Wanna beat the other guy? Use your brain, not your price.
The key to any sale rests on how well you engage the prospect. Now there’s a rude awakening. Most salespeople are NEVER taught engagement. They’re taught crap like probe, present, close, overcome objections, close again. Old sales techniques that make me throw up. Oh, and they also make your prospects puke.
Take a look at the bigger picture. If you “engage” the prospect, you create an atmosphere to buy. If you just