Sales Information in the Window Film Business

Sales Information in the Window Film Business

Glass Coating and Window Film News
Johannesburg South Africa April 2011
By Errol Geyer Sales Manager Klingshield S.A.

Here is something Errol would like to share with you after 38 years of PR and Sales Management. Read it, Apply it and Grow with it. And if you are already up there then use this as a refresher.

It happens in every area in every country around the world. You see two window film companies. They sell the same products and charge the same prices. They are in an identical business like two peas in a pod. One window film tinting centre is empty, and the other one is packed with cars and customers and is prospering. How do we account for the difference between the two window film businesses? The one operator thinks like a fox and the other window film operator thinks like an ox – plain and simple

The same is true of people. They appear alike. Many seem to have the same degree of ability. Yet some people succeed in everything they do, and others fail. Why? Who is responsible?

It’s not really that much of a mystery. I attribute the difference between the winners and the losers, both in business and people, to one word : Image. The word may sound simple but it’s meaning is not. Image is intangible in some ways but tangible in many others. It is essentially the collective impression created in the mind of the viewer. The successful enterprise has an image that appeals to customers and stimulates their patronage. The unsuccessful one has an aura of failure about it.

It is the same with people. Everybody likes the image of a winner. They sense it and respond to it. On the other hand, the losers have quite the opposite image. People see their indecision, irresolution, and aimlessness and tend to avoid them.

Never forget that the kind of image you create makes the difference between a prospective customer buying window film from you and his buying window film from a competitor, it’s the difference between eager, constant, repeat business and the casual, occasional sales.

But how do we get it? How does one create an aura of success? How does one build good will? Why do some window film companies have it? Why not others? Why do some people have it? Why not others? Good will results from a favourable image, an image that radiates from a business. It sets your enterprise apart from your competitors in the window film window tinting business. It is as place people want to do business with – again and again.

Central to any favourable image is the determination to succeed. If you tell yourself you won’t succeed, you never will. If you tell yourself you will succeed, it is almost a foregone conclusion that you will. It is as simple as that. Create the proper image in your mind’s eye that you wish to attain. Eventually that image will come through, not only to you but also to others. It isn’t something you can build overnight. You have to work at it, but it is worth everything you put into it.

A significant aspect of having a favourable image is the manner in which you conduct yourself with customers. In the give and take of daily life, you make judgements about your customers. They make judgements about you. You create impressions which, when you add them up, become an image.

We have 36 ideas to offer that will assist you in building a favourable image. Study these ideas. Apply them. They will mean money in your pocket and window film orders on your books. They will make the difference between repeat business and one-time buying or window film installations. They will make people want to do business with you and you only, as Klingshield has experienced in the last 4 decades of business.

l. Remember Names and Places Ever meet a business acquaintance after a long period of separation? He smiled, grabbed you by the hand, and greeted you by name. Weren’t you impressed? On the other hand, if someone y9ou know forgets your name, it’s not very flattering. The odds are in favour of a negative result. Remembering names is good for your image. Try to develop the habit – it will pay dividends.

2. Demonstrate your Integrity -Let people know that you keep your word. Live up to the promises you make. Over the long run it is a policy that pays off. The public is not inclined to tolerate shoddy window film installations or broken promises from business people, and business people in turn, want more than just window film from their suppliers. Integrity is an important quality to have. Your reputation for integrity will spread quickly through the window film industry by word of mouth and will pay off in business referrals.

3. Be a Good Listener -We all have problems. We are partial towards those who are willing to listen to them. Besides, everyone likes to hear himself talk, and he likes the people who let him sound off. If you listen, you’ll get to know people better. It is your way of showing your interest in them and not only for the immediate transaction. If you listen when they talk, they will listen when you talk.

4. Play up the “You” Appeal If you want the customer’s business, show him how you serve His needs. If you are selling cakes to supermarkets, make sure you tell them about your new packaging material that gives them a longer shelf life. This way of selling has come to be known as the marketing orientation. It demands that you really get to know your customer’s business, and it gives you a great advantage.

5. Be Consistent In the prices you quote on window film and window film installations and in the claims you make, don’t tell one customer one thing and another customer something else. I know an appliance dealer who gave three customers three different prices in a 1-week period for a stereo set. Unfortunately, these customers were members of the same health club. They compared notes and he lost all three sales. Such inconsistencies cause serious damage to your image.

