This is the blog transcript of our YouTube video “Get More Meetings by Improving Your Sales Introduction”.
How you introduce yourself to a prospect or a client can make you or break you in sales.
After 20 years of working with business owners and sales people – not to mention being the target of my fair share of sales calls – I’ve seen and heard some great introductions.
I’ve also heard some bad ones….
And some REALLY bad ones.
So what makes for a good sales introduction?
First of all, confidence is everything.
People need to believe that they should be listening to you and that they should actually care about what you have to say. If you don’t have the confidence in what you’re selling or in your pitch then it’s entirely possible that you may have wasted the contact that you just made.
It doesn’t matter if it’s over the phone or in person, you need to be sure of yourself, your company, and the offer you have for the person you’re talking to.
If you struggle with confidence personally, there are some exercises that you can do to help build that confidence. I’ll cover them in another video but mostly it really comes down to practicing your introduction, practicing eye contact and making sure you’re not giving a weak handshake.
There’s nothing worse than a limp handshake.
If you’re struggling with confidence in your company or your product or service offering then it might be a good idea to really take a look at what you’re doing and asking why you don’t have that confidence.
Do you just not know enough about your company yet? Do you need more training on your products or services? Maybe you need some clarity in what you’re trying to do and why.
These things can have a huge impact on your confidence – and they can impact business owners and sales people alike. They’re not necessarily deal breakers, though.
If you’re a business owner, find a business coach or a consultant that can help you work through these questions. There are plenty of new business owners who know what they want to do but they struggle articulating why they do it or what makes them different. And that can have a huge impact on your confidence level.
If you’re a sales person, go to your boss and ask for sales training. Ask for a solid history of the company that you’re working for and what makes them different. Find out why they do what they do and then do the same for the products and services that you’re selling.
They should be able to work with you to make sure that you can confidently walk into any conversation. And, if after all that training you still can’t be confident in your company or what you’re selling then maybe it’s time to find a new company…
Before we move on to the next point, have you ever had a problem with confidence in selling? How did you get over it?
Drop a note in the comments and let everyone know so that they can benefit from your experience too!
So what’s next? Once you’re confident in yourself, your company and what you’re offering?
Perfect your introduction
I know it’s not a lot of fun to practice your introduction over and over again but it’s important.
Think about the last great movie that you saw. Were the actors just winging it and improvising the script?
No, they had a written script and they sat with it, read it over and over again, learned it and then practiced it over and over again to figure out how to make it their own.
You need to do the same thing with your introduction.
Write it down and work with it. Spend as much time as you need to memorize it and then figure out how you can make it conversational.
No one wants to listen to a robot recite an intro statement so that last part is crucial. But it takes practice.
So practice it.
Practice it in the mirror. Practice it with a friend. Practice it with your mom. Practice it with your cat. Practice it, practice it, practice it.
Your introductory statement should be second nature to you and it should roll off your tongue as naturally as saying your name.
If you don’t know it that well yet, you’re not ready to use it.
And lastly, here’s a tip for anyone who’s cold calling (either over the phone or in person).
Don’t open with “how are you today?”
I get the idea, you’re trying to get the prospect to engage with you in some way to take the edge off of the call but it doesn’t work.
We’ve all had those calls where we pick up the phone and the caller opens with “Hi Ian, this is John from ABC Corp, how are you today?
I’m betting you can feel the awkwardness of the silence that follows even now.
Remember that when you’re cold calling, you’re interrupting someone’s day. And that’s ok, that’s what you have to do to get their attention but respect their time enough to get straight to the point.
I really hope you got something out of this and if you did, check out the video and give it a like and share so that other people can check it out too! Be sure to check out these videos for more on selling more effectively. And, of course, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel and ring the bell to be notified whenever we post a new video!