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Relationships

Are “Relationships” really relevant to the sales profession?

 

One of best pieces of advice I ever received about holding on to important clients and customers was this: During times of uncertainty, approach your business contacts from a different perspective than during so-called “normal” times.

 

Everyone wants to know what business closed today. Or this week. Or this quarter. But is that really all we should be asking?

 

The global pandemic has highlighted the need for sales teams to focus appropriate amounts of selling time, effort, and energy on client retention.

 

Everyone loves a good quiz and the Sandler Research Center has a tricky question for any business leader responsible for customer success or net revenue retention.

 

Mike Montague interviews Ray Setter on How to Succeed at Customer Service.

 

The value of client retention is significant, especially when compared to the cost of customer acquisition.

Brian Sullivan Interviews Jonathon Farrington on The Critical Elements of Proactive Client Retention.

In order to combat this frustration and fear of product obsolescence, producers offer you over-the-air updates that upgrade your product’s software to perform new tasks and make your user experience, in general, more satisfying.

 

Once upon a time, there was a young kid who graduated from high school, took a look at the help wanted ads, went out on a couple of interviews, and, within just a few days, landed his very first job.

What does a spilled box of candy have to do with a sales call? Everything.

As 2019 draws to a close, it makes sense to survey the landscape and take note of the ideas and innovations that are most likely to affect markets, and sales teams, in the year to come. With that in mind, here are five emerging trends we at Sandler believe sales professionals should be on the watch for in the year 2020.

It’s that time of year. The holidays loom, there is a chill in the air, and countless articles appear providing guidance to sales representatives about how to close the year strong. The five, ten or twenty best strategies are outlined in checklists to insure end-of-year success. “Contact every client” is an action often recommended, as is “Revisit prospects who have chosen another vendor.”

Tom’s best customer, Meg, called and asked for a favor: “Can you talk to my new assistant Karen about getting up to speed with your software? She’s got a couple of questions I don’t have time to answer.” Theoretically, supporting a brand-new user was supposed to come under training, and handled under a separate contract.

We’ve all heard the sobering statistics that winning a new major account costs far more than keeping one – depending on the study you read, perhaps twenty times as much. And we’ve all heard how even a small increase in a firm’s overall major client retention rate has an exponentially positive effect on revenues and profits. We also know, of course, that, on the flip side, decreases in retention rates produce similarly negative impacts, often devastating and long-lasting.

One of the distinguishing characteristics of top performers in sales is the ability to avoid two common, self-imposed mental handicaps: reachback and afterburn.

Mike Montague interviews Carlos Garrido on How to Succeed at Asking for Referrals In this episode:

  • Why do we struggle to ask for referrals?
  • Attitudes to help you get business from referrals
  • Give referrals to get referrals

Jack was having some challenges. Feedback from multiple sources -- his own clients, prospects, customers, and colleagues -- suggested that his communication skills needed some work.

If you lose a big sale, have a bad month, or don’t make quota, what is your typical first response?

Here are five simple ways we can improve the quality of our communication with the people who are currently buying from us and expand and deepen those relationships over time.

Read Time: 8 Minutes

Why do people buy milk or bread or cereal or soda at the gas station convenience store when those items are far less expensive at a grocery store? Obviously, they have a need for the items. More importantly, buying at the convenience store is quick, and you guessed it, convenient.

This year, on Fridays, Dave talks about the attitude, behavior, and techniques of successful sales managers as he shares his thoughts on the 49 Sandler Rules for Sales Leaders.

Listen Time: 10 Minutes

Brian Sullivan, VP of Sandler Enterprise Selling, speaks with Steve Moritz, thirty year veteran of the technology industry and CEO of Moritz Consulting Group about  Consulting Services: Putting the client first in sales and delivery.

Listen Time: 40 Minutes

Potential buyers of your product or service – like the rest of us – spend a lot of their time online. This gives rise to a question: What are the best ways to engage with them when a voice to voice or a face to face conversation isn’t a possibility? Here are five simple, effective steps you can follow.

Learn how to engage and partner with gatekeepers to get to more decision-makers. Sean Coyle is Sandler's prospecting expert and host of the online course. In this episode, Sean talks about the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top sellers and how they interact with gatekeepers and admins. 

Learn how to do a simple five-part client satisfaction call using the RECON framework. Caroline Robinson, Sandler trainer from the UK, talks about checking in with your clients and getting on the same page.

Customer relationships are the lifeblood of any sellers’ career. The ability to attract clients, build rapport, and start sales conversations ultimately determines the level of success that a salesperson will enjoy. You can be an extreme specialist who knows all the tricks of the trade, but without supplementing your knowledge with interpersonal communication skills, you’ll fail to connect with your clients or prospects on a deeper level. Building rapport is essential to turn yourself from a transactional seller into a trusted partner. Below I’ve outlined four ways to strengthen your bond with clients.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

One of the most obvious reasons you should be building brick walls around your existing clients is to reduce the impact of aggressive competitor activity. While you are off flirting with seemingly more attractive and exciting new opportunities, your competitors will be targeting your “home base.”

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

Getting started in sales, or increasing your success once you’ve established yourself, can be a very challenging task. One of the hardest parts of this process is securing leads. What’s even harder is ensuring those leads are qualified.