6. Give Service
Special attention and personalized day service are appreciated. This extra interest will pay off in additional business. Take the case of Frank Murphy, a vacuum cleaner salesman I know. He turned a disaster into a triumph. One day, by accident, he stopped at a house where a homemaker had purchased a vacuum cleaner from another salesperson in his company. He was shocked when his friendly approach was met with a storm of abuse. The machine had not been used because of a mechanical defect. Frank brought it back to his firm and had it repaired. The service he performed for this woman made her a permanent friend of the company and brought him several new customers by referral.

7. Be Helpful -There’s a great deal to be said for those who help us without grinding their axe. There are hundreds of ways to demonstrate your interest in the welfare of your business contacts, aside from your desire to sell to them. For instance, one salesperson clipped news of importance to clients and sent the clippings along. If you pick up information in your travels, you can pass it along. You are doing something for them. They won’t forget it, and they will probably think of doing something extra for you.

8. Be A Joiner Socializing, mixing, and mingling with people can be fun. It gets you out of yourself. It broadens you. More important, it is good business to join clubs and organizations in your town. It not only allows you to help others and be a good citizen, it helps you know people who can help you and your business. The contacts you make can be useful at some future time.

9. Be Puntual Keep your appointments on time. Remember, time is money. Lack of punctuality may be regarded as an insult by your prospect and an indication that you consider your time worth more than his. It is also considered a sign that you do not take your business engagements seriously enough.

10. Be Systematic Organization, planning, and systems can make things far easier for you. The old exhortation “plan your day and work your plan” is more true today than ever. If selling is involved, prearrange the coverage of your territory from day to day and plan your contacts so as to cover the maximum number of prospects. A map is very helpful. To target the map, use coloured pins: red for customers, black for prospects and green for suspects. Then based on the number of calls you can make each day, estimate the amount of time needed to cover the entire territory. Subdivide your territory into areas in such a way that you can make a maximum number of calls with a minimum of travel. Your adopting this system means a gain in productivity that is certain to benefit you.

11. Be Self-Motivating Business is a school of constant hard knocks: So many things can go wrong. Don’t let adversity wrestle you to the mat. Take a positive attitude toward it. Remember the sun shines most brilliantly after a heavy shower. I remember a hardware jobber who had the largest order in his history for portable hand tools. Suddenly his supplier had a strike and couldn’t deliver. He was very depressed, but then his natural bounce asserted itself. He went out and found another supplier. And to top it off, his new source sold him the product for less than the old one. View setbacks in their proper perspective, and set your business course with conviction and determination.

12. Be Affirmative – Not Negative Nobody likes a knocker. There’s no sound reason for it. Elaboration on the deficiencies of a rival product invites suspicion. Instead, elaborate on what you and your product can do. You’ll be more believable. When one knocks a competitive product – even though it may be true – there’s a tendency for the listener to attribute your remarks to “sour grapes” rather than give credence to it.

13. Be Thoughtful and “Considerate. A friendly relationship with your customers will take you a long way. The best way to have it is through a genuine interest in them. A follow-up thank you note, a birthday rememberance, or an occasional friendly phone call can create good will at little cost in money or time. It broadens the entire relationship. Thoughtfulness of this kind not only will bring dividends but will give you personal satisfaction.

14. Be Alert Watch for new ideas and developments in your field. Read the major business publications and window film magazines. Find out what your competitors in the window film business are doing. Think about how to improve your window film products and services by incorporating new and innovative products, a new way of doing things or a new process. Most of all see how these ideas can be turned to the advantage of your customers.

15. Be Neat A business person makes his best impression when he is dressed in a fairly modern clean and tidy manner and not too conservative manner. Wearing expensive jewellery, racetrack neckwear or sports shirts can turn off many customers. Business people like to deal with people who take their business seriously. Also pay attention to the details of your daily dress: avoid a tie that is ever so slightly stained or a suit that is losing its press. The same is true of the presentation you offer. Nothing can be more discouraging or harmful to sales than crumpled or soiled pages included in your presentation material.

16. Be Patient Remember that potential customers don’t know your product or service as well as you do. What you may consider elementary may appear complex to them. Develop your sales pitch in “stages” with numerous valid reasons “why” which are to be absorbed and digested a little at a time. Also, be patient with people who work for you. Often employees need a little careful cultivation to turn out well. And be patient with yourself – don’t be your own worst critic. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt.

