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How can I improve my sales results and close more deals?

Here are a few suggestions to get you on the right track.




The problems described are not unique. Every business owner, sales person and marketer faces these challenges on a regular basis – obtaining a response to your emails, getting past the gate keeper, obtaining a face-to-face appointment, networking effectively.

To be truly efficient in each of these areas requires a commitment to ongoing self-improvement to establish and enhance your talent as a skilled sales person. Remember you are competing for business against hundreds, sometimes thousands of other sales people all vying for the attention of the same decision makers.

Here are a few suggestions to get you on the right track:

1. Why should anyone take notice of you?

Do you have a compelling and unique selling proposition or is your business pitch just another “me too”. Step one is to craft a selling proposition that communicates a clear benefit and compels your target market to take notice.

Learn more by reading this:

2. Cold calling

Having trouble getting past the gate keeper: Increase your odds by requesting the decision maker by name. You can do this by purchasing a qualified, researched list of contacts that are appropriate to your industry. Contact lists will provide names, designations, email addresses, telephone numbers and more. Contact Matrix Marketing for more information.

Learn more by reading these articles:

3. Improve your mailers

Writing an attention-grabbing emailer that prompts immediate action is both an art and a science. Study up on how to improve your response rate by reading up on these articles:

4. Sales Pitch:

Practice makes perfect. Call on trusted acquaintances (business owners, executives and sales reps) and request 15 minutes of their time. Deliver to them your telephone and face-to-face sales pitch and solicit their feedback and criticism. Implement the necessary changes and present to the same set of people again. This benefit derived from this type of forum can be invaluable. Engaging in sales scenario role-playing can have a dramatic impact on your effectiveness in real sales situations.

Learn more by reading the articles at:

5. Are you the right person for the job?

Finally, if you are still not achieving positive results despite your best efforts, you may have to face the reality that you are just not cut out for sales. If this is the case you may have to recruit a partner in the business with a strength in selling or hire a sales executive.

Entrepreneur Magazine is South Africa's top read business publication with the highest readership per month according to AMPS. The title has won seven major publishing excellence awards since it's launch in 2006. Entrepreneur Magazine is the "how-to" handbook for growing companies. Find us on Google+ here.

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How do I make a positive first impression with my clients?

You never get a second chance to make a first impression, so be sure you don’t screw it up.

Marc Pillay



How do I make a positive first impression with my clients?

Everyone makes mistakes. Fortunately, however, they can be rectified in many cases. If the wrong amount of money is transferred, it can be reversed; if the wrong information is given, it can be corrected with a polite apology.

In business matters too, there is a ‘second chance’ that allows for an error to be straightened out and which sometimes can even be turned into an advantage. But there is one time when this is not the case: The first impression.

Making a good first impression is an opportunity that must be maximised. The old saying holds true: You never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Research has shown that first impressions are of critical importance for three out of four buyers – that is a whopping 75%. Some aspects of your external appearance play a role here, but mostly it is what you say, how you say it and also what is conveyed non-verbally.

It’s all about tone of voice, gestures, facial expressions and body language, and it’s about capturing the mood in which the customer finds them self at that moment.

The following points can help you make a positive first impression on the customer:

  • Approach the customer attentively and with a friendly smile
  • Observe the customer – how do they respond? Are they reserved or receptive, cautious or forthcoming?
  • Take the emotionality of the customer seriously
  • Try to adjust yourself to the mood of the customer
  • Give the customer the feeling that you accept and understand them. Create common ground this way, which will leave the customer with good memories and which will shape their future relationship with you.

Do you already take all of those factors into consideration? If not, try to pay attention to them, and you will quickly see that you will have greater success with them.

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What’s the most important thing to remember when I’m interacting with a customer?

The one surprisingly simple success tactic that works every time.

Marc Pillay



What’s the most important thing to remember when I’m interacting with a customer?

Customers want to be taken seriously. Someone who invests money does not only want to receive a product or service. It’s also important to make the customer feel appreciated and on an equal playing field with the sales person.

To do this is surprisingly simple: Address him by his name. By doing this throughout the sales conversation, not only when you greet him, your communication with him becomes much more personal and ‘warmer’.

Nothing is more unpleasant than talking to a person face to face not knowing his name – this has certainly happened to all of us at some point. But how can we possibly remember the names of all our customers?

Here are a number of tips that will help you:

  • Be truly interested in the customer and do not only pretend to pay attention
  • Carefully memorise his name during the first meeting, and write it down if necessary – it is no problem if the customer notices you doing this
  • Repeat the name from time to time during the conversation
  • Memorise the person behind the name – face, figure, voice, distinctive characteristics
  • Try to link the customer’s name to an image. Convert his name into a picture, and link objects or situations to it. The saying also applies in this case: “A picture is worth a thousand words.”

You’ll see that after just a short while, the names of your customers will stick in your memory much more easily, and your customer interaction will become more promising.

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How can I make more sales?

Taking a good look at your existing sales strategy may reveal some areas for improvement.

Tim Berry



My sales are ticking over nicely but I’d like to increase them now, as I feel that we have the capacity to meet increased demand. Can you give me any advice on how to go about growing sales?

The first thing you need to do is reassess your sales strategy and its impact on sales. Look at what’s working and what isn’t. Once you’ve done that, you can consider introducing some new sales strategies, such as finding new ways to sell more to existing customers, or even how you can find brand new customers. Perhaps you’re charging too little. And your marketing strategy could probably do with an overhaul to ensure it’s relevant in today’s marketplace.

Read the full article here.

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