Let’s face it—there’s so much going on in the world right now for businesses and consumers. We’re all surrounded by immense change and transition. What I see are two different worlds emerging in the midst of this upheaval…
In one world, where most people live, things are really hard and people are struggling.
In the other world, a much smaller group of people are having a ton of success.
In fact, they’re absolutely killing it.
In particular, many salespeople today are actually closing more sales now than they ever have before. They’re simply crushing their sales numbers.
These superstar salespeople are doing certain things right now that are allowing them to consistently and reliably close more sales in today’s unstable market.
Want to know what those things are?
Closing More Sales Super-Quick Tip #1: Know your ideal prospect.
If you’re committed to closing more sales in today’s market, then you have to know exactly who you’re selling to. And just as important, you have to know who you’re not selling to. If you focus all of your efforts on your ideal prospect, you’re going to close more sales. Simple as that.
Super-Quick Tip #2: Be distinct.
It’s time to stop being like all of the other salespeople out there. You’re only distinct when you’re perceived by your prospect as unlike any other salesperson they’ve interacted with. Whatever your competitors are doing, do the exact opposite. Be distinct.
Super-Quick Tip #3: Know your process.
If you’re just going out there and winging it, trying to figure out each sale as you go, then you’re going to get crushed in today’s marketplace. You must know your process. This means that you need to know exactly what you’re going to do, what questions you’re going to ask, what you’re going to say, and how you’re going to engage prospects ahead of time, in order to close more sales. Know your process and commit to it every step of the way.
Super-Quick Tip #4: Become a research ninja.
Research is key to effective selling right now. As salespeople, we have so much more access to data than we ever have before. Take advantage of it. Particularly if you’re selling to businesses, tools like LinkedIn Navigator are critical to helping you understand exactly who your prospect is and how to personalize any outreach or sales conversations. Become a research ninja and you’ll be on your way to closing more sales.
Super-Quick Tip #5: Have a five-hour sales day.
I don’t blame you if your first reaction to this is, “What in the world are you talking about? A five-hour sales day? That’s impossible.” But hear me out. By five-hour sales day, I mean that you should make sure that you’re spending at least five hours a day actually selling. Most salespeople, when they tally up what they’re really doing every day, find that they’re only spending a couple of hours a day on real sales. And I’m talking like one or two hours—the rest of their day is filled with a bunch of other junk. So, make sure that you have at least a five-hour sales day, every day.
Super-Quick Tip #6: Schedule prospecting time.
Your prospecting time should be worked into your schedule as if it were an appointment in your calendar. It’s that important. Because let’s face it—it’s so easy for prospecting to just slip through the cracks. By scheduling your time for prospecting, you’ll hold yourself accountable to spending some key uninterrupted time on prospecting every day.
Super-Quick Tip #7: Disqualify prospects.
At least 50% of the people you come across are not going to be a good fit for what you offer. You must be willing to disqualify prospects who are not a fit. This doesn’t mean being a jerk. It just means kindly moving on, and instead focusing all of your resources and energy on the prospects who are truly qualified for what you offer.
Super-Quick Tip #8: Stop trying to close.
Your prospects don’t need you to try to close them. That’s super-transparent. They’ll see it coming from a mile away. It’s going to put pressure on them, and cause them to feel repelled. Instead, make sure you’ve gone through a good sales process so that you understand exactly what’s going on in their world, and then show that you can solve their top challenges. If you do that successfully, there should never have to be a hardcore close at the end.
Super-Quick Tip #9: Drop the pitch.
You can teach a monkey to pitch. A great salesperson isn’t there to pitch; they’re there to demonstrate insight, engage people in conversations, and then show that they can solve specific challenges. That’s it. The pitch fits nowhere in that conversation. If you’re focused on your company, yourself, or your offering in your sales conversations, you’re in trouble. Drop the pitch.
Super-Quick Tip #10: Drop, “I’d like to learn more about your business…”
If you’re trying to start conversations by saying, “I’d like to learn more about your business…” then you’re actually repelling prospects. Put yourself in the shoes of a high-level prospect. Do they really want to teach you about their business? No, of course not. This common sales phrase is a really weak way to start a sales conversation. Of course, you eventually do want to learn more about your prospect’s business. But that’s not how to start off the conversation. You have to work your way there. It’s time to drop, “I’d like to learn more about your business…” for good.
Super-Quick Tip #11: They don’t care about you.
