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Archive for April, 2010

What It Takes To Be Successful In Sales

Posted By Michael Roby | Saturday, April 17th, 2010

What does it take to be successful in sales?

Some say the most important thing is Enthusiasm.

en·thu·si·asm n.

  1. Great excitement for or interest in a subject or cause.
  2. A source or cause of great excitement or interest.
  3. Archaic
  • Ecstasy arising from supposed possession by a god.
  • Religious fanaticism.

While you need to have a passion for what you do and what you sell, it takes more than enthusiasm to be successful.

Selling is not just “telling.” Successful selling takes more than just spewing facts about products and services. It is relationship development, prospecting, making the approach, interviewing, presenting, answering objections, asking for the order, and keeping promises. Selling requires enthusiasm, product knowledge (yours and your competitors), and confidence.

con·fi·dence n.

  1. Trust or faith in a person or thing.
  2. A feeling of assurance, especially of self-assurance.
  3. A trusting relationship: I took them into my confidence.
  4. The state or quality of being certain: I have every confidence in your ability to succeed.

Expertise breeds confidence. Confidence results from knowing you are prepared, and that you can deliver and keep promises. Confidence forms the basis for enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is a choice. But still you don’t want to run around screaming about your product. Unbridled enthusiasm results in a lack of focus. It takes more to truly succeed in sales.

pro·fes·sion·al·ism n.

  1. Professional status, methods, character, or standards.
  2. The use of professional performers, as in athletics or in the arts.

Professionalism takes all of the factors listed above to a higher level. It helps you form a cogent story, run your business like a business, build and work a plan in an organized, focused manner.

So what is the most important factor?

There is no one most important key to success in sales; they are all important! Your success is a product of how well you execute on the activities and behaviors listed above, and the attitude that you bring to these tasks.  Successful salespeople are confident in their abilities, enthusiastic about their solutions, and professional in their execution.

Good selling!

The 8/15 Plan For Using LinkedIn

Posted By Michael Roby | Thursday, April 1st, 2010

LinkedIn® provides professional services marketing and sales people with a wonderful tool for building and expanding relationships and growing business. Consider the following tips for maximizing the use – and profitability – of one the top business building tools on the Internet.

This daily game plan has 8 steps and takes 15 – 20 minutes.

  1. Comment on Comments – Show your connections you are paying attention.
  2. Make recommendations – If you have not made a recommendation for a connection, DO SO if at all possible. Please make sincere recommendations; remember, your name is on the line. If you cannot recommend someone in good faith, don’t do it.
  3. Make your profile publicly available – While you can set the information which is publicly available to non-members/contacts, be careful with blocking too much information as this will also be unavailable to the search engines. As a minimum, consider providing enough information for the search engines to index your profile and cache the external links you have listed! In terms of optimizing your profile, the main goals are normally to rank for your own name, company name and possibly industry keywords related to this.
  4. Comment on Profile Updates – Congratulate others on promotions and awards, inquire about other changes, and always offer assistance.
  5. Check your Inbox – Respond to requests and messages in a timely manner.
  6. Look in the “People You May Know Section” – Find new connections and leads.
  7. Check Your Groups – Look for new discussions, answer questions, and look for other items of interest. Ask questions to gather information and open new relationships.
  8. Use LinkedIn® Answers – This can help to build up your reputation within a field. For SEO it also builds the number of internal links pointing to your profile from within LinkedIn, therefore helping to strengthen your profile in the search engines!

A word of warning: LinkedIn® is a tool, not a religion. Relationships are still made person-to-person, not digitally. You can receive an introduction or introduce yourself on the web, but true relationship building comes from personal interaction. LinkedIn® and other social media sites help maintain and grow relationships. In a busy world, that is truly priceless!