17. Be Logical Appealing to your prospect’s intelligence can often carry you far. It is a firm foundation on which to build. We all know the salesperson who depends only on emotion to sell. And we all know that too many of his orders are cancelled when the prospect has second thoughts. Make your approach believable and avoid evasive answers to your customer’s questions.

18. Be Specific Avoid generalities. Whenever and wherever possible give specific figures and supply documentation to prove your point. Most business peopole, particularly the successful ones, are hardheaded. They want and respect facts. You must be specific to do business with them.

19. Be Authoritative You must be the expert; you must display the expertise needed to carry the day. You must read up on all the instruction material and, moreover understand it so that you can explain it clearly to prospects. You must thoroughly familiarize yourself with your products. In this way you can speak with confidence, the customers can depend on you, and you can gain their respect and loyalty.

20. Show Humility Though you should always maintain your aura of authority, there will be times when you haven’t the answer. When this happens, admit it frankly instead of trying to bluff your way through. In such cases, merely say “
I don’t know, but we have highly paid experts in our company. I’ll be glad to consult them for the answer”. Honesty and humility are things to be respected in any business relationship.

21. Be Generous It is too easy to find fault with other people. Most often these faults are the faults of our own personalities. Look for the good points, not the bad ones. You’ll find you get on better with people. Be generous, too, with small attentions that show genuine interest. Treating the prospect to lunch will be appreciated. It will help each of you to know each other better. It will take a business arrangement and move it on to a new plane of friendship.

22. Be Creative Keep thinking up new benefits that your customer can derive through your product or service. Think of your customer’s special problems and how your product or service can help in relation to them. A manufacturer of women’s pantyhose became a multimillion-dollar organization, the foremost in the world, in its field through creativity. For instance, beautiful tr4ees of multicoloured ice-cream cones were devised which had pantyhose encased within the plastic cones. These trees were displayed in hundreds of stores throughout the country. Pantyhose were also placed in plastic baseballs that were distributed in ballparks as Mother’s Day gifts. They were also placed in fishbowls so that the customer could buy on impulse. And there were many other innovations that helped to provide this company with literally thousands of new customers eager to buy the product.

23. Display Good Manners This may seem elementary yet it is of vital importance in building a good image. Little things like asking permission to smoke, being considerate of the prospect’s time and upcoming appointments, apologising for outside interruptions, and closing doors softly help establish you as a person with whom it is nice to do business with

24. Be Original Don’t allow yourself to become dull or monotonous with the same sales talk and approach. That way, boredom sets in quickly, not only for your customer but for you too. The customer wonders why he should see you since he already knows your pitch. Constantly analyze yourself: You may find yourself mechanically giving your sales talk. You must seek to dramatize and to give excitement to your endeavours. Jed Burton, a salesman, was having a hard time early in his career. He was selling a very prosaic product, the monkey wrench. Everyone had a wrench, few people felt they needed another. Then he got an idea. He announced proudly to his prospects “I’m here to sell you 1000 tools for the price of one”. This dramatized the product and created new interest in his item. It was another form of the advice of a world famous salesperson “Sell the sizzle – hot the stick”.

25. Be Cheerful Maintain a cheery demeanor. Make every effort to keep your personal troubles out of your business life. Dejection communicates itself and dampens both your sales efforts and your prospects’ interest. A ready, sincere smile is another way to impress others with your desire to be friendly. Good cheer has a way of spreading itself to others. It is infectious and reciprocal and encourages people to want to do business with you.

26. Be a Graceful Loser Even if you don’t get the order, show the same amount of cordiality as you did at the outset of your sales effort. Displaying irritation will not only make matters worse but it will ruin your future prospects. Maintaining your equilibrium and being a graceful loser will earn you a measure of respect and chances are you’ll have better luck next time.

27. Be Brief and Timesaving As noted earlier, time is an important coin of the business realm. It should not be wasted. Keep your sales pitch and visits as brief as possible. Prospects will highly regard you for it. They will readily welcome you back because they know you are a timesaver, not a time-waster.

28. Don’t be a Lecturer A Sales meeting shouldn’t be a monologue. The most effective ones are two- sided discussions, not one-sided. Make yours conversational; invite your prospect’s participation. Develop pauses and questions throughout to stimulate his involvement. In this way, he sells himself by means of his own comments and ideas. A good rule is to let him do more than 50% of the talking. Encourage him to ask questions, and answer them patiently.

