How the Best Sales Reps Earn Engineers' Trust | Symmetry Blog
In this three-part series, we will be covering different perspectives on the relationship between buyers and distributors, and why it’s important for them to be involved early in the design cycle. Part 2 is taken from the perspective of a sales representative, with input from Symmetry Field Sales Representative Maria Gelphman.
For every job, there are always the top performers that seem to hold some secret to their success. How do they do it? What are they doing so differently that helps them shine above the rest?
It’s no different for sales reps. When asked how the best are so successful, some might point to their charisma, their knowledge or their experience. Others might point out their work ethic, their dedication, or even their luck.
Although there may be truth to those conjectures, the best sales reps know that the key to selling is building relationships early and often. When they reach out early to answer questions, voice their concerns and offer general assistance, they build trust with their client.
That trust is what differentiates the best from the rest.
“Old Friends Die Hard”
There is truth behind this popular adage. Old friendships harbor trust that lasts across years. The same principle applies to sales.
When a design engineer decides to move forward with their design, they are much more willing to place their trust in a relationship that is already established. If they remember a sales rep that was exceptionally helpful in the past, those engineers return to the same people because that well-established trust saves them time and frustration.
Maria Gelphman, a field sales representative at Symmetry Electronics, shares how the best sales teams are involved with buyers early in the design cycle.
“As a field salesperson, being involved early, especially in the architectural discussion of a new wireless platform, is a major validation of the value that distribution plays in the engineering community. There are 2 factors that contribute to this, the first being customer relationship and the second, a deep understanding of the customer’s business and vertical markets. Relationships play a vital role because the engineers seek out the salesperson with whom technological trust is already established. A knowledgeable sales rep will have a comprehensive awareness of the customer’s products and/or services. This knowledge gives the rep the ability to draw, from a blank canvas, a concise landscape of the technology and key components that are most applicable and save the engineer a lot of time and research. The distribution sales rep helps to accelerate time to market, enabling the customer to gain a competitive edge with their new product introduction.
Once product definition begins to materialize, this allows the sales rep to recommend certain suppliers and share confidential product roadmaps. This provides the customer the visibility regarding what technologies are scalable for the future and the ability to capitalize on future product integration. Return on the design time investment is critical. The distribution salesperson has the ability to influence component selection but not usurp any of the design engineer’s role. Product integration saves board space and cuts down on component costs. Another vital piece to the early design cycle is to create a collaborative bridge between engineering and supply chain, so each department knows how much time you’ve invested. The sales rep ends up being an extension of the customer’s new product introduction team. Working with the supply chain team and having them involved in the upfront costs avoids lengthy pricing negotiations later in the design cycle. There are no surprises if you set the price expectations at a realistic level from the beginning of the discussion. Catching a design cycle early has advantages for both customer and distributor by determining together the best technology options that prove most sustainable and cost-effective for the product lifecycle.”
The secret behind great sales reps is really no secret; It’s all about offering a helping hand and making themselves available when engineers need help. Sales representatives at Symmetry Electronics put time and attention towards helping IoT engineers avoid mistakes through the design cycle. Symmetry understands the value of technical support and we invest heavily in making sure our sales team is technically trained beyond what is expected of them.
Why partner with Symmetry Electronics? Symmetry's technical staff is specially trained by our suppliers to provide a comprehensive level of technical support. Our in-house Applications Engineers provide free design services to help customers early in the design cycle, providing solutions to save them time, money and frustration. Contact Symmetry for more information.
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