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Sales - why did they buy?

Following on from objective decision making, it is as important to find out why you won the sale, as to why you lost it.

Most salespeople believe the sales they bring in are due to their charm, product knowledge and strong relationship building, and prefer not to dig deeper.  The truth is that the buyer's decision making process is often less than transparent, and regularly far from objective.

Ask!   Once the deal is signed and sealed, go back to the main signatory and ask why you got the business.

  • Company reputation and brand equity?
  • My service delivery?
    • Good presentation
    • Proposal prompt
    • Follow up regular, but not invasive
  • Recommendation from a trusted colleague/business connection
  • Price?
  • Don't like the opposition?
  • You created a strong connection and trust relationship with the decision maker?

The only way to repeat the right behaviour is to know what the right behaviour is.  Don't guess.   If you do this regularly enough, a consistent message should be coming through.  Once you understand what you do right, find out what you do wrong.    Ask a colleague or manager to phone the deals you have lost, and find out why.   People find it easier to offer a critique when it is not directly to the person concerned.

Just like a coin has a head and a tail, there is always the flip side to the positive.  One company might really appreciate regular follow ups, another might feel pressurised.   And you need to know which is which.    Once you have a good picture of your strengths and weaknesses you can work on them, and adapt accordingly.

When you are in sales, you need to present the winning side of yourself, every time.

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