So, do you think you can make it in sales?
Let’s break it down. You’ve got the drive. You’ve got the personality. You’ve got the skills. But to thrive in a sales job, you’ve got to truly love what you do and what you sell. Unlike the girl in the clothing store that shoed me out with one look, you’ve got to believe in the product like your life depended on it—and then sell it. What, then, is the best sales position for you? Peruse the following list of sales jobs and discover what niche you were born to sell in.
Sales Assistants Hand-Sell Products and Interact with All Types of People
If you enjoy face-to-face selling and interacting with all types of people, a job as a sales assistant might work best for you. First, consider what you most like to buy. If you enjoy buying clothes, work at a clothing store like Banana Republic, Old Navy, or Nordstrom. If you enjoy buying books, become a bookseller at Barnes & Noble or Borders. If you enjoy buying gadgets, consider working at Brookstone or the Apple store. Whatever it is you’re into, you’ll find that you’ll enjoy your job as a salesperson more if you like what you’re selling.
As a sales associate, you will be required to hand-sell products to customers. This means selling items to the customer that he or she may not have thought about buying initially. If you work in a clothing store, you may have to hand-sell a belt to someone buying a suit. If you work in a bookstore, you may have to hand-sell a puzzle to someone buying a book for a child.
Sales associates also need to interact with all types of people. In most retail stores, thousands of people come in and out from local and distant areas. You may encounter some difficult people that you will have to try to sell to. By having good communication skills, patience, and an upbeat attitude, however, you will be able to keep a cool head and help even the most challenging customer find exactly what he or she needs.
Sales Representatives Sell Products to Clients in Person or over the Phone
As a sales rep, you may be selling more over the phone or one on one with a client. If you enjoy a sales job in which you are presenting a product to a client in person or persuading a client to buy a product over the phone, having a job as a sales representative may be for you.
Typically, sales associates will be paid a base salary or an hourly wage on top of whatever commissions they earn throughout the day. However, as a sales rep, your paycheck may very well be any commissions you earn; a salary might not be included. This requires someone, then, who is not only motivated, but able to push past the objections of customers to make the desired sales.
A career as a sales rep also often requires representatives to invest time in educational programs. Learn how businesses run and how best to sell to them. According to one telephone sales rep, “You don’t sell to a mom-and-pop store the way you’d try to sell to IBM.”
Account Executives Build Relationships between Clients and Companies
As with many sales jobs, an account executive position requires one to speak clearly, think creatively, and, most importantly, be personable. Account executives are relationship experts — experts at bridging the client/company gap and maintaining a good rapport between the two parties.
Those interested in a career in sales as an account executive also need to be driven and stay positive, even when you might not land every client you’re after. Fostering any negativity may not only harm your morale, but your company’s goals as well.
Digital Media Planners Sell Media Space to Clients
If you enjoy working in the entertainment industry and are interested in a career in sales, the job of a digital media planner might be for you. It combines the excitement of the entertainment industry with the fast-paced energy of sales.
But what does a career in digital media sales entail? Think about all the advertising you see or hear, whether on the side of a bus, in a magazine, on television, or on the radio. Whatever it is, someone had to sell that ad slot to a client. This is what a digital media planner does: sells media space.
As with most sales jobs, digital media planners have to be personable. They have to build relationships with consumers and clients in order to land sales. They have to present positive images of their companies so that potential clients will be attracted to them and buy into whatever the given company is offering.
So which career in sales is for you? Do you enjoy hand-selling? Cold calling? Relationship building? Working in entertainment? Whatever it is you’re into, make sure you believe in what you’re selling. That way, you’ll not only achieve your sales goals, but you’ll love your job in sales as well.