During an early season episode of Mad Men, John Slattery’s character, Roger Sterling, offered up this pearl of wisdom about business:
The same can be said about ad sales, or any sales for that matter. This is a competitive space and in many instance there aren’t huge differences in the actual product or service that will be delivered. What differentiates a company or a salesperson and is often the deciding factor is likability. Top performing, and typically likable, salespeople understand the difference between selling transactions and selling relationships. It means prospecting, generating leads, and pitching with a longer term goal in mind…retention. It’s thinking beyond selling leaderboards and skyscrapers to selling partnerships, not just selling ads. Ask yourself this question: Am I a transaction seller or a relationship seller?
- Transaction sellers focus primarily on getting the next new client. Relationship sellers do to, but they’re also focused on keeping their clients happy.
- Transaction sellers think in terms of one –time deals. Relationship sellers look for ways to get in and stay there.
- Transaction sellers are less targeted and will sell to anyone willing to buy. Relationship sellers are more selective and understand not all companies are a good fit.
- Transaction sellers are short-term minded. Relationship sellers are long-term.
Which one sounds more like you? Which philosophy has guided your sales team up to this point?
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