Closing a Sale or Opening a Client?

Posted on Jul 20, 2010

By Dan Hughes CSO and Co-Founder of Broadlook Technologies

“Closing the sale.”Where do we get this phrase?Or how did “I am about to close a big sale”, “When are you closing that deal?” or “Let’s review the pipeline to see what sales are closing this month” enter into common vernacular of the sales organization?

Probably because it is meant to represent the end of a sales cycle or the end result of a sales process well-executed.Maybe the sales systems we put in place needed an end point.But does it really? I have used it for years and have really never thought much about it up until recently.

As we continue to train and teach Sphere of Influence selling, it forces us to examine the programs we implement, as well as the mindset we wish to enforce and support that helps them (and ultimately your organization) succeed.I am slowly coming to a conclusion and am considering attempting to make a “new sales language” that is more in line with the desired outcome.

Follow my logic here:

A suspect, a lead, or a target actually begins closed.And it is our efforts as a marketing organization and through our sales professionals that begin a process of introducing our company, educating as to our value proposition, understanding their challenges and objectives, and presenting solutions that represent the slow opening of a relationship of exchange, trust, and potential transactions.The sale is actually opening.Therein lies the possibility of earning a client, and then a vendor, whereby a long term exchange of dollars for valuable services is present and the ultimate objective.Should the transaction actually take place, the event of a sale, and client, is actually opened, not closed.

This actually could change the mental state of selling organizations, particularly in the B2B world, that sees the initial transaction as the beginning of the opportunity as opposed to the closing of one. By opening opportunities to sell additional products and services, companies get referrals and build the brand.

As I see it, it would deem more appropriate to now say “I am about to open a big sale”, “When are you opening that deal?” or “let’s review the pipeline to see what sales are opening this month”.

Where is the first place to start using this new language? Right here at Broadlook.I will let you know how we decide to instill this mindset at Broadlook Technologies.Don’t be surprised in our future conversation if you hear me say “When are we opening our sale and getting you your license keys?”