This is absolutely critical to understand: Your prospects don’t care about you. My prospects don’t care about me. All they care about is solving their challenges. That’s why you should never focus on yourself, your company, or your offering. Instead, focus on them. Focus on the challenges they’re looking to solve. That’s all that matters to them.
Super-Quick Tip #12: Have contingencies.
Nothing in life ever goes exactly as planned. As a result, you need to have contingencies in your sales for when the unexpected scenario inevitably arises. Let’s say you make a prospecting call and the prospect says, “I don’t really have time for this.” What are you going to say? What’s your contingency for bringing the call back on track? Because that’s going to happen. Or, imagine that you get on the phone with a prospect and they rudely cut you off with, “You know what? Why don’t you just tell me your price? That’s all I want to know.” Are you going to just cave in and give your price—or do you have a contingency for how to deal with that? You must have all of those contingencies prepared, lined up, and ready to go, if you want to be closing more sales in today’s market.
Super-Quick Tip #13: Know your questions.
You must know exactly what questions you’re going to ask your prospects. This doesn’t mean you can’t slip in some ad-hoc questions, or that you won’t skip some prepared questions because the prospect preemptively answers them. All it means is that you should be confident and comfortable with the exact questions you plan to ask during every sales conversation, ahead of time. And those questions should be geared toward determining whether the prospect is a fit for what you offer. Don’t just wing your questions—map them out.
Super-Quick Tip #14: Demonstrate insight.
Your prospects are guarded. They aren’t dying to jump on the phone or a Zoom with a salesperson. They just want to connect with people who can really bring insight to what’s going on in their world, and particularly their business. By demonstrating some insight upfront in the sales conversation, you can show prospects that you’re truly an expert who can help them. This is the single best way to engage them in a conversation.
Super-Quick Tip #15: Think like a doctor.
Most salespeople think and behave like salespeople. The problem is, your prospects will immediately put up walls if you act like a typical salesperson. Instead, I encourage you to start thinking—and behaving—like a doctor. When you walk into a doctor’s office, how do they engage you? How do they demonstrate their expertise? If they’re any good, they don’t use fancy buzzwords and jargon to try to get you to try the latest experimental surgery they offer. Instead, they simply ask good questions and pay attention to understand what’s going on—and then they determine whether they can help you solve your problem. This is exactly what you want to do as a salesperson. Start thinking like a doctor.
Super-Quick Tip #16: Always have a next step.
Most salespeople are focused on closing the deal right then and there, in the prospect meeting. But the reality is, if you haven’t gotten to that point easily and organically, you’re unlikely to close the deal no matter what you say. That’s why it’s critical to focus on having clear next steps at the end of every prospect meeting. Especially if your sales tend to be complex and long-term, it’s key that you lock in a next step at every point in the sales cycle. Don’t get off the phone without sending out a calendar invite and making sure it’s been accepted for a clearly stated, obvious next step. That’s how you can hold sales together, even in a turbulent market.
Super-Quick Tip #17: Who cares?
Some selling situations go wrong. And, you know what? It’s okay. It doesn’t matter if you’re the best salesperson on the planet, things are going to go wrong sometimes. The old adage that a great salesperson can sell anything to anyone is complete BS. There’s not a single salesperson out there who can sell anything to anyone! Instead, great salespeople find the right prospects and take them through the right process. If a few deals slip through the cracks, it’s okay. Don’t waste your time worrying about losing sales. Who cares? There’s always the next one.
Super-Quick Tip #18: Know your first 30 seconds.
If I said to you, “You have 30 seconds to explain what your company does and how you help people—go!” it’s likely that you would ramble on and say a bunch of different things that didn’t make much sense. I know, because I’ve asked this of thousands of salespeople over the years, and most of them react this way. It’s imperative that you know your first 30 seconds, cold. Map out exactly what you’re going to say in the first 30 seconds of any sales conversation. This is the most important piece to start strong, so you can engage prospects in a conversation they actually want to have. This should be a tight 30 seconds—or fewer. It’s better to say less than more. Never meander and ramble. Know your first 30 seconds inside and out.
Super-Quick Tip #19: Cold calling is unnecessary.
If you’re cold calling and for some reason it’s working for you, then great—keep doing it. But for the vast majority of salespeople, true cold calling is unnecessary in today’s selling world. Instead, it’s far more effective to use a prospecting blueprint that lays out a consistent campaign of prospect outreach through different channels: phone, email, LinkedIn, Facebook, snail mail, packages, etc. That way, by the time you actually get prospects on the phone, it’s not even really a cold call; it’s actually a warm call. They already know who you are. That’s why cold calling is unnecessary.
