If you’re like most sales managers, you probably consider it a win when one of your sales reps closes a deal or hits or exceeds his sales goals. That’s quite natural. Those are, after all, the ultimate objectives.

However, the path your team takes in reaching those goals can make a significant difference in their ability to maintain customers for the long haul. That’s the kind of deal that has repeated dividends, particularly with upsells. Here are some supporting statistics:

  • It’s 6 to 7 times more difficult to attract a new customer than it is to maintain a current customer, according to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs.
  • A dissatisfied customer will tell between 9-15 people about their experience.
  • Around 13% of dissatisfied customers tell more than 20 people.

That’s why a core part of your team’s strategy should be focused on building relationships; not just on making those initial sales. Additionally, 55% of consumers would actually pay more for a better service experience  Tweet This! according to Salesforce.

As Dale Carnegie Training emphasizes, you can leverage the efforts of your sales team by developing a strategy that centers on the slower process of developing relationships with your prospects and customers.

Here are 3 tips to help you set that customer-focused philosophy in motion:

  1. Provide great customer service. It should go without saying that you and your team should always provide great customer service. Yet, in our highly automated environment, it can be difficult to take heed of the many ways you can maintain a human connection. Don’t neglect this step; it could be key to helping you gain the positive feedback you need to gain the trust of prospects, and, eventually, their referrals as customers.
  1. Share success stories. Storytelling is a key component of sales and marketing in today’s business climate. There’s no better way of painting a picture than showing how your product or service made a difference for another client, taking it from Point A to Point B. Great customer service, as pointed out in step 1, can be essential in getting client participation in case studies.
  1. Empathize with your prospects. You can’t build a solid relationship with customers and prospects without having a conversation. And, of course, a conversation requires being engaged. Be prepared to engage with clients and prospects by doing your research beforehand, understanding their challenges and asking the right questions. However, it’s important to realize those challenges can vary depending upon who you’re talking to, according to Dale Carnegie. For example, a marketing executive may be thinking about challenges quite different than those of the CEO. Take the time to explore those nuances so that you’re able to have compelling conversations.

Developing relationships is crucial to the sales process. It helps to have plenty of information at your fingertips to keep track of your various clients, prospects and their preferences. FatStax’s mobile sales tool equips your team to deliver effective presentations and meaningful conversations. Contact us to find out how

About J. Rusty Bishop, PhD

I've spent the last 5 years helping great brands create amazing experiences for their sales teams during one on one sales interactions. Helping sales people do their job is my passion. When I'm not working, I am on the ocean fishing in San Diego, Ca.