Thursday, December 27, 2012

My Sales Checklist (Part 1 – Preparation)

As I’ve been focusing more of my time on pure sales at Flock and bringing some new folks up to speed on basic sales, I’ve began to compile a basic checklist for the sales process.

Elevator Pitch – This is a critical part of your business.  Generally this should be 3 lines (for email/events/introductions):

  1. Who you are
  2. What you do
  3. Why you want to talk to the customer

That’s it.  Keep it short and sweet – this sets the table for the rest of the conversation. 

Practice  - Stand in front of a mirror, look yourself in the eye, and practice until it’s perfect. By the time you get in front of a customer you should be able to communicate your value on autopilot. This enables the rest of your brain to focus on the customers, their reactions, and what the next steps are.

Script – After the elevator pitch there should be no more than three key points you want the customer to remember.  These should serve as your checklist – don’t blurt them out all at once or in a list, but be sure to hit each point by the end of the conversation.

FAQ – Any engaged customer will have questions.  Luckily, most customers have the same questions.  Over the course of just a few meetings you’ll get a good sense for the core common questions.  Get some great answers prepared and

Make a List (and check it twice) – I use a simple excel sheet with customer names, companies, emails, phone numbers, and notes as the columns.  This is essentially a super simple CRM system.  Your initial list can most often be created through web searches or directories. 

Bonus: Have a Good Hook – Any customer base has some aspirational goal (in IT this would be reducing costs, in sales it’s meeting more leads).  This is what you should lead with.  If you can open your conversation with this goal – their next question will be “Sounds great – how will you do that?”  You’ve now captured their full interest and set the table for the rest of your conversation.

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