Medical device sales – planning the commitment

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Much time has been spent talking about pre-call planning, but what about planning the close? Closing the call is all about obtaining a commitment from the customer that moves the sales cycle forward. Top performers plan the commitment they want from the customer – setting it as their call objective. They assess and adjust the level of that commitment as the call unfolds.

Some commitments apply regardless of the stage in the sales cycle, such as setting up a follow up meeting with the person or gaining an introduction to someone else inside the hospital or practice.

Others tend to be more specific to the stage of the sales cycle. For example:

Early in the sales cycle a sales person might ask for 5 minutes of a physician’s time just to better understand their interests and needs or a commitment by a physician to be introduced to a type of therapy. Many sales people at this stage are seeking access to the Lab or OR as their commitment objective.

In the middle of the sales cycle, sales people might seek to gain some other commitments such as: a device evaluation, in-service staffing, or support within a hospital’s new product committee or VAC.

Late in the sales cycle, sales people might seek commitments to help close the contract, assist with the implementation process, and, as appropriate, start to build relationships outside of the hospital.

The key is always to propose a commitment at the end of the call that moves the sales cycle forward. Done consistently, it is the most effective way to shorten the sales cycle and close more business.

Richard Ruff
For more than 30 years Richard Ruff has worked with the Fortune 1000 to craft sales training programs that make a difference. Working with market leaders Dick has learned that today's great sales force significantly differs from yesterday. So, Sales Momentum offers firms effective sales training programs affordably priced. Dick is the co-author of Parlez-Vous Business, to help sales people have smart business conversations with customers, and the Sales Training Connection.

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