Have you ever called on a prospect and found them with that “wall” built before you ever begin to even try to build rapport? I mean, you may have barely even gotten out of your car and you can feel the divide between the two of you and know you’ve got a lot to overcome.
I think that happens at times because we “look” like a salesperson. And, you know—we have “that look”.
Here’s a sales tip I learned years ago when calling on retail establishments: instead of going in armed with all your materials, three legal pads, a briefcase and a sample pack—how about trying to just walk in with a business card and a small spiral notebook tucked into your pocket.
Then, when you ask if the owner or manager is in, you could be anyone—a banker, a friend, an IRS agent—well, let’s not go that far. My point is, don’t create problems for yourself by lugging in all your materials to start the relationship.
Many times I’ve had nothing but a pocket full of business cards and ended up writing a lot of notes on the back of them because I was able to get information from the person working in the retail location. I was disarming in my appearance, so therefore they were more readily agreeable to providing me with information.
If they want more information you can always go out to your vehicle to get it.
Try it. The next time you head out for a sales call, look professional, be professional, but try to look a little less like the proverbial salesperson.
Another sales tip when calling on retail locations is to buy something before approaching the person behind the counter. Now, you are a customer and you are treated differently when you ask for the owner or manager. Maybe it’s just a pack of gum or a small item, but being a customer puts you in an entirely different light than a salesperson.