Making the transition to a sales profession can occur in a variety of ways, even in account based marketing and determining which roles are suited for you can be tough. Few jobs, however, can prepare you for a successful sales career like that of a sales associate.
Consumer experience and service are critical in a world of account based marketing where outgoing sales strategies are less effective and inbound sales are on the rise.
We’ll take a deep dive into what it takes to be a great sales associate in this tutorial. If you’re short on time, you can skip to the section you need by clicking on one of these headlines.
- What does it mean to be a sales assistant?
- What is the role of a sales rep?
- Skills of a Sales Associate
- How to Work as a Sales Representative
- How to Become a More Effective Sales Associate
What Does It Mean To Be A Sales Associate?
A sales associate is a B2C salesman in account based marketing that communicates with prospective business and attracts them to identify products that meet their needs, commonly in a retail setting.
The sales assistant role differs from other sales professions in that it places a greater emphasis on counseling and shopping experience than prospecting and funnel control.
This is frequently the principal means via which businesses interact with and serve their clients.
As a sales associate account based marketing, you’re frequently the initial point of contact for new clients with your organization, giving you significant experience that will help you advance in your career. Not only will you gain practical experience, but you will also learn new skills.
What Is The Role Of A Salesperson?
Engaging with customers, emphasizing discounts, responding to customer enquiries, promotional signage, inventory management, carrying out payments, and helping customers through the buying process are all major duties of a sales associate.
The daily activities of a sales associate in account based marketing vary depending on the role, but they all revolve around providing exceptional customer service and meeting predetermined sales targets.
Related: What is sales training?
Skills Of A Sales Associate
Here are the key talents that every salesperson needs to succeed in their position.
1. Interpersonal And Communication Skills
You engage with people on a daily basis as a sales associate in account based marketing. Having excellent interpersonal skills is the cornerstone of your success as a sales associate, whether it’s helping customers, taking orders from your manager, or delivering feedback to your coworkers.
When you work in a customer-facing position, you will interact with a diverse range of people from varied ethnicities and work styles, typically assisting them in resolving a problem.
Ask staff and customers for comments on your abilities to actively listen and make helpful suggestions to enhance your communication abilities.
If you work in a supermarket, for example, you may ask a coworker to listen while you welcome a client and ask if they’re searching for anything in particular, and have that coworker provide comments on the exchange.
2. Interaction With Customer Relationship Management (CRM) or Point-of-Sale (POS)
For salespeople in account based marketing, knowing how to operate a CRM (customer relationship management) system is a must-have skill. To maintain connections and deals, many salespeople rely significantly on their CRM.
Because it allows for categorization and automation, a CRM is a more efficient way to manage contact information than a worksheet or document. This means you can contact the correct individuals at the right time without having to look for their contact information. If you’ve never used a CRM before, our definitive tutorial will teach you all you need to know.
A CRM may not be necessary for sales personnel operating in a retail environment. Working with a point of sale system (also known as POS), which processes and logs customer transactions, is becoming more frequent among retail sales workers.
Related: What is a sales funnel?
3. Mindset That Is Customer-Focused
All businesses have one thing in common: they provide a product or service that tries to address an issue for their clients. As a sales associate, you’re generally a potential customer’s initial point of contact with your firm, and how they interact with you has a significant impact on their perception of the brand.
Successful salespeople have a customer-centric perspective and aim to help their prospects find the greatest solution to their problems, even if that solution isn’t with your organization.
Having a customer-centric mindset entails:.
Putting the customer’s interests and needs at the forefront of everything you do on the job
Making it a point to earn the customer’s trust during the sales process.
Customer service that goes above and beyond
Having a customer-focused mindset as a retail sales associate could mean devoting time throughout your shift to engaging with consumers rather than focusing simply on your company’s product.
When it comes to hiring retail sales workers, an Apple recruiting manager says, “We’ve learnt to value magnetic personality just as much as expertise.”
Outside of a retailing context, it’s beneficial to keep in touch with your consumers on a regular basis, soliciting input and assisting them in making the best option available to support them to solve a challenging problem.
4. Expertise In A Specific Product Or Inventory
“There is enormous strength in leading with knowledge and leading with relevance,” said Karl Friedrich Kleeman, the creator of The Selling Cadence.
Take a little time as a new hire to familiarize oneself with your company and its products. Understand what characteristics they have and how your consumers will profit from using them.
