New products and services are the lifeblood of organizations. The sales force eagerly awaits their arrival, hoping for a short-term competitive edge in a cut-throat marketplace. Yet when new products or services are launched, many sellers become their own worst enemy. They launch into sales mode and make huge mistakes that ruin their chances of a sale.
Here are the biggest mistakes that salespeople make:
Mistake 1: Ungrounded in Reality
If a salesperson doesn’t understand the likely problems customers experience because of their current product or method, as well as the implications for their business, they’re at a major disadvantage.. Without knowing the specific benefits customers get from using the new product or service, salespeople aren’t able to sell with confidence or handle tough obstacles.
Mistake 2: Going for Gold
The first time salespeople sell any new product or service, they often screw things up. Their knowledge of the customer’s situation may be spotty and their presentations ragged. Unanticipated questions and obstacles cause them to stumble. So when they call their top prospects first, they risk losing a sale they might won if they had a few practice sessions with “B” prospects under their belt.
Mistake 3: Faulty Premises
Setting up meetings to update customers about the new product or service can lead to trouble. Arranging the meeting isn’t the mistake – just its premise. If sales reps tell customers they’re bringing information about the new product or service, that’s exactly what customers expect the meeting to be about. Prospective customers don’t want to be asked questions or to share the issues they’re facing, they only want to watch the seller’s spiel and decide on their own.
Mistake 4: Brandishing Brochures
Designed to be a sales aid, marketing collateral has been the death of more sales than anyone dares to imagine. Using them in early meetings with prospective clients focuses discussion on two deadly areas: product/service features and pricing. Salespeople never get a chance to develop value, and as a result, the cost is always too high. Vendors are quickly ruled out because their brochures distract prospective customers from learning what they really have to offer.
Mistake 5: No Game Plan
Without a clearly defined next step implanted in their brains prior to the call, salespeople are doomed. Just sharing exciting new product information gets sellers nowhere. Unless they have a clearly defined objective before the call and are ready to offer logical next steps, they’ll be left sitting by the phone waiting for it to ring.
Next time you are in charge of selling a new product or service, make sure you avoid these common yet often catastrophic mistakes. It’ll make a big difference in your sales results!