To grow as a salesperson, mastering this aspect of your career is key. Below I have identified three ways to get qualified referrals. Incorporating these simple tips will help you step up your referral game and uncover a path to new levels of success.

Early in every sellers’ career, they learn to segment clients. They have As, Bs, Cs, and “everybody else.” What separates great sellers from others, is their ability to balance these segments and manage their relationship with each. 

This blog will illustrate several techniques to nurture those prospects in your funnel and how to effectively turn them into clients. The ability to do this is what separates good salespeople from just good networkers. Below are four keys to developing a successful nurture funnel and how to convert your prospects into clients. 

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler Selling System.

The sales industry is fast-paced now and isn’t showing signs of slowing down. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the clutter of new selling techniques, emerging technologies, and more specialized analytics. Although those components – and some others – can play a major role in your level of success. It would be a mistake to spend too much time on them and ignore the basics. Before you get carried away learning this or that, remember to take it back to your roots and ensure that you are providing optimum customer service. If you have strayed a bit or are just looking for a reminder, below are five imperative tactics to employ in your practice.

There are three tools that are particularly effective and easy to use in making people feel good about themselves: stroke, struggle, and validate. You can use one, two, or all three of these tools in interactions with patients—it depends on the situation.

You’ve closed the deal – but your job isn’t done quite yet. Managing client expectations can help you make the most of your new relationship and ensure you are striking the right balance. By working together to outline goals, define success, and clearly communicating your progress and milestones, you can increase transparency to build the long lasting relationship with your new client.

Fear may be the most powerful motivator affecting your buyers’ decisions. However, in their effort to maintain an image of power and control, buyers will be reluctant to share their true anxieties and concerns with you. You’ll increase your sales production when you help buyers discover and overcome their fears, show that you are sensitive to those issues, and then lead those buyers to the conclusion that your product will replace their fear with peace of mind.

2016 has been a year of many successes. Whether you are a sales representative, a sales manager, or simply interested in learning more about trending topics in the sales industry, we hope you have gathered some key insights from our blog this year. Before moving into 2017, we would like to take a look back and highlight some important topics from 2016.

By focusing on tracking activities in a Customer Relationship Management software, you can evaluate which things influence prospects to move forward in your sales process. Understanding exactly what’s moving a deal forward will help you decide the best next steps you should take to close any similar deal in the future. Tracking activities also highlights the telltale signs that a deal might be slipping away, and helps you pay it the proper attention to keep it moving forward. 

A salesperson striving toward success and prospecting for new clients may think that he or she must do something grandiose to draw customers away from the competition. Occasionally, something spectacular may be just what's needed, but it's not practical to do on a regular basis. Incorporate the following four simple gestures into your interactions with potential clients to experience greater conversion success.

Does your workplace make you happy? Some 52.3% of Americans report feeling unsatisfied with their jobs, while 39.4% of people reported disliking the people that they work alongside. If you find a strong correlation between being unhappy at your job and weak relationships with your coworkers, follow these nine rules to develop interpersonal skills and become well liked by your peers.

The hiring process can be a rocky journey involving dozens of candidates and weeks of interviews. Although a painstaking process, finding the right employee for the job is crucial, and the choice should never be rushed. Carefully studying resumes, checking previous job history, and meeting face-to-face to get to know the contenders takes time. Employees are the ambassadors of your brandMany companies even hold multiple in-person interviews with candidates to decide if they fit the criteria. Once the obvious applicants have been cut because of inexperience or other shortcomings, the hard work starts. Look for these eight red flags to weed out the candidates that may spell trouble for your company

I spend about 80% of my time working with sales professionals to perfect their ability to structure the questions that need to be asked. They all understand the importance of asking questions but need some assistance in creating their own tailored versions. Salesmen often enjoy the exercise of deciphering which questions uncover the compelling reasons the prospect should do business with them. 

If you've heard the any of the following statements from prospects, then keep reading to learn more about how to determine when to walk away and when to continue investing time and energy. "I need to confer with other managers here." "I need more time to decide." "Call me in about a month."

Nothing lasts forever, right? While it may seem pessimistic, having a plan for dealing with a client's departure is sound advice when it comes to maintaining business and clients. We spend so much time building solid, trusting relationships with clients that it can come as quite a blow when news hits that your client contact announces they're leaving their current position.

Aberdeen's research shows that the best sales training companies, like Sandler Training, integrate sales training and customer relationship management.

The other day, people in the training center were discussing how they go about building trust. The group shared lots of ideas, and every idea they shared would probably do the trick. When all was said and done, we had a list of about twenty things people could do to build trust.

As a salesperson, I seem to take quite a few lessons from movies and some of the best lessons are in some of the worst movies. Most people think Burt Reynolds played only tough guy roles and the occasional slapstick comedy role. But one of the best sales lessons I have ever learned was from the movie "The End." If you have not seen "The End," do not rush out to rent it. I am about to spoil the plot for you. This is kind of a cute movie starring Dom DeLuise and Burt Reynolds.

Whoever said talk is cheap didn't know much about sales. Talk-too much talk, that is-can cost a lot. This is a difficult lesson for many sales professionals to learn, and that's understandable. People in sales tend to have outgoing personalities. They enjoy good conversation, and the longer they are in sales, the better they get at making small talk, establishing an emotional connection with the prospect, and driving a conversation toward the specific end of closing a sale