As we’ve discussed on this blog before, we’ve seen a fundamental shift in the way people and businesses make purchasing decisions. This, in turn, has given rise the inbound sales methodology. In order to keep pace with these changes, an effective sales rep now needs to master these seven skills:
1. Closing Skills
Sales reps can have all the skills in the world, but if they cannot close a deal, no one will hire them. Salespeople with closing skills know the value of nurturing a positive relationship with the buyer, plan meticulously and set up defined strategies. They measure their sales pitch with targeted phrasing well in advance and, since practice makes perfect, focus on fine-tuning.
2. Farming Skills
Sales reps who have farming skills know how to sow seeds of trust, nurture them, be patient, and then harvest increased sales. They understand that customer loyalty leads to higher profits. In addition, having farming skills means being able to offer solutions to complex problems, and know how to interact confidently with buyers, assisting them in their final decisions. Consultative sellers have the inbound selling techniques that develop strong customer-centric relationships, and they become clients’ trusted advisers.
3. Lead Qualification Skills
Salespeople with lead qualification skills scout the members of a company or organization and pinpoint exactly who will make the ultimate sales decision. They secure meetings with those decision makers and are not intimidated when discussing uncomfortable issues. They are able to make consistent attempts at a closing sale without coming off as pesky.
On your sales team, these sales reps will be the experts at screening potential buyers and budget while still remaining likable. As they don’t feel the need to be liked, they don’t fear rejection, and they confidently solve issues while remaining professional.
4. Hunting Skills
Hunting skills are among the most sought-after habits of highly effective inbound sales reps. Salespeople can acquire these skills by disciplining themselves daily to develop business opportunities and crafting strategies that reach the prime decision makers. They are able to find new prospects proactively by networking without being told, attending industry events, and reaching potential clients on social media sites. Inbound sales reps who master their hunting skills are self-motivated and don’t require praise or coaching to get results.
5. Consultative Selling Skills
Acquiring these skills requires fostering long-term relationships with clients while being able to solve their problems. Your sales reps can develop consultative selling skills by creating strong rapport with clients, asking qualified questions to target the prospects’ problems, and offering solutions. They also need to be active listeners, able to identify the customers’ preferences, and build a solid social presence for inbound marketing.
6. Posturing Skills
Posturing skills may not be tangible, but they are very powerful. Sales posturing means having the ability to gain and develop authentic relationships early, thus being empathetic, goal-oriented and optimistic, as well as being assertive without being overly confident. Sales reps with intuitive abilities become their clients’ trusted advisers.
7. Account Managing Skills
Nurturing and caring for accounts should come naturally to sales reps with account managing skills. Their keen and sharp vision enables them to perform a wide variety of tasks creatively and plan strategies that will meet their defined goals. In addition, they manage their time efficiently and have strong organizational skills so when opportunity knocks, they show up and then follow up. Sales reps with account managing skills are able to handle complex and tactical responsibilities, so you can trust them to handle organizational roles.
When training your sales team, nurture these seven skills. Hire competent salespeople who already have most or all of the above skills, and they will guarantee sales revenue growth for your organization.