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"7 tools every salesperson needs for success" by Terry Brock, Houston Business Journal


Throughout history, people have used tools to get a job done.

Better tools give a competitive advantage. Innovative tools leapfrog you ahead of the competition.

Today, technology and the tools that come with it provide such an enormous leap that we wouldn’t think of competing in business without them.

1. CRM

The customer relationship management tool you use will greatly affect how you connect and ultimately succeed. You want the tool that gives you immediate access to important contact information, but even more, gives you access to important facts. You’re scheduled to meet with Mary this afternoon. You talked with her last year, but her company wasn’t ready to move forward. Now they are and she called to set up the meeting. By the way, what are the names of her three kids? You know she told you about them last year. You need a CRM that allows you to first enter that information quickly and the ability to recall it quickly. Popular choices are Salesforce.com SugarCRM. I’m using Nimble and love it!

2. Video creation

We live in a world of video. YouTube is a necessity for searching and learning. Have the ability to create quick videos for communication with prospects and customers. It makes the connection more human, more real, and helps in the buying process. Usually a quick video shot on your smartphone and uploaded to YouTube (get the app) can be saved as an unlisted video so only your customer sees it. I use a tool called Eyejot, which lets me send a video email. Find a tool that is easy to use and helps you stand out.

3. Evernote

Yes, we’ve heard about this brilliant tool a lot. If you don’t have it, what are you waiting for? Get it. Use it. Store all kinds of paper there but don’t forget you can also make quick audio notes. Take audio notes after a meeting so you’ll remember Mary’s kids’ names better next time.

4. Fast Internet access

Have the ability to get to the Internet fast when you’re on the road. That means having LTE speed on the road. I use not one, but two carriers in the U.S., so if I’m in an area where one is weak, I can try the other. Yes, Wi-Fi is preferred, but it is not always available. Prepare in advance by assuming one system will be down.

5. Backup batteries

This has become an essential tool for salespeople on the go. Yes, your smartphone or laptop battery can and will go dead at the most inconvenient time. Carry extras (yes, plural). Added bonus: One of the coolest things you can do for someone sitting next to you at a conference is hand them a battery charger if you see his or her phone has died. You’ll have a friend for life!

6. Client-connection tools

Think through what tools you need uniquely in your work to connect with clients. Some of these could include an extra phone, keyboards for typing, whatever it takes to connect in whatever condition exists. Do the hard work. Think it through in advance and be prepared.

7. Learning fast

One of the most important skills you can acquire in a fast-changing world is the ability to learn how to learn fast. This means reading fast. It also means memorizing well. Another critical skill is learning how to read people fast. Find out what they like and don’t like. Match their style and be seen as a resource.

These are some tools that can help you to gain an advantage. What tools have helped you and are your “must have” tools today? Please share this article with your friends and share with me on Facebook and Twitter. I look forward to hearing from you! READ ARTICLE