Salespeople types

Lots of people confuse sales with marketing and vice versa.

Sales is an important function of marketing and sometimes that function is carried out by salespeople. Unfortunately, good salespeople are hard to find. I’m sure you’ve run across one or two of these sales types in your life…

Psycho Sales
–A little too happy with tracking sales on spreadsheets
–Own way too many Successories and motivational books.
–They “network” way too much.
–Arm-wrestle clients into a purchase.
–Over-promise and under-deliver (also called lying)

Floaters
–They got out of college and had no plan. They think they’ll “they’ll try sales for awhile” and 20 years later they’re still trying to sell you copier toner.
–Have absolutely no knowledge about what they’re selling you
–Typically promoted to Sales Manager.

Stable Horses
–Have little knowledge of the product/service they’re selling.
–Sales mostly occur through long relationships with clients, sales promotion (gimmicks), and luck.
–The majority of all salespeople fall under this category

Order Takers
–Pick up the phone, write down the order, turn it in.
–Rinse.
–Repeat.

Eye Candy
–Can be male or female
–Clients tend to buy just so the salesperson keeps coming by.

Good Salesperson
–They’re concerned about what the customer needs versus what they can be sold. They understand that this sometimes means no sale.
–They know what they’re selling inside and out. That means both the advantages and disadvantages.
–Using this philosophy, they are always very successful and very well compensated.
–Sadly, I can count on one hand the number of these salespeople I’ve ever met.

I’m sure I’ve missed some sales characters. Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Chris Houchens is a marketing raconteur & writer. Connect with him on Twitter or Facebook.

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4 comments on “Salespeople types
  1. Dan Schawbel says:

    Salespeople are either aggressive or passive. The passive ones usually fail, while the ones that are aggressive succeed. In terms of personality, there are a variety of types, which you included here.

  2. Lewis Green says:

    Great posts! Good marketers and good sales people put people first and are always more concerned about their customers wants and needs than they are selling their own products and services.

  3. Roger Anderson says:

    I agree with you and Lewis, but I would add that good managers, leaders, and executives also put people first.

    I tend to see Marketers as openers and Sales people as closers. Marketing is usually appeals to a broad base. Sales usually looks for more direct connections.

    A type you may have missed is the Technical – usually tries to win the sale by repeating the features until the client agrees or throws them out. Similar to the Psycho but less motivated.

  4. Graham says:

    Sure is, people come first, but it still comes down to the sale and the product being sold.