Many sales professionals subconsciously raise red flags when making sales calls to potential clients whether they know it or not. These warning signs become inevitable sales pressures when trying to win the trust of a prospect. In this article, we will discuss four forms of sales pressure that can sabotage sales conversations. It is crucial to recognize these pressures early on so that you can avoid going down a path of frustration, mistrust and loss of sales.
When making calls, many of us are overly focused on the sale and not what the prospect’s issues really are. Prospects can tell almost immediately when this happens. They sense that you are too focused on your goals rather than on mutually exploring what their needs and goals are. This can short-circuit the whole process of trust building and productive communication.
Having a change of mindset and shifting your focus on natural communication with the prospect, will allow you to build trust. This trust will lead into a conversation of mutual exploration. This is needed to see if there is a good fit or not. Practice this by telling yourself “I will focus first on building communication” before each call. When your focus shifts from “making the sale” to “making conversation” there is no sales pressure.
Forcing your products or services on the prospects will only lead to suspicion and mistrust. No good will ever come of trying to force the outcome of a sales conversation. When you are exploring right along with the other person to see if there is a fit, then that person doesn’t feel any sales pressure and what you have is a trust-based sales conversation.
When you start a sales conversation with a pitch about who you are and what you can do for a prospect, you introduce sales pressure right away. The listener clearly knows what your agenda is, and many will respond with defensiveness and rejection. Do you blame them?
Avoid these situations by beginning your conversation focusing on a need or issue that you feel the prospect might be facing. Remember the conversation isn’t about you, it is about them. If you become a part of their world and allow them to share their thoughts and concerns, they will more than likely be willing to explore possible solutions with you.
If you are trained to use scripted lines and follow a carefully planned strategy, this mindset may be particularly difficult. When you are engaging with a prospect using scripted lines, they will most likely feel like they are being controlled and that is definite pressure! They may put up a wall and dismiss what you are trying to say. They can detect the changes in your tone. Having a natural voice cannot be faked. You cannot try and work on sounding “natural.”
Let go of the script. Find a more natural way to have these conversations with prospects by being yourself and not trying to take them down a linear step-by-step process. They will appreciate you for it. Your potential clients will more likely be open to offering important information and discussing the needs that they may have. This will begin the trust-based relationship that will take the business relationship to the next level.
The problem with over-enthusiasm in sales conversations, is that the listener has a choice whether to “buy into” your perspective or reject it. Potential clients may feel they are being boxed in. They feel the pressure of your expectations and are compelled to respond, whether positively or negatively. Mostly the latter. They sense your tension or nervousness and your ability to try and mask it by being overly eager. When you sound too eager to sell, you may be giving off the impression that you know you have what the prospect needs. You really don’t know that yet. It’s very easy for the listener to put up a wall, so toning it down to a natural conversation, will help eliminate the sales pressure and invite the potential client to respond more warmly and positively.