29. Be an Anticipator Before you see your prospect, anticipate the personal factors, the problems, and the questions that may arise. Try to see what you can find out about his nature. Is he the friendly, informal type who likes to discuss things with you? Is he the authoritative type who expects deference and formality from the sales person? Is he a businesslike person who wants to get to the point quickly? This kind of forethought will permit you to handle yourself better with the different kinds of prospects you meet. By anticipating you may also be able to bypass the negative and concentrate on the positive.

30. Be a Note Taker -For those of us who haven’t total recall, taking notes provides an invaluable record, which can be referred to in the future. It should include all the key points of any meeting. You can see what did or didn’t work. You can set yourself for the prospect’s attitudes. You needn’t take notes during the meeting itself, but you should make them right after it. And make sure they don’t get lost. By taking notes you will also be able to assure correct follow-through.

31. Be Friendly, but not Over Familiar- There is a fine line between friendship and over familiarity. You need to be able to sense when you are overstepping it. So often it will depend on the nature of the person you are doing business with. What will be acceptable to one will not be to the other. When you are in doubt, fall back to a less familiar position. Remember, a prospect may feel pressured by over familiarity. It can create resentment that will ruin a deal.

32. Get Fun out of your Work- If your work is a boring, deadly, dull grind to you, you’ll certainly fail at it. It can’t be pleasurable for your prospects to enjoy doing business with you, rather than with your competitors, you have to learn how to enjoy your work. And very often this is merely a question of attitude. A man called Joe Marshall hated selling because he did it badly. Every time he approached a prospect, he anticipated a defeat. After 4 months at it, the company teamed him with one of its better sales people, Bill Holzman. To Holzman, selling was fun, Marshall couldn’t understand it. How could selling be fun? Holzman explained that they were going to meet lots of nice people, going into interesting homes, starting on new adventures, and being paid for it besides. “But what is fun about having the door slammed in your face?” asked Marshall. His friend said that it meant he had one less person to sell to and that made his day all the easier. Marshall got the point, his attitude changed and found his work progressively easier. After a while, it became fun for him too.

33. Display Self-Respect- You must always be on an equal level with your customer. He buys your product or service because it is useful and thus valuable, not for any other reason. Moreover, if you wish him to respect you, you must respect yourself. You must be polite but not servile. In this day and age, servility is not considered a virtue.

34. Be Forthright Answer all questions fully and fairly – right on the line. Don’t give inadequate half-answers. When your prospect realizes you are not trying to duck or to evade issues, he will respect you and that respect will be communicated to your product or service.

35. Exercise Polite Persistence- A turndown is no reason to be deterred from trying again. After a reasonable waiting period, you are free to make a polite renewal of your sales effort. It won’t offend the customer and may well bring about a sale. Once again, it becomes a matter of being able to know when persistence becomes offensive because of ill-timed insistence and when persistence is worthwhile.

36. Don’t Misuse the Hard Sell- I’m not suggesting that high-pressure salesmanship is to be entirely avoided. Pressure must always be maintained to see that prospects fully understand the product and that explanations and facts are thoroughly understood as well as benefits. Don’t overwhelm the customer with exaggerations, extravagant claims, or by price cutting that cheapens your product. Stick to the facts, and make sure they’re well understood. If you do this for qualified prospects, you’ll have done all you can to sell him and to maintain goodwill. You’ll be welcomed back the next time, rather than avoided.

Summary

By this time, I hope you have become aware of what goes into creating an image. As you see, you are the artist who paints his own picture. The manner in which you handle yourself, the impression you give, the integrity you display, the consistency, the sincerity, and the planning are but main brush strokes on the canvas. They provide the reason that people want to do business with you and you only. They are your image.

Don’t believe that the world has become so mechanical, so computerized, and so impersonal that human beings don’t matter in business. The more identical window film products become, the more important are those who sell them. Your objective, then, is to build an image which is so positively radiant that it sets your Window Film Company apart from your opposition. Undoubtedly you have been doing some things right.

Lastly, but not least, always believe in yourself and the window film that you sell, ever reminding yourself that humility and image is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less. Now go ahead and do what is right for others.

Good luck on the road to great sales and prosperity in the Window Film Window Tinting business!!

 landing-page-button