Not everyone is born to be a salesperson. While some seem to have an innate gift for speaking persuasively and making quick and effortless sales, it usually takes time to nurture that talent. Sales can be a great career path, particularly if you’re an extrovert who loves dealing with people on a daily basis. If you want to make a success of sales but don’t know how to be effective in the business, use these secrets to start strong.

  1. Get the right training. It usually takes expert guidance to understand how to effectively close a killer sale. A long-term tertiary course shouldn’t be necessary to nail the basics of great sales technique – usually a few finely tuned workshops should do the trick. Choose an organisation that offers b2b marketing services and training for companies and salespeople if you want to be fully prepared for this fast-paced, competitive industry.
  2. Be flexible. A poor salesperson only works from a script and is quickly thrown off their game when a call or meeting doesn’t go according to plan. It’s important to be flexible in your approach to every sale you tackle, which often means adjusting your tone, altering your pitch to suit the client in question, and pushing past your comfort zone in order to make the sale.
  3. Choose your audience. The toughest kind of sale is the one where the pitch is aimed at the wrong person. If you don’t have a clear idea in your mind of who your buyer is and what your audience wants, you’re going to waste a lot of time and energy. At the beginning of any campaign, build a strong understanding of who you’re planning to approach and where you can find the best prospects.
  4. Be prepared. While working off the cuff can sometimes lead to success, it’s always best to enter every situation with a clear plan of action. Do your research, know your product, and have a contingency plan for a range of outcomes. Try to anticipate what kind of questions and problems you could face throughout the pitch, and have answers ready to bring to the table.
  5. Get to know your clients. Relationships are essential to any salesperson. They’re the best way to network, generate new leads, and maintain contacts throughout the industry. Try to build relationships with your clients as well as your colleagues by initiating conversation in a friendly, charismatic style, rather than merely focusing on closing a deal. The more natural and genuine you come across, the more likely it is that the client will trust you.
  6. Don’t shy away from competition. There’s a reason that salespeople tend to be competitive by nature. It’s a simple, effective way to push toward success and boost your ambitions. Keep the competition good-natured, but don’t be afraid to set targets above those of your colleagues and keep an eye on their successes. You should be cheering each other on while always aiming to make an impact.
  7. Maintain your confidence. It’s easy to let rejection and failed sales get you down, but allowing your confidence to take a knock will only harm your career prospects. Remember that a ‘no’ from a client isn’t personal; it’s just an opportunity to learn and grow.