I keep hearing all around me that we are in the middle of an economic crisis and a credit crunch. I must say that I am really not convinced! I mean the interest rates haven’t gone up – so I am not totally sold on the whole concept. That said, for those who have ‘bought into’ the whole ‘economic crisis’ scenario and also for those like me who want to make life really easy for themselves, here are some tips on the “how to” sell in tough times.
Existing Satisfied Customers.
I have no doubt that even at our worst, we have left some satisfied customers in our wake. Surely to goodness, logic must tell us that if we have satisfied them once, it cannot be that difficult to satisfy them again. Reconnect with them, rekindle the relationship that you once had with them and find out what it is they need/want/desire. If it is something that you can do for them – fabulous, if it isn’t, don’t stress, connect them with who they need out of your database. This still means that you are adding value to them and they will remember you all the more for it.
Ask for Referrals
What is it about the human race and South African’s in particular, that we find it so incredibly difficult to ask for help? We find it very easy to help, to assist – I mean, we are internationally known for our friendliness and generosity. Yet we cannot seem to ‘ask’ when we need the help.
It’s very easy you know, just do it – ask for what you want. Ask your friends, your relatives, your clients (past and present) to refer you to the people within their circle of influence. It will cost them a few minutes of their time and it will increase your sales exponentially. How cool is that? Even more cool is the number of references that you are likely to get out of the exercise.
Putting on the Pressure.
It is said that in the tough times, it is not a good idea to put pressure on a client in order to close the deal. I would take that one step further and say that it is never a good idea to push someone into a corner in order to close a sale!
Be warned – if you do push a client like this, in all likelihood you will never sign a deal with them ever – not just this one deal, but never another deal ever.
People like to take some time to think about what it is that they want to do. They like to think about the pro’s and con’s of what they need/want/desire – the more pressure you apply the more they will resist and the more desperate you will appear. You will not only lose the sale, you will lose the client too. Don’t do it!!
Next week we will look at some more tips on Selling in Tough Times.