Throughout my years as a Sales Coach, one of the questions that my clients sometimes ask is, “Why didn’t I get the sale?” I say, “sometimes” because no one really wants to talk about lost sales. We don’t even like to admit that we didn’t get the sale. But I want to tell you that sometimes not getting the sale isn’t a bad thing. And, there are things you can do to reduce the amount of sales you don’t get. The reality is you aren’t going to get every sale. Nor would you want to. It is important to remember, though, that selling begins in your mind. When I wrote Selling with Intention, my primary goal was to teach Sales Professionals and Entrepreneurs that they had a lot more control over selling then they thought. And that was the key–more than they thought. Selling begins in your mind, and when you “get that” at a deep level, selling can become effortless.
Think back to the last time you didn’t get a sale. How did the interaction begin? How did it end? My guess is that it was one of the reasons I am going to share with you below. After each reason, I am going to share a key strategy with you that you can implement next time to make sure you get it (as long as you want it)!
Four Reasons Why You Didn’t Get the Sale:
You didn’t ask.
Let’s face it. Sometimes you can have a phenomenal conversation with your prospect, and it feels like everything is going perfectly until the end of your time together. You can feel the time creeping up on you, the hour is almost over, but you haven’t asked for the sale yet. Fear creeps up, strangling your vocal cords, and before you ask for the sale you find yourself scurrying out to your car, trying to get your key into the ignition as quickly as possible. Looking back you know you could have had the sale, but you didn’t ask. Strategy: Next time you are wrapping up a great appointment with a prospect, save time at the end to take a breath and then simply offer at two to three solutions for them to choose from. You will probably be surprised to find out that by simply offering choices, you WILL get more sales. Or, let them know that you will be writing a proposal, then set the next appointment when you will be delivering it. Always have the next step set before you leave!
You didn’t set your intention.
Not setting your intention is a lot like not asking for the sale. If you aren’t expecting the sale, you probably aren’t going to get it. Strategy: I always encourage my clients to set their intention ahead of time and actually visualize the sales process from start to finish. Being intentional about selling is like “assuming the sale”-or expecting that you are going to get it. Notice how you feel when you “expect” something to happen versus just “thinking” or “hoping” you are getting it. I recommend that you expect the sale only when you are working with your Target Clients. Otherwise you will feel like you are just forcing the situation rather than letting it unfold. Set your intention and expect to get the sale!
You didn’t really want it.
Deep down, at a gut level, you KNOW when a prospect who is sitting in front of you isn’t a Target Prospect. A Target Prospect is a prospect that fits your ideal client profile and needs and or wants (or both) what you are selling. One of the main reasons you set an appointment with a prospect is for you to get to know them and for them to get to know you. During the process of assessing their wants and needs, you will figure out whether or not you really CAN solve their problem or help them with your products or services. Strategy: Maybe the last time you didn’t get the sale was because you didn’t really want it. You recognized that for whatever reason, this prospect wasn’t a good fit. And that’s okay. In fact, it’s better than okay because you did what was in the best interest of the prospect. When you can’t help a client, refer them to someone who can.
You didn’t build rapport.
People buy from Sales Professionals they LIKE, KNOW and TRUST. It takes a different amount of time to build rapport depending on personality types. Laura Bruno, owner of Southern California’s Referral Institute, teaches a great class called Room Full of Referrals. This class teaches you the different personality types and how to sell to each one. One of the reasons you might not have gotten the sale is because you didn’t take the time to build rapport with your prospect. You can tell whether or not you have built rapport because they will either seem completely disconnected from what you are talking about, or they will be engaged. Strategy: Taking time to build rapport can often be the difference between gaining a new client, or shaking your head and walking away wondering what just happened. Ask questions, have open body language, make eye contact and get to know your client and their challenges so you can determine whether or not you can help them.
Action Item: Think back to the last time you didn’t get the sale. Which reason above most accurately describes it? What could you do differently next time? Can you think of a client that you think might have said yes if you had asked for the sale? Make a commitment to yourself to call that client and set another appointment. And then ask for the sale!
Not getting the sale often makes room for the next “big client” that is trying to get to you. The next time you don’t get a client, and you know it was because they weren’t a fit, just be grateful. I can almost guarantee you that the next one is right around the corner!
© Sales Coach Now
Ursula Mentjes, M.S., ACC is the founder of Sales Coach Now and the author of Selling with Intention and One Great Goal. Ms. Mentjes has helped clients double and triple their sales revenue in as short as two months! If you want to do the same, then visit her web-site at www.salescoachnow.com <http://www.salescoachnow.com> and subscribe to her e-zine by clicking on the sign up box and typing in your email address. You will receive a FREE downloadable MP3 recording, “7 Ways to Sell More in a Doom and Gloom Economy”. Or, join her at Sales Coach Now—LIVE 2011 for the re-release of Selling with Intention through Morgan James publishing! She will be sharing the stage with Loral Langemier, Craig Duswalt and other experts. www.salescoachnowlive.com <http://www.salescoachnowlive.com> . Ursula currently serves as the NAWBO-CA Vice President of Corporate Partners and Economic Development, is Past President NAWBO-IE and Past President of NAWBO-U (Inland Empire).