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The Sales Buzz Issue 101 - Making effective sales introductions
December 06, 2010

I'm Stephen Craine from the website

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Training on making effective sales introductions to cold prospects in just 15 seconds

Last week we looked at sales prospecting and how to approach prospects differently depending upon their current situation.

This week we look at your first contact with a sales prospect. It could be a telephone cold call, or a knock on their door.

This sales technique also works when network marketing, attending informal business meetings, or just spreading the word about what you do.

This type of sales introduction should be only 15 seconds long and should keep the interest of your listener.

Only words and phrases that add something positive to your introduction should be included. Nothing extra, no padding, only attention grabbing straight to the point information.

Here’s what this type of sales introduction should include:

Sales Introduction Training – How to Introduce You

Your name is a must. The prospect must know who they are talking to. Knowing your name makes it personal and breaks down some of the barriers to a sale.

Also in this stage of the introduction you could use your position in the business, your experience, or a title you have such as Doctor or Professor. But only use this information if it has a direct relationship to what you sell or the industry you are in.

If you use a title or a position, or your experience, which is not related to the sale you may be seen as bragging or showing off, and customers do not respond well to that. When deciding whether to use a title or position think about it from the buyer’s perspective: Will they see it as a benefit and something that gives them confidence in you.

If you’re the managing director, and you are approaching a prospect to make a sale, it tells them two things:

Your company is quite small, because otherwise you would have sales people doing the selling.

You are genuinely interested in them as a new customer as you have a real interest in the business.

You decide if either of these pieces of information, and the reaction you can expect from a sales prospect, makes them lines you would add to your introduction.

You have 15 seconds to grab the buyer’s attention, look at what you are thinking of adding to our sales introduction and decide if it adds something of benefit.

Sales Introduction Training – How to Introduce Your Business or Product

Include the name of your business and a short line with information that is a point of reference for the listener.

A point of reference is something that connects with the customer's own knowledge or experience related to what you sell and the benefits you can provide.

Points of reference are especially useful if your business name does not give the prospect information about what you sell, or if they may not have heard about you or your product. You need a line that instantly triggers a response in the prospect that tells them what you and this call or visit are about.

When you include a line about your product or service you should use its name and a general overall feature, followed by a wide angled potential benefit that the listener could want to gain. This line is a motivator for the call to action that follows.

For example:

I’m the regional manager of the Speedy drill company. We manufacture drills that cut through specialist materials in half the time of others on the market, which helps manufacturers like you cut your production costs.

You’ve introduced you, your business, and your product, and you have included a benefit that the prospect may want.

Choose the information you want to include.

Take out anything that doesn’t add something positive, and remember to keep it to a minimum.

The entire sales training on this page should take no longer than 15 seconds to present.

Now we move on to the next stage of the sales introduction.

Sales Introduction Training – The Call to action

Make sure you are clear about what you want from the telephone call or visit to a sales prospect.

Are you sure you know what the most desirable outcome of your contact with a sales prospect is?

And, do you have secondary desirable outcomes?

Here’s an example

When cold calling a sales prospect my most desirable outcome is to: Qualify the prospect as someone that can buy from me, and to make a sales appointment with them.

Secondary desirable outcomes are: Gaining the name and position of the person that I need to contact. Learning the process the prospect uses to make purchases. Gaining information about their current suppliers. Scheduling a cal back to the decision maker.

Do you get the picture. I have a desirable outcome that will make this a successful telephone cold call, and I also have secondary objectives to aim for if I do not achieve my main objective.

Achieving The Call to action

When you have clear desirable outcomes you can focus on influencing the prospect to agree to take the action to achieve your goals.

Your call to action will vary depending upon the situation you are in. If you are in an informal setting and your sales introduction is more of an elevator pitch your call to action may be for the prospect to agree to talk further with you.

If you are cold calling sales prospects your call to action may be for them to agree a sales appointment, add you to their supplier list, agree a sale with you, or one of many other desirable outcomes.

To influence your sales prospect to take action you need to motivate them. The best way to motivate sales prospects is by using benefits that they could potentially gain from taking the action. You can use two types of benefits to motivate prospects to take action:

1. A benefit that moves the prospect away from a something negative such as a consequence or penalty. A consequence may be non compliance with legislation or law. If this benefit relates to money or costs, it would be a way to save the prospect money compared to their current situation.

2. A benefit that moves the prospect towards a more positive position. This could be a way to help them make more money, or grow profits.

The same benefit can often be viewed as both of the above types. It will have more effect if you word it as one or the other and be specific about how it will do what you say it will.

To use benefits effectively to call the prospect to action, you need to add one more line to your sales introduction. It is the most important line of your introduction and to see what it is, and how to use it, open Sales Techniques for a stunning sales introduction...

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Open the invitation and send to as many people as you think will gain from receiving this newsletter. Open and send the Sales Buzz Invitation...

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