Sales can be a very rewarding career, but definitely not an easy one for a lot of people. I always look for ways to break down walls and barriers of those that I am working with to see that I am not a as “salesperson”, but that I am a person who is trying to help them, so we can get on to the common objective. Here are 3 simple “sales hacks” to help you build a better rapport, and start to gain trust faster and earlier in the sales cycle.
- Refer to people by their first name – yes, this is as easy as it sounds. When someone calls me to sell me on something, and then refers to me as Mr. Evans, or Sir…you know what they are not doing, they are not building rapport with me. There is nothing wrong with being respectful, but this is 2019, not 1919, people aren’t expecting you to address them by Mr., Mrs., etc. Now, if you want to be respectful, but be effective with building rapport with someone…try the following: Me: “Hi, Mr. Smith, this Ty with XYZ company, the reason for my call is…blah blah, do you have a few mins to talk? Prospect answer: “yes, I have a few minutes” Me: “Great, thank you, Mr. Smith, is it ok if I call you Paul?” … this is just a way where you can be respect and gain permission to use their first name. Referring to someone throughout a conversation by their first name, is a way to start to break down that guard that they have up. You start to sound a bit more like a friend, than a “salesperson”. I have always referred to people by their first names, and in the last 15 years, I have had 0 stop people tell me to refer to them as Mr. or Mrs.
- Be honest and transparent – if someone has taken the time to answer your call or allow you to speak with them in person, get to the point with why you are calling or why you are there. When salespeople become vague, or not fully honest from the get go, a few things will and can happen. One, they are never fully going to let their guard down, because they are unsure of what your motive is. Two, if you start to build rapport, and then spring something on them at the end that you should have told them in the beginning, you have lost the sale. Three, being manipulative does nothing for creating long term clients, you might trick them once, but it will be a one and done. This is why most people don’t like dealing with salespeople to be begin with, they feel as though someone is trying to get something over on them. So, just state right away with why you are calling, or set the intentions of why you are visiting or having a meeting with them. It allows everyone to get on the same page early in the game, and builds an underlying trust right away.
- Bring Value – the best way to get a prospect on the phone or get an in person meeting is by bringing them value. So do your homework, know who you are calling, why you are calling them, and how you think you might be able to help them. When you are leaving a voicemail, there should be a take away from your message. When sending an email, there should be a take away from it that corresponds with your voicemail. For example; I work in insurance, so if there has been a break up between a carrier/network and a provider, I could call a prospect to let them know. This gives me a reason to follow up, but I am also bringing something to them, other than, “This is Ty, give me a call back when you get some time” – why should they? But they may call me back to find out more of what is going on about the network and the provider… this does a few things, one, it shows I care about how this might impact their business, two, it shows that I am a resource and a expert in my field, three, it shows them I am wanting to work with them. And lastly, if it does impact their business, my product or service might be the solution they will need for the upcoming issue. All positive.
These are simple “hacks” you can and should implement now. I promise they will lead to better results and better, longer lasting relationships.