Avoid calls at quarter or year endIf finance specialist would knowOr be too busy!Limited resources and staffing levelsReduced reflection timeThoughtful timing of contact
TONE OF COLD CALLSTone used is oftenAggressiveAbruptEven rudeAmazingly arrogant levels of expectation Just call and get an instant order?Supplier selection processNot a whim!Justifiable internallyPleasant working relationship?Desperation is not convincing Going out of business?
TELLING IS NOT SELLING“I want to introduce myself and my company’s services to you.” = “Hi, the purpose of this call is to sell to you.”“Hi, we’re a high quality translation company that specialises in the ___________industry. We are ISO and EN 15038 accredited and we handle all languages and all formats, provide an end-to-end, high quality service” =“Hi, I want to feature you to death.” Features without results statements are boring.
Blitz of untargeted, unsolicited, irrelevant emails Colleagues all forward their copies to me Discount offers at Christmas and Easter????More fitting for consumer products perhapsIndustry commoditising itself
ELIA Networking Days, Budapest Presentation: "From the client’s mouth"
FROM THE CLIENT’S MOUTH
Introduction & Background Karen Netto • Over 12 years’ experience as translation buyer • Past 6 years in financial services • Qualified translator with business start-up Jessica Rathke • 21 years of localisation sales/management experience • Large/small LSPs • Europe/USA
Agenda/Goal What do customers want from your sales people? – First-hand experience with bad sales practices What should we be doing? Using experiences from the past 12 years Receiving end of bad and good sales practice – What it feels like to be the recipient of bad sales practices with specific examples – What works and is appreciated client-side
Cold Calling/No Value Proposition No compelling/relevant message • Same script from different agencies • Client goes to sleep • Robotic • Lacks warm, spontaneous conversation • Simultaneous typing up • Going through motions, wasting time No differentiation
Cold Calling Pattern = Interrogation of Customer Sales: Question Client: Answer Sales: We do it! Sales: Question Client: Answer Sales: We do it! Sales: Question Client: Answer Sales: We do it! Client: (Yawn)... Well, I really must get back to work now... Bye!
Say they have experience with whatever the client requests…really? • Sound like used car salesmen • Buyers not idiots • Establishing trust is important All things to all people – Is this really specialisation? Practically every LSP has same client laundry list!
The Solution: Cold Call /Value Proposition Focus on outcomes you deliver, not services you provide How do other, similar clients USE your services? Ask intelligent questions focused on CLIENT business issues, not yours Conversational questions
Reflect on the following industry techniques... Free gift for instant order! • Naive • NOT for B2B! • How justify selection? Top London restaurant invitation – first meeting! • Compliance procedure • New bribery laws, especially in UK/USA
False Promises Areas of specialisation – Be honest, can’t specialise in EVERYTHING How many active translators? How many specialists in niche field? Language coverage Not just numbers in database!
Develop a Commercial Mindset Develop a good understanding of your client’s industry and company • Read recent press releases/FT for openers • Be aware of new regulations • Look at website • Know what languages
Develop a Commercial Mindset Look for opportunities based on understanding client – Issues faced • Increased regulation • Turbulence of markets • Faster turnaround times • Highly specialised terminology, constantly changing
Who is the Buyer & What is Their Role? Title of the buyer or client contact – Decision-maker but decisions not in isolation • Need to justify and explain decisions • Others seek to influence decisions • Need the arguments from you
Make it Easy to Do Business With You Help client sell internally – Easy to share presentations – Easy to digest information – Easy to cut and paste into my internal emails – Clear proposals – Easy to scan, not time-consuming
Develop Meaningful Proposals Cost effectiveness, not cost reduction – Demonstrate clearly in your proposal – Clear, professional proposal – Make easy to forward to senior colleagues (never likely to meet you) – Justify your selection against competition – Short-term outlay v. longer-term savings
Demonstrate Expertise to Customer Project Plan – Help client show a clearly thought-out project plan – Anticipated problems – Envisaged solutions – Short- and longer-term planning – First project towards greater efficiency/quality
Solving Customer Problems Inform and educate (not lecture) – Newsletters • inform on language and cultural issues • can be forwarded to colleagues when convenient – Approach gets client to inform you of an issue needing a solution – Articles of interest
Help the Buyer Help You! Help your client educate others in their company – Solve other problems • Terminology and software solutions • Good sales people have anticipated future issues and proposed solutions – e.g. KIIDs • Information in press – may help identify that client has increased volume in a particular language • How can you tackle the issue of insufficient suitably experienced translators in specialist financial field?
Resolve Problems Quickly Give tools/information to respond quickly internally • Joint Sales and Project Management approach Inevitably, there are problems with translation projects • Not that a problem has arisen, but how you handle it that counts • A well-handled challenge can result in increased sales! • Client retention and cross-selling
Summary Develop a Value Proposition – What do you do well? – Which industries do you best serve? – How have you helped customers? – VALUE you have provided that someone else can relate to Specialise Solve Client Problems Client Retention – communicate during challenges