How do you crush your sales goals next year? Niraj Kapur offers five sales tips: 1) stop trying to sell and start researching 2) send thank-you cards 3) learn from books and successful people every day 4) ask great questions, especially forward-thinking ones 5) develop your emotional intelligence.

Kickstart your 2019 sales efforts with these five sales tips from Niraj Kapur. These may be more of refreshers, but they’re good reminders to revisit as you begin to pick away at next year’s sales quota or your before bookings target.

On the ninth episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, I am joined by Niraj, the author of the bestseller Everybody Works in Sales and owner of a coaching business with the same name. During the podcast, he shared some of his expert insights from his 20 plus years in sales.

Don’t keep these tips to yourself, share them with your team!

5 Sales Tips to Kickstart Your 2019 Sales

Niraj’s sales tips are simple to implement, so without wasting any time, let’s jump right in so you can start applying today!

Stop trying to sell and start researching. This one requires a bit of balance as it can be easy to get stuck in research mode which means you’re not actually making calls. However, you also don’t want to call your prospects with little to no background information on them.

Researching the business and the person you want to connect with helps you to find a common bond and Niraj says it shows respect. He recommends spending up to ten minutes on research before each call. I’m curious — do you think that’s too little or too long to spend researching each person?

Send thank-you cards. Yes, you read that correctly. Send tangible, “real life” thank-you cards through the mail. A card with a simple, handwritten “thank you” can help you to stand out as a salesperson.

For me, if I’m comparing companies and all things are equal, I’d likely go with the person who sent a card because it shows that they understand the power of the relationship. You don’t even have to buy stamps or address the envelopes. There are services like Handwrytten or Postable that will do everything for you. What do you think — does a handwritten card influence your perception of an individual?

Learn from books and successful people every day. Study what the masters are doing — the people who outnumber you in years of experience. Luckily for the modern salesperson, there are lots of options to educate yourself.

You can absorb plenty of knowledge from books/eBooks, and articles. If you don’t have time to read, audiobooks and podcasts are other great options. Listen on your commute to the office, while walking your dogs, cleaning up around the house, or even on your daily run. There’s no excuse for not learning something new each day. Do you make time to, currently, to study and constantly grow your knowledge, or is it more ad hoc?

Ask great questions, especially forward-thinking ones. When you pose questions during a conversation, you demonstrate that you’re interested in the other person. To get a meaningful discussion started, Niraj recommends forward-thinking inquiries.

Also, try asking the contact questions about him or herself. You can quickly put people at ease if you ask them about themselves; it’s a topic they are comfortable with and know well. Do you tend to talk about yourself, because it’s a topic your comfortable with, or do you make a conscious effort to ask the person about themselves?

Develop your emotional intelligence. A lack of emotional intelligence (EQ) will hold back your career, so do something about it. Sales managers should coach their reps on EQ. When your sales team can manage their emotions and better read their prospects, you’ll have a significant advantage over the competition. A team with a higher EQ will be more pleasant to work with too.

Niraj’s advice to improve EQ is to stop holding grudges and think before you speak. Don’t let whatever problem or issue you are facing become personal. Do you consider EQ when you’re talking to new contacts?

What’s on Your Sales Resolutions List for 2019?

Are you following these five sales tips already or will you be adding them to your list of resolutions for next year? Do you agree with Niraj’s tips, or not? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, as well as any other sales tips you’d like to share with your fellow salespeople.

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