Are you an Introvert Salesperson?
Here’s how you can hack your personality for success…
If you’re an Introvert, you’ve undoubtedly felt like this before…
You’ve looked at your Extroverted colleagues in sales meeting one person after another as if their list of friends were endless.
Not just that, their energy also appears limitless!
After two appointments in a day, you’re completely drained.
You just want to head home, take a nap, or just Netflix and chill.
Your Extroverted colleagues, however, don’t seem to have a problem squeezing in three or even four appointments a day, every single day. Not just that, after that, they’ll be heading to a social meeting to ‘unwind’! (OMG, how do they do that?!?)
Being always around people, it seems like sales and prospecting seems so completely effortless for them!
Does it mean that as Introvert, you’re already set up to lose out to Extroverts? Are you already destined to make a fraction of the sales of your Extroverted colleagues despite giving your best?
At first glance, it seems so. How can you compete as an Introvert when your energy levels are so different?
Fortunately, yes - there are methods that an Introvert can outdo their counterparts. They just have to play the game right. There are ways that an Introverted salesperson could use in his/her arsenal to compete with the Extrovert. There’s some stuff you need to understand about Introverts to know how they actually have an advantage over their Extroverted colleagues.
If you can understand and apply these insights, you’ll be much more able to play the sales game to your advantage.
Here are a few tips on how you can do so:
1. Use your listening skills to your advantage.
While Extroverts have seemingly boundless energy to pitch their products, Introverts have the advantage when it comes to listening for client needs.
Introverts should start by asking relevant questions to their client about their current challenges and needs. Introverts tend to ask better questions, and this actually reflects the expertise and experience to the clients. This, at times, are even more impressive than a good presentation.
Personally, I like to start a sales meeting by doing a short introduction of myself, and then to ask the clients about the current challenges they face in their work. I sit back in my preferred listening mode, asking questions where necessary.
I found the meetings that I listened to be far more productive and the sales process much smoother than when I start by pitching without listening.
You see, most people like others who listen to their troubles, and you the Introvert, is perfect for that.
2.Attract people to yourself instead of prospecting for business.
The gift of Extroverts is their ability to maintain a wide network of acquaintances and friends, on top of their natural energy to talk to new people. At roadshows, door knocks and street prospecting, Extroverts tend to have more energy and can keep at it for far longer than Introverts.
Introverts who try to play the Extrovert game of prospecting for new business at these events may find themselves burnt out quickly. Either that or their social life and family suffer because they find themselves having little or no energy to engage anyone else after.
Instead of playing the prospecting game, Introverts need to think about how they can attract their clients to them. With new media like Facebook and Instagram where anyone can market themselves without actually meeting people, there are many more channels for Introverts now.
Doing a video series, or giving an educational talk should be an Introvert’s strategy of showing competence and depth of knowledge in a subject without going out there to ‘look for businesses.
People can have a foretaste of your expertise before deciding whether they want to do business with you.
I’ve trained my students who are financial consultants to do budgeting or investment talks, depending on their expertise. The talk is a non-intimidating way of getting people to know you, and if they want to take it with you further, they can choose to do so.
3. Develop a referral-based business
Introverts should think about how they can structure their business around referrals rather than having to prospect for new business constantly.
This means they should ‘go deep’ with clients, building strong relationships to obtain referrals from them. Instead of spending time trying to prospect out there, invest the time in stronger relationships with their existing and qualified clientele.
Introverts like to go deep, so this is how they should play to their strengths. This way, clients are more likely to refer business to them, because they feel so comfortable and at home with them.
Considering running events that allow current clientele to happily invite their friends or family, leading their prospects to you. Events like wine appreciation, private movie screenings give a chance for the client’s friends to know you in a non-threatening setting.
Transform your sales process
Are you an Introvert? Don’t fret. Start steering your business in this direction, and you’re going to find results soon enough. What’s more, you’ll play your own game.
Truth is, different strategies work for different personalities. Once you understand your type, you’re clearer about who you should emulate and who you shouldn’t. Don’t play the Extrovert’s game – you won’t ever beat them at their game.
Just because someone else is successfully doing something doesn’t necessarily mean you should pursue it. After all, you’d want to do something that you enjoy and keeps you fulfilled.