Time Kills Deals: Sales Strategies for Effective Closing
As a Recruiter for Marketing for the UAE and Europe, it's my job to ensure the entire hiring process goes as smoothly as possible and both parties get what they want.
In recruitment, you work with the most complex product ever created - People. They change their mind, the situation changes... people disappear off the face of the earth. As you work with two 'clients' (hiring manager/ candidate), you have to sell to both parties and manage everyone's expectations like crazy.
Photos by Nirmit Gire. For today's office look I'm pretty in pink with an ASOS dress, Ted Baker floral heels, Olando Valentino handbag and Micheal Kors watch (look linked below).
Whether you are a sales associate selling fashion, or realtor selling apartments; you need to control the sales process. 'Time kills deals' as they say, so to ensure a smooth sales cycle, here are my top tips:
Speak to the decision maker
No matter what industry you are in, speaking to the decision maker is crucial to a quick close. A lot of the time, they will send a middle man to get all the information. If this happens, request to meet with them so you can ask them all the ins and outs of exactly what they are looking for, and tailor your pitch accordingly..
Be yourself; real and consultative
People buy from people, as they say. None of the fake sales-y selling, please! You are far more likely to make a sales if you are genuine about what you are selling - approaching sales from a consultative angle allows you to really get to know what the customer is looking for, and give them the best service. It's important to convey that you care about their business and have their best interests at heart, rather than a fee from a single deal.
Create a timeline
With the initiation of the sales, it's important to have a timeline. In recruitment, typically my clients want a three round interview process meeting with key stakeholders. Sit together, and block time out in your dairies. Add value to your timeline; perhaps if you are selling a product you could offer a discount if they purchased by a certain date - give your client an incentive to commit.
Explain your process
To manage your clients expectations, it's crucial that they understand WHAT you do, HOW and WHY. This will avoid any last minute cock-ups in the final stages of your deal, and ensure you are both on the same page. You are the consultant at the end of the day, so advise your client in areas where they have unrealistic goals.
Under promise and over deliver
Well, you don't want to do the opposite... always give yourself a realistic amount of time to prepare for your client, ensure effective service and a quality product - go above and beyond!
Understanding the key issue of an objection is important so ask plenty of questions. Often, I am left surprised as the reasons are different than what I expect - to 'solve' the issue, you will have to know what the true problem is. Handling objections comes down to practice and experience - if something catches your off guard and you need some time (even if you are the key stakeholder), you can always humbly (for once!) suggest you have to discuss with the higher powers of your business first.
Understanding your client and what they are looking for from word go, will ensure a timely sale. Never 'assume' you know, and ask the questions you don't want to hear the answers to.
To reinforce what you are staying, use examples of previous situations with other clients.
Prompt for CALL of action
At the end of every interaction, restate the plan of attack that you discussed. This may be to:
- Get them to review or get sign off from another person within the organisation
- Confirm a date for a meeting
- Clarify some information within the team
Always finish with the question, "When would be a good time to follow up with you on this?" A lot of the time people will vaguely suggest they will email/call you over the next several days. Follow this with, "So if I haven't heard from you in (e.g. 3 days) I'll give you a call back?"
By doing this, you still let you client feel in control, but have an excuse to call back if they get busy and forget etc.
Implementing these things into your sales cycle will help ensure a smooth process, creating happy customers and more money for you!
If you liked this post be sure to check out my VLOG on this topic which will be uploaded in the next week! You may also like my post on how to create an elevator pitch or how to promote your business in an over saturated market.
Briar Prestidge x