Promotional products professionals are continuously challenged to match and exceed sales goals. When working a commission–based job, it’s hard not to get consumed with quotas. It can often feel as if you are running on a hamster wheel. Yet, customers can always tell when your mind is set on making a sale as opposed to a personal connection. If a buyer feels that you don’t see them as a priority their walls go up and it’s likely that your calls and emails will be left unanswered. The solution? Build affinity then sell.
Your clients understand that you have sales goals to meet. Instead of pushing random goods on them, make it personal. Convince your customers that your products complement their brand better than your competitor’s products. How do you do that? Build trust by offering the total package! Customers want the best quality, the best deals, the best services and the best partners.
To assure customers that you have their company’s interest at heart, consider the following:
Do your research.
Instead of making impromptu phone calls, sending electronic flyers or surprising customer with pop-ins, show that you’ve done your homework! What is your customer’s mission? Where is their business market? How can you uniquely benefit them? Approach them already knowing the ins and outs of their business so that you can find the subtle sales opportunities your competitors might have missed.
Let your customers know you’re paying attention.
Does their company have a social media presence? Do they blog, vlog, and/or podcast? Are they active in their community? Acknowledge their work. Reaching out to your customers and touching on specific initiatives they’re working on will prove that you appreciate their business. Simple interactions can go a long way!
Offer thoughtful solutions.
Sometimes your company may not have the stock or offer the product they need. It happens! When this occurs, do not try and force a product they do not want to try and make a sale. Instead, provide alternative options or dare to say it…refer them to another promotional product professional who can. This does not indicate they will take their business elsewhere moving forward. It shows you want what’s best for them, even if it’s not our company for that particular opportunity. An affinity is formed.
Offering helpful information will ensure you to stay top-of-mind and build credibility. A customer’s affinity for you can increase their willingness to spend on higher quality products. This is because they want your business just as much as we want theirs.
So when you are running overtime on that hamster wheel, remember, build affinity then sell. Your clientele will be more willing to let their guard down and buy from you if they know you genuinely care about their business and about them as individuals.
Interested in improving your professional relationships online? The alphabroder Digital Lounge is a great place to start. Learn more about the Digital Lounge and explore 6 ways to supercharge your marketing strategy with downloadable content HERE.
Katie is a social media specialist for the number-one supplier in the promotional products industry, alphabroder. She also serves as the voice of alphabroder and Prime Line on commonsku, an industry software program that helps distributors streamline their workflows. Reach Katie at firstname.lastname@example.org.