I’ve been doing Sales at Meddy for the past 5 months and I had never done a sales job before. Never. If anything, I was always representing a service or a product where people came to me — I didn’t have to go look for them or didn’t necessarily have to try to convince them so the past 5 months have been a new challenge.
What I do now is going to clinics and present Meddy to them and try to get them to sign up with us.
Patients use Meddy to find doctors and choose who they go to according to reviews and qualifications. Think of Yelp for doctors in Qatar. There is a basic type of profile (for free) which every licensed doctor has. What I try to sell is a premium profile with more features so it can help them rank better, thus get more patients and get more profit, etc etc. Sounds very simple.
I really sucked the first time I tried to demo the product to my colleagues. I was babbling crap and being very monotonous — and going very very fast.
In my mind I was like “THIS IS THE BEST THING EVER!!!” but what came out of my mouth was like “Emm this could be useful for you, please please please buy”
There were soooo many things to learn at first. Not only from becoming the best sales person you could ever be or actually getting a grasp of how the medical industry works here or learning every little thing about your product. But also simple things like coping with the horrid traffic and estimating the best times to visit a doctor were things that take a few days. At the end of the day this is what makes your day and job interesting.
1) No client is the same
Qatar is very diverse, and so is the people behind the private medical sector. You get everything. Huge clinics/hospitals with loads of doctors, solo clinics with only one doctor. Techy ones, old fashioned ones. People who only market on newspapers, those who only market online. Those who market in Arabic or English only. You even get some that choose not to market at all.
You meet grumpy people and you meet lovely people too. You meet people who barely speak English and others that speak it better than you 😂 So you need to be prepared for anything and willing to be flexible with how you present your product.
The same sales pitch or sales approach does not work for everyone so you need to be willing to change it according to your lead or situation.
No day is the same and no client is the same.
2) Just showing up is sometimes the best — at least in Doha.
Sales calls: Eww 😩
I am like probably any other person under 30 years old now. I hate phone calls. I dread them. “If you can text me or e-mail me, why are you calling me and disrupting my eternal shine of awesomeness?” If this is the way I feel about phone calls, I was worrying about how my leads felt when someone they don’t know calls them out of the blue.
At the beginning I was mainly trying to get the phone number of a key decision maker and then calling them to set up a meeting. This worked with very few people as it’s usually the case with cold calling. If anything, it set a bad impression for some and I was wasting a lot of time searching for the people, trying to get the number, convincing the receptionists to give a contact, etc.
Then we tried something different. Instead, I would make an informative call at the main number first to try to get a feeling of the clinic and the people in it. “How many doctors do you have? What times are you open? What is your consultation rate?” Sometimes this essential information cannot be found online as some clinics do not even have websites but from the phone call you can sort of get a feeling of how it could be.
Then I would just walk into the clinics and hoping to get a meeting with a marketing manager or the medical director along the lines of
We have chosen your clinic as etc etc and would like to speak to Dr. X about getting more patients
This approach gave me more meetings than trying to cold call or cold email. Or if not, it got me that contact of a key decision maker 100 times faster so by that point I could call and say “Hi sir, I visited your clinic and Dr. X asked me to contact you, etc etc”
Now the problem is just getting there at the right time if they are not busy. Sometimes they will call you for a meeting but you will very often wait at least 30 minutes or not meet them that day. I am still working on a way to make myself a priority for them in their busy day as at the moment, I am just not.
Sales is sometimes not a 1, 2, 3 type of thing and it really depends on what area of the world you are in and what your clients are like.
3) “I am interested. I will call you back later”
They will not. They never will if they are not interested enough and YOU WANT THEM to be super interested.
That is probably why sales is one of the hardest jobs ever. You are not a priority in your client’s daily life and this is why you need to insist and follow up like crazy.
You don’t want it to be super annoying like Trump insisting for the presidency but you need to insist as if they may be missing out on something. You need to intrigue them, keep them updated about your accomplishments and new features.
Truth is in some cases it might take 50 calls or showing up 10 times to actually get to meet them, which can be very demotivating and a bit annoying. Take it another way: take it as a challenge. You are not meeting or having objections with your boss or colleagues. You are meeting the person who will decide to buy or not. The person who decides if your product works or not and thus has an impact if your company keeps up or not.
Even if you meet them and they do not close a deal, you need THAT feedback. That feedback is very important. Sometimes even more important that closing or not because it gives you insight on how your product can be improved, what things needs to change or if you need to completely revamp it.
4) “But you are a new company”
Meddy is new. A lot of clients questioned me as we are a new company and we are just starting. People are quite scared to deal with new things as the reassurance factor is not there yet. They are not 100% sure if it works and they want other people to test you first.
Everyone had to start at some point but that does not mean that they should be scared.
They should see it as a new opportunity to invest in innovation, in other ways to market themselves. A lot of them do not see it like that. When everyone was only advertising on newspaper, who do you think got the best business advertising online when the public starting moving in that direction? The one who wanted to be innovative and took that risk.
5) Everyone is a sales person
Everyone is a sales person. Everyone. There is no exception. You do not necessarily have to be selling a product to consider yourself a sales person.
Applying for a job is selling yourself. Asking your parents to go to a party when you are 14 is selling the idea to them. Trying to convince someone why you want to go to this particular restaurant is selling another idea. Even flirting can be counted as sales 😝 When you try to convince anyone of anything, you are selling; whatever it is.
This means that you have to be very tactful with everyone. You need to have peoples skills. You need to start conversation. Ask questions. You need to be genuinely nice and project positiveness to whoever you are talking to. People love talking about themselves and talking to someone who is interested in them.