The personal selling process is an extremely effective way of promoting a product in a market and the reason for its effectiveness is not that much of a secret. It works amazingly, because what you have to do is just put on formals, impress your customers by the telling them how much potential your product is hiding within it and persuade them to make a purchase. It is as simple as that. Even though it is quite a great promotional tool but just like every other great thing, it also comes at a great price.
Personal selling is the most expensive means of promotion out there but one of the most successful ones too. But just like every other tool, its effectiveness is also dependent upon its step by step implementation, otherwise, it is also possible that all of your investment that you made to make this technique work will go to waste. Therefore, it is better if you take your time in reading through rest of the article in which we will be explaining each and every step of the personal selling process.
Personal Selling Process Steps
It is quite a common observation in our daily life that you can’t benefit a person from a product if he doesn’t need it. And that’ what, this first step towards a winning personal selling deal is based on. In this step, the companies employ different methods to formulate a list with “can-be-a-prospect” basis. This process of looking for potential leads is also known as prospecting. This list is generated by various means like examining data sources e.g. newspapers, or by gathering information from organizations, the internet or even the existing customers.
Prospecting is a way of searching for potential customers whether they are individuals or companies. It is extremely necessary for a brand to stay in the market that it replaces the old customers that do not return to it since the studies show that a typical customer base loses 20% of itself time to time. And there can be any reason behind it e.g. it is very likely that the customer is dead or has transferred somewhere else. Or it might be because he thought your competitor’s products to be better than yours. This all explains why a firm should always be trying to grow up its client’s list.
- Qualifying a Prospect
Getting the name just mean that, they can be your customers, but not necessarily. That’s why it is important to determine that whether that leads needs your product or not. This can be done by several methods like in some cases, keen observation is all that it takes towards confirming a lead to be your client; while on the other hand, it might also need a lot of hard work in qualifying him as a prospect.
Once a lead qualifies as a prospect, then it’s time for you to start looking for important information and gathering necessary details. These details can be smaller with quite a weak effect on the deal or bigger which can ruin the whole deal off if proper care is not taken. For example, if you qualify a company as a prospect, then it’s important to know that what kind of product that company is looking for, who the main buyer is acting behind the curtains, etc.
After that, call objectives should be set before you approach the company and start persuading with all what you have got. This step of personal selling process manages the timing and strategy of approach. Moreover, it is also better to decide the best way to approach that prospect like why to bother going there, where a letter or a call can do, since it will save a lot of hard work while still sparing you plenty of time for focusing on other prospects.
In this step of personal selling process, the sales person finally gets to move off his table to the prospect’s office. Since he is going to be the representative of your brand to that prospect, that’s why it is extremely important for him to be aware of proper etiquettes of a gentle talk. He should also know how and when to greet the buyer and how to hold off against unexpected behavior from his side. For the purpose, he should use a positive opening line and that too in a professional way. And more importantly, how can he give the feel of professionalism, if he’s dressed badly or is opposite to the buyer’s temperament.
During your approach, make sure to focus the customer’s advantage all the time instead of your profits. Well! I’m not saying that you should leave it all. But believe me, once he surrenders himself to become a user of your product, it will surely pay off.
- Sales Presentation and Demonstration
Once the atmosphere relaxes, then it is the best time to deliver your sales presentation in front of the buyer. A success sales presentation requires a well-coordinated visual and audible explanation along with a powerful body language. Even though it is not that easy but whatever you do, just make sure that it goes as the “AIDA formula” which is the short form of several consecutive steps involving gaining attention, holding interest, arousing desire and finally, obtaining the action of the buyer. It works just like as you heat the iron and then hammer it while it is hot to obtain what you want thus leading your personal selling process to victory.
- Dealing with Objections
Everything, when forced to do something, puts up some kind of resistance to counter that force. The situation develops when a sales person forces the buyer too much. This situation can arise either because of logical reasoning or psychological resistance. The psychological resistance develops for the same reason as mentioned above while logical resistance is normal which can arise because of price or delivery schedule or anything that relates the product and the brand in it. It is important for the salesperson to overcome such kind of objections using an all-time positive approach while changing all objections into reason explaining to them that they should go for your product.
- Closing the Sale
Ending a presentation with a successful business deal is a tougher task than starting it. That’s why most of the time, salespersons end up failing without a deal because they weren’t able to deliver the best of it or it is because they didn’t believe in the fact that if the deal is made the prospect will surely enjoy the features and advantages of the product.
There’s always a right moment to end the sale, so if you get it then go for it while keeping your body language active all the time. It’s not just all about your body language but also of your prospect. If you feel that he was quite satisfied towards your presentation, then what else do you want? But if you think that the customer is still facing difficulty in making the decision, then guide him by drawing his attention to the features of the product again and then, finally taking the talk to color and size.
- Following up and Running on-time Maintenance
Well! It all doesn’t end even when the sale is made. This last step of personal selling process focuses the long-term relationship of the customers by taking some follow-up measures immediately after the sale is made. And that’s the customers have the right to know that when their product will be delivered to them, the method of payments and terms of purchase. Even when the delivery of the product is made, it is necessary to keep an eye on the condition in which the product reached to its new owner.