How Much Do You Know Your Customer?

Mostly, SELLING is considered as most EASY TO ENTER profession. And with the selection process of sales team with many organizations, it seems true. They hardly care much before hiring their front-line brand ambassadors. But entering a profession and becoming successful are two different game and thus, sales jobs in most of the industries witness highest attrition. After an effortless hiring, organizations hardly take pain to inculcate selling skills in them. Imparting product knowledge and detailing practices generally are only aspects related to selling, that is included for induction program, beside introduction to company, HR practices and internal processes. Now think for a while, what is more important? Detailing products uniformly to all clients like a parrot or understanding the customer and then placing products as solution. Without any exception, everyone will agree to the second option as “CUSTOMER FIRST” is now the epitome of new age marketing. Unfortunately, this agreement is seen rarely in actual execution. Aftermath is a disaster. Sales person sets only three activities for oneself- Meeting customer, vomiting all the product detailing and collecting orders. I have no intention to say this practice is not working. As the client is in need, he looks at the offers form his specs and take decision accordingly. From sales person point of view, he is losing from two sides, even after getting orders. First, he passes ball to customer’s court and second, he can’t expect loyalty out of this from his client.  Now there is a natural question arising, is there any way out? Answer is yes- “KNOW YOUR CUSTOMER”.

And how? Conversation; “CONVERSATION with CLIENT” is only key to unlock client’s need. This is a skill, an art, every salesperson should be mastered. Here we will discuss some tips for developing Excellent Conversation Skills.

  • STOP INTERNAL CONVERSATION– Here internal doesn’t mean any communication within organization, but it’s the mental conversation, that generally echoes inside one’s mind, while discussing with others. E.g. when customer is speaking about his problem, sales person is thinking, “whether he will give me order?” or “will I get this order or not? And this is where we miss great chance to understand customer.                       Picture12
  • DON’T BE A SURVEY AGENT– Mostly sales person prepares a set of questions before meeting prospect. They develop only one objective to ask all the question by anyhow, irrespective of the flow of conversation and concurrent situation. And this is the point, where sales person becomes a Survey Agent. Put yourself in the shoes of your client and try to feel the bombardment of question one after another. In such situation, the client, lose interest soon and become uncooperative soon.
  • DON’T BE A SURVEY AGENT– Mostly sales person prepares a set of questions before meeting prospect. They develop only one objective to ask all the question by anyhow, irrespective of the flow of conversation and concurrent situation. And this is the point, where sales person becomes a Survey Agent. Put yourself in the shoes of your client and try to feel the bombardment of question one after another. In such situation, the client, lose interest soon and become uncooperative soon.
  • STOP TOO MUCH FLATTERING– Many sales persons believe that they should respond always very enthusiastically with all the client’s talk with words like Wow, Bravo, Awesome, Great etc. And many a times, this kind of response crosses the fences of flattery. Just think for a while, if customer is right to a deserving “GREAT” factor always, why sales person is needed? So, friends, in short, you should challenge his thoughts or current practices also, but with politeness.
  • REFRAIN FROM CONTRASTING CUSTOMERS IN NEUTRAL TOPICS– Within any conversation, often there are some neutral points, which are not related to business like political, any social event or may be religious. Try not to go deep into such discussion and refrain from contrasting customer with opposing views. Although these are perhaps most unproductive discussions for any one, but still most people have got strong pain point attached, which should not be touched

In current write-up, only a few tips are given for becoming “Master of Conversation with Clients”. But this subject is vast and demands thousands of more words to be inked. In subsequent blogs, many other points will be touched. Keep reading.

 

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