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customer satisfaction Archives - Tadpole Training

waiting to close the deal before it dies

Sometimes it’s better to sell backwards

By | marketing, sales tips, Training | No Comments

Sometimes it’s better to sell backwards

Do I really mean that? Well maybe not everything should be done backwards, but it is certainly worth setting out at the beginning of the meetings, the expectations you have for the end of the meeting!

Let me clarify.

OK – here is a familiar scenario to anyone who has been in sales. Have you ever been in the situation where you talk to your prospect, you do pretty much everything right and then you struggle to pin them down to a start date, or a date to sign? This, by the way, has nothing to do with the prospect creating objections – we will assume they are happy with everything but they are just reluctant to actually commit. It’s very frustrating and, short of just ringing them to ‘check on progress’ or ‘see if it has been signed off yet’ there is not much you can do.

So if this is something that is happening to you a lot, then try this strategy:

When you begin your discussion, start straight away by asking about the date of installation, or use or application – in other words – the date they need your product or service to be in their possession, doing it’s thing.

This means you can use this date as a starting point and work backwards. You can explain your turnaround times and included details of important stages such as production, delivery and testing (depending on what you do of course). After all, that’s exactly what you would do if you were managing a project. And in many ways, selling is exactly that – project management.

Once you have done this, the prospect has a clear picture of time frames and you can guide them that they need to make a decision by a certain date in order to achieve their desired outcome. This gives them clarity and it gives you a genuine reason to chase them if, for any reason, they start to slip beyond the dates you have discussed.

Not all sales solutions are complicated!

Happy selling!

Come and have a chat about how we can grow your sales. Here’s a link to my calendar

Check out more of Tadpole Training’s blogs

happy staff using CRM

What is the single most effective tool that will transform my business?

By | customers, entrepreneurs, marketing | No Comments

What is the single biggest tool that will transform my business?

All around us, ‘gurus’ (of varying degrees of credibility) are pushing this system, or that product, or some package or another which will miraculously ‘transform’ your business. Some are excellent, but some are not and there is, of course, a price point for every pocket.

However, I am a great believer in simple things. I have lost count of the number of wonderful sounding tools or gizmos which I have invested in, but which were too complicated to learn or I just never used.

So, as a sales trainer and small business owner, what is my favourite transformational tool? It’s a CRM.

OK – I  bet you thought it was going to be something a lot more exciting didn’t you? Or perhaps that I was going to prefix it with words like “Secret” or “they don’t want me to tell you about this”.

Well I am just as fed up as you are of hearing about the NEW BIG THING only to find out it’s a recycled version of an existing thing. 

So let me explain. I don’t really care what sort of system you have, but you MUST have some way of tracking your leads and your customers. For some people it’s a pile of business cards (don’t really recommend that, but it does work for some people). Others use notebooks, scraps of paper (ouch!), their phone or products like Microsoft Access. 

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50p the cost of great customer service

Why Outstanding Customer Service Doesn’t have to be Complicated

By | customers, entrepreneurs, sales tips | No Comments

Why Outstanding Customer Service Doesn’t have to be Complicated (or expensive)

This morning I had an almost flat tyre.  Not an actual puncture, but something I noticed last night and forgot to deal with.

I was on the school run, so I had to make sure the children were dropped off on time, then I gently drove the car to the nearest petrol station and parked up by the air machine. Then I realised – I had been on the school run, so all I had was keys and my phone.  No money. I needed 50p.

I did the regulatory scrabble under the seats, in the nooks and crannies and glove compartment and came up with ….36p. Not enough.

Faced with the choice of driving home and possibly damaging the tyre, or throwing myself on the mercy of the staff at the petrol station, I chose the latter.

“Excuse me, I need your help – I’ve got a flat tyre and I’ve only got 36p. Is it possible…….?”

I never got the chance to finish. The man behind the counter walked off, grabbed something and plopped a 50 pence coin into my hand.

I started to thank him and promised to call by later. He just waved me away and smiled.

Now, I am sure he is a kind man who just wanted to help a fellow human being, but he actually did so much more than that – through his simple act of kindness he made a potentially complicated day suddenly simple and helped a rather frazzled mother on the school run calm down instantly.

