The world of B2B sales can be a tough place. Business owners are conditioned to keep a tight grip on their budgets and to carefully curate all of the products and services utilized by their brand in order to keep their overheads and expenses down and their turnover up.
This is completely understandable, as control is key in the corporate world, and it is perfectly possible for a company - no matter its level of success - to find itself in a very precarious financial or image-related position as the result of a single small mistake.
If you're a salesperson who has been tasked with convincing a company's higher-ups to invest in a particular product or service, you're bound to have your work cut out for you. So are there any ways in which your job could be made a little easier?
In this article, quick home sale business property solvers explore a few excellent sales and negotiation techniques that will assist you to not only land big clients but to broker deals that will yield the best benefits for you, your commission, and the organization you represent.
Best negotiating tips for clients
Tailor your pitch
The more you manage to discover about your client, the more effectively you'll be able to help them understand how well your product or service may fit their requirements or solve their problems.
Do they have a competitor that could be overtaken with your help? Might they be able to achieve access to a wider audience or better opportunities for sales conversions if they use your product? How exactly would this work from their specific standpoint?
Do your homework on everything from their image to their infrastructure and crunch some numbers to determine how what you're selling would fit into their budget and even save them money. Use real-world numbers and scenarios that they will easily relate to.
Once this is done, you can present them with an expertly tailored pitch revealing an exact model of how your product or service would serve their particular business model, approach, and finances.
When a potential client sees that you've done most of the legwork on their behalf, they'll be far more likely to sign on the dotted line.
It's also probable that they'll follow your lead in terms of the finer details, as the inner workings of the deal you have in mind will be clearly laid out, saving them time and effort that may otherwise have proven too costly for their already busy schedules.
Go for the slow burn
Cold calling is not pleasant for either the salesperson or the client. Neither is the "hard sell". The most comfortable approach for all parties by far is for a strong and trusting relationship to be built before any deals are proposed.
B2B salespeople should be prepared to invest time and effort into developing this kind of mutual understanding with all target businesses.
Once the relevant contacts are able to appreciate you as an honest individual who will not attempt to mis-sell products or twist any facts, they are far more likely to sign on the dotted line with you than they would be with a lesser-known rival salesperson.
When you finally feel that it is the right time for you to pitch an idea to the business in question, don't push too hard - as this may cause your relationship to sour. Instead, sell with confidence using the intimate knowledge you have learned about the company as described in approach 1.
If it's a clear "no", accept their answer but don't delete them from your contacts and do not consider that bridge burned. They might not have been a suitable match for this particular product, but you may have piqued their interest - so there could be the option of a future sale.
Have sweeteners at the ready
Of course, you should always have one clear central goal in mind when entering negotiations with a potential client. However, you should also consider what additional offers you could make in order to "sweeten the deal."
Might you be able to drop the price or tweak payment terms slightly in order to secure a positive response? Could you throw additional resources in on top of the original offer? Maybe you could customize the product or service to better meet the unique needs of the client.
Another option is the offer of a lesser initial commitment - a trial period, for example - with the possibility of an increase after a set amount of time. This may afford you an increased sense of trust.
These techniques will help you to make the person with whom you are negotiating feel that you value them and that the deal they are getting is the best one available.
Plan potential concessions
As well as the key central aspect of your sales pitch, you might consider adding peripheral elements that can be dropped if need be.
Think of a "best-case scenario" and a "second-best case scenario" as well as a "most likely" and "worst case." The results may look something like this:
- Best case: The client takes on your product or service, signs up for an ongoing partnership with you, and agrees to include adverts for your company on their website.
- Second best case: The client takes on your product or service and either sign up for a partnership or agrees to include adverts on their website.
- Most likely case: The client takes on your product or service.
- Worst case: You fail to strike a deal at all.
Make a concerted effort to achieve the best-case scenario. If it's clear that they aren't biting, simply ask for less. At the very least, this will make the "most likely" scenario still more likely.
Prepare the next steps
You need to consider it a given that the person with whom you are negotiating will eventually accept what you are proposing. To this end, you will need to have everything set up and ready to move forwards with them once you have come to an agreement.
Have all required paperwork to hand in and make sure that all relevant decision-makers are present as the negotiations draw to a close.
Signatures and other permissions should be obtained on the spot if at all possible, as delays may lead to cold feet and cancellations on the part of your client.
If you need to send electronic communications or to fill in information online, make sure you have a device to hand that is already connected to the internet and is extremely simple to us. You should also have quick access to all items and documents to be handed over to the client.
Try not to leave until you have done everything that is required to move the sale to the next step and provide the client with all of the information they need - including relevant calls to action - to ensure their experience is an easy and pleasant one.
As is evidenced by the sales approaches suggested above, a B2B salesperson should consider flexibility, investment, research, personability, and honesty as vital elements of their arsenal.
Depending on the nature of the ABC of sales and the potential client in question, you may decide to deploy these elements - and the suggested techniques in this article - to different extents and in different ways with every pitch.
Be sure to have your exact approach well-planned before you arrange a meeting with your next potential client. Referring to this article as you do so will help you to substantially increase your likelihood of sales success.
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