Peter Jones

Get your products sold

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7.2 Sell persuasively and credibly

Make the most of selling

To state the obvious, if a product or service doesn't sell, a business won't succeed. Until an entrepreneur sells their product in a marketplace, there is no proof a venture will work.

But selling isn't purely about closing the deal. Selling is a process that goes through four key stages:

  • attracting prospects
  • gathering leads and referrals
  • getting and keeping the prospects interested
  • closing a deal by convincing them to buy

It doesn't stop there either. Once the deal is done and the customer is persuaded to buy, the product or service needs to be provided and contact followed up. In fact, the cycle begins again, gathering additional referrals and leads, attracting prospects, and so on.

Marketing deals with the initial stage of getting messages in front of the right people to attract attention. Sales deals with turning prospects into customers and retaining those customers, through effective follow-up.

In sales, there are many variables that need fine tuning to optimise results and reach targets.

You need the right:

  • team
  • product or service - the right solution
  • tools and training for your team
  • customer service
  • audience

Each variable depends on each other. A great product may not sell well if the sales staff are poorly trained and equipped. Equally, a great sales team may struggle to sell a poor product.

Successful entrepreneurs hire sales staff who could sell ice to an Eskimo, but they don't put themselves in the position of having to sell ice to an Eskimo. They get all the factors right, from price and pitch to product. And, most important of all, they deliver on their promises.

One final, though important thought. It is vital to establish credibility between the seller and buyer. Credibility centres on delivering a promise. But it also involves acting fairly and ethically. I am convinced that ethical behaviour will ultimately strengthen a business in the long term and I have enshrined this value in my companies. There should be no alternative.

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