Do you like to be sold? Notice that when you see a sales pitch coming, your muscles tense up a bit and you put on your armor so as not to be convinced of something you don’t want. Your defensiveness goes up and your prospects do the same. Everything you’ve been taught by product companies about spouting features and benefits screams SALES PITCH and insures that your prospects will resist. Would you like to learn to “sell” in a different way so that your prospects are receptive rather than defensive?
I participated in creating a self-study program on selling, and the most frequent question I got was “where’s the section on handling objections?” The only reason a sales person gets objections is because he attempts to sell what the prospect does not want. So you don’t need to handle objections if you offer what the prospect wants. If you stop convincing them that what you have is what they should want, objections disappear.
How many times have you shown your prospect the glossy mutual fund brochure or the insurance brochure, which is basically the written sales pitch for the product? In fact, how many times have you mailed it before meeting with the prospect? If you want to be any more certain of raising your prospect’s resistance and defensiveness, keep sending them product and sales literature so that they know they are in for the sales pitch of their life. Not only do they resist when you start off in this manner, they have no interest in your agenda. If you want to get their attention, send an item that addresses their agenda or send nothing if you don’t yet know what they desire.
In the next few minutes you can learn to stop selling and get prospects to buy.
The fastest way to get your prospect’s attention is to speak to them about issues important to them such as their desires (their agenda) are their foremost concerns. Here are some common foremost financial concerns:
- To have more income
- To pay less tax
- To have financial independence in retirement
- To protect themselves and family members from financial catastrophes
People are very eager to have these desires satisfied. Wait a minute, don’t you offer products and services that satisfy these desires? Then how come people are resistant when you attempt to sell them these products? Because you have put the cart before the horse. You fail to get their attention before you alienate them by discussing your products and services. In simple English, you talk about your products and services in the first 10 minutes and you should not be talking about them until the last 10% of the conversation. The first 90% must be all about identifying and crystallizing the prospect’s concerns and objectives.
You only mention your products and services:
• After you have precisely identified what they want
• After you have won their trust as a person with solutions and made friends.
• After you have confirmed that the benefits offered by your product (without mentioning your product), the prospect would want to buy, if available
In your mind, the prospect’s desires are fulfilled by your product. This is so obvious to you that you forget it’s not obvious to the prospect. So when you discuss your product too early, the prospect thinks, “what does this have to do with my concerns?” It’s only after you have fully flushed out the prospect’s concerns can you ask, “If I could help you with that concern, would you want to know more about it?” You then explain the solutions in general (no product mention) and confirm with the prospect that your conceptual solution is on target. “Would you like me to recommend the specific solution that will best fulfill what we have agreed on?” Then, when the prospect expresses interest in your recommendation (i.e. he trusts your suggestion), you can show your product.
Put the horse (the prospects agenda) before the cart (your agenda—the sale of your product or service) and your conversations with prospects will be more enjoyable and lucrative.