You can learn about a product in a variety of methods, including:
Conducting interview sessions with employees of your company’s business team
Investigating your competition to see what sets your company’s product unique
To get first-hand experience with the product, you should use it yourself.
If you work as a sales assistant in account based marketing for a company selling beds directly to the public, for example, familiarizing yourself with the features of your company’s beds, understand which types of sleepers would profit more from your product lines, but be very clear on what sets your company apart from rivals.
5. Genuine Interest In The Firm And Its Products.
As a sales rep, it’s critical to have a thorough awareness of your company’s products and services. However, information alone will not suffice if you truly want to conquer it.
Salespeople in account based marketing who are genuinely enthusiastic about the goods and services their firm offers can go above and beyond because they see the value of what they are selling. Potential consumers have a better idea of how the offering can help them when sales professionals demonstrate palpable passion and excitement for what they sell.
When you come across repeat clients, inquire as to why they enjoy using your company’s services and what comes back. Beyond depending on past experience, this will assist you generate enthusiasm for and familiarity of your company and its products (although as mentioned above, personal experience is a great place to start).
6. When Handling Customer Issues, You Must Be Creative In Your Problem Solving And Decision Making.
Salespeople in account based marketing are frequently called upon to address problems swiftly and decisively. A solution-oriented mindset and a creative approach are essential for success.
In certain cases, sales employees are the initial point of contact for clients who are having problems with your company’s product. If consumers continually report the same issues, you may wish to create troubleshooting solutions or terminology that you can use (and teach your peers to use) on a regular basis.
You might also share this feedback with your engineering or production team so that they can address user-experience issues and improve your offering.
Your capacity to assist clients in troubleshooting issues can improve their overall experience while still making them think positively of your company.
7. Attitude Of Empathy
As previously stated, every business strives to assist its clients in resolving a problem. Customers are helped by sales employees who are on the front lines, assisting them in finding the best solution.
To provide the finest service to your buyer, you must have empathy. You’ll be better able to relate to and solve a prospect’s concerns if you can truly sympathize with their problems.
“Sales are reliant on the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect,” the early benefactor and entrepreneur William Clement Stone once observed.
Empathize with customers in account based marketing by visualizing yourself in their shoes while they seek a solution to their problem. What kind of help would you want if you were having trouble with the same problem? What would you tell someone who was attempting to assist you? Can you get this knowledge from the customer by asking intelligent questions?
8. Adaptability And Prioritization In Multiple Tasks And Unexpected Situations.
Salespeople in account based marketing balance multiple responsibilities and operate under pressure to meet tight deadlines while balancing opposing priorities. Adaptability is essential for success in this context. The capacity to adapt to whatever comes your way and reprioritize on the go is essential for success.
Show adaptability by being calm in the face of unexpected situations, attempting new ideas if the first doesn’t work, and taking on new tasks or duties as needed.
If a prospective asks you a topic you don’t know the right answer to, for example, stay calm and say, “You know, I don’t even know the answer to that actual example, but I’ll figure out an answer.”
9. Effective Listening And Establishing Trust
To assist your customers in solving their problems (which is your primary goal as a salesperson), you must first understand their problems. This necessitates strong active listening abilities, in which you listen to your buyer to comprehend rather than respond.
Furthermore, many sales representatives work in a team setting where giving and receiving feedback is commonplace. Having good active listening skills is essential for giving and receiving relevant feedback.
This conversation might look like this in practice:
“I’m seeking to buy a commuter bike to replace the one I have,” says the prospect.
“Wonderful,” says the salesperson. You’ve arrived at the right location. Tell me about the bike you’re planning to replace.”
“Well, I got an old mountain bike a few years back, but it was never particularly comfortable on my long commute,” the prospect explains. I also use it on weekends to go on longer rides around town, and I’d like something that fits me better.”
“Thank you for explaining,” says the salesperson. What I’m hearing is that your long commute and weekend car trips are making you feel a little claustrophobic. Have you considered getting a road bike? They’re better for longer rides on the pavement.
10. Money Management And Basic Math
For retail sales workers in account based marketing, the ability to effectively support POS transactions is very vital.
Basic mathematical and money management abilities ensure that your consumers and business are on the same financial page. Brush up on your subtraction skills so you can conduct precise rapid math when dealing with money.
If you have a coworker who is knowledgeable about POS systems and transaction processing, shadow them to learn best practices. It may be beneficial to compute the number of money back to customers as you improve your money management skills to ensure you’re handing them the correct amount.
