By RJ Sales & Leadership Reports
Much of your success in sales is based on your ability to network effectively. Without connections, it’s not just your client base that will be limited, but also prospective partners, marketplace competitors, and intra-organizational individuals with whom you can exchange insights. Networking goes beyond the simple act of handing out calling cards or fliers nor is it just about filling up your contact list in a shorter amount of time. This business strategy of cultivating relationships with people or groups that matter is a powerful tool for a sales professional.
Here are some of the reasons why your career in sales could be enriched by networking:
1. Face time with prospects
Just because technology allows for distant communication doesn’t mean you always have to take that option. In sales, face-to-face interaction makes it more personal and not merely a transaction you have to get over with. Melissa Whitaker International previously touched on showcasing your personality, and a charming, innovative, and trustworthy one is part of closing the deal, which you won’t be able to succeed in doing online.
2. Sales opportunities
A roomful of people is a room full of opportunities. A LinkedIn Newsroom survey found that 70% of individuals landed a job because of their connections within a company. Imagine how those people were able to get employed because they built relationships with the right people. In sales, you can translate that rate into your world by focusing on making genuine connections with the right people first instead of trying to make a buck. Once you’ve established both trust and your brand, closing deals will naturally follow.
3. Expanding referral channels
Your contacts should not be condensed in the sales industry, because talking to the same circle will only get you redundant results. The good thing about networking is that it doubles as referral marketing through which you can obtain more leads from different fields. Entrepreneur explains that this type of marketing is based on your reputation and experience, both of which you should be polishing. Word of mouth is still a classic method of gaining more exposure in different communities. In exchange, you could refer others to your contacts so they’d be more than willing to do the same for you.
4. Insight learning
A Harvard Business Review study showed that people who networked with an open mind performed better in their careers than those who only networked because it was required of them. The most valuable aspect of networking is the exchange of insights and perspectives that happens when two people get together. It’s not solely about making your name known as the source of a particular product or service but being receptive to the needs and feedback of your clients and prospective partners.
Much like in life, a career in sales is about creating impactful two-way connections. Menlo Coaching highlights the important characteristic of networking as a mutually beneficial relationship. Don’t just try to get them to purchase your product or service. Take the time to show them how you can add value to their lives and if you allow it, their perspective may add value to yours.