The 8 Step Personal Selling Process

Personal selling is the most expensive form of advertising and to be effective one should use a step by step process to gain the most benefit. Personal selling can adjust the manner in which facts are communicated and can consider factors such as culture and behaviour in the approach. They can ask questions to discover the specific need of the customer and can get feedback and adjust the presentation as it progresses.

The Personal Selling ProcessThe personal selling process is a consecutive series of activities conducted by the salesperson, the lead to a prospect taking the desired action of buying a product or service and finish with a follow-up contact to ensure purchase satisfaction.

Step OneProspecting - the first step in the personal selling processThe process of looking for and checking leads is called prospecting or determining which firms or individuals could become customers.Up to 20% of a firm's customer base can be lost for reasons such as transfer, death, retirement, takeovers, dissatisfaction with the company and competition. A steadily growing list of qualified prospects is important for reaching the sales targets.Qualifying a prospect: A lead is a name on a list. It only becomes a prospect if it is determined that the person or company can benefit from the service or product offered. A qualified prospect has a need, can benefit from the product and has the authority to make the decision.

Step TwoThe Pre-approachThis stage involves the collecting of as much relevant information as possible prior to the sales presentation. The pre-approach investigation is carried out on new customers but also on regular customers. Systematic collection of information requires a decision about applicability, usefulness and how to organise the information for easy access and effective use.

Step ThreeThe ApproachThe salesperson should always focus on the benefits for the customer. This is done by using the product's features and advantages. This is known as the FAB technique (Features, Advantages and Benefits).* Features : Refers to the physical characteristics such as size, taste etc.* Advantages : Refers to the performance provided by the physical characteristics eg it does not stain.* Benefits : Refers to the benefits for the prospect. Eg. Saves you 20% on replacement cost.

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