Online Continuing Education

The 5 Keys to Building Confidence with Prospects

Confidence is a tricky beast. It’s not something that you either have or don’t have, it’s something that fluctuates from person to person and from moment to moment within the same individual. Confidence also has a direct impact on your ability to sell, with studies showing that people who feel more confident are also likely to close deals faster, as well as be more memorable to your prospect. This article will go into more detail about how confidence impacts your sales performance and tips for building your confidence in the context of prospecting and sales; however, if you’re looking for a concise list of actionable takeaways then read on...


Build Your Self-Esteem

Your self-esteem is the foundation on which your confidence sits. Low self-esteem can leave you feeling insecure and worried about what others might be thinking of you, and this can ultimately impact your ability to close deals. Boosting your self-esteem can be done by finding positive affirmation in what you’ve done, instead of focusing on what you’re lacking. Keep a journal of your achievements and use affirmations to remind yourself of your strengths.


Anchor Your Success

Your first sales win will have a huge impact on your confidence. Take that opportunity to “anchor” that win to boost your future confidence when you’re up against a hard objection or selling to a particularly challenging prospect. Find a way to tie that first win to that specific situation or challenge, and you’ll find it much easier to use your self-belief to get over that obstacle.


Create a Ritual

Your morning ritual might be geared towards helping you feel energized and ready to tackle the day, but what about your evening ritual? By creating a ritual for evening, you are giving yourself an opportunity to reflect on your day. Were there any major struggles you experienced? What were the prospects’ reactions? What could you do differently next time? The ritual of reflecting on your day allows you to learn from your mistakes (and successes!) and implement changes for the future. With this in mind, you might consider adding one of these confidence building activities to your ritual. - Listening to Podcasts: Research shows that listening to podcasts can increase your confidence and self-esteem, as well as improving your self-awareness. - Journaling: Journaling has been proven to increase productivity and remove anxiety - great for boosting confidence before sales calls! - Writing a letter to your younger self: This exercise encourages you to reflect on your journey and identify where you’ve grown or learned from your mistakes.


Change your Perception

As much as we might wish it wasn’t the case, not everyone will appreciate your sales approach. Some people will be rude, abrupt, or just generally uninterested in your product or service. When this happens, try to change your perception and don’t take that person’s behavior as a reflection on you - it’s not. If a particular prospect just isn’t interested in your product, it doesn’t mean you’re a bad salesperson. It might be something you need to re-evaluate, but it doesn’t mean you’re a bad person.


Networking is Key

Building trust and rapport is key to any sales conversation, but it’s even more important when you’re first starting out. Make networking an integral part of your sales strategy and you’ll find that you can quickly overcome those initial trust issues and start to close deals. Join industry groups, attend conferences, and find ways to connect with people that are in your target audience. This will not only help you gain in-person experience, but it will also give you insight into your customers’ wants, needs, and pain points. However, there are a couple of things you must remember when networking to boost your confidence in sales. - Networking is not selling - It’s important to remember that even though you’re in a sales environment, you’re not trying to sell your product or service. You’re there to meet people who are in a similar position to you and build a rapport with them. - Be genuine - It’s not a good idea to network just for the sake of networking. Connect with real people who are going to add value to your career, as opposed to just connecting with as many people as you can.


Stay in Touch with Your Audience

Follow up with people who you spoke with during your first few sales calls. Even if you didn’t close the deal, follow up to find out why and use it as a learning experience. Find ways to stay in contact with the people you’ve met and customers you’ve dealt with throughout your sales journey. Send a quick email to say thank you, or send a gift to show your appreciation. This will help to remind them of your brand and build trust and rapport with them. These techniques can help you build your confidence in sales, but they can also help you overcome some of the biggest challenges you might face when starting out on your sales journey, such as being nervous or encountering pushback from your prospects.

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