Do you enjoy
the experience of someone trying to sell you something that you
aren’t sure you even want and are even less sure you can afford?
Most people would answer no to this question, which calls into question
the basic sales strategy that businesses have used for ages: send
out sales personnel to make calls on busy people to try to convince
them to buy stuff they may not even want! If you are in sales, but
you hate to be “sold” to, we have a sales training course
that will change your life. Our business sales consultant training
course – Consultative Selling Skills – will help you
to understand the needs of your customer and find out what he wants
to buy before you offer to sell him anything. As a result, you will
make more sales and more friends.
For more information
or to Register for a seminar, class, or training workshop Click
How to engage
prospects before they have a chance to tell you they'll "think
For many businesses,
the summer months mean a sales slowdown. New prospects become hard
to find, and current opportunities tell you "I'll have to think
it over" or "I'll get back to you in a week or two."
It's those kinds of responses that often lead business owners to
ask me "How do I handle that?" But in fact, that's part
of the problem.
mistakenly identify these customer responses as objections, things
that are traditionally "handled." These responses are
in fact a "stall" in the sales process and not an objection
at all. Things will only get worse with your prospect if you try
to "handle" this customer feedback using a traditional
So what's the
difference between a stall and an objection, and how do you move
the sale forward? An objection is really the customer requesting
more information or a clarification on information that you may
have already provided to them. A stall in the sales process happens
when the customer isn't really interested in what you have to say.
It's the polite way for a customer to say "I don't think you
can help me" or "I don't need what you're selling."
A stall means that you haven't found a problem the customer wants
to fix. And a problem can only exist when the current situation
isn't working. Your role as a salesperson or a marketer is to create
an environment where the customer isn't satisfied with the existing
situation. When a customer recognizes that what they have today
isn't good enough, you'll have their interest.
In May, I talked
about making "big fat claims" to remove any chance of
a prospect telling you they want to "think it over." Now
it's time to create a series of "interest statements"
that focus the prospect's attention on a problem you can solve.
Here are the six pieces of an interest statement:
State one of
your big fat claims. This gets the customer to focus on a problem
they might be having. How do you know which claim to make? Do your
homework before any sales call. Industries and companies all suffer
from the same problems; it's how each fixes them that is usually
different. Make sure you have a list of claims ready for this specific
Link the big
fat claim to a statement of fact. You just made a claim; now you
have to give a reason why. Use the word "because" to associate
something about your product or service to the problem the prospect
is experiencing. What fact or feature of your product or service
allows you to make the claim?
State a logical
benefit. This answers
the question "So what?" Let the customer know what
the fact or feature does. You don't have to be fancy or persuasive
at this point; just tell them an advantage they will experience
if they use your product or service.
Tie their problem
to your solution. What does this really mean to them? Let them know
they can expect some real benefits by finding out more. This is
the part of the interest step that makes your product or service
personal. It answers the question "What's in it for me?"
Make it real—give
an example. Do you believe everything that you hear? Of course not!
To build credibility into your claims, give a relevant example.
Is there a past customer who has benefited from your offering? What
results did they experience? A recognized third-party reference
is a great way to build trust into any sales call.
Do your homework.
Make up five to 10 interest
statements, and commit each of the five steps to memory. Before
your next sales call, research the customer, their industry and
their market. Make a quick list of the potential problem areas,
and design some interest statements that give them a reason to continue
the sales call.
By James Maduk
Sales Skills - Engage Your Prospects
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