Seasoned sales professionals know their success depends largely on the relationships they build. The connection they have with customers are critical and should be nurtured with each encounter. Properly preparing for each call, establishing credibility, listening to concerns, and presenting favorable solutions create the perfect recipe for building and sustaining rapport. And it helps if you can add a dash of confidence and a pinch of humor!
Probably the most important contact point is what you say first when you are face-to-face or phone-to-phone with a buyer. This first impression is critical, even with customers you may have known for years. The first few minutes of any sales interview can set you apart from the competition and build personal and product credibility.
When you are calling on new prospects, you are usually facing an uphill battle to overcome preoccupations on the part of the buyer. They are dealing with their problems and issues. You need to show that you understand these issues and begin your sales call with evidence that you can help them, based on what you have done for other clients.