What Pre-Digital Methods Can Teach the Modern Salesperson

As we’ve touched on countless times here at the Acquirent blog, technology has significantly changed the way we approach sales and interact with clients. In just one decade, the information consumers have access to has exploded, making today’s customer more informed—and more selective—than ever. From vacuum cleaners to software as a service, the sales professionals of today are tasked with finding ways to form meaningful business connections and close deals both on-screen and off.

But the door-to-door era does still have a few lessons to teach the sales recruits of today. Though we’re not knocking on doors and vacuuming dirty welcome mats anymore, the obstacles that the front door represents have their own parallels in today’s business landscape:

  • Quite literally getting a ‘foot in the door’ means you’re one step closer to closing, and at least having your pitch heard. Our society rewards consistency, and if you’ve already gotten a prospect to agree to ‘let you in’ and listen to your pitch, it’s very likely that they will comply with other things you need: to close the deal or obtain referrals, for example.
  • Presentation is key. As with the first peek through the peephole or opening the front door, the initial interaction with a prospect will greatly influence how they perceive you and whatever you’re selling. As a general rule of thumb, if you wouldn’t let yourself into your own living room, then your prospect probably won’t bite.
  • The demonstration is still an incredibly valuable sales tool. Whether that’s you physically sitting with a prospect and showing them what your product can do, or putting video or other interactive materials in their hands, it’s very important to effectively show your prospect exactly how what you’re selling can solve their problem, or outperform whatever they’re already using.

So there you have it. The days of carrying heavy briefcases in the hot sun through endless neighborhoods may be over, but there is plenty of wisdom from those times that remains relevant—and very useful for sales consultants like us!

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