"It's a battle of the plans, and the person with the stronger plan wins," says Steven Kraner at Hightechguru.com, and it's the main reason why high-tech salespeople fail. Technology buyers are often formally trained to manage salespeople, extract as much information as possible and maintain control over the sales process. And buyers often mislead salespeople only to use a seller's proposal to negotiate a better deal with a competitor. Sound familiar? Here are four other reasons why salespeople fail.

Salespeople talk to the wrong people. Sixty percent of the time the sale falls through. That's because salespeople are afraid to weed out false prospects and are more comfortable pitching to lower-level buyers.

Salespeople talk too much, and don't listen enough. Salespeople get comfortable rehashing the same pitch instead of focusing on the buyer and eliciting what he needs. "Seek first to understand" the buyer's problem, then you can sell them a solution.

Too much focus on price. "Study after study confirms that quality and services are almost always more important than price," according to Kraner. "If you are effective in asking questions and getting to real issues ... then you can sell at a premium over your competitor's price."

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