Direct Sales Strategy: Disengagement

March 18, 2017 | Direct Sales

from Tradeshow Basecamp™

Sales in “Five Easy Steps”

Tina Nicola, M.A.

Tina is the founder of and has been creating profitable marketing and exhibit strategies for startups, small businesses and nonprofits for over nineteen years. Her main goal is to broaden access to the techniques she has developed so anyone can benefit and improve exhibiting strategy, sales conversations and follow up.

Need a Direct Sales Strategy? Step 5: Disengagement

You are at a direct sales event. You’ve stopped a stranger passing by with a Sales Icebreaker. You’ve introduced yourself, the company you are with and/or the product you are selling in 2-3 short sentences (the ‘Quick Intro‘). You’ve conducted a Lead Interview to determine if you are talking to someone likely to buy from you.

And, you’ve suggested Next Steps that meet one or more Direct Sales Goals.

Now? It’s time to say goodbye. In other words, ‘disengage.’

If any time during your direct sales conversation you realize the person you are speaking with is not a good leadDisengage! That’s right, jump right to this last step

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Why does ‘Disengagement’ need to be a Direct Sales Strategy Plan step?

It’s true, the disengagement during a Direct Sales Conversation is typically just an appropriate farewell. However, here we consider it to be a step in and of itself because many people don’t end sales conversations when they should.

Disengagement is the easiest step in your direct sales conversation—especially for good leads.

The trickiest part is identifying when it is time to disengageand then doing it!

Some examples of professional Disengagements include:

  • “We look forward to doing business with you. Enjoy the rest of your day!”
  • “It was so nice talking with you. We’ll be in touch soon!”

If your Next Step included scheduling a call, demo or follow-up conversation, you could reference that in the Disengagement like this:

  • “Thanks so much for stopping by! I’ve got your contact information, so let’s plan to touch base about all this after the show.”

When Disengagement is Hard

Since time is money during a direct sales event, you’ll want to end the conversation with a person as soon as you realize they are not a good lead now or in the near future.

However, sometimes you’ll encounter people who won’t take a hint when you try to disengage. Those new to direct sales can sometimes get tripped up when talking to such a person. There’s a fear of seeming rude, or of dismissing a possible potential customer.

“If this person is still talking, they must be a good lead somehow… right?”

Wrong! There are many reasons why a person may want to keep talking to you or learning about your product even though they aren’t likely to buy now or any time in the near future:

  • They are bored and looking for company.
  • They are the type of person who are interested learning about ‘new stuff’
  • They work/live in an environment where they think your product could be useful, but they themselves have no decision-making power to purchase your product.

On several occasions, we’ve had people continue to hang out in our direct sales exhibit just for a place to rest! Another great reason to keep seating in a direct sales exhibit practical and to a minimum. You don’t want sales staff sitting in the booth, and you don’t want people looking for a rest-stop to occupy space otherwise available to good leads!

“I don’t want to dismiss a potential customer…”

Of course, you typically don’t want to pre-judge a customer based on things like appearance or even demeanor. Many of our most lucrative direct sales customers have been decisionmakers that seemed unprofessional by our standards. But that’s not what we’re talking about.

If you have followed the our “five easy steps” to a Direct Sales Strategy, you will already know if this person is a truly good lead. If they are not, you must end the conversation and get back to using sales Icebreakers to start conversations that might actually lead to a sale!

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