Honesty and patience reap betters results verses being pushy when trying to sell your collections service to a prospective client. Let your prospective clients ask questions about your service before you explain your collection services to them.
1. Understanding all services and believe in them:
Sales process requires a deep understanding of the product/service to a level where a Sales Agent himself believes in the product and is 100% confident that it will be beneficial to his clients. He should completely understand which service is beneficial for which type of client, make recommendation and then let client select the service of their choice.
Observation: Working as a Sales Representative in a Collection Agency is a very challenging career. Most agencies offer only commission based payout and no fixed salary component. Although most Sales Reps would love to have only a fewer very large clients which generate hefty commissions, but for most Reps this never happens. The client portfolio of most Sales Reps consists of several small clients, handful of medium sized clients and no large clients. Many Reps will change the career within a couple of months because they are unable to make any meaningful money. Due to this sales pressure, a small portion of Reps often indulge in presenting partial-truth information about the collection agency they represent.
Being a Sales Rep for a collection agency can be rewarding but only over a period of time, and cracking that six figure salary/commissions barrier will take years of hard work. Here are practical and honest tips for individuals who are looking to make a career in this field.
2. Be honest to your prospective client:
Let me give a few examples where a Sales Rep may not be very truthful for these questions are raised by a prospective client:
Q1) What are your collection rates?
A1) Our collection rates are highest in the industry.
( Instead reply with some real collection percentage numbers across various phases of service. Explain him what results in higher collection rates.)
Q2) Are all your operations located in USA?
( Even if your corporate office is located in USA, but may be your back office IT is located in India, or your call center or support staff is located in Philippines then you just hid the facts.)
Q3) What guarantee do you offer?
A3) If we do not recover your investment with us, then we will refund your money.
( That’s usually not 100% true, most agencies will return only partial amount back and withhold any commissions that have been paid out to employees/staff or there will be additional riders. Instead tell them that the detailed guarantee terms are mentioned in the agreement.)
Q4) What collection phase do you recommend I should submit my accounts?
A4) Collection calls – We don’t charge you till we collect.
(Suggest what is best for the clients and not what is good for your own commissions. If the age of debt is less then suggest a lower fees fixed fees letter service product, and not the collection-calls which are contingency based and results in a higher cost for the client.)
For all such questions, check your company’s policy to answer such questions or consult your supervisor.
3. Be patient – don’t be pushy:
Pushing hard to seal the deal in very first call can be a huge mistake. It may work in a very few cases but in most cases this approach fails. Give adequate opportunity to your client to let them ask as many questions as they like, explain your services clearly, then ask for a follow-up meeting to finally close the sales. Even though many Sales Managers will disagree with this approach, but based on my personal experience, more deals are closed if you are more patient with a client verses when you are pressurizing.