"The worst fault a salesman can commit is to be a bore. Foster any attempt to talk about other things; the longer you stay, the better you get to know the prospect, and the more you will be trusted."
Can you guess who spoke these lines?
You won’t believe us when we tell you who it was.
An advertising legend who didn’t start his career as an ad executive but a talented sales guy who sold moving cooking stoves.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, he’s none other than David Ogilvy, the father of advertising and visionary behind Ogilvy & Mather.
David may have been a man of ads, but he left behind critical sales tips for our generation. (Out of the many sales tips, we captured a few in our opening lines.)
Evidently, you can’t be a great salesman unless you make efforts to be unconventional and off-beat. But how do you do that, right?
Well, the short and sweet answer is to follow 25 habits of incredibly successful salespeople across the world.
What are the 25 sales tips you’ll learn today?
- Use sales technology
- Measurable sales goals
- Review goals and objectives
- Research your audience
- Improve Product Knowledge
- Learn Active listening
- Ask Questions
- Follow-up to the T
- Personalization matters
- Practice Social Selling
- Problem-solving attitude
- Stay Updated
- Refer playbooks and previous call notes
- Work on referrals
- Learn virtual selling
- Prepare for calls
- Learn Empathy
- Invest time in learning
- Invest in sales coaching
- Practice time management
- Be a team player
- Be disciplined
- Work hard
- Accept bad days
- Never give up!
25 habits and sales tips of incredibly successful salespeople
1. I love sales technology, and technology loves me
Successful salespeople don’t believe in manual activities when an operational software or tool is available to automate the process.
For example, a call recording software that records calls and eliminates the process of taking notes.
2. I believe in measurable goals and not shooting arrows in the dark
Surviving a sales environment is easy without targets only for 3 months or so. But to see success beyond that, any sales expert would discourage moving ahead without any set goal. A measurable sales goal is your north star and helps in achieving business goals faster.
For example, an account executive with a quarterly revenue target can double their efforts than an AE without any targets. They’ll pull all strings to achieve the target and take home their incentives for the quarter. But an AE without any measurable goal is as useless as a clock without hands.
3. I revisit my goals and objectives and reiterate when necessary
What’s a sales goal that doesn’t get revisited often and revised. We all want to achieve SMART goals, but usually, standard targets won’t work for your organization and product.
One company presses on granular targets such as RFPs qualified, call quality, cost of acquisition, etc., other companies focus on broader goals like leads acquired, total conversions, etc. But both companies are unique and have different perspectives on measuring sales.
4. I know my audience more than they know themselves
Great salespeople learned the hard way, but here’s one tip you get quickly- the way to a prospect’s business is through their pain. The more you recognize their pain, the more the prospects recognize you in the crowd.
Knowing and researching the prospect is critical and the only way to achieve success in the sales world.
For example: How do you think big brands like Apple and Microsoft stayed ahead of their time? They recognized their client’s problem before the competition could. The more they went near the customer, the more products they launched. The same is the case with sales. The chances of closing the deal get higher with every passing conversation.
5. I am the reflection of my company’s product/service
Wise men said product knowledge might not be critical in sales, but there’s always one opportunity where product knowledge changes the game. Are you prepared for that day?
6. I have my ears and mind open
Great sales guys saw failures because they failed to recognize the fine details and couldn’t read between the lines. As one can conclude, they lacked active listening.
Listening is having your ears open, but active listening is understanding what the other person is saying.
Another advantage of listening is that you can frame questions that are otherwise hard to establish. This takes us to the next habit of a successful salesperson.
7. I will ask the questions, the prospect does the talking
Successful salespeople are incredibly skilled at asking the right questions. They are so keen on it that they often overdo it. But trust us asking questions is the best gift you can give yourself as a sales guy.
- Hey John, How are you?
- Where are you working currently?
- Yesterday, I noticed on LinkedIn, you have moved to a new company? How has it been so far?
- Would you like my help in setting up the marketing team?
8. I promise to follow up to the T
Follow-up is not a new concept in sales or any event in life. It’s a human tendency to check and confirm if a particular event will happen or not.
Having said that, successful sales guys take follow-ups too seriously. Consider an AE who works around 9 hours a day for 5 days a week. During the day, they spend about 30 minutes following up, and at 8 p.m., they check their email for responses from company executives.
Following up with the client takes effort and preparation. To nail sales quota every quarter, you need to ace your follow-up strategy.
9. I’m not serving the same dish I serve my other clients.
Personalization is a choice that wise salespeople choose. They want their customers to feel special and not taken for granted.
The satisfaction of receiving a tailored presentation or a proposal draws the client’s attention and makes them check their pockets.
10. I am a big advocate of social selling
The most lucrative sales tip a successful salesperson would give you is to harness the power of your network because your social network is your net worth, your asset.
If you don’t make use of it, someone else will. Missing out on your network will lead to missing out on a huge selling opportunity.
The reason sales managers stress LinkedIn networking and staying relevant is because of social selling. Continuous networking and contact building amplify sales activities.
Your relationships don't require your services now, but later, one day, they may switch jobs, and the new organization may require your services. And there, you hit your jackpot client.
11. I dig deeper to reach the root cause
Instead of falling for surface-level issues, clever salespeople dive deeper to uncover the root cause and offer help in that direction.
Also, a common sales tip that you’ll get from successful sellers is that solve a problem, offer help, and give consultation but don’t be a seller. Don’t try to oversell your products or services.
12. I am on top of the local and international market trends
Learning about the industry and the market trend is a given. It’s not an option anymore.
But if you want to stand out of the crowd, you may want to know about your prospect’s industry, their problems, new technologies, political changes, etc.
The more you learn about the market, the less valuable it is. So, hurry and get going.
13. I am not overconfident. I like to learn from others' mistakes.
A sales tip and habit that often gets overlooked is learning from others, their mistakes, and their wins.
You may be a fantastic salesperson, and yet there’s always room for improvement.
If you want to face the days when the going gets tough, you may want to start referring to sales playbooks and previous call notes provided by peers/seniors.
14. I know where the opportunities are- in referrals
Successful salespeople are smart enough to uncover the easiest way to close deals- a referral. You can’t challenge social proof over anything. Chasing referrals over cold leads should be the first choice.
And referrals come when you are successful in your previous deal. Don’t wait too long; ask for referrals from leads as soon as they close.
15. I can see the future; mastering virtual selling is the top priority
Virtual selling has several benefits, and sales professionals can see it.
Businesses are saving tons of money, and sales teams are enjoying the convenience of staying at home and selling efficiently. Rather than traveling, sales leaders are extracting extra work to replace the travel time.
Even customers are more open to virtual meetings than face-to-face ones. Their teams work remotely, so tighter meetings are highly productive and easier to understand.
We believe we need to accept and prepare for the future sales landscape.
16. I am not going on a call unprepared
Don’t we know the repercussions of going unprepared for an exam? Client calls are no different. They can surprise you even more.
Successful salespeople stress a lot on call preparation. Because going unprepared for calls is considered useless for the seller and disrespectful for the buyer.
As a best practice in sales, it’s advisable to practice and research well before calls.
17. I put myself in the client’s shoe
Sales tips and tricks don’t talk about empathy, but the best and most successful salespeople are the biggest advocates of empathy selling.
Unless you keep yourself in the client’s shoes, it’s hard to uncover what they want. You may end up selling your product or service, but that wouldn’t solve the problem.
Client’s tend to remember sellers who accept their problem and find a solution around it. Not sellers who sell their products and services.
18. I insist and invest in learning
The focus area of a salesperson is selling, we agree. But blindly following the age-old techniques makes no sense.
A seller needs to learn and unlearn specific methods and get back on the field. Otherwise, the numbers will stagnate.
19. I invest in sales coaching
Sales coaching may not be in your control, but you’re responsible for showing enthusiasm and making efforts to receive the maximum value from it.
If nothing works, determined salespeople spend time self-coaching using the free call recordings available in the company.
Similar sales tools support learning and help in automatic review and feedback.
20. I know where to devote maximum time in the day.
No denying time management for a seller is one of the trickiest tasks to date. One can never predict which sales event will need more time, where you’ll need to sacrifice, and what needs urgent attention.
While we say so, having a plan is recommended and the only way forward.
That’s what the best sales guys do.
Time and schedules are fixed for all events, even follow-ups, and coaching. That way, you can squeeze other events in and around it.
21. I am an individual contributor but don’t shy away from my team
We’re glad to know you’re a lone wolf and crushing numbers in your organization. Is that all you can do?
Knowing your sales team, their challenges, and their mistakes are as important as your individual contribution.
Sometimes, a good rapport with the team can be a blessing during the stormy days of your sales career.
22. I am performing because of my disciplined nature
Salespeople can easily get lost in the chase of numbers and incentives. Some treat their sales jobs too seriously to earn recognition and status symbols.
Desirable promotion and compensation will stay with you up to a point; then, there is no more to it.
While it’s good to be competitive, let’s not forget coaching, learning, team contributions, health, and of course, the pillars of your life, your family.
To attain all that, you must have a disciplined routine and balanced mindset.
23. I work hard even on the days the going gets tough
We bet we share the same outlook about hard work.
And sadly, there’s no alternative to it.
Despite the silver spoon you were born with, all salespeople will continue to work hard.
Pro sales tip: Don't try to take shortcuts now. You'll struggle even more later.
24. I recognize every day won't be a cakewalk
There’ll be tough days when your sales dashboard will look as blank as the whiteboard.
You won't be able to figure out what went wrong. What could I have done better?
While you keep yourself busy figuring it out, you should not give up!
25. When the going gets tough, I don’t give up
Days are bound to get tough, and things will go wrong.
Sales is highly dynamic, and every day will not be your day. But remember not to quit and deviate from your initial goal.
Have faith, continue and seek sales coaching whenever you can’t handle the pressure.
The 25 habits we discuss today will help you accelerate your sales deals and make your sales life comfortable and convenient.
But more importantly, create competent salespeople with the least amount of effort.
Bonus Sales Tip: Here’s a FREE version of a call recording software to get new sales guys ramped up quickly. - GO SIGN UP NOW!
Results first, payment later.