Sales vs. Promotions, Pricing Your Goods , Customer Relations, Price Points, Selling on Online Auctions, Selling From Websites, Selling At Craft Fairs, Selling At Home Shows, Selling To Stores, Attitude, No Money Down Advertising, Independent Sales Reps, Customer Referrals, Gift Certificates, Be Customer Driven, Keepers, Mail Campaigns, Payment Types, Packaging, Bargain Selling, Basics of Selling, Working With Non Profits, Start Up Fees, Start Up Inventory, Competing With Imports, Calling New Businesses, Preparing for Sales Appointments,
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Oh, happy day! You get to show your jewelry to a potential buyer! Your goal for the day - to qualify the store as a potential customer. Note I did not say that your goal is to sell the jewelry. That is something you can't control. However, you can present your goods in the most positive light and find out if your jewelry is a good match for that store. If you have done your homework, you already know that your jewelry goes well with the ambience of the store. It is simply a matter of seeing if you and the store buyer are a good business match.
Leave a few minutes early so you will be on time for your appointment. If you do get caught in an unbelievable traffic jam which will make you late, call the store to explain that you're on your way.
Finally you are at the store. You are self confident because you know you have a good product that would work in that store. You know that your passion for the jewelry will show in your presentation. Approach an available store clerk and ask for your contact. If all of the clerks are with customers, wait for one to become free before you announce yourself. Use the time to once again scan the exiting merchandise to see which pieces best compliment your line.
Finally, the moment has arrived. You are face to face with the store buyer. Introduce yourself and shake hands. The buyer will probably decide where you will meet. Most likely, it will be in a room separate from the showroom. However, you may be asked to make your presentation at the check out counter. There are advantages to both positions: you will not be interrupted if you're in an isolated room. However, if you're in the show room, you have the option of playing with the store's existing merchandise during the presentation. If given my choice, I would opt for the office.
It will take you a few minutes to settle into the presentation. Before you start to show your jewelry, try to engage in focused small talk. If you're talking to the owner, you can ask how s/he broke into the business, how long s/he's been in business. etc. Then you can segue into what a good job you think s/he's done. Specific comments about how much you like the existing store lines work well. For example, you can say 'Well, you've brought in a great line of (sterling silver earrings, clothing with classic lines, funky jewelry, fantastic color schemes, or whatever caught your eye). Here you will find your common ground, a place for you to naturally begin to show your jewelry.
Now it may be that you're with a controlling manager who wants to carry the ball during the conversation. Answer all questions and then say, 'enough about me, I'd like to learn a little about you'. At this point, you can ask the questions I outlined above.
As you're showing the jewelry, point out its BENEFITS (not properties) to the owner. The sterling silver earwires are safe for everyone to wear, the high gem quality stones are remarkably clear and brilliant to behold, a perfect compliment to the store's other high end lines, the beads you created will not be found elsewhere, etc. There is something to appeal to this store's sense of uniqueness or you wouldn't be there in the first place. As the buyer compliments different pieces, set them aside. If you have necklaces or earrings that match those bracelets, this is the time to show them. If s/he likes your diamond cut sterling, show the range of styles in that line. At the end of the presentation, your buyer should have easy access to their favorite pieces. You can suggest they start by carrying those few selections.
Along the way, you are
probably going to get asked some hard questions:
Regardless of how the sales call ends, thank the buyer for their time and leave the store proud of yourself. Even if you didn't make a sale, you've learned a lot from these first few sales meetings. Next time you will be even more polished in your demo. All sales are a numbers game. The best salesperson in the world hears more nos than yeses and you've just gotten one no out of the way! The bottom line is that you really have come a very long way from when you first picked up the phone and made a sales call. You're on your way and you deserve to treat yourself.
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