As a business person or once you start in the corporate track, people are going to start selling you more things everyday because you are now much more financially able to buy stuff. However, a lot of salesmen have this chronic problem of overselling, which produces counter-productive results instead.
Like everybody else, every few days I get cold calls from:
1) Banks trying to lend me money I can’t pay back
2) Credit card companies giving me more cards
3) Insurance agents trying to insure my life
4) Telemarketers trying to sell some product
Now the first 3 type of calls I’ve already learnt how to effectively reject by just telling them I’m not keen in the product as I’ve been approached/already have the service. It’s the 4th type that’s slightly tricky. But it’s all about just being firm and saying no. Alternatively, you can always opt out of marketing calls with the Do Not Call Registry. I’m however an opportunist and would like to stay in touch with what marketers are doing and also be aware of new products. So I still pick up such calls.
A couple days ago I received a sales call from streetdirectory.com, who was selling me a promotions and website revamp package. Coincidentally, I’ve been looking around different companies and was on the verge of remodelling my website. I was the perfect lead.
So the salesperson was giving a sales pitch about what services they had, but I had a clear idea what I needed which I told him, so he suggested a meeting to discuss whether they could provide what I needed. I agreed to a meeting since I did intend to make a new site and was open to exploring options.
The next day, a different salesperson from streetdirectory.com called me again. I was puzzled, since we already had a meeting set up, what was it that was so pressing I had to hear it over the phone again? The salesperson on the line mentioned that her colleague told her I had some enquiries about the web services they provided. I say yes, but we’re meeting to discuss that already. She then proceeded to totally ignore what I said and started explaining streetdirectory’s web services AGAIN, but in very extensive details this time. I stopped her halfway and said “Look, I already know I want XYZ host and XYZ CMS for my website, can you just give me a quote.”
No dice. She gave me a quote for a completely different product I had no interest in (probably the one she wants to sell), then continued on again about services I was not at all interested in. Mind you I created this website and the SEO myself so I’d say I have a rough idea what to get. I got really fed up and told her again I already knew what I wanted, and just need a quote for it- I don’t need a lengthy history lesson of your company’s products and services. She said she couldn’t give me a quote on the spot and needed to arrange a meeting.
OH FOR THE LOVE OF PIZZAS… WE ALREADY HAD A MEETING SET UP PREVIOUSLY.
In the end, I informed her politely to just email me a quote instead, and CANCELLED the meeting that was set up prior, due to sheer frustration and irritation of my time being wasted.
The lesson to learn here is when a salesman has closed a deal, be it an actual sale or a lead, just shut up and stop selling. We’ve already been sold, what is the point on forcing more sales on us? Would you like 2 meetings instead of 1? Can I buy 2 websites for my 1 company? In the end it made me take back my offer instead. I could have potentially given thousands of dollars worth of business from that meeting, but now that door is shut because the salesperson didn’t know when to stop while ahead.
LISTEN to your prospect. It’s not about what products your company has to offer, it’s about what the client needs. I felt like my needs were being ignored and they just wanted to push product. That irritated me a lot.
Be FLEXIBLE about your sales pitch and tailor it based on the situation. You do not sell the same way to every different customer who has different requirements. Reading off a script is extremely poor salesmanship when you have the opportunity to engage in live interaction.
It’s one thing to upsell, which every salesperson should do, but be clear that you are not overselling the same damn product. When a prospect has already been pushed over the edge, you don’t have to jump over as well.