Small business marketing is full of fun things to trip you up! How your disc personality index and your sales funnel can keep you from making sales from all those leads.
Your sales funnel is the process by which you get people to buy from you. They move through the funnel from Sales Leads to Followup to Conversion to Sales. Very rarely will someone call you from a piece of your marketing and be ready to buy on the spot. This is where your DISC personality type can get you into trouble!
My DISC personality type is a D – driver. When I buy something I do not research 1,000 different options, ask for referrals or angst about the buying process. My sales process usually goes like this, I hear about something interesting, I buy it. This makes it VERY hard for me to sell to other people of different personality types. They generally do not make decisions that way and so I have to have systems in place that will allow them to learn more about my products or services (followup), give them buying options and a little time to decide (conversion) and then, bang they buy. This process can take MUCH longer than I think it should and requires that I have an active part in making the sale.
One of things that I do, knowing that I am that “D” type personality, is to slow down when I am talking to a prospect who is NOT like me. I talk lower and slower so that I do not scare them off. I answer ALL of their questions, even if I think that it is crazy to ask so many. I also have other people involved in the sales cycle who are better than I am at calling to followup and also to send information that is going to be vital to making the sale.
D types are good rainmakers and can help drive new leads into your sales funnel.
I Personality Type and Sales – “I” or intuitive type people are GREAT salesmen or women. They like the social interaction that comes from talking and getting to know new people. They truly care about the prospect and want to make sure they understand what they need. The one thing that can hurt an I is wanting to “make the sale”. A lot of times I's will not want to lose the sale because the company is not able to perform a certain task. If you are an I, watch out for trying to make your prospect happy at the detriment of your business going forward!
Another thing that I's have to look out for is the high-highs and the low-lows. Every lead feels like a win and they are ready to run with it, BUT every no feels like a loss or even a personal rejection. This can cause disappointment or frustration and if enough come at the same time, I's can get thrown off of their games for weeks at a time. My suggestion to I's if this happens is to call one of your favorite current or past clients to get a warm fuzzy about what you are good at and get right back on that horse again!
I types are good rainmakers and can also drive leads into your sales funnel.
C Personality Types and Sales – “C” Type people are analytical and facts driven. They want all the details of the process to be outlined and would like the sales funnel to be linear. I have a client who is a Bookkeeper, TOTALLY a “C” type. To her the sales process should run like a well oiled machine. A sales lead comes in, a phone call is made, a meeting is set, facts are given and then the prospect buys. Easy-peasy! Well, we have been tracking how that is working in function and initially there was a gap in her followup. If the person did not buy on the first call, she wrote them off as not a “real” lead, not thinking that the sales cycle for most people is longer than one call. She has implemented a great followup call system using a true salesperson who stays in contact with her prospect, but still has a hard time closing the sale.
We talked yesterday and the gap is now at the prospect preparing their documents in order to be able to hire her. They want bookkeeping help, they need bookkeeping help, but they are not functionally doing the tasks required to make this possible like collecting bank statements, filling out spreadsheets or getting their receipts in order. This gap actually makes sense! If the person is not generally good at keeping these things together then they will be overwhelmed at the thought of having assemble them in order to hire a bookkeeper. My suggestion was to make part of her services a “hand holding” hour or two where she gets together with the prospect or client to get those items together. To her it feels silly, “why can't they just get those things to me”, but to the people who need help, this could be a HUGE value add!
C type people are technically good at details and followup.
S Personality Types and Sales – If you are a D or an I type personality and need help with your sales, go TODAY and find a “S” to help you! S type people are stable, steady and caring. They will take all of the crazy ideas that you have and help you to implement them. They will followup on prospects and help them make good buying decisions that are win-win for you both.
I have a S! She is great for me as she doesn't get distracted by my wild flights of fancy, she is dedicated to helping our company grow and she is the one all the customers say “I LOVE Michelle”. OF COURSE they love Michelle, by personality type she is set up to be caring and nurturing.
C type people make great customer service and inside sales people, getting prospects through the whole funnel to the sale.
I will bet you a dollar that your DISC personality type is effecting your sales process in some way, making your small business marketing efforts less effective. Take a look and really see what you might be doing to cause gaps in the process, find the holes and fix them! If you are looking for ways to improve the process, take a DISC personality yourself AND give one to any new people your are considering hiring – while it is fun to have someone who shares your DISC personality type, more often than not you need someone who is NOT like you to help grow your sales.