Updated: Aug 30, 2019
There are a countless number of sales mistakes, including presentation errors, relying on statistics and over analyzing, not to mention NOT closing during a free trial period. (that's blasphemous!)
This article looks at the softer side of sales.
In no particular order, let’s begin!
1. Not being prepared (affects credibility)
The sales process begins way before you think about picking up the phone or pitching; and not being prepared is vital and is immediately the greatest downfall that blatantly shows.
Don’t get caught out at a social event when someone asks you ‘What is it that you do?’ - First impressions count
Fix: Learn your pitch and make sure that you are prepared to give your pitch/response wherever and whenever. Be prepared to answer “What it is that you do for your clients?” and NOT “what do you sell or what is your job etc?”
2. Talking too much
I have interviewed and spoken to numerous sales professionals who do not know when to ‘shut up’. Over-talking (not to be confused with over-communicating) is a definite “No No” for any sales professional. Some people try to joke with their client or a prospect, this can and sometimes causes offence, especially when you cannot see them down the other end of the phone.
Chances are that you had the sale grasped tightly in your hand until, yes, that moment, when that extra word just crumbled the whole pitch; yet you kept on talking – talking your way out of a sale!
In another setting you could have met some genuinely nice people at a social event, yet the more they spoke, the more you realise that you are no longer attracted to them. "Epic falls covert into epic failures."
Fix: Build the rapport, keep it relevant and learn when to…. shut up!
3. Being casual
Regardless of how a lead or prospect speaks; one cannot become too comfortable in a conversation to allow it to become unprofessional. How a prospect speaks should not impact the way you respond. There’s a saying “it’s never a done deal until the client signs on the dotted line” and this is true in most cases.
Fix: Always, #keepItProfessional. Personally, I don’t recommend drinking alcohol during a business lunch and stick to a maximum of only 2 drinks during a meet after hours. Watch your language and choice of topic.