Sales can be a very tough business to make a living in. There are so many intricate details which go into making a successful deal.
If things do not go exactly according to plan on either side, there is a good chance the deal will fall through.
There have been literally thousands of books written over the years about various selling techniques. Some of these books are useful, others are not.
The bottom line is that there is not one tried and true method to increase sales. In the business of sales, you need to worry about the conditions of the market, how badly your client needs to have the item you are trying to sell them and many other factors that can’t be planned for.
However, in the world of sales, information is power. The more information you have about potential buyers, the better you can craft a strategy to sell to them. Here are the advantages of account intelligence.
1. Get to know your buyer
It is a proven fact in the world of sales that people who know their buyers the best are the salespeople who are the most successful.
Uncovering useful information about a potential buyer’s tendencies and needs can be incredibly useful prior to making your sales pitch.
Walking in blindly to a boardroom to make a presentation is not a good idea. The salespeople who are at the top of their profession are the ones who invest a great deal of time researching who they are selling to.
In some cases, especially where foreign buyers are concerned, this is much easier said than done. However, there are now companies that specialize in gathering account intelligence. They do all of the legwork for you.
You tell them who your buyer is, and then they go to work compiling useful data that you can incorporate into your presentation. This will increase the likelihood that you will make a sale.
2. Find out who the decision makers are
In order to make a successful sale, you need to make sure you are dealing with the person who actually has the authority to approve a purchase. This is sometimes difficult to do if you are selling to higher ed institutions.
You do not want to waste a lot of time trying to persuade a person, only to find out later that the person is an underling with no authority at all.
If you have the correct account intelligence, you will know going in who the decision maker is. This will allow you to target this person and direct all of your sales efforts towards this person.
You will also be able to get advance knowledge about the decision maker, such as their likes and dislikes. Knowing this person’s track record will be essential to you closing the deal and making the sale.
3. Build long lasting relationships with your customers
When you make a sale, the ultimate goal is to keep that customer coming back many times in the future. If you impress the decision maker and the transaction goes smoothly, you have a much better chance of generating repeat business.
Account intelligence allows you to create a contingency plan so you can be ready for many problems that might pop up. This will make it more likely the customer will do business with you again.
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