Insurance sales can be a hard industry to succeed in. Honing your skills as a sales professional will carry you far in your career.
SHOW REAL INTEREST IN YOUR PROSPECT
Take a few minutes to get to know the person you are talking with. How old is your prospect? Does he have children or grandchildren? What kinds of hobbies does she have?
Everyone’s favorite topic of discussion is themselves. If you show this interest, your prospect will respond. Having this conversation with them will also help you find common ground. People will pay more to buy a product from someone they like rather than save a few dollars and work with someone they dislike.
LISTEN TO YOUR PHONE VOICE
Quite often, we make our first contact over the telephone. As the old saying goes, you will never get a second chance to make a good first impression. This adage is very true.
Without body language to add context to our words, it is necessary to build interest just through our voices. Use proper inflection, energy and enthusiasm. Record your phone talk and listen to it. Where can you improve? Remember to rehearse, because practice makes perfect.
DON’T IGNORE SALES FUNDAMENTALS
Don’t forget to smile! Ask probing questions when you need more information. Use well-crafted leading questions to help the prospect move in the direction of your close.
Never ask an open-ended question. Finish your questions with leading words. As an example, say “You see how your current policy fails to cover you here, right?” rather than “Can you see how your current policy fails to cover you here?”
For more advice here, see our blog post: Attributes of a Successful Salesperson
SPEAK LESS / LISTEN MORE
“Listen” is defined as giving one’s attention to a sound. The important word here is attention. There is a difference between hearing and listening. Most of all, pay attention to what your prospect is saying, especially when they are giving you an objection. It is worse to give a rebuttal that doesn’t match the objection than to miss the opportunity to rebut altogether.
Most importantly, do not talk over your prospect, since nothing is more maddening than being interrupted.
BE BETTER PREPARED
Every so often, your prospect will ask a question that you do not have the answer to. Be ready for this, and have a plan to find that answer.
In addition make sure you have all the supplies you could need. Don’t carry a pen that is running low on ink. Make sure you have plenty of clean paper, extra copies of important paperwork, and all of your presentation materials.
Keep a spare shirt and tie in the car, just in case. Don’t forget to rotate your spares occasionally. They can start smelling stale from a hot car interior.
BECOME A MARKETING EXPERT
Never stop learning. Some people are good at setting phone appointments. Others are good at conversing with a prospect. Every office has a salesperson that consistently closes more deals than anyone else.
Learn how to emulate each of these people. Sit with the phone pro, ride out with the conversationalist and watch the closer work her magic. Absorb the information you get from them and practice until you are the best at all three!
RECOGNIZE AND ACT ON BUYING SIGNALS
You may have a script or a sales process that usually works for you. Many prospects will start throwing buying signals before you have reached your close. Learn to recognize these signals and practice how to smoothly transition to a close.
I have seen salespeople ignore a buying signal and talk their way out of the sale. Nothing hurts more than looking back at the point where you moved a prospect from buyer to denier. Remember, not everyone (not even close) needs every piece of information you have before making a buying decision. Therefore, don’t be afraid to drop your presentation to ask for the sale when the situation arises.
1 thought on “21 Tips for Insurance Sales Professionals – Part 2: Hone Your Skills”
Pingback: 21 Tips for Insurance Sales Professionals - Part 3: Time to Sell