Longer term though, he will be the winner. Of course he will get his 50p back. But he will get much more. Because of my gratitude and the fact that I will remember that feeling of panic which he diffused, I will use his petrol station again. In fact, I will probably make a point of using it even more. So he will sell me petrol, the children will ensure we buy sweets and drinks, I will definitely use the car wash and it is likely that we will make various spur of the moment purchases, just as everyone does.

He will reap far more than 50p. Maybe knows it, maybe he doesn’t, but if he treats all his customers like me, I have a feeling he will have a very successful business.

So, if you are in Edmonton, London, go to the Jet Garage at 134 Hertford Road. There! Now he’s got a referral too!

See how that 50p has grown?

Happy Selling!

take a break from selling

5 things a child knows about the Summer sales dip that you don’t

By | entrepreneurs, marketing, sales tips | No Comments

5 Things a child knows about the Summer sales dip that you don’t.

Work, work, work. That’s what so many of us do isn’t it? We work really hard, putting in the effort and the hours and then, despite our best efforts, during August a lot of our businesses just slow down. Everyone is either on holiday or talking about their holiday. There are fewer paying clients around and, unless your business offers something seasonal, the chances are that this is a quiet time of year and your sales drop. Read More

Small Businesses, Claim your Competitive Advantage (Part Two)

By | customers, entrepreneurs, marketing, Uncategorized | No Comments

Small Business, Claim your Competitive AdvantageSales Training London - happy lady

Yesterday, we looked at some reasons why it can be good to be small. As a small business, you:

Respond Faster

Have More Flexibility

Have Better Relationships with Customers

Get a Personal connection to the Customer

Have Specialisation

Have The Community Edge

Today we will look at some more reasons, starting with:

Present a more compelling message
Large companies have so many people involved that it can be really difficult to create a strong message (for example a marketing campaign or new product). With multiple contributors, no one person knows the entire message and it can be difficult to get a consensus. Add to that various layers of management approval and a message will easily get diluted.

However, as a small business you have very few people involved and can create a strong compelling message quickly and then get it out into the wider world.

Better, faster processes with less red tape
Large companies certainly have lots of processes. However, they also have lots of individuals who may or may not follow them. Think about it, for a proposal, there may be different teams involved, reporting to different supervisors, with different (and possibly conflicting) objectives. It can be both challenging and time consuming to get everyone to agree. The chances are, that with larger organisations there will also be an element of office politics involved too. The different individuals or departments may all be following a different process, so a new one has to be introduced to ensure consistency for each new project and then everyone has to agree to follow it. If this is repeated again and again, then confusion will be the constant. Understandably people can then be reluctant to learn new processes so frequently and actually the whole thing becomes more chaotic. Read More

charge more Tadpole Training

Why you should stop discounting and charge more

By | customers, entrepreneurs, marketing, negotiation, sales tips, Training | 4 Comments

Why you should stop discounting and charge more


When you looked at that heading, did you think ‘no chance!’ Or perhaps you shouted at me; ‘what does she know?’ Certainly, if you are anything like most people in business, you might have some genuine reasons to be sceptical, like:

 

1. I need to give discounts to win business
2. I need money and I need it now – so even if it’s not that profitable, by discounting I do get some cash flow
3. I’ll raise my prices when I’m busier
4. I don”t know how to justify charging more
5. It’s just easier to give a discount
6. My customers can’t afford to pay more

Well, if that is you, then you need to know that, unless you are in the bargain basement discount end of the market, discounting has been shown not to work. These are the main reasons why:

 

1. Someone else will always discount a bit more – so before you know where you are, they have undercut you, then you need to undercut them and so on. The result? Even if you do make the sale, you have totally eroded your profit margin.

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Do you know what your customers don’t want?

By | customers, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

sales tips - shaking handsHave you any idea what your customers want? OK – have you any idea what they don’t want?

Well, you probably have more of an idea than you think you do. After all, you are a customer too aren’t you? Maybe you could give yourself some sales tips. And I’m sure you have pretty strong ideas about how you do and don’t want to be treated – whether it’s in the supermarket, buying a new car or considering renewing your insurance. When you interact with a salesperson, there are rules. So when you are trying to sell to others, you will do a lot better if you remember some of the major turn-offs for customers. Here are the main things you should do.

1. Listen – time and time again in surveys, this is the one thing that customers really want more than anything else – they want the sales person to listen to them. What they do not want is someone who talks, talks, talks. So use your ears and your mouth in the correct proportion and listen twice as much as you speak. Customers will love you for it. Read More