Closing the Sale
Half of the battle when it comes to selling is finding the right client and getting the conversation started. But just because you've climbed that hill doesn't mean there isn't a taller mountain to climb just beyond the horizon. Sometimes once-eager potential clients begin to have second thoughts, display unsure body language, or—perish the thought—ghost you completely. To get some insight on closing the sale, we tapped the expertise of our own sales team here at Groups Today.
Right out of the gate, Kary Moening, Media Sales Director, says it's vital to be yourself, believe in your product and to be honest.
"I have a very bubbly personality, and I like to talk and get to know people! But not everyone is like me—it took me a while to learn that," Moening said, noting you shouldn't waste your potential client's time. "Talk about goals and accomplishments! Also, let them talk and discuss ideas they're captured by."
For Haleigh Gerwig, Media Sales Consultant, making sure a potential client knows who you are and the value of your product is key for establishing credibility.
"I personally always ensure the client has an up-to-date media kit prior to our conversation to learn more about who we are," Gerwig said, stressing that you should be the biggest believer in your product and convey that knowledge to offer confidence. "Listen to the client and what they're looking for. The majority of the discussion should be about them and their needs. Jump in where appropriate to let them know how you can help."
If you're having a B2B conversation, Jill Carroll, Marketing Manager and Media Consultant, suggests connecting on LinkedIn beforehand so they could see your credentials.
"Similarly, direct consumers could be sent a link to your website's 'About Us' section, which should include more about what you do, your company's core values and testimonials from other clients," Carroll said.
It's also important to genuinely get to know your clients on a personal level beyond business.
"By building trust, you'll instantly be more effective with them," Moening said. "And don't forget: you've got to get the details right."
If someone is having second thoughts and happens to be a past customer, Carroll suggests providing a recap of what the client did previously and reminding them of the results.
"If they are a new prospect, I suggest politely, but directly ask them about their hesitation," Carrol said. "Is it the money? Maybe propose something less costly. Is it that they aren't convinced it will be successful? Provide them with examples or testimonials of transactions that have been successful for others."
Gerwig recommends trying to put yourself in their shoes and ponder why your product truly is the best fit for them or their business.
"Ask your client if there's a better time to reconnect down the line," she said. "A 'no' now, might not be a 'no' forever."
LET'S TALK ABOUT GHOSTING
When a potential client ghosts you, it can feel hurtful, discouraging and confusing, but there's often more to the story than you'll likely ever be aware of.
"After being ghosted many times, I now believe that about 70% of the time, there's a reason they're ghosting me," Moening said. "I know there has to be an underlying reason I don't know about and most often they simply don't want to have to say 'no!'"
If you're being ghosted, continue to reach out, but don't go into overkill.
"You're not going to win them all and YOUR time is valuable, too! At some point you need to ask yourself if your time is better spent moving on for other sales efforts."
Written by Sarah Suydam, Managing Editor of Groups Today.
This article originally appeared in the May/June '22 issue of Groups Today.