12 More Things to Avoid on a Sales Call

Hi readers,

This is an addendum to my earlier blog ” 8 Things NOT To Do on a Sales Call” 

In that blog, I had touched upon 8 things that I consider an absolute NO NO if you want to make a positive impact on your sales call.

The subject of this blog says it all…12 more things to totally avoid and keep in mind when you plan your sales call.

  • #1: Discuss politics or religion.  Such subjects are almost always a trap into opinionated quicksand that’s hard or impossible to get out of.  Fix: keep the discussion on business or neutral ground.
  • #2: Dive into your product pitch.  Sure you’ve got something to sell, but if you pitch too soon, you’ll get pitched out the door. Fix: Ask questions to understand needs, before you pitch.
  • #3: Arrive late to the call.  If you don’t arrive on time it tell the customer clearly that you don’t give a damn about them or their time.  Fix: Always arrive 15 minutes ahead of time.  If you drive to calls, get a GPS.
  • #4: Appear flippant or sarcastic.  A good-natured laugh at a joke might be taken personally by someone watching out the window, without hearing the context.  Fix: Watch your demeanor at all times.
  • #5: Lack requisite product knowledge.  The prospect doesn’t want to hear “I need to get back to you about that”…over and over. Fix: make sure you’re trained on your current products and policies…before the call.
  • #6: Fail to plan the call.  Sounds simple, but trying to close when should be qualifying (for example) is a lost sale.  Fix: Never enter a door without first thinking about what you plan to accomplish.
  • #7: Be too business-like at first.  Remember you’re building bridges with another human being, not just a notch in your sales gun.  Fix: Smile and be friendly… but don’t get too gushy.
  • #8: Show up with a crowd.  If you bring too many people, it will draw customer’s comments about why your costs so high  Fix: Use webconferencing when you need to include additional resources.
  • #9: Fail to check your appearance.  Don’t show up with something amiss that a quick stop in the client’s bathroom could head off.  Fix: Make a quick pit stop – with a look-over – before the call.
  • #10: Forget the customers’ names.  What could be more embarrassing than actually forgetting whom you’re talking with?  Fix: Write down the names down of everyone in the room with a small table diagram.
  • #11: Be rude to the admin.  No flirting, of course, but if you act all arrogant and superior, you’ll just antagonize the help.  Fix: Be friendly and respectful of the staff – admin and otherwise.
  • #12: Ask personal questions.  You may think that the customer is your friend, but you can easily screw up if it gets too personal.  Fix:  Keep the conversation focused on business issues or neutral topics like sports.
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