Seven Consultative Sales Strategies To Improve Your Outcomes
When you take a consultative sales approach, you act more like an advisor (or consultant) than a salesperson. This approach leans heavily on building relationships before ever offering a solution. To succeed in consultative selling, you must truly care about your clients and prospects—not just closing another deal.
According to Ben Taylor, the content marketing manager at Richardson Sales Training, consultative selling allows you to uncover prospects’ needs faster and position more compelling solutions. In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we walk you through Taylor’s top consultative selling tips.
1. Mix questions with insights. Thoughtful questioning is key in consultative selling, but you shouldn’t overdo it. If you fire off too many questions, prospects may feel like they’re being interrogated. A better way is to incorporate insights into the conversation, suggests Taylor. When you offer insights, you provide rationale for your questions and build credibility.
2. Show your reliability by following up. It can be difficult earning prospects’ trust if your interactions take place primarily online. The way around this challenge is to demonstrate your reliability by following up with a call. According to Taylor, this helps legitimize your solution’s value and helps build a trustworthy relationship with your prospective buyer.
3. Be genuine. No one wants to work with an overbearing salesperson who cranks up the fake enthusiasm. Be yourself and believe in your offering. Speak with genuine conviction and honesty, says Taylor. In other words, be open with your intentions and authentic with your pitch. If you’re selling a budget product, don’t try to spin it as a luxury item.
4. Guide the conversation. Dialogue is crucial to the consultative style, notes Taylor. Keep the conversation moving by sharing examples of relevant work. And be confident—this shows your capability.
5. Carefully consider feedback. Consultative selling requires you to listen to every piece of feedback the prospect provides. When they bring up a concern or objection, they’re voicing their needs and what they need to see before they move forward. Take their feedback to heart and use it as the sales process continues.
6. Present concise findings. It’s normal to want to show all the ways your solution could benefit your prospect, but you can create a bigger impact by presenting just a few relevant findings, says Taylor. He recommends locking down the points you need to make and eliminate the fluff from your consultative approach.
7. Sympathize with the buyer. To be a true consultant, you have to listen to what the prospect is saying and aim to understand where they’re coming from. This means giving them room to talk, not interrupting them and not using tactics than come across as pushy. Taylor says they key is to let them know their issues matter to you and that you have a vested interest in solving them.
Consultative selling is never about pushing products or rushing to close deals. Instead, it focuses on building relationships with prospective buyers. Try applying the guidance above to become more consultative in your sales efforts.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: Ben Taylor is the content marketing manager at Richardson Sales Training. He has over a decade of business and writing experience, and he has covered content for brands including Nasdaq, Barclaycard and Business Insider.