August 23

How Can You Prospect Better? Powerful Strategies To Shorten The Sales Cycle


One of the biggest mistakes we see salespeople make is spending too much time trying to follow up with prospects that are never going to buy.  Okay, never may be a bit strong, but you know what I mean. 

You spend so much time and energy trying to close that deal that you must wonder if it’s even profitable by the time you get it done. As sales professionals, you have got to understand that every time you say yes to one prospect, you are closing the door on another. Another prospect that could be a better fit, less price sensitive, and far more interested in buying your products and services. 

To prospect better, you must start out right. You have to do a better job of choosing the right prospects. By right prospects, we mean those most likely to meet with you, to share their challenges, and most importantly, those most likely to buy.

The better you choose your prospects, the less time it will take to close the deal. Better prospecting is the key to shortening the sales cycle, and to choose better prospects you need a prospect avatar, a persona of your ideal prospect.

10 Strategies To Create The Perfect Prospect Avatar

1. Get Clear – on your ideal customer.  That’s right; if you want to choose better prospects, you begin by understanding your best customers. You enjoy working with those who buy from you and never give you a hard time about price. 

2. Make A List – now that you are clear on who that top customer is, make a list. Ten or more of your top 10 customers, and just write them down.

3. Look For Themes – take the time to study this list, and start to see the themes and the things these ideal customers have in common. Such as the industry they work in, the company’s life stage, their position in the organization, their age range, etc.

4. Organize The Themes – make a list of these themes and put them in order.

5. Build Your Customer Avatar – use this list of these themes to build your ideal customer avatar. This is your “type” the customer most likely to buy from you, refer you, and continue to buy from you. 

6. Model Your Prospect Avatar –  Once you know your Customer Avatar, you can use that Avatar – those themes to create your Prospect Avatar.   

7. Design The Questions – Once you know who you are looking for, your best prospects, you can design questions that can quickly help you identify if your prospect is a fit. 

8. Use The Questions To Determine Prospect Fit – When you are on sales calls, use these questions to determine if the prospect you are calling on fits the ideal profile or not. 

9. Learn to Walk Away  – if they don’t, then learn to walk away.

10. Sell From Power – When you use your Prospect Avatar, you are selling from a place of power rather than a place of need—putting you squarely in control of the buying cycle.

Selling is a challenge no matter the industry you’re in these days. So, give yourself the best chance of closing more sales by beginning the sales process right.  The better you choose your prospects, the faster your sales will close.

Meridith Elliott Powell

Voted one of the Top 15 Business Growth Experts to watch by Currency Fair, highly engaging corporate motivational keynote speaker Meridith Elliott Powell delivers a cutting-edge message, rooted in real-life examples and real-world knowledge. Meridith’s presentations are full of powerful content, highly interactive, and fun. She helps her clients learn the leadership development, sales and business growth strategies to turn uncertainty to competitive advantage.

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