Many entrepreneurs struggle with the sales responsibilities of owning a business. This is true within the Staten Island marketplace, and elsewhere.
“Business-to- business (B2B) entrepreneurs often have useful products or services to provide, but fall short of success because they don’t properly convey their message to perspective clients,” said John J. Amodio chairman of SCORE Staten Island.
“Sales skills don’t come naturally for everyone,” he said, “but if you’re a B2B small business owner, they’re essential for successfully building relationships with potential customers, and generating interest in your wares.”
Fortunately, with some concentrated effort and attention, “you can improve your sales skills and boost your confidence when talking with prospects about your company’s offerings,” Amodio said.
SCORE Staten Island offers these tips for B2B business owners seeking to be better sales people:
OPEN THE DOOR TO A CONVERSATION, RATHER THAN JUMPING RIGHT INTO A SALES PITCH
Learn to be a better listener. By talking less and giving the customer room to discuss their challenges, you can build trust and demonstrate you’re there to help rather than drone on and on about what you’re selling.
FOCUS ON SOLVING PROBLEMS
If you can demonstrate how your products and services will save time, reduce work, cut costs, etc., people will be more apt to listen and learn more about what your company offers.
MAKE CUSTOMER SERVICE A PRIORITY
Remember that keeping your existing customers happy is one of the best ways to attract new customers. Word of mouth will always be one of the most effective sales tactics.
FOCUS ON UPSELLING
Existing customers who already know your value are an easier sell than convincing new prospects to buy from you. Take opportunities to leverage your relationships with satisfied customers and see if there are additional challenges you can help them overcome.
REMEMBER NOT ALL LEADS ARE GOOD LEADS
You’ll waste time and lose motivation if you chase leads that aren’t a good fit for your solutions. Set criteria (minimum net income, number of employees, etc.) for identifying whether or not a lead is a viable prospect before you spend time trying to nurture the relationship.
REALIZE IT TAKES TIME
Sales cycles vary depending on the type of product or service and the audience. For example, selling B2B big-ticket technology products will nearly always have a longer sales cycle than selling office stationery.
Patience is key. Don’t expect to close a sale on the first or second contact with prospects. B2B selling often requires multiple conversations before customers will sign on the dotted line.
About SCORE Staten Island
SCORE Staten Island is dedicated to fostering a vibrant small-business community within its New York City borough by providing cost-free education and confidential mentoring to both aspiring and established entrepreneurs. Headquartered at 950 West Fingerboard Road, Grasmere, in the iconic Staten Island Advance Building, the organization is Chapter 476 of the nationwide SCORE, a nonprofit association and resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). For additional information, or to schedule an appointment, SCORE Staten Island may be visited at https://statenisland.score.org; telephoned at 718-727-1221; emailed at info@SCORESI.org, and visited on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SCOREStatenIsland.
Media Contact: Barton Horowitz
Relevant Public Relations, LLC