if you truly understand the product and why it will bring value to the lives of your prospects.
Apart from knowing the product, you must also review the pipeline properly. You must never be in a position where you mark deals as being ‘likely to close.’ Instead, your job should be to objectively review opportunities and come up with accurate forecasts.
Discover Shortcuts and Hacks That Work
Once you find a strategy or a technique that works, you should use it again and again. You will only stop using it when it stops working. This is a smart move. Keep in mind that you are almost always racing against the clock. This means that the more time you spend experimenting, the less time you have to actually make sales.
Also, there’s an opportunity cost involved. The moment you try one thing, and it refuses to work, you would have missed the opportunity to use a technique that brings results. This doesn’t mean that you must never switch things up. It just means that you need to do so selectively. When you do so, observe the result as soon as possible so you can either keep using the tactic or you switch to something that works.
This might sound cliche, but it actually works. While others will likely be in a hurry to leave the office and go to the bar, you must be the one to stick around to send emails, schedule meetings, and make calls. You should do this even if it’s month-end. That way, you can lay a great foundation for a new month and blow your goals out of the water. You must also remember to follow up. This is important each time you send a proposal. Sometimes you might think you are being ignored when it’s just that the prospect hasn’t opened your email at all.
Whether you are a salesperson for window replacements, asphalt paving companies, or solar panels, it’s crucial to figure out how to be a sales expert in your specific field. These are some of the ways to ensure that you become the best sales expert in your field. While this takes a lot of research, hard work, and dedication, it’s doable.