Read the signals and go for the kiss!

Weird title for a blog about medical sales, huh?  Well, medical selling is a lot like dating—you need to capitalize on the “opportunities.”

Let’s skip dating for a moment and talk selling.  Your job is to grow your business, both for yourself and also for the companies you represent.

There are essentially two ways to increase sales volume:

  1. Expand your customer base by closing business with prospects with whom you have never done business
  2. Sell additional products to existing customers

Most salespeople know that it requires less money and effort to sell to an existing customer than to go after new customers.  However, in the medical world, especially with customers who are already buying a large volume of product, there is sometimes reluctance to sell additional products due to a fear of appearing greedy or pushy.  This is really just a misperception by the salesperson.  Let’s take look at it from the customer’s perspective.

Has a customer ever complimented you on a product or the service you provided?  Maybe you heard something along the lines of, “That case went great” or “The patient really likes your product.”  This is a clear sign that the customer is feeling good about you, your product or service, or both.  It’s a great time to offer them more of what you sell!

When a customer expresses satisfaction with your product and service, it reveals a level of confidence.  Healthcare providers must have confidence in the products and services they use to care for their patients.  In fact, a lack of confidence or level of uncertainty is why most healthcare providers resist change—the potential cost of changing to something else could potentially harm the patient or produce a less than acceptable outcome.

The best time to discuss new products with a customer is when they express satisfaction with one of your other products.  You might not close the sale immediately, but the customer is likely to be open to a sales conversation, either at that moment or they are likely to commit to the discussion at another time.

Much work goes into turning a healthcare provider into a satisfied customer.  When a customer expresses satisfaction, see it as an opportunity for more business.  Don’t just say “thank you” or “glad to hear that.” It’s a great time to say, “Could I show you how some of your colleagues are [benefit, benefit, benefit] with one of our other products?  I know you’ll be just as thrilled with the results as you are with the product you just used.”

By all means, sell to your healthcare customers at every sensible opportunity, but especially when they are pleased with you, your product, and your company.

When your date tells you how much he or she likes you, and is giving you that wanting look, if a kiss is what you desire, don’t go for a handshake!  You’ll feel like an idiot for wasting a perfect opportunity and you’re going to disappoint your date.

In selling, just as in dating, when the opportunity presents itself, go for the kiss (figuratively speaking, of course!).