Sales Tactics- Time for a Change?

Pocket Video Power course.I am sure that we have all experienced going into a store and being greeted by a salesperson. No doubt within minutes you have been told by the sales person what you need to buy and which is the best product for you. It is amazing that so many sales people have wonderful powers of perception so that they know what you need without asking you any basic questions.

You can just imagine the little old lady walking into a mobile phone store and saying she wants a phone for emergency use only. As she walks out of the store clutching her iPhone the sales person is so pleased with himself. Who got the best deal? In the short term the sales person. In the long term both will lose. That customer is unlikely to return and neither will her family when they find out what has happened (other than to complain)!

Selling should be more than just getting the sale and earning the most commission or profit possible. It should be about providing the customer with the right product to match their requirements. How can a sales person achieve this?

Ask Questions

To make your customer feel valued and be satisfied with their purchase you need to establish facts about them and how they will use the product. Let’s take mobile phones as an example. This is a very complex market with a plethora of phones available and tariffs charged.

What questions should first be asked?

Starting with the phone ask what do they want from the phone. Do they only make phone calls and send texts? Do they use the Internet, Twitter or Facebook on the phone, a camera, video, play games, listen to music and so on. The answers will give you an idea of the level of complexity or sophistication required in the phone. It would also be good to find out the budget that the client has to spend. A phone most suitable could then be recommended.

When looking at the tariff then the amount of time the phone is used for mobile to mobile, landline calls, texts, the Internet should all be established before blindly recommending a package and of course some packages come with a free phone just to make it all more complex! A good sales person will establish the customers needs and match them to the right phone and tariff. The customer will be delighted in the long term and will recommend others to the business. The sales person may in many instances earn less commission on this sale but will gain far more over the months to come.

The principle of finding out what the customers needs are apply to all sales. Every person is different and using questions will enhance the customers experience, build a better relationship between the sales person and encourage repeat business and recommendations.

How do you sell?

Please leave your comments in the box below.

Roland Millward
The Entrepreneur Club


6 thoughts on “Sales Tactics- Time for a Change?

  1. I believe the key here is to change from a sales perspective to one of “enrollment”.

    The key to that mindset is to remember that our clients are completely uninterested in our products and services. They don’t care in the least. What they are interested in, is the benefits they provide … the positive change in their lifestyle they believe they will receive from using those same products and services.

    Here is a short, crystal-clear video I shot on the topic. Check it out and please share and tweet about it if you like it.

    My two cents,


  2. Few people do it. It’s mostly push marketing. I take another example of selling telecom monthly rental packages for post-paid connections. They push the broadband and call for which they have the targets rather than understanding what I want. An example: It happened y’day, i asked for broadband connection with static IP address and he told me commercial plan costing 3339. I asked him is there any cheaper option available. On continuos iteration and my own exploring on their site (Airtel), I found another version (entreprise version) for 1999 with more advantages. It was funny. Similarly, operators charge services which they initially gave free of cost (e.g. caller tunes and latest is call forwarding) by poor communication for confirmation.

    As customer, I don’t have choice to move away, because others are equally bad, and that they also know and so this non-personal behaviour.

    Just to add, in selling, selling behaviour is also determined by market players and the choice customer has got.

  3. It’s interesting as only this week I gained a new client. A local business had been mailing around for quotes. I am not sure of the exact number but they did say several accountants had been contacted.

    I was the only one that asked for more information and did a bit of web research about the business with which to be able to give a tailored quote for the service they wanted. Hence a major factor in winning the business!

  4. Well done Phil. That’s exactly what the article is pointing to. You will ultimately be more successful and have a bette relationship with your client. Thank you for sharing this with our readers.

  5. Oh yes! The role of the really good 2011 salesperson is 1) to help their customer think through their (customer’s) problems and 2) help their potential customer make a decision about what they require.
    Using the old ‘snake oil from a covered wagon’ selling approach just doesn’t work any more. People buy from real, honest people.
    The ‘push’ sales model is now officially dead.

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