How to Be a Great Sales Professional in Today’s Market

Posted by Guthrie-Jensen Consultants

The evolution of technology and the subsequent shift in consumer behavior have given birth to the modern market. While businesses roughly still have the same goals of selling their products, helping their consumers, and making a profit, the means and strategies of achieving these have dramatically transformed.

Consumers today have become tech-savvy and independent. Businesses don’t have to walk them through the entire process of buying an item; buyers can gather the information they need with a simple Google search. The sales funnel has also changed to a non-linear model, demonstrating how people nowadays don’t always necessarily enter the sales process from the top.

However, this doesn’t mean that consumers don’t want to hear from you—the opposite is true. People are also searching for unique and tailored experiences with their favorite brands and are likely to be loyal if they’re satisfied with the way they are treated. Companies that focus on customer experience drive 4% to 8% higher revenues than their competitors.

As such, the modern sales professional has to adapt to what their current and future buyers want. It’s about striking a balance between not coming off hard sell, but still providing them the support they need while successfully guiding them through the buyer’s journey. Here’s how you can improve your sales style for the modern market.

How to be a Great Sales Professional in Today’s Market

1. Strategic prospecting

With over 40% of sales reps saying that lead generation is the most challenging part of their job, it’s up to you to find ways to get ahead of the game. Read up on case studies, try radical ideas, and look at previous data to assist you in coming up with effective prospecting methods.

 2. Mastery of sales tools

The modern market is all about technology, so use smart sales tools to your advantage. Read up on various tools such as HubSpot Sales, Salesforce, Rapportive, and more to automate some tasks in your sales process. Each of them has a unique function to offer. Evaluate which ones are necessary and beneficial for your unique business process.

3. Agility

Salespeople go through many tasks and interactions every day, and it won’t always yield a positive outcome. You should be able to think quickly on your feet and adjust to any situation thrown at you. You should also be able to adapt to new technology, processes, or changes rapidly and seamlessly.

4. Deep empathy

Understand how the customer thinks and feels, putting their needs first and recommending solutions they truly need vs. aggressive and pushy sales dialogues. If you aren’t already doing this, then join the 66% of sales teams that track customer satisfaction. This will help you have repeat sales and build stronger bonds with your existing customers.

5. Critical thinking

Sales is more than just closing deals that today’s sales personnel only spend 34% of their time selling. Sharpen your knowledge on other disciplines: analyze current and emerging trends, assess and serve customer needs, and crunch and review data to better refine your sales process.

6. Understanding the buyer’s needs

Only 46% of sales reps have data on their customers’ inclination to buy. Effective sales professionals know the right products and services to suggest to prospects and rise above the everyday need to meet their quota. Don’t treat your customers as just another metric—understand what solutions they need to improve their lives or solve their problems.

7. Networking ability

Sales professionals are on their phones for a considerable portion of the day, and not just for making phone calls. In fact, 41.2% consider their phones as their best sales tool. Use it not only to engage with customers and close deals but to make meaningful connections. This will impact both your professional and personal growth as you learn from other professionals and discover new opportunities you can bring to your business.

8. Communication

Get your point across in the most concise and engaging way possible. In an insightful survey, it’s revealed that only 7% of effective communication relies on the content of your message. A significant bulk of it (38%) relies on your tone of voice, volume, and choice of words. Practice how you deliver your pitches to your customers.

9. Product knowledge

Product knowledge is a requirement for every sales professional. However, there’s a distinction between memorizing information vs. knowing your product in and out. In-depth product knowledge means giving great demos effectively and answering prospects’ questions deftly. Demonstrate that you’re passionate about what you’re selling for your prospect to see and feel how confident you are about your product.

10. Confidence

Last but not least, an excellent sales professional should exude confidence. This ties everything together, from excellent product knowledge and customer assistance to coming up with radical ideas and bettering their work. Confidence is also key in establishing rapport with your prospects. It’s a way to establish trustworthiness and credibility with the people you transact with.


The Bottom Line

Being a sales professional in 2019 and beyond will be undoubtedly demanding, but also exciting. Take these changes in the modern market as challenges in propelling your craft forward and discovering new things you can do to close deals for your business. In a few years, you will probably have to push yourself harder to reach your goals, so start learning more about how you can break the mold.

If you’re looking to enrich your knowledge through classes, Guthrie-Jensen Consultants’ Online Selling: Strategies to Reach Out and Connect with Customers seminar is perfect for you. It’s an interactive and fun way to learn the different approaches you can practice to up your sales tactics for the modern market. Workshops are also a fantastic way to increase your network—a great bonus!

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