SALES PROSPECTING TECHNIQUES: LISTENING SKILLS

What do listening skills have to do with sales prospecting techniques?

Think about it – how often do people really listen to you?

Do your kids listen to you? Your spouse? Your friends?

Or are they just sitting there patiently – waiting for you to stop blabbering so that they can speak their mind? If that's the case, you're not using effective sales prospecting techniques.

Unfortunately, most people just want to hear themselves speak – or are more comfortable speaking than listening. People want to express themselves, their thoughts, their emotions – and most of us are craving some kind of attention. We want someone else to listen to us and commiserate with our situation. We want people to feel our pain.

If you as a salesperson could focus on just one of the many sales prospecting techniques that the Sales Career Training Institute covers throughout these modules, focus on your listening skills.


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Active Listening

The authors of FEAR Selling go into much more depth than we can here regarding Active Listening techniques and other sales prospecting techniques, but we’ll cover some of their key points.

As we have pointed out elsewhere, you must constantly be learning about your products – and your prospects. And the key to learning is listening.

Just listening to your prospects can have an incredible effect upon your ability to persuade them. Furthermore, the top salespeople that we’ve worked with SHOW that they are listening by taking notes while they listen.

Several surveys of buyers indicate that they have more appreciation for salespeople who take notes about the conversations that they are having. Most buyers feel that they are doing salespeople a favor by taking the time to talk to them, and so they appreciate it when the salesperson shows interest enough to jot down what they have to say.

Also, be aware of your body language while you are listening. Lean in slightly to show the prospect that you are interested in connecting with them.

For more on Matching and Mirroring, see our section on NLP.

Always let your prospect finish their train of thought. Never interrupt or finish their sentences for them.

And make sure to respond to any questions before moving on to a different topic. For more advanced strategies on how to answer questions, check out FEAR Selling.




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