Seven Steps to Turn Prospects into Customers

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In the online sea of companies all trying to get would-be customers’ attention, it can be a serious challenge to draw in the people who would benefit from what your company does.  Once you have their attention, never squander the opportunity.  If your company is fully prepared, your team has a good shot at turning that prospect into a loyal customer.  Here are the basics for making your customer feel welcome and ready to buy.

Be Highly Accessible

Set up a strategy for marketing.  It’s important to not just dive into social media or ad campaigns without having an overall view of what you are trying to accomplish.  The two biggest goals for a marketing campaign are to help customers find you and for them to understand what you offer.  If they can get a sense of your style, ethics, or other attributes that set you apart, even better.

Accept that different customers are going to want and need different things.  Every customer has their own budget, their own logistics parameters, and their own staffing constraints.  Being accessible means taking your customers as you find them.  You can’t change their access to cash, their location, or the dynamic of their team, but you can sell with those factors in mind.

Every customer has their own unique level of knowledge and sophistication as well.  You shouldn’t bore your highly knowledgeable customer with information they already know.  It also means you shouldn’t embarrass your less sophisticated customers by talking beyond their level, making them feel uncomfortable about what they don’t yet know.

Listen Carefully

Every point of contact for the prospect should provide a positive experience for the prospective customer.  Your sales team probably knows how to be warm and welcoming, but does your answering service?  What about the operator who routes the calls?  What about the team members who might accidentally get an inquiry that should have gone to the sales team?

Everyone in the company should be trained to not only be kind to the customer, but to be attentive.  If the customer says something, everyone should treat it as important, from the cleaning crew to the CEO.  What the customer has to say will tell you how to sell them your product.

Make Onboarding a Breeze

This one is simple.  Don’t make customers fill out a ton of forms or answer a million questions.  If you absolutely do need a set of information that takes time to transcribe, make the process pleasant.  Offer refreshments, breaks, and entertainment.

Take Responsibility

Getting the sale requires earning the customer’s trust.  Keeping the customer requires doing what you say you’ll do, when you say you’ll do it.

Do Your Research

The key to keeping customers is to always try to be better.  Don’t look at your customer’s behavior and your own team’s performance in selling sporadically.  Your competitors are working to improve, which means you need to also to keep up.  Every sales interaction is an opportunity to learn.

An external company, one that can objectively help you look at your own performance can be a game-changer.  Look into programs like Koncert call analytics software that offer both the ability to identify what the customer is communicating as well as how the sales team is interacting and responding.

Keep Good Records

Good call analytics programs will also enable you to track customer trends as well as internal progress.  Regardless of what type of external vendors you use, knowing your customer, keeping track of what they want, when they want it, and how they want it, will help you build trust with the customer.  A customer you know is one you can care for.  A customer who feels cared for will keep coming back.

Sales records are often referred to as a pipeline.  Your pipeline will help you track leads, keep track of re-ordering patterns and timing, price points, pain points, and other factors that help you be ready to sell.  Keeping track of what your customers say and do will help your team work smarter, not harder.

Stay in Contact

Depending on what your customer’s like, stay in contact with them using the format that suits them.  For some customers that would mean a regular newsletter, social media posts, or regular phone calls to check in.  For others, it will be in-person visits or more formal events.  Remember to build in some social enjoyment.  A joke, an anecdote, or something light will help your customer take a much-needed momentary break in their work day.  Remind them why they like you and then ask for the sale.