• December 11, 2014

5 Ways To Avoid Being A Sales Robot

It might seem like something out of the Arnold Schwarzenegger film Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines but there are continual stories in the business press that robots could take over all jobs, including sales. After all, a sales robot doesn’t need lunch or coffee breaks, it doesn’t require benefits and it doesn’t need to be trained. And it always updates Salesforce.com.

Thankfully clients are always seeking the human touch. A robotic approach to sales, leads to apathetic customers who aren’t engaged in the business relationship. To help develop more of a human relationship, robots are now being designed with human flaws! They’re created to add words like “so,” “you know,” and “like” in order to soften the robotic voice and make it less sterile.

As developers continue to make robots more human, there is a lot salespeople can learn from the process. Technology and automation has made our jobs easier, but it has also reduced the “human element.” In order to be successful in sales, it’s essential to look at what clients want from a sales representative.

(You should also check out Spiro’s sales automation CRM if you want to get a leg up on a sales robot)

Make it Personal

Making a sale is not just about presenting the client with the ideal product, at the perfect time and with the right price: it’s about making the buyer want to purchase something from you. You need to find a personal connection with your client. Maybe you grew up in the same town, or both have small children, or enjoy cycling. When your client can identify with you through a personal connection, they’re more likely to trust you to help steer them towards the right decision.

Five Components of Building Rapport and Trust (That Make You Better Than a Sales Robot)

  1. Expertise
    Knowing your product inside and out is essential for building trust with prospects. Your client typically won’t know everything about your product or service and it’s up to you to show them how it can work for them. When they have confidence in your knowledge, they have confidence in your recommendations, and are more likely to buy what you are selling.
  2. Credibility
    Credibility and expertise go hand-in-hand. The buyer needs to trust you and believe you are honest and dependable. Showing you are knowledgeable and can answer your client’s questions, is one way to show you are credible. Don’t promise your client that your product or service will deliver something it can’t. Be honest about what it can or can’t do, and your client will see you as someone who is actually interested in their best interest.
  3. Compatibility
    You need to give the buyer a reason to purchase from you. Be likeable, approachable, reputable and respectable. Then, you can build a connection with your client, which will make them want to spend their money with you rather than another sales rep.
  4. Congruence of interests
    What’s in the best interest of your buyer is also in your best interest. By showing you’re invested in business, you can make your client feel you can be relied upon to act in their best interests.

How to be Human in Sales

  1. Ask Questions: Your client doesn’t expect you to know everything. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, take risks or make mistakes.
  2. Court Your Clients: You need to woo your clients to make them feel special. Research their business and interests and email them an article that you think would help them.
  3. Really Listen to the Customer: Fully listen to what your customer is speaking. Don’t cut them off or start formulating a response while they’re still speaking.
  4. Share Personal Stories: Building a relationship with your client is a two way street. In order to make them feel like you have a connection, reveal something about yourself.
  5. Don’t Get Distracted by Technology: Sure it’s easy to send your client an email or a text, but it’s not very personable. Instead, call them or visit their office. Show that they mean enough to you for you to take time out of your busy schedule to see them. And don’t be distracted by relationship apps.

Building a relationship with clients is an essential part of being a sales representative. Be patient, it won’t happen overnight, but when you can create a lasting relationship with a client, your job becomes irreplaceable. Don’t be a sales robot by focusing on building connections with your clients, each one different than the last.

Photo of ‘We .. were .. waiting .. ages” they droned‘ by Flickr user Mark Kelly