Locking Down Prospects During Initial Correspondence

Locking Down ProspectsThe first conversation between a representative and a potential client can be one of the determining factors as to whether business is secured and if a transaction is at all possible in the future of the relationship.

A sales management team needs to teach their representatives that the initial conversation could play a significant role in the development of a positive sales relationship. While the first correspondence is important, managers need to note that a good rep will be able to salvage the account even if it doesn’t start off on the right foot.

The right questions and the way in which they are asked can have a significant impact on the potential customer during the first sales call. Representatives need to generate a list of the essential things that they need to get across to the buyer and what they can discern from the conversation, according to Heather Kivett, President of Resolution Systems, Inc., a sales training and consulting firm.

Representatives need to make the conversation about the needs of the customer, as they must open the questioning in a way that outlines the potential decision-making process that the buyer would go through, said the executive.

They also need to find out if the person on the other end of the line is the individual who is actually making the decision, and if not, they need to determine how far down the line that person is on the pecking order at their company. There is no need to waste time talking to someone who is far removed from any type of purchasing power, noted Kivett.

A sales management team needs to teach their representatives to find out what the buyer’s business issues and needs are, as they have to know to what point or aspect that they are selling to, according to the executive.

Logistics need to be addressed in the initial conversation, possibly towards the end of the conversation, and representatives need to find out a potential starting date for when the transaction may begin to occur.

Representatives need to determine the value that they could bring to the buyer’s company, and should seek information from the client regarding the potential impact of the service or product on their business. This helps to give a rep an idea on the interest level for the customer, noted Kivett.