Sales is a field that’s built on relationships. Not only can your existing clients continue to bring in revenue, but they can lead to referrals and continued growth for your promo business. If you and your sales team aren’t focused on strengthening your customer relationships, another company could swoop in and win the business.

Anthony Iannarino, a bestselling author and world-renowned sales expert, says a part of what you sell should be the relationship. In this issue of PromoPro Daily, we outline his thoughts on how you can establish stronger connections with your clients.

Take a long-term view. Many sales professionals get caught up in the short-term pursuit. They chase the first meeting and overlook the big picture. Remember that the first meeting is an audition, Iannarino says. You’re trying out to join your prospect’s team. You should approach it with the intent to work with the client for the rest of your sales career.

Give them time. Don’t hurry your prospects along or put pressure on them to make a decision. When you try to shorten the client’s decision-making process, you make it harder for them and increase your odds of losing the deal, Iannarino says. Keep in mind that the more time they spend with you, the better your chances of landing the deal.

Focus on value. How does the client benefit from the sales discussion? Iannarino says it’s critical to create value so the prospect will prefer entering a sales relationship with you over another company.

Deliver results. When you say you’re going to do something, follow through. Your clients need to know they can count on you. Even if you connect immediately with clients, if you don’t provide what they need, you’ll lose them. Iannarino recommends engaging with the people who are responsible for delivering the results you sold the client. When possible, bring them into the sales conversation.

Communicate often. Don’t be the kind of sales rep who closes the deal and then disappears. You need constant communication to maintain the relationship. Work with your clients on a schedule that makes sense for them.

Bring new value. If you’re committed to selling the relationship, you can’t just call it in. You must be willing to do the work others will not, Iannarino says. He recommends reading, researching and providing your client with advice and recommendations that will ensure they succeed now and in the future.

Take some time today to review your client relationships. Whether you send your customers a thoughtful promo or a quick email to check in, always look for ways to invest in these relationships.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Anthony Iannarino is an international speaker, bestselling author, entrepreneur and sales leader specializing in B2B sales.