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    Building Sales Relationships

    Using sales closing techniques usually comes at the end of the sales call. Building a relationship with prospects and their support staffs in selling comes much earlier. It employs specific skills that you might already have at your disposal. This article points out what those skills are for you to add on or sharpen them as you go along.
    Building sales relationships
    For example, do you remember the customer's name and pronounce it correctly?

    How well did you listen?

    Techniques For Building Sales Relationships

    Upon completing this article, you can demonstrate practical listening skills. You can say that listening effectively is the most crucial factor in building customer relationships when selling.

    Effective listening

    Effective listeningListening is visible activity. It is also an evident skill.

    It is speculated that we spend 70% of our waking time listening.

    But hearing and listening are different. Few people really listen. Most people hear.

    Part of listening well is noticing clues:

    • verbal
    • non-verbal.

    The other part is showing to the speakers that you are paying attention to them.

    It can be done through:

    • body language 
    • verbal reinforcement.

    Quick question: What behaviors of others tell you that they're paying attention?

    Listening behavior

    Listening behaviorListening behavior shows that you empathize with the speaker. It encourages them to continue and clarify the message being communicated. It is an integral part of building customer relationships in the sales process.

    You show that you empathize and encourage speakers to carry on through 'attending body language' such as eye contact, mirroring and appropriate gestures.

    It also involves the use of 'minimal encouragers' such as words like 'Yes,' 'ah ha,' 'right,' etc.

    You clarify what was said through questions and paraphrasing. Paraphrasing doesn't mean repeating words for words, but repeat the gist of what's being said.

    You can do a simple practice with a partner. Listen to your partner speaks and have someone observe your listening behaviors.

    Record listening behaviorRecord the observation as below:


    • Listener

    Use appropriate eye contact....Y/N
    Faced the speaker... Y/N
    Mirrored speaker's body posture... Y/N
    Use non-verbal encouragers (nod, hand gestures, smile)...... Y/N
    Show empathy...... Y/N
    Use minimal encouragers... Y/N
    Paraphrasing..... Y/N
    Clarify with question or comments..... Y/N

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