Sales relationships could be one of the most powerful tools sales professionals have at their disposal today. As the landscape grows more competitive, consumers are increasingly focusing their attention brands they can form an emotional connection with. Via “relationship selling” reps can improve their chances of conversions, increase average order value, and generate customer loyalty.
Here’s everything you need to know about building sales relationships.
Relationship selling is an alternative approach to traditional, “transactional sales”. In simple terms, it involves taking advantage of your knowledge of your customer, their pain points, and expectations, to build a deep emotional connection with each lead.
Building sales relationships requires sales professionals to get to know their prospects, and customize their sales pitch according to each client’s needs. It focuses on building rapport with each customer, developing a sense of trust, and working towards long-term interactions, rather than one-off sales.
Via sales relationship building, you can effectively turn an unsure prospect into a dedicated advocate and a valuable resource for your brand.
The relationship strategy in sales has grown more crucial in recent years, as consumers have grown increasingly discerning about the businesses they buy from. Today’s customers want to know they can trust their sellers, and they’re also searching for more personalized, relevant sales experiences. In fact, 70% of B2B customers say they require in-depth personalization in sales.
Building relationships in sales allows sales professionals to improve their chances of conversions by appealing to the emotional aspect of their customer’s decision-making process. With the right relationship selling techniques, you can benefit from:
There’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for relationship selling. For the most part, the key to success is treating your prospects as a human being, and thinking about the long-term impact of your actions. Here are some of the top tips you can use to build better sales relationships.
Connecting with your audience regularly is a great way to build a relationship. It takes more than just one conversation with an agent for a customer to feel as though they can trust their recommendations. This means you may need to connect multiple times over the phone, via email, and through social channels, to help create a rapport.
Crucially, whenever you reach out to a prospect, your aim should be to deliver valuable insights and information. Don’t just try to sell your product, share links to valuable content, provide advice, and ask questions which allow you to better understand your audience.
An important part of effective relationship selling is tailoring your recommendations and sales pitches to suit each specific prospect. This means you need to get to know the lead you’re connecting with. Asking questions about your potential customer’s pain points, goals, and expectations will help you to tailor your strategy to suit their needs.
Getting to know your prospect also shows your leads you’re genuinely interested in finding the right solution for their requirements. This can help to establish trust.
Once you know what your customers need from you, or what kind of issues they’re trying to solve, you can begin to develop trust by offering relevant suggestions and advice. Back up your recommendations with data and insights from previous cases you’ve worked on with other prospects. This will help to authenticate your authority.
It’s also worth looking for ways to highlight your knowledge of the industry. You can consider mentioning the people you know in your prospect’s industry to gain credibility through connections. Alternatively, you can share insights and data collected by your business.
Many sales professionals have a habit of automatically responding to client objections with scripted responses. While some of your responses may be effective, they don’t do much to create an intimate and personalized relationship. In sales relationship-building strategies, you should instead focus on developing a deeper understanding of what’s bothering your prospect.
Respect the concerns your customers have, and be honest about how you believe your product or solution is the best solution to their problems. If your customers have a valid concern you can’t argue against, look for ways to compromise on a strategy that works for both of you.
Finally, sales relationships shouldn’t stop the moment your prospect decides to make a purchase. One of the biggest benefits of developing a connection with your customer is it can improve your chances of repeat sales and loyalty. With this in mind, remember to follow up after the purchase too.
Continue to provide value to your clients once the deal is closed, with advice on how to use their service, or questions about how they’re doing. Showing you’re committed to helping your customer get the most out of the purchase will make you more valuable to your client.
Building sales relationships isn’t just an option for today’s sales professionals, it’s a crucial part of increasing your revenue and conversion opportunities. The more you develop your relationships with your prospects, the more your business will benefit.
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