Sales development is the act of educating a agent in the act of sales. Sales, which can be done individually or as part of a team, is where a person sells a merchandise or service to a customer. It is often thought that selling is the same as marketing but there is a distinct difference – marketing exists to promote a item by making it attractive to a prospective customer and, through this, may by default generate a sale. On the other hand, a sales agent actively communicates with a prospective customer, showing specifically how their goods or service can assist the customer by providing them tailored data. The best sales agent is someone who works in conjunction with their customer and works to answer the customer’s needs and goals with the merchandise or service to be sold.
Sales is an important part of modern work models. Not only does the sales agent sell a company item or service, they also act to create new business prospects and find clients for their business, thereby sustaining and growing their business’ client base and reputation. Sales is often the community face of a business so it necessary that correct sales training is provided to the sales agent so that they can do well in their selling role but also know how to be the best promoter possible for the goods and the company.
There is a plethora of methods a company can employ to connect with their client. Direct sales – where the business deals directly with their client – is probably the most recognized. The most familiar direct selling methods are door-to-door selling and telemarketing; in both cases the company directly connects with the client at home or at their place of business to inform them about the goods. Another way of direct selling is ‘consultative selling’ whereby the business deals directly with the customer but first starts by asking the client about what products or services they require and developing answers in consultation with the client. Corporations also often sell products through retailers – so called ‘middle men’ – and through mail order, while the rise of the internet has given companies a new medium in which to work with future clients. As can be seen, there is a huge variety in the way companies contact, connect and potentially sell to a customer, which has increased the necessity of sales development.
New business development concentrates on the range of methods a sales agent can use when directly interacting with the customer, so integral in these days of direct selling. Although there are a range of particular techniques tailored for different varieties of selling, the main methodology behind outstanding sales practice is five-fold: analyze a buyer’s needs, offer solutions to the buyer, discuss the advantages of the goods, overcome any objections the customer may have and close the sale. This methodology can sometimes be condensed to a three-part methodology: find the client, present to the client and close the sale.
Sales development courses are widely available with many training academies and expert companies offering courses that you can take in person or via correspondence or the internet. Many large businesses have also developed their own in-house sales development programs. There are also a plethora of books available on the topic.
Competent sales development will always highlight the need to ask clients questions in order to better offer them solutions, will always highlight the importance of knowing your goods and will include motivational material, as selling is a high-pressure career that not only requires a lot of self-motivation but also deals with a lot of rejection as well.
Incentive programs, what they’re for and how to use them are also included in a lot of new business development. These ‘sales incentive programs’ or SIP’s, are a tool used to focus a sales agent and lists specific goals for attainment, which aims to focus selling activity.
Training in new business development will show you self-motivation, focus and exceptional interaction talents and, as such, would stand any person in good stead for any leading role outside of sales, as well as within.
Author: Ed EdwardsThis author has published 4 articles so far.