Do you know the 7 essential qualities of a Good Prospect ?



Some sales people mistakenly consider every one as a prospect without first finding out whether the people really provide an opportunity to make sale. Prospecting actually begins with beating leads. A LEAD is a potential prospect a person or an organization that may or may act have what it takes to be a true prospect. As noted earlier, the prospecting is the hunt for 'FEEDERS who can be transformed into WANTERS. Put in other words, there is vast difference between a LEAD and a PROSPECT because a lead can be suspect or prospect.

Even is case it prospects there can be 'China eggs', or 'Cold-turkeys' - China eggs are those prospects who appear to be very promising but fail to hatch. That is, sales efforts go waste, as they do not turn prospects into buyers. Similarly, there are some prospects that are called as cold-turkeys because they turn buyers without or with least efforts. The broad measuring of prospect makes us to call every one on the earth as prospect on the basis of potentiality of sales. It would be facile and abortive effort on the part of salesman to waste his sales efforts without really knowing as to who is a good prospect. That is, salesman must realize that all that glitters is not gold. Certain requisite make a lead as good prospect. These are:

Qualities of a Good Prospect

1. Does he/she have a need or Want?

Research has supplied no infallible or correct answers as to why consumers buy but it has found many reasons. It is certain that consumers buy because they want to satisfy their both tangible and intangible needs. Determining whether leads need a sales person's product or services is not always simple task. Successful selling presupposes the existence of a need which is capable of being transformed into a want and want into a purchase. In case the need does not exist, it is the creativity of salesmanship that fills the cavity. However, there should be some minimal clue of need, which may be present or dormant. It is the salesman; task to generate an awareness of need by exhibiting clearly the relationship between his product or services to present or dormant need of the prospect or dormant need of the prospect in question.

2. Does he/she have the ability to pay?

Mere desire or need is not the prima facie proof of calling a lead as prospect. What is needed is effective want. "Effective want" is one which is "fully supported by purchasing power''. Purchasing power or ability and pay for products or services help to separate leads from prospects. Ability to pay includes both cash and credit. It speaks of credit standing of financial status rating of credit status or standing is made available by credit rating organizations. If money were to grow on money plant, the sellers would not have worried. The problem is that the money does not grow on plants and trees or fall from the trees like fruits. It is to be earned the hard way and spent. Mere earning is one thing and parting with money is another. That is, when take of ability to pay us also speak of willingness to pay.

3. Does he or she have the authority to Buy?

A lead may have a real need for a product and the ability to pay for it but may not have the authority to make purchases. Knowing exactly as of who has this authority saves the sales person valuable time, effort and results in higher percentage of closed sales. The sale deals take place under legal, moral, blood relations. Thus, a sale made by a major to a minor is not valid; medicines can not be sold without physician's prescription; security weapons can not be sold to any Tom Dick and Harry unless they have prior legal license; alcohol can not be bought and sold in prohibited areas Even in family circles, children many not have the right to buy; a husband may not have if his better half is the administrator and vice versa.

Decisions are made by very strong influences; however, it is the situation decides as who is the most powerful influencer, For instance, a machinery manufacturing planned it sales efforts thinking that machines were being purchased by production managers. However, it was found that only 10 percent of sales came from production executives. The rest came from engineers - 44 percent, purchasing agents - 29 percent and others 17 percent because they had the authority to make the purchase decision. A good way to find out if the lead has the authority to buy is to simply ask that person. More and more firms are delegating their purchasing tasks to outside vendors. These vendors are caller as "Systems Integrators", have the authority to buy products and services from others. Systems integrates usually assume complete responsibility for a project, from its beginning to follow-up servicing.

4. Does he approachable Favorably?

Some leads may have need the ability to pay and the authority to buy but still not qualify as prospects because they are not accessible to the sales person. A good prospect is one who is approachable or who can be contacted easily. Many a times, it is the nature and status both official and unofficial - may arise. Thought, the relations are simple and straight those of salesman and prospect or likely parties of exchange, salesman has a tough time to have rapport with the prospect. For example, the president of a large bank, a major executive of a large manufacturing company or the senior partner is a well established law firm normally would not be accessible to a young college graduate starting out as a sales representative for an investment trust organization. Getting interviews with those people maybe so difficult and the chances of making a sale so small that the sale representative eliminates them as possible prospects. Some prospects expect the salesman to come through their friends and relatives. However, what is important is that good prospect is easily approachable.

5. Does he or she meets eligibility to Buy?

Eligibility is an equally important factor in finding a genuine prospect. For instance, a sales person who works for a firm that requires pretty large order should not call on leads that could never order in such a volume. Similarly, a representative who sells exclusively to wholesalers should be certain that the individuals he or she calls on are actually wholesales, not retailers. Another factor that determines this eligibility for a particular sales person is the geographic location of the prospect. Most companies operate on the basis of exclusive sales territories, leaning that a particular sales-person can sell only to certain prospects say doctors in three ire as, and not to other prospects. A sales person working for such a company must consider whether the prospect is eligible based on the location, to buy from him or her.

6. Does he or she prove to be Profitable?

Salesman stands to benefit by having large member of prospects. He may have a small class of large buyers or large class of small buyers; or he may have any combination of the two depending on the nature of product and his ability to generate contacts and prospects. However, what is important is that for the efforts put in case of a single prospect, he should have a maximum gain. That is, the prospect one who is sure to purchase large enough to be profitable to the salesman.

7. Does he or she fits in other Criteria?

The leads that meet above five criteria are considered as excellent prospects. However, some selling experts want to add another criterion or other criteria. Some companies direct their sales people to classify leads by their likelihood of buying. Sales people may have a long list of people whom they believe that they have need for their product, can pay for it, have authority to buy it, are eligible to buy and are easily approachable. However, if these leads do not have absolutely no interest in buying, the sales persons should look elsewhere failing which the sales persons will waste additional on this lead and fail to prospect better leads. Criteria may include other things or qualifications - say time of purchase, long-term potential of developing partnership relationship with lead.