If you scoured the world of literature, chances are you’d never find a better salesman than Bruce Wayne, AKA Batman. Who else out there can turn a pair of tights and some black eye shadow into a symbol that strikes fear into the hearts of evildoers everywhere? As Xbox fans await the fourth and final installment of the Arkham video game series, we’d like to take a moment to admire the qualities that make the “caped crusader” great—not at fisticuffs, but as a salesperson.
Maintain constant vigilance. Well before the Batmobile hits the streets of Gotham City, Batman pores over his research. Above all else, this is the Dark Knight’s super power. Doing the same sort of exhaustive research (with the help of your own Batcomputer) can not only net you new prospects, but you’ll probably learn how they like to be approached, too.
Know yourself and your competition. The Justice League is full of great heroes, but only Batman knows the full extent of their powers and weaknesses. Armed with this information, Batman has consistently come out on top, even when going head-to-head with Superman himself. By the same token, you’re going to come up against other good salespeople from time to time. If you know their product as well as your own, you’ll be able to approach your prospects from a point of truth that the competition won’t.
Make strong connections, right away. This is important: do not walk into a sales meeting and (POW! BAM! BANG!) sock your customer in the jaw. The sort of strong connections we’re talking about here are the ones fueled by your customer knowledge. Implementing your research is just as important as doing it in the first place. Keep your notes with you, speak to your customer’s individual interests, and you’ll be hard to forget.
Call in backup when you need it. Even the most prepared super-salesperson in the world needs backup from time to time. When your meeting gets moved up or a new customer appears out of the blue, don’t be afraid to call in your own Batgirl and Nightwing. Work together with your team and your presentations will come together faster, giving you the time you need to get to know your customer before the big meeting.
Listen every way possible. Even after the sale, keeping tabs on your customers is a great way to maximize your influence. If customers mention your product online, you should know what they’re saying. If a returning customer’s tastes have changed, take note of it. By keeping your customers as happy as Poison Ivy in a botanical garden, you stand a great chance of garnering referrals and customer advocacy alike.
Be meticulous about your commitments. What with new villains cropping up all the time and his existing rogues gallery escaping Arkham Asylum on a regular basis, Batman’s schedule is pretty full. Keep track of your own commitments like the fate of the world depends on it. If you know when you’re busy, you also know when you have a moment to nurture a new lead or check in with a repeat customer that you haven’t heard from in a little while.
Never stop getting better. When Batman started out he was already the world’s best detective, but he didn’t have sidekicks, wear armor, or have nearly the number of awesome gadgets and vehicles he does now. Today’s perfect sales system might not be quite so comprehensive tomorrow, so get your hands on tools that evolve at the speed of your business. If you’d like to take a gander at the new tricks of the trade introduced in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015, this is a great place to get your hands on, as the Joker once put it, “all those wonderful toys.”