10 Tactics to Successful Selling – Part 1

In his book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”, Robert Kiyosaki recalled that when he left the US Marine Corps, his Rich Dad recommended that he should get a job that taught him to sell.  His Rich Dad knew that learning to sell would help Robert Kiyosaki to succeed. 

Robert Kiyosaki followed his advice and got a job as a salesman wih Xerox.  Not knowing much about sales, Robert Kiyosaki became the worst salesman in the company for 2 years.  He did eventually learnt the rope and get quite well at salesmanship.

Personally for me, selling is not an easy task and not is something that is in my blood. However, there are certain tactics and rules that can help in making the selling process more effective.

Len Foley, a sales management trainer and co-author of the book, “Your Successful Sales Career”, shares his 10 tactics for sales success.

Tactic 1:
Keep your mouth shut and your ears open. This is crucial in the first few minutes of any sales interaction. Remember:

1. Don’t talk about yourself.
2. Don’t talk about your products.
3. Don’t talk about your services.
4. And above all, don’t recite your sales pitch!

Obviously, you want to introduce yourself. You want to tell your prospect your name and the purpose of your visit (or phone call), but what you don’t want to do is ramble on about your product or service. After all, at this point, what could you possibly talk about? You have no idea if what you’re offering is of any use to your prospect.

Tactic 2:
Sell with questions, not answers. Remember this: Nobody cares how great you are until they understand how great you think they are.

Forget about trying to “sell” your product or service and focus instead on why your prospect wants to buy. To do this, you need to get fascinated with your prospect; you need to ask questions (lots and lots of them) with no hidden agenda or ulterior motives.

Many years ago, I was selling CDs at a music festival. It didn’t take me long to figure out that it wasn’t my job to sell the CDs-it was my job to get the earphones on every person who walked by my booth!

I noticed right away that whenever people sensed I was attempting to “sell” them a CD, their walls of defense immediately went up and they did everything in their power to get as far away from me as they could.

So instead, I made it my job to introduce new music to anyone who wanted to put on the earphones. Once they heard the music, they either liked it or they didn’t. I didn’t do any “selling,” and I made more money that week than any other CD hawkers at the festival.

Back then, I didn’t know anything about sales, but I knew enough about human nature to understand that sales resistance is an oxymoron: The act of selling creates the resistance! Which leads us to the next principle:

Tactic 3:
Pretend you’re on a first date with your prospect. Get curious about them. Ask about the products and services they’re already using. Are they happy? Is what they’re using now too expensive, not reliable enough, too slow? Find out what they really want. Remember, you’re not conducting an impersonal survey here, so don’t ask questions just for the sake of asking them. Instead, ask questions that will provide you with information about what your customers really need.

When you learn what your customers need and you stop trying to convince or persuade them to do something they may not want to do, you’ll find them trusting you as a valued advisor and wanting to do more business with you as a result. 

In the next article tomorrow, I will continue with the rest of the 10 tactics to successful selling.