How to Be a Memorable Salesperson Part 7: Encourage Your Buyers
Now that we’re more than halfway through this CONNECT2Sell series on how to become a more memorable as a seller, be sure to go back and catch up on any posts you’ve missed. We’re covering 12 different ways you can make a lasting impression with buyers.
The benefits for you of becoming more memorable include differentiation, competitive advantage, confidence, getting more referrals, and making more sales. The benefits to your buyer are also noteworthy – they will have a better experience, feel a sense of trust and connection, and find it easier to do business with someone they feel they can count on.
In this installment, we’ll be looking at one way to be memorable that seems to be more important to younger buyers than to older ones.
In research with 530 B2B buyers, this seller behavior was markedly more appealing to buyers under 30 than older age groups.
- Part 1: Create an Experience
- Part 2: Collaborate With Buyers
- Part 3: Personalize Your Pitch
- Part 4: Be a Giver
- Part 5: Create Value
- Part 6: Take Risks
- Part 8: Be Authentic
- Part 9: Follow Through
- Part 10: Ask Better Questions
- Part 11: Listen With Empathy
- Part 12: Answer Buyer Questions
How Will Encouraging My Buyers Help Me Be a Memorable Salesperson?
Encouragement means “pouring courage into.” When you encourage someone, you are bolstering their courage and giving them fuel to continue a pursuit. Sellers may neglect to do this for their buyers.
Encouragement for buyers takes many forms. It can include:
Appreciating when they take a meeting, provide information, or sign a contract.
Recognizing milestones achieved in the work they do.
Praising the work they do to work with you and to internally sell your products/services.
Affirming their contributions and questions as helpful to your long-term, shared success.
Dignifying their questions and input with relevant and timely responses.
Cheering them on when they are struggling to reach a goal or work through an obstacle.
Comforting them when one strategy fails, and a contingency plan is needed.
Buoying their spirits when the work isn’t easy and the change is hard to make.
Acknowledging efforts they made “behind the scenes” to garner support.
Complimenting them for their style, traits or contributions to your collaboration.
Any one of these options makes you more memorable. That’s because most sellers operate in a transactional manner with a linear sequence that doesn’t incorporate encouragement until the sales process is advancing. For some, that means there is no praise or recognition until the end when a deal has been struck (a de rigueur “Thank you for your business.”).
What Can I Do to Appreciate and Recognize Buyers?
Here’s what NOT to do. Don’t fawn all over buyers with false praise and forced compliments. That’s sycophancy and buyers see it as manipulative and phony. It makes you less trustworthy. It also indicates that you do not view this relationship as one where you’re on equal footing. If you are to be trusted with a big decision and business outcomes, you need to be confident and of equal stature.
Instead, look for the true openings. There are lots of things to genuinely thank a buyer for – taking time to answer your email, setting up a meeting with another member of their team, educating you about their needs and business practices, letting you know their concerns, sharing information about their current contracts and vendors, taking a risk to give you a try, etc. Every one of these acts involves a sacrifice (of time if nothing else!) on the buyer’s part. Show your gratitude for that!
There are also lots of opportunities to encourage a buyer. Don’t forget that they are doing work inside their own organization to bring you in as a vendor or to keep you in good stead. They may feel a little discouraged at times by other people’s:
- Lack of understanding
They will need courage and resilience to keep working on your behalf.
One important way to provide encouragement is to let the buyer know they aren’t alone. You don’t expect them to do this work alone. Let them know ahead of time that you’d like to know what they’re hearing from others so you can provide additional information or support. Be responsive when the buyer brings you these issues, no matter how small they may seem! Backing the buyer up is also going to make you memorable.
How Can I Learn More About Encouraging Buyers?
There doesn’t seem to be a lot out there about this specific topic. Fortunately, the ways to honor, recognize, appreciate, and encourage people are universal. What you do in sales will be no different than what you’d do as a manager or as a parent or friend.
If you’re interested in learning more about Millennials and interacting with them, be sure to read Danita Bye’s book Millennials Matter. For more on the importance of showing appreciation, the book for you is How Full Is Your Bucket by Rath & Clifton.
For a broader look at creating a positive experience for your buyers, turn to The Sales Experts Channel and the webinars posted there by dozens of global sales experts. These are all available on-demand and are free (and fabulous!).
And don’t forget to work on additional ways you can become more memorable, too.
Stick with this series to read more about buyer research and field observations with sellers.
Check out this video playlist on the People First PS YouTube Channel with more tips and research with buyers. There are 25 videos there, each one lasting just 3-5 minutes.
Read the book that started it all. DISCOVER Questions® Get You Connected is packed with ways you can make yourself more memorable to buyers. It was ahead of its time in bringing research with buyers directly to sellers.
Whatever you decide to do, make a commitment to become more memorable. Standing out in a crowded sea of sellers is a surefire strategy for boosting your sales success.