Want timely and easy ways to remind yourself what NOT to do in sales? Or remind yourself that it isn’t that hard to differentiate yourself among the mass of salespeople? Look all around you – you will see all kinds of sales activities – in retail stores, in politics, on TV, etc. All great opportunities to see sales people in action.
Recently I saw a powerful lesson when I attended a ‘home’ show for Tupperware.
Some of you might not have ever been to a home party/show – so a quick explanation. A home show is where a ‘host/hostess’ invites friends/family to their home for a demonstration/opportunity to buy a certain product line. In my lifetime I have been to home shows for: cooking items, knives, jewelry, lingerie, home goods, food products, baskets, wine, linens, and more. The premise is smart…all the attendees don’t want to let the hostess down (the hostess earns $$, discounts and prizes based on the amount of sales at their party – if others ‘book a show’ for the future, there are even more freebies for the hostess!) and they are a captive audience enjoying snacks and drinks with their friends.
Two weeks ago I went to a home show for Tupperware. Now, I was really excited because I have a ‘thing’ for Tupperware as my husband will tell you. I have Tupperware in our home, our vacation home, stored for when the kids get their apartment and I give it as gifts. I really love Tupperware!
That’s why this sales experience was a let down. Why? The Tupperware rep did not follow some of the basics of successful selling. I could see it, I watched her crash and burn (I tried to help her but she brushed me off). I was let down as a sales professional AND as a customer!
What did she do? She left a lot of sales ‘on the table’ – literally! A diagnostic:
- She made her whole presentation about HER. Not about us!
- She told us she would not do certain things (like be pushy to have a show) and yet she asked 4 times!
- She was dressed WAY down…no make-up, hair pulled back and sloppy clothes. She explained she was tired because she was going on vacation the next day.
- She focused on only TWO items – even when the crowd asked about other items from the catalog, she dismissed them.
- THE BIG error – she had ERRORS in her facts! They were blatant errors that immediately removed her credibility for most of the group.
So…two weeks later I am still pondering this. She told us she was TOP in sales and made LOTS of money (as she was telling us why we should be like her). I am confused and let down… with a few tweaks in what she did, she could have made 25-33% more sales easily!
Reminders for all of us in sales:
- Your appearance matters! Dress one step ‘up’ from your prospects/buyers.
- LISTEN for buying signals. Even if you are presenting one product/service, if there is an inquiry to something else -do not ignore it!
- Make it about THEM! My philosophy is that the more you focus on WiifT (What’s in it for Them) the more interesting you are, the more value you give and the more sales you get!
- If you don’t know something – do NOT make up a fact. Instead, tell them you will get accurate information and get back to them.
- Be consistent and congruent. If you say you will/will not do something – DO it or Don’t do it.
I am now off my soap box and will gladly store away the small order I did make. I was prepared to BUY more and host – and she doesn’t even know it! She left sales on that kitchen table that evening.
What are some of the ways you have been reminded of what is important to be successful in sales? Help us all learn!