Chris said to Kate, “How do you get lone wolves to become
part of a collaborative sales approach? How do you get them to actually put
prospects into a contact management system”
“He’s got a point,” I said, “Every salesperson I know thinks
that until a contract is signed or a deal is closed, the lead is theirs, not
the company’s. And even afterwards they believe that all future sales to that
customer are something they should be rewarded for even if they have not maintained
Kate smiled and said, “ The eternal problem. Business owners
hire sales people because they believe:
The sales person works for a
competitor so they have lots of contacts that could be prospects for us.
The job of the sales person is to
define and hunt down the best prospects for our business.
The sales person is going to
convince them to buy from us.
Because they are sales people they
only have to have rudimentary knowledge of what we do.
They sell better when compensation
is directly linked to closes.
Usually the people doing the hiring in small companies have
never been professional sales people themselves and are looking for a real
boost in their business.”
Rob pulled out his aw shucks grin and syrupy voice to say,
“So we got some untrained youngster
wanderin’ ‘round in the dark who couldn’t find their own behind with either
hand, a guide dog and a flashlight tryin’ to tree the right sales person.”
I said, “Can I use that?”
Y’all are welcome to it, Fletch,” Rob said.
“So they wind up with lone wolves,” said Chris. “But how do
you get them to work with a team?”
“Leads, Kate said. “Today you can use the internet like you do all the time Chris with pay per click
advertising and some of the inventive things you’re doing with Linked In.
Without a lead, a sales person has nothing to work on so they have to go find
their own which is usually not their strong suit.
But, give them a warm lead where the prospect is truly
interested and you have their attention. If they get the first few sales from
leads you supply you can pretty much count on them to follow up most of the leads you give them.”
“Most?” Gail asked.
Gail,” I said, you’ve worked in advertising. I know you’ve
seen sales types walk away from ad generated leads without even trying them
“It goes right back to that lone wolf nonsense,” said
Kate. “If one of their pet sources
didn’t sniff it out it can’t be good is their attitude.
The way to make it work is to understand how people make
buying decisions n considered purchases and match that up to the sales person’s
basic desire. The prospect wants to get enough information to make a decision
and not be pressured to do so while the salesperson just wants to close.”
Rob injected, “Thass a tractor pull. Both of ‘em can’t win.”
“Wrong,” Kate said. “Both can win if the sales person
listens to what the marketing team doing the lead nurturing tells them about
where the customer is in the purchase process. Most importantly, the sales
person need to confirm hat status with the customer, help them get whatever
else they need stop selling and take the order.
What would you suggest?
Jerry Fletcher may write these dialogues but they come from
actual conversations. Learn how he thinks at www.JerryFletcher.com
Stories like these that have motivated teams on three
continents can be found at www.NetworkingNinja.com