Super-Quick Tip #20: Know your activity goals.
Do you ever wake up in the morning and ask yourself, “What do I have to do today to drum up some sales?” If so, you’re in trouble. You should know your exact sales activity goals for every single day. You should know how many calls you’re supposed to make today, how many emails you’re supposed to send, how many LinkedIn outreaches you’re supposed to make—everything. That way, you just follow the plan, and you know that if you’re following that plan on a daily basis, you’re ultimately going to hit your sales goals. Knowing your activity goals is the key to successfully prospecting over the long-term, which translates to closing more sales in today’s market.
Super-Quick Tip #21: Have a kick-ass call to action, or a CTA.
What’s your call to action when you’re prospecting? Are you just saying, “Hey, I’d love to learn more about your business”? That’s not going to work. Instead, you need to have a kick-ass call to action for when you get them on the phone, or for when you’re sending an email—something that’s really compelling. Maybe it’s some kind of a brand marketing audit, or case studies, or a piece of insight that’s really going to grab their attention and get them to want to engage with you. If you’re just trying to have a phone call to pick their brain, chances are you’re going to be scaring off a lot of prospects that you could otherwise get to engage with you. Come up with a kick-ass CTA that really works—and use it every time.
Super-Quick Tip #22: You’re not a doormat.
Many salespeople think of themselves almost as customer service agents. Now, if you’re in customer service, and you have a cranky customer, you do have to be nice. That’s customer service 101. But if you’re a salesperson, you’re not in customer service. When someone is not yet a buyer, you’re not a doormat. You don’t have to do whatever they tell you. You don’t have to answer any question they ask. You don’t have to bow down to them. You’re not a doormat. You have your rights. Be willing to hold your ground if someone’s being unreasonable.
Super-Quick Tip #23: Have multiple options.
You should have multiple options for prospects to do business with you. If you only present one option for doing business with you, chances are you’re leaving money on the table. You should always have multiple options for a prospect to choose from, because you can never fully know what’s going to make the most sense for them. Now, you should have asked really good questions to generally understand where they’re going to fit in your list of options, but you still want to give them the choice. When you do this, they’re less likely to go shop around. And you know what? Every once in a while, you’re going to sell that premium option, and you’re going to make a lot more money than you otherwise would.
Super-Quick Tip #24: Keep the presentation short.
If your presentation is long, your prospect is going to get bored. They’re going to lose interest. Keep the presentation really short. I want the bare minimum that shows the prospect that you can solve their challenges—and then let their questions drive the second half of the presentation. That’s it. It should also be super-interactive, not just a one-hour PowerPoint presentation where you’re telling them every single thing that you’re going to do. That’s boring, they’re not going to be engaged, and you’re not going to close as many sales.
Super-Quick Tip #25: Always get feedback.
When we’re in sales presentation mode, the conversation can become a one-way monologue where we’re not truly having a conversation with the prospect anymore. We’re just talking all the time. But great presentations are constantly bringing the prospect back into the conversation. So, when you’re presenting, you might ask a quick question like, “Does that make sense?” That way, they come back into the conversation. By asking little questions, which I like to call feedback loops, you’re keeping the prospect engaged. Does that make sense?
Super-Quick Tip #26: Always be learning.
My father has always told me that the day you stop learning is the day you die. And I believe that is completely true. I’ve spent my entire career trying to learn as much and as often as possible. And that has put me in tremendous stead anytime I’m in a sales opportunity. As salespeople, we have to challenge ourselves to always be learning, always be developing. Make sure that every single day you’re learning something new.
Super-Quick Tip #27: Don’t wing it.
Stop winging it. Make a commitment right now to use a sales process. Whether you choose to follow my Sales Insights Method, or some other process, I don’t care—but you must use a sales process consistently. Commit to this today.
So, there you have it. Now you know 27 super-quick tips to closing more sales right now. Which of these tips did you find most useful? Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments section to join the conversation.
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About the Author Marc Wayshak
Marc is is the best-selling author of three books on sales and leadership, including the highly acclaimed titles Game Plan Selling, The High-Velocity Sales Organization and his forthcoming book, Sales Conversations, Mastered.
Marc is a contributor to Inc, HubSpot, Fast Company, Entrepreneur Magazine, and Huffington Post Business. He also hosts a popular YouTube channel on sales strategy with over 103,000 subscribers.
Marc helps thousands of people his data-driven, science-based approach to selling that utilizes all the best tools available to sales organizations today.