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Getting Past Gatekeepers – 6 Quick Strategies

If you’ve been involved in sales for any period you will have encountered gatekeepers. You clearly want to increase your sales success if you are reading this. Detailed here you will find practical strategies for dealing with gatekeepers to access decision makers (DM).

The sole focus of gatekeepers is to screen calls that don’t qualify for the DM’s time. Your sole focus then is to show that your call is critical and must be answered by the DM.
  • Turn Gatekeepers into Allies: treat them with respect, humor and compassion.

Understand their process, you are either relevant or not. You may need a few calls to understand their process to understand what relevant looks like.
Take the time to establish rapport with each person you come in contact with. Whether or not they’re the actual person you were wishing to speak to, they are actual people – deserving of your courtesy, respect and attention.
  • Realize Your Value to the Gatekeeper – You can make them look good for passing a useful call through.

What would happen if the gate keeper didn’t put through a useful call to the DM? Speak in terms of the problems you can solve for the DM without pitching to the gatekeeper. What you’re doing is making it worth their while to pass you through. Create a list of benefits they will miss if you don’t speak to them now.
  • Calling before and after gatekeeper’s shift will get you through directly.

DM’s often work long hours and feel less pressured outside of office hours. Believe it or not the gatekeeper has to take a break at some point.
  • Use each call to gather information

Each call can be useful if you know what your outcome is. By asking focused questions you can gather accurate information on the DM’s schedule and current events at the company. You’re also interested in insights into the personality profile (e.g. introvert or extrovert). For instance, the best and worst time to call. How do you pronounce and spell your DM’s name?
  • Use more than one method to make contact.

Calls alone may or may not result in success. Consider using emails, social media or even a business networking to make initial contact. Ask decision makers and their gatekeepers the most convenient way to communicate. Some managers prefer e-mail, others formal letters or calls after work. Once you have this information, play by their rules.
  • Indicating you are “Returning the DM’s call”

This automatically elevates your call’s importance in gatekeeper’s eyes and will get your call put through more quickly.
Use the above strategies get through to the decision makers you need to get through to create more business opportunities and thus close more sales.

Remember the relevant you are the greater your chances of access – Be Relevant and have fun. 

You might actually make a new life-long friend!


 

Are you interested in selling Verizon Wireless services? Call us at (855) SELL-VZW or fill out the form below.  We look forward to talking to you soon!

Please join our mailing list. We will send you updates and specials, but know that we will not abuse this right.

 

Seven Secrets to Sales Success

People mistakenly think that effective sales involves convincing people to buy whatever is being offered. Exceptional sales people however realize that’s not the case. They utilize these sometimes counter-intuitive approaches to distinguish themselves from the herd.

1. Focus on doing the right behaviors
Understand which sales behaviors drive your business. Is it cold calling? Cold walking? Warm calling? Asking for referrals? Speaking for visibility? Advertising? Attending trade shows? If you’re not sure, you need to find out. Keep track of the activities get you “closer to the money” the most often. (Hint: it’s probably not organizing your files.)
Do those activities consistently. Set goals based on behaviors you can control rather than hoped-for results (e.g. number of sales) that are under someone else’s control. Keep your attention on the right activities and the results will naturally follow.
2. Act like you don’t need the business
There’s nothing worse than a desperate sales person. Even if you’re dead broke, never let a prospect sense that. Act like you’re in demand and sought after. Play hard to get.
If someone is stringing you along tell them know you sense they’ve lost interest. Offer to return any documents they’ve given you. They’ll either quickly exclaim their interest or bow out gracefully. Either way, you win.
3. Make sure you know what your prospects want & need.
Many sales people feel they have to convince prospects they need what the sales person has to offer. Before you start touting the benefits of your product, find out what’s important to them. Everyone does not need what you have; most people won’t even care.
Focus on identifying their needs first. Keep reminding them of what they want to accomplish then help them understand how your product meets those needs (if it does). If it’s not a perfect match, acknowledge that and move on to someone who needs you more.
4. Have a customizable script or outline.
Anticipate the likely concerns or problems (not objections) different prospects might have for which your product is a solution. “I help business owners who are frustrated by… fed up with … and concerned about…” By customizing your conversation, your prospects will feel like you really understand them and their situation and will be more open to what you have to say.
5. Always know what the next step is.
Don’t ever end a call or meeting without knowing exactly what’s going to happen in the next two steps. If they’ve asked you to submit a proposal (step 1), find out exactly what happens after the proposal is in (step 2).
6. Sell to the highest person possible
While it may be more comfortable talking with people lower in the hierarchy, they are rarely the decision maker. Your sales will go a lot faster if you start at the top. Even if the CEO doesn’t make decisions about products you offer, it’s still better getting introduced to the VP of Widgets by the CEO that trying to convince the VP that he or she needs you.
7. Never give up
According to the National Sales Association:
  • 2% of sales are made on the 1st contact
  • 3% of sales are made on the 2nd contact
  • 5% of sales are made on the 3rd contact
  • 10% of sales are made on the 4th contact
  • 80% of sales are made on the 5th – 12th contact
Now go out there and close more deals!

 


 

Are you interested in selling Verizon Wireless services? Call us at (855) SELL-VZW or fill out the form below.  We look forward to talking to you soon!

Please join our mailing list. We will send you updates and specials, but know that we will not abuse this right.