If a client hands you a $20 bill for a $5.50 purchase, you may practice first handing them the $.50 money, then calculating as you hand them the 10 note and five each bill.
11. Organizing Your Time
There are constantly duties vying for the attention of sales staff. As a result, time management is essential.
Try to balance various responsibilities while spending the appropriate amount of time for each prospect — and when to call it quits on a sale that has cooled down.
If you operate in a retail environment with a high volume of customers, for example, you must decide if your time is better spent talking with individuals who have just entered your business or completing inventory to replenish the shelves. While both duties are critical, as a sales associate, you must decide which should be emphasized and which may wait.
12. Able to Learn And Accept Criticism Quickly
“Transform before you have to,” stated Jack Welch, founding chairman and CEO of General Electric.
Roles that involve interacting with customers might be unexpected. You’ll be expected to learn new selling strategies and product information on a regular basis, and your ability to pick up new abilities fast will help you succeed.
Solicit input from top members of your team and act on it as soon as possible. If you’re a hiring manager, the best guide to teaching young salespeople will help you create a smooth process flow for sales staff.
13. Experience Of The Customer In A Retail Setting
A retail job in account based marketing can be a fine place to begin if you don’t have any prior sales expertise. Client service guiding principles, inventory control, contract sales strategies, and promotional signage are just a few of the talents you can learn as a retail sales associate.
Customize your resume to highlight talents such as leadership and teamwork as you prepare to apply for retail jobs. Include valuable experience in your CV if you have coordinated events, engaged in customer-service centered volunteer work, or led group initiatives.
14. Personal Independence
As a sales associate, having a strong feeling of personal liberty will help you succeed. Individual accountability will help you stay focused on and in harmony with your goals each and every day when you have precise sales targets to meet and are operating separately to achieve them.
Develop a sense of personal autonomy by accomplishing chores or duties on your own, without being told to. This could take the form of offering to come in on a Saturday to fold and stock new merchandise or writing a training manual for an underutilized onboarding procedure.
15. Society Is Considered That Is Genuine
Sales employees must be able to persuade customers that your product or brand is the best answer for their issue.
Apply the following effective practices to become more convincing with customers:
Even while dealing with client objections, maintain a compassionate tone.
Consider client objections as an opportunity to probe further and continue the dialogue.
Frame your responses as solutions that will assist the customer in solving their problem or overcoming a challenge.
We’ll talk about how to get started and become a successful sales associate now that we know what abilities are required.
What to Do To Work As A Salesperson
1. Take A Look At Your Academic Record.
A typical salesperson in account based marketing holds a high school certificate or GED, as well as a college degree in Business, Marketing, or another field with transferable abilities.
There are several virtual or even in sales programs which provide the tools needed to flourish as a salesperson for people wishing to increase their academic background and then become a sales clerk.
2. Make A Resume For Yourself.
Enhance your sales volume resume by including any relevant academic and employment experience. Whether you highlight entry-level retail jobs, internships, or a more distinctive position, make it clear to the employer that you obtained transferrable skills and learn how to utilize them in the future.
3. Look For Open Store Employee Roles On The Internet.
A profession in sales in account based marketing offers a lot of opportunities. Every business needs a team of qualified sales representatives, and choosing a product or service that you are passionate about might help you locate the appropriate firm to work for.
If looking for a sales assistant job, use a reputable job search website to find out who is recruiting in your area and whether their company interests you.
4. Prepare For The Interview.
You’ll need to be prepared if you have the chance to interview for a sales assistant. Concentrate on demonstrating your communication abilities and previous work experience. Say clearly what transferable abilities you obtained from your previous work experience if it wasn’t directly connected to sales.
It’s not uncommon for HubSpot’s Global Sales Team members to come from a non-sales background, as anyone who is eager to learn can succeed.
How to Become a More Effective Sales Associate
It takes time to improve as a sales representative in account based marketing. It demands a professional with excellent leadership and organizational abilities. Better salespeople also have interpersonal skills, allowing them to put consumers at ease, welcome them, and even anticipate their needs. All of these things are necessary for boosting your performance and developing client trust.
You’ll be better able to convince potential clients that your company’s service is the ideal solution for them once you’ve earned their confidence. Successful salespeople are able to use a number of abilities to provide the greatest service to their customers.
Related: Lead Generation: Can It Be Useful For Your Products?