Mastering The Art Of Slow Selling

Sales representatives may be all too familiar with the potential buyer who just can’t seem to pull the trigger on making a purchase, as the patience that is required can drain the motivation of even the most experienced salesperson.

A sales management team could struggle with motivating their employees to hold out for the long run, and prolonging client calls in order to get every last dollar out of the potential buyer.

While certain instances may benefit a representative to prolong the correspondence, other times could necessitate making the determination that the sales relationship is simply not worth it, according to Barrett Riddleberger, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Resolution Systems, Inc., a sales training and consulting firm.

“You keep the conversation going if there is a legitimate reason to. Why would you want to have a conversation with someone if there’s not?” noted the executive. “It goes back to qualification there. If there is a long sales cycle, then yeah, I understand that.”

Defining the next steps on every sales call may help to keep the conversation going due to the notion that the sales relationship will only progress if there is some aspect that is mutually beneficial. Either way, there has to be a reason to elongate the string of correspondence, according to Riddleberger.

“It may be you’ve got to do research, you’ve got to talk to their technical team, you’ve got to work with other departments because it’s a major account,” the executive said. “Or, if it’s just to keep the conversation going, because this person’s not ready to buy, then put them in the category of: they’ve got some characteristics of a qualified buyer but they don’t have a sense of urgency.”

This may be when a representative chooses to reach out and talk to them about what is going on in their business, without making a distinct sales pitch. After making this determination, salespeople should change the objective to staying in touch with the potential client, according to Riddleberger.

Instead of pressuring the customer, representatives should let the conversation flow from what the specific individual wants, and more importantly, when they want the product or service, reported.

While it is important to retain the majority of prospects, it doesn’t pay to hold prolonged conversations with buyers who aren’t qualified for an eventual purchase, according to Riddleberger.