Effective Sales Communication: 5 Key Actions
Categories: Sales Conversation
Improve your ability to not just land high-value deals but also ensure positive customer outcomes and long-term account retention, by staying buyer-focused in your sales conversations. Elite sellers put themselves in the shoes of their buyers. They focus their sales approach on helping buyers understand their business problems and what’s needed to solve them. As a result, they drive better numbers at close and ultimately ensure their customers achieve their desired results.
Here are a few areas you can focus on to ensure you’re driving effective, buyer-focused sales conversations.
1. Stop Talking
Part of keeping your sales conversations effective and buyer-focused is to let your buyer do most of the talking.
One of the most important components of effective sales communication is to listen. If you are showing up and merely talking about your products and what you do, you will never be able to elevate your deal size.
Be sure you’re asking the questions that uncover your buyer’s business pain, but keep the questions at a minimum. Start with the question list you've created for your discovery process. Then, edit it down to three or four questions that you know will help you get to the answers you need. If you have any more, you’ll be so focused on your questions that you won’t be listening. Start with general questions and then move towards more specific questions. Listen to the answers and use what the prospect says to fuel your next question.
2. Start Positive in Discovery
We all know that we need to find a buyer’s biggest business pain if we want to move an opportunity forward. The challenge often lies in getting a prospect to tell you the problems or challenges they’re having with the business. One of the easiest ways you can get the person to open up is to probe into what is working. Here are a few examples:
- Tell me what’s working really well in your business?
- Walk me through what happens when everything works as it should?
- What does good look like?
When you ask about the positive, the prospect will often revert to the negative without you needing to ask those questions. (e.g., “We have a lot of great sales conversations, a lot of great meetings. People are really interested in the product, but we can’t seem to close them.”) The mention of a challenge gives you permission to follow up and ask more questions about the problem through effective discovery questions.
3. Align Your Talking Points to What’s Important to the Customer
Everything you say should be aligned to the customer’s required capabilities and positive business outcomes. Even if you know that the products and services you sell can outperform anyone in the market, if customers don’t see the tie to their business challenges, their value falls flat. The customer will think your solutions are too expensive or not a fit for their business. When you create your sales decks, make sure you’re tying all your talking points to what’s important to the customer.
4. Own Any Needed Next Steps
Don’t let the customer define the next steps. Drive what happens next based on the great information you uncovered or what you’d like an outcome of the conversation to be.
For example, if you’re finishing a discovery session, you can end by asking if there’s anything you missed in the conversation that should’ve been included. That answer can then help fuel the follow-up. Here are five things to execute after your next prospect call to own and improve your next steps.
5. Stay Focused on Key Sales Fundamentals
The most elite salespeople constantly work on keeping their sales conversations buyer-focused, while executing the fundamentals of great selling. Both of which are topics we cover often on The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast. Subscribe on your preferred streaming platform to get weekly episodes on sales best practices and timely tactics to incorporate into live opportunities.
Do you want more tips from B2B sales pros? Learn more about Ascender by Force Management. Content, Curriculum, Community.