Marketing Bootcamp

3 Major Sales Mistakes You Must Avoid

3 Major Sales Mistakes You Must Avoid
Image credit: no lurvin here. | Flickr
This story appears in the February 2016 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Your persistence comes off as nagging

The fix: End each call with a question that continues the conversation, such as, “What’s the best time to call you back and get you live?” Or, “What’s the best way to talk to you about X?” Plan to reach out five times over the first 30 days -- and if there’s no bite, give it three to six months before trying again.

You don’t seize the moment

Does a customer seem interested? Jump at it aggressively. “Entrepreneurs often wait too long for live engagement,” says Hoffman. “Attention is a transient moment. You want to seize it. We are always too busy to do things that are uncomfortable. If you believe your product or service is good for the world, you have the responsibility to bring that to your customer.”

Your overconfidence is off-putting

Are you an imperfect salesman? Embrace it, and even admit it. Customers would rather deal with an ideas person than a sales shark. “That’s the special truth about sales,” Hoffman says. “You want to look vulnerable and confident at the same time. Being new and nervous is effective. Your confidence is in what inspired you to start the business.” 

Edition: December 2016

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