How Professional Business Selling Differs from Selling to Consumers • Personal selling persuasive, deliberate contact between a buyer and a seller for the specific purpose of creating an exchange between them. • Selling to consumers personal selling is used to complement other elements in the promotional mix. • Selling to business customers professional selling is usually the primary means of selling business goods and services.
How Professional Business Selling Differs from Selling to Consumers Differences in Consumer “Hard Sell” Versus Business Goods & Services Traditional “Hard Sell” to Consumers Selling requires a “killer instinct.” Selling involves a one-sided “pitch.” Selling is adversarial, with a winner. Selling is based on manipulation. Salespeople are on their own. Salespeople are employees. The most important thing is getting the sale. Modern Professional Selling to Businesses Selling requires a problem-solving instinct. Selling involves two-way communication. Selling involves win-win for both sides. Selling is based on listening, sensitivity, and follow-through. Salespeople are part of a customer value creation team. Salespeople are professionals. The most important thing is customer satisfaction.
Profile of a Professional Salesperson • Classifying sales jobs • Development-oriented • a.k.a. order-getting • Refers to the creation of customers • Missionary-oriented • Provide necessary professional selling assistance • Do not intend to sell anything
Profile of a Professional Salesperson • Classifying sales jobs • Maintenance-oriented • Involves the continuation of present sales volume from existing customers • Support-oriented • Provide continuing service to the buyer • May engage in some direct selling by suggesting a replacement item rather than a repair
Profile of a Professional Salesperson • One day’s work • Averages 9 ½ + hours • Less than 30 percent spent in face-to-face selling • About 30 percent in travel and waiting
Profile of a Professional Salesperson • The salesperson performs many types of activities: • Selling – e.g., prospecting, making presentations, consulting • Servicing customers – e.g., following-up with customers, contacting and working with other company employees to ensure delivery of product • Time management – e.g., must plan the scheduling and routing of sales calls, frequency of contact with accounts • Communication – e.g., with current and potential customers, with members of distribution channel
Is detail oriented Likes to meet new people Manages multiple things Appearance oriented Good listener Gets involved Encourages harmony, agreement Has good communication skills Has good intuition Enjoys discussing events and news Keeps in touch Has sense of responsibility Has organizational skills Do You Have These Salesperson Characteristics?
The Cost of Professional Selling • Varies significantly- depends on: • Type of product • Type of industry • Size of the firm • Degree of personal contact necessary with customer • About $350 per sales call • An average of 4.3 calls are needed to close
Understanding Buyer Behavior: A Seller’s Perspective • Understanding Buyer Needs Barriers to overcome: I don’t know who you are. I don’t know your company. I don’t know your company’s product. I don’t know what your company stands for. I don’t know your company’s customers. I don’t know your company’s record. I don’t know your company’s reputation. NOW, What was it you wanted to sell me?
Understanding Buyer Behavior: A Seller’s Perspective • Methods Used to Uncover Important Buyer Needs • Ask questions:Questions often can bring out needs that the prospect would not reveal or does not know exist. • Observe:Successful salespeople are particularly sensitive to customer expressions and body language. • Listen:Telling is not selling. Ask a question and wait quietly for an answer – then the prospect’s entire attention is focused on the salesperson. Never to say something if you can ask it.
Understanding Buyer Behavior: A Seller’s Perspective • Methods Used to Uncover Important Buyer Needs (continued) • Talk to others:Ask people close to the customer (e.g., a secretary) about the customer’s level of satisfaction with current products and/or situations. • Combination:Talk, listen, ask questions and observe a prospect to get the full picture
Understanding Buyer Behavior: A Seller’s Perspective • Behavioral Styles of Buyers • Hard bargainer:Obtains several price quotations and/or sources of supply • Sales job facilitator:Positive toward the salesperson, may help things go smoothly • Straight shooter: Is honest and polite • Socializer: Likes personal interaction • Persuader: Seems to want the salesperson to like the buyer’s company • Considerate buyer: Is compassionate and concerned for seller
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective • Preliminary (or Presale) Activities • Setting Objectives • Preparing the Opener • Choosing and Preparing the Sales Presentation • The formularized model- attention, interest, desire, action (AIDA) • The buying-decisions model – a form of “outlined presentation” • The problem-solving model – like need-satisfaction selling, may involve use of SPIN technique
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective • Preliminary (or Presale) Activities (continued) Adaptive selling Using different sales presentations for each buyer and, if needed, within one sales presentation.
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective • Preliminary (or Presale) Activities (continued) • List Possible Objections • Plan the Closing
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective • Face-to-Face Activities • Introduction – tries to capture buyer’s attention, to create a positive selling atmosphere and build rapport with buyer • Presentation – the business of selling, engage in “signal detection” of buyer’s signals, handle objections • Closing – getting the buyer to make a commitment to your product
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective Handling Sincere Objections Find out what the objection means—ask questions and listen. What does “it costs too much” really mean? Restate the objection as you understand it. Get in step—agree that it is a wise concern. Never say, “You’re wrong.”
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective Handling Sincere Objections Answer objection by Offsetting with other benefits “Boomerang method”—converting objections into a benefit Converting objection into question so it becomes a request for further information
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective Salespeople Expect - and Even Like - Objections Handling objections correctly will lead to your close. A well-handled objection is a positive buying signal. • Ask for the order • Ask for the trial • Ask for action
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective Closing the Sale • Closing is simply asking for the order. A professional salesperson knows several closing techniques from which to choose, based on prospect and setting. • When to close: • After a positive buying signal • After a successful answer to an objection • At the end of the presentation
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective Closing the Sale (continued) • Types of closings: • Alternate proposal close:“Do you prefer truck or rail shipment?” • Assumptive close:“Sign here please, so I can process the shipment.” • Direct:Can we write up the order? • Minor decision:Takes customer through decision-making process— either/or, step by step, open-ended questions, summary, balance sheet
The Personal Selling Process: A Business Salesperson’s Perspective • Follow-Up Activities • Be sure that an order is completed • Be sure that all support arrangements are completed • Evaluate customer satisfaction with product and with salesperson. • If a sale wasn’t made – try to determine why
Contemporary Trends in Business Selling • The Increase in Use of Customer Relationship Management and Data Mining • The Increasing Use of Handheld Devices and Other Communication Technology • The Increasing Presence of Diversity in the Sales Force • Mass Customization of Business Market
Sales Management:A Leadership Challenge • Sales managers must allocate, maintain, direct and control the sales force • Planning, organizing, leading, and controlling activities of salespeople is important because salespersons are boundary spanners and oversight and supervision are difficult.
Planning the Sales Organization • Basic Types of Sales Organizations • Line • Line and Staff Organization • Functional Organization • Centralized vs. Decentralized Organization • Organizing by specialization • Geographic specialization • Sales activities • Product-line specialization • Customer specialization • Combination specialization
Staffing a Business Sales Force • Determining Sales Force Size • Turnover Expected • Three Methods • Workload method incorporates: • Number of sales calls to be made • Number of accounts in the territory • Frequency of sales calls to given customers • Time intervals between sales calls • Travel time around the territory • Nonselling time
Staffing a Business Sales Force • Determining Sales Force Size • Turnover Expected • Three Methods (continued) • Sales potential method: • Yearly sales volume divided by expected volume of each salesperson • Incremental method: • Profit contributions from an additional salesperson’s sales versus costs of hiring that person
Staffing a Business Sales Force • Recruitment (finding and attracting qualified applicants) • Conduct a Job Analysis • A careful and objective study and written summary of the job in question • Prepare a Written Job Description • Details the components of the job and the functions or activities that must be performed • Develop Sales Job Qualifications • List duties and responsibilities outlined in the job description
Staffing a Business Sales Force • Selection (select and attract the best person for the job)
Training a Business Sales Force • What a Training Program Should Cover • Company Knowledge • Product Knowledge • Selling Techniques • Customer Knowledge • Competitive Knowledge • Time and Territory Management
Training a Business Sales Force • Who Should Do the Training? • Home Office Sales Training • Field or Local Sales Training • Private Consulting Organizations and Professional Trainers
Training a Business Sales Force • How Sales Training Should Be Evaluated • Set objectives (overall and specific) for company sales training program. • Determine whether objectives as set are being met or already have been met. • Try to measure the effect of training on profitability.
Directing and Motivating a Sales Force • Providing leadership • Sales quotas: • To provide incentive • To provide a basis for compensation • To evaluate a person’s performance • Compensation Plans
Leadership • Leadership is difficult to define and teach, but we know it when we see it. • A leader brings out the best in us and knows that we can be successful even before we do. A Leader… • Creates shared vision and purpose. • Empowers through confidence and trust. • Is a role model. • Facilitates, encourages, and supports. • Serves the needs of the team. • Creates a team of leaders.
Managerial Leadership* Research shows that even when managing a group of individual contributors, effective leaders: • Create self-confidence in individuals by clear and sincere supporting messages. Self-confidence leads to more innovation, empowerment, and success. • Use communication and interactions to increase individuals’ feelings of being part of a greater whole, working together toward a worthy vision. • Are perceived as honest, caring, trusting, respecting, and consistent. • Encourage and literally support the highest levels of achievement (results that individuals can take pride in). • Build group culture that all are glad to be a part of. • Provide constructive feedback and encourage individual professional growth to help each person be all that he/she can be. * Based on Gomes-Knowles Model (JME, vol. 21, no. 3 , 164-174.)
Analyzing and Evaluating a Sales Force • To determine areas where each salesperson needs improvement • To assess the validity of the standards used • To spot people who are ready for promotion, salary raises, or assignment to new territories and responsibilities • To supply evidence about salespeople who should be disciplined or terminated • To check the effectiveness of the sales compensation plan, training, supervision, recruitment, territory assignments, and operating procedures (continued)
Profile of a Professional Salesperson • Goal-Setting • Vision • Passion • Communication Skills • Commitment • Efficiency • Readiness to Learn • Helping People • Integrity A salesperson for XYZ Corp. discovers a new potential customer. A sales call confirms that the company purchases millions of dollars of products from XYZ’s competitor. The buyer makes it clear that they are very satisfied with their current sources and have no need for XYZ Corp. The salesperson’s report suggests little chance to become a supplier, but the salesperson will check in with the company every six months in case anything changes. What time is it? It’s time for a new salesperson.