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Table of Contents

Lead Story

All aboard the processing train

News

Industry Update

Credit card spending increases

Reading the tea leaves on Apple and NFC

Weighing in on alternative payments

Trade Association News

Features

GS Advisory Board:
Game changers for 2011 - Part 2

ISOMetrics:
Salaries in the payments industry

A checklist for advertising effectiveness

Selling Prepaid

Prepaid in brief

Rewards expand with BillShrink

The value of stored-value for ISOs and merchants

Views

Bold steps needed on fraud front

Patti Murphy
The Takoma Group

Retaining merchants during a portfolio acquisition

Daniel Federgreen
Analyst

Education

Street SmartsSM:
POS systems, yea or nay?

Ken Musante
Eureka Payments LLC

Selling in the digital age

Dale S. Laszig
Castles Technology Co. Ltd.

The decreasing primacy of price

Theodore Svoronos
Merchant University

Referrals: Do you play the numbers game?

Bill Pirtle
MPCT Publishing Co.

Marketing basics

Nicholas Cucci
Network Merchants Inc.

Company Profile

VeriCheck Inc.

New Products

Upward mobility, no strings attached

Pay Anywhere
North American Bancard

An app to cinch the deal

POS Portal Mobile App
POS Portal Inc.

Inspiration

The fine art - and science - of selling

Departments

10 Years ago in
The Green Sheet

Forum

Resource Guide

Datebook

Miscellaneous

2011 Calendar of events

A Bigger Thing

The Green Sheet Online Edition

February 28, 2011  •  Issue 11:02:02

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Inspiration

The fine art - and science - of selling

Any activity becomes creative when the doer cares about doing it right, or better.
- John Updike

Selling to merchants is both an art and a science, requiring insights into human nature, as well as technical knowledge of products and services. During sales calls, we must connect with a human being, not just a business entity, to make our case.

The most successful merchant level salespeople (MLSs)know how to combine people skills with industry expertise to create a truly effective presentation. Fortunately, MLSs are by nature resourceful and results-driven, so becoming well-rounded to secure more sales makes perfect sense. After all, we routinely set goals for ourselves, not boundaries, while seeking to perfect the sales process.

Becoming well-rounded

Keeping tabs on the industry, as well as acquiring insights into human behavior, is a dynamic, never-ending process. Technology changes rapidly, and we are constantly discovering more about how people communicate, what motivates them and why they make certain choices.

Industry expertise comes from reading trade publications like The Green Sheet, attending tradeshows, networking with peers, taking relevant classes and so on. It's important to read and share this type of information so you can credibly represent a range of payment solutions - the "science" side of selling - to merchants.

On the "art" side of selling, there is the need to listen carefully, ask probing questions and empathize with the challenges the merchant faces before jumping into a one-size-fits-all sales pitch. The information-gathering portion of your meeting demonstrates to the merchant facets of your character that are key to relationship-building.

It's a joy to watch salespeople who can create rapport and then wield their deep industry expertise to fashion a solution that truly matches a merchant's goals and circumstances. It's like witnessing a masterpiece in the works.

Broadening your horizons

So how do you become a better listener, more attuned to customer needs, more innovative when suggesting solutions? Perhaps it's time to move beyond your accustomed educational resources to achieve a fresh perspective. Here are some suggestions:

The more you seek to understand the people you are selling to, the greater your chance of building a connection and thus creating a sale. Facts and figures alone will not convince a potential customer that you recognize their needs and are worthy of their trust. You must creatively combine both the art and science of selling to excel.

Notice to readers: These are archived articles. Contact names or information may be out of date. We regret any inconvenience.

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Spotlight Innovators:

North American Bancard | USAePay | Impact Paysystems | Electronic Merchant Systems | Board Studios