What Makes the Ideal Salesperson?
A lot of people are struggling with making an effective sales hire at the moment
The traditional way used to be to poach a salesperson who claimed that they had a large book of business. It was assumed by both salesperson and their new employer that the business would follow. However, this was usually far from the case!
Most people now realize that this isn’t a strategy that works in today’s world. However, traditional thinking still governs a lot of hiring. So here’s an interesting question.
Do salespeople need a background in print?
A lot of people will immediately tell me that this is essential! But let’s look at a big issue around this. The belief that a good technical knowledge of print is essential means that people are often hired on this knowledge. However, it would be far better to hire candidates based on their people skills. It is much harder to teach someone people skills than print skills.
I would go further than this. As a buyer, I often had to sit through some very dull sales approaches that were far too technical to interest me. Bear in mind that I am someone who knows a fair bit about print and am interested in how it is produced. Yet I still struggled in some of these presentations. I wonder what the reaction of a typical buyer without my experience would have been?
One printing company told me that the best sales hire they made was a local TV news presenter. She was very skilled at asking questions and getting the best out of people. If there were technical questions she could always ask the team at the factory.
Maybe it’s time to re-think the best skills for a salesperson?
Whatever type of salesperson you hire, creating a sales plan is essential
My book “How To Succeed At Print Sales” contains a step-by-step plan for creating a 12-week sales project. It will have all the right targets and activities and a way of making sure that the project is on track. There’s a whole host of useful tips for a salesperson’s day-to-day activity as well.
PS Find out more ideas on how to engage with today’s buyers
Download my free e-book “Ten Common Print Selling Errors and What To Do About Them” right now at https://profitableprintrelationships.com/e-book/ You’ll also receive my regular “Views from the print buyer” bulletin, full of ideas on how to sell print effectively.
Many printing companies are frustrated how hard it is to engage buyers in today’s world. That’s where Matthew Parker can help. He is a gamekeeper turned poacher. Parker has bought print for more than 20 years and received over 1,400 print sales pitches. He now uses his buyer’s point of view to give practical advice to printers. He helps them engage with prospects and customers to create profitable relationships.
Download his free e-book, "Ten Common Print Selling Errors And What To Do About Them" and check out his recently launched book, "How To Succeed At Print Sales: Setting targets, planning the right activities and making sure goals are met."