Without sales, every business is an expensive and time-consuming hobby so even if you consider yourself to be an introvert you will have to sell to grow your business. Being an introvert can be your superpower, your secret sales tool if you will.
Do you often find yourself being too busy to focus on your sales? Keep moving it down your to-do list? Perhaps you told yourself that you’re an introvert so you can’t sell, is this you?
In this article, I will share 5 top sales tips for introverts to help you find a way to sell that works for you without any icky and sleazy sales tactics.
Being an Introvert is Your Superpower
Being an introvert is often confused with being shy, quiet, and not assertive enough but there are plenty of us out there that may not love being the centre of attention all the time but who are driven and focused.
As an introvert, you may find that you are creative, find it easy to listen, understand others, and that you are great at identifying and solving problems and challenges, all great tools to have when you sell.
This ability to connect and empathise with others is what can make you a great salesperson if you play to your strengths.
For example, if you know you feel more confident when you have time to prepare and get to know who you will speak with before you jump on a call, arrange a meeting, then set aside some time to research who you are going to be speaking with. If you’re a service-based business, get potential clients to fill out a pre-call questionnaire, if you are a product-based business, research the buyer, look them up on Linkedin or social media and find a couple of points to connect on.
Finding a way to sell that works for you is a necessity for you to confidently grow your business. Take the time to find a process that you can replicate over and over again so you can step out of your comfort zone without retreating to the comforts of a long to-do list that won’t bring you more sales. To get you started, here are my top 5 sales growth tips.
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5 Sales Tips for Introverts
1. Re-frame what selling is
A lot of the business owners I work with tell me they are scared to come across as sleazy or pushy and that it’s holding them back from selling. I don’t know where this preconceived imaginary persona comes from but I’m guessing it’s from the movies and tv shows. Sales professionals in the movies are often portrayed to be only after the short term sale with little care for the outcome afterwards but this is most likely not you!
Selling is all about helping people and everyone wants and needs help. Whether this is help finding the most thoughtful and beautiful gifts to stock in their retail stores that their customers will love and that will grow their sales or if it’s help doing their PR, help with doing their taxes or in my case, help with starting and growing their wholesale business.
When you are selling your product, whether this is your time or a physical product or a course, you are simply helping to connect those who have a problem with the solution and isn’t that the most kind and non-sleazy thing you can do for someone?
Take a few minutes to write down how you help your customer and what problem you are solving for them and what it will mean to them when they solve that problem. For example, I help my clients start and grow their wholesale so they can build a business that is suitable for their lifestyle and dreams. When they work with me, they save time, money and lots of stress which frees them up for what’s important to them.
Now let’s look at my second sales tips for introverts…
2. Remember your WHY
This may sound like a cliche, but when it comes to selling and stepping out of your comfort zone it’s important to be really clear on why you are doing something.
Define why you are running your own business? Why do you want to grow your business? What will it mean to you when you reach your next goal?
Create a visual reminder of your WHY and put it somewhere in your eye line near your workstation. The next time you want to move that uncomfortable thing down your to-do list refer to this and ask yourself, is it worth being uncomfortable for a few seconds/minutes if the outcome gets you closer to your WHY? If your why is strong enough then the answer will always be yet, if not, dig a little deeper.
The next 2 sales technique tips are my favourite…
3. Set aside time for selling
Running your own business can be overwhelming and we often have too many things to do, and too little time to do it, but I’m a firm believer in setting aside time every day (working day) to sell.
In the book, ‘Build your business in 90-minutes per day” Martin Gladdish asks Nigel Botterill, “What does it take to make your business successful?” The answer, “to gain new customers and retain existing ones”.
Now, this might not be a word for word quote of the book, but you get the idea, and it is true. After taking care of yourself and your own well-being as a business owner there’s nothing more important than to make time for getting new customers and retaining existing ones so set aside time every day for this.
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4. Make a plan
Setting aside time is all well and good but you also need a plan for what to do with this time.
As an introvert, I’ve learned to sell in a way that suits me and that means setting myself up for success by having a plan. Without a plan, I find that it’s very easy to find something more urgent (that is not really more urgent) and much more comfortable to do.
So what does this mean? It means to take the time to plan before your dedicated time to sell so you know what you are supposed to do during this time and you are clear on the outcome of this time.
For my clients, this means that we set up their sales funnel with the steps they will take to convert retail buyers to stock their products. This may mean that we set a target that they will contact 10 potential customers 3 days per week and spend 2 days per week to follow up. Each step in their funnel has templates and instructions that they can follow without having to think too much about it so that they can move forward confidently.
What are the actions that you know will get your new customers and keep existing ones? Take out a piece of paper and make 4 columns, write down the things that will help you get new ones and how much time each task would take, do the same for existing customers and then make all those tasks a part of your daily schedule. First thing in the morning if you’re someone that is likely to keep moving it down the to-do list.
And now for my final sales tip for introverts…
5. Set targets
To stay motivated you need to be able to measure your success or it can feel like you’re not getting anywhere. Sometimes it can take time to convert new customers so these targets don’t all have to be financial.
In fact, I find that a lot of my clients are more motivated by seeing their products in their favourite retail shop rather than the money that generated so we will set both financial and fun targets that will get them there. Contact x many shops per week, get x many orders per week, get x many re-orders per week.
What targets would motivate you? If it’s a big financial number, can you break this down into a few smaller targets to get you there so the task doesn’t feel as big?
Don’t forget to decide how you will celebrate and make your targets time-bound so you know when you reached them.
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Selling as an Introvert
Being an introvert is not a handicap when it comes to sales. You can play to your strengths and use them as one of your most valuable sales tools.
Take the time to make a plan and set yourself up for success and remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect, sales is all about making connections and helping others.
The key is to start somewhere and to stay consistent and try to have fun with it. Set fun targets and fun rewards and enjoy connecting with others.
I hope you enjoyed reading my sales tips for introverts and good luck.
About the Author
Therese Oertenblad is a business mentor who helps her clients get clear on their pricing and margins so they can start and grow their wholesale and sell more to retail buyers and shop owners. She has 13+ years of experience in the home and gift industry selling to both large and small retailers and she sits on the national committee of The Giftware Association. You can find out more about Therese on her website below.
> Website: www.smallbusinesscollaborative.co.uk