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So, what are some good sales techniques? One is to know your audience. Comics don’t tell crude jokes in the aBible belt. It doesn’t pay. So know who you are selling to.
Dressy clothes are good for sales to doctors. In construction you need something more practical. You also need to be in compliance when you dress. You don 't need to be yelled at by the safety officer.  On job sites have your own hard hat, steel toed work boots, eye protection and wear an outfit that is nice in the work sense. A comfortable shirt or blouse with buttons and nice practical slacks. Shoes should be Dockers if visiting the office.
Don't drive a foreign car. As a matter of fact, if your car is too upscale, you could have problems. You say your car's already bought and upscale, what do I do? My Dad had a Lincoln and told everyone that he'd won it in a bowling tournament. They liked him, so it worked.
When visiting a customer be considerate all around. Bringing in doughnuts and coffee for everyone, within reason, is a nice thing to do. And being nice in a non-cheesy way sells. Being nice helps too because there will be people you deal with who are rude. It isn't personal; it’s a job, so you must be thick skinned.
Of course; the biggest problem you'll have is getting in to see who you need to see. How to negotiate the maze? Your phone's a start. Be direct and polite. “Hi, my name's Janet Smith, and I represent Fantastic Lumber. I realize you may have another outside salesperson with whom you have a good relationship but we offer low priced quality cedar products here, something which perhaps your current outside sales person doesn’t sell, and I’d like to meet with you to show you our great lineup of products.” Plain, simple and you get rid of the guilt of  betraying Joe Smoe who brings him coffee and discusses Andersons.
Now when you're selling, you are selling your personality and your look to the person. Sales is about you, not the product, though you can have problems if your boss is shady which I hated because honesty makes for long term customers.
I know of companies in my field which we called trial runners. The boss had his salesperson run a trial with a required 50 % solution and then the boss substitutes a 30% solution after he wins the bid. He wins because anyone can be a high bidder if he prices the product based on the cheaper, inferior substitute. After a few orders, of course, the company's kicked out, but as long as the shady guy can make $ 30,000 a year, what does he care? The salesperson getting the commission that is now lost though is burned.
An important thing in sales also is to make the sales calls. You need to make 20 calls for one sale. It's this work that brings in customers. Also you need to be careful not to take your customers for granted. That may be how you got into the front door by another outside salesperson's thoughtlessness.
Most important, you need to be able to close a sale (Don't be pushy but always ask). I know a guy who hated to ask potential customers to buy because he got friendly with them and felt he would lose their friendships if he did so. Let me tell you something, I was friends with my customers, and I liked asking them to buy. Their companies made money using our products, and so did I. After all, I wasn't asking them to buy 500 lb. ice cream cones and melt them on their front yards.
To close, I wish you luck in this career. And don’t get discouraged if it takes time. The parents of wisdom are striving and experience.

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Jeffrey Ruzicka
Jeffrey Ruzicka is a retired executive of a small company that specializes in industrial water treatment. He lives happily with his wife in Western Pennsylvania and is a contributing writer toFinancialJobBank,FinancialJobBankBlog,ConstructionJobForce,ConstructionJobForceBlog and Nexxt.


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