It involves all the preparations for getting ready for the selling process by thesalesmen. The salesman has to be familiar with the product, the market, thetechniques of selling and organization. He would be successful if he is aware of the unsatisfied needs and problems of the customers. He should prepare himself by knowing himself and his company, competition and market environment.
Prospecting and qualifying
The potential customer is known as a prospect and the method of finding hepotential customer is known as prospecting. Prospecting involves a significantamount of time, effort and money. Although the company will give the leads,the salesmen have to develop their own leads. Leads can be developed in thefollowing ways1.
By analyzing telephone directory.2.
Cold canvassing (Dropping Un Announced).3.
Asking current customers for the names of prospects.4.
Cultivating referral sources such as suppliers, dealers, bankers, noncompeting sales representatives and trade association executives.5.
Joining the organizations to which prospects belong.E.g.:- Lions club, Rotary club etc.6.
Engaging in speaking and writing activities that draw attention.7.
Examining data sources (Newspapers, Directories) in search of names.
It involves finding out the needs, problems, preferences habits, attitudes, natureand interests of the prospects. The salesman can consult standard sources such
as Moody‘s, standard and poor, Dun and Brad sheet etc. The salesman should
set best approach, which might be a personal visit, a phone call, or a letter. Thebest timing should be thought out because many prospects are busy at certaintimes and finally the sales presentation strategies are planned.
The initial few minutes
of the sales talk are known as the ‗approach‘ to the prospect. The purpose of the talk is to arouse and sustain the customer‘s