Over the years, I’ve held a variety of different sales jobs.  These jobs have opened by eyes to the nuances that exist within the field in regard to approach and tactics. During this time, one of the things that I’ve noticed is how my approach to sales differed from my colleagues, and most other salespeople that I’ve come across.
There are two distinct differences between the approach that I take compared to most other.  First, I always listen to the other salespeople around me on the phone and second, I sell by trial and error.
Here is what these two tactics have taught me:
1.)  Listening To Others Sell
I’m honestly amazed at what I’ve learned by listening to others sell. There are certain things that I would notice, and subsequently incorporate into my own sales pitches. In most cases, I’d learn more from bad sales pitches than I’d learn from good ones.
Perhaps most importantly, the listening process made me more aware of how I sell.  As an example, if overhear another salesperson with low energy, it serves as a reminder to keep my own energy up.
There is also a lot of new information that one can glean from the listening process.  Listening to some sales speakers has resulted in picking up new information to incorporate into my own pitches. One particular sales speaker comes to mind, as I was able to incorporate some great questions that he would utilize, while also noticing where he was too aggressive and pushy for my own taste.  I practiced the parts that I felt were effective and did away with the pushy tone.
Ultimately I’ve always viewed my sales pitch as though I was constructing a puzzle. I would work on completing the puzzle and determining what works and what doesn’t.
2.)  Sell By Trial & Error
I’ve heard a plethora of different sales pitches, from a long list of salespeople. One thing that still amazes me is that many will continue delivering the sale sales pitch despite it resulting in no appointments or new business.
If your calls generates a 0% response rate, why wouldn’t you alter your approach?
If your sales pitch is unsuccessful, change it immediately.
When training salespeople and recruiters, I always remind them to try new things.  In sales, you can’t break anything, so long as you remain respectful.  In order to become better at anything you do, including sales, a certain amount of trial and error is essential.
I’ve tried a lot of things over the years, including contacting executives that went to my alma mater to make it more more personal, taking a blunt approach to demonstrate transparency,  and even sending Next Day Air letters in the mail.
The list of attempted approaches is long, and a majority of them didn’t work. However, the ones that did work remain in my arsenal of tactics to this day.
In summation, I believe that there is a lot to try when it comes to developing your style as a salesperson. The two approaches that I would suggest above all else when honing in on your own style is to always listen, and don’t be afraid to sell by trial and error. These tactics will lead to critical growth as a salesperson, and ultimately improve your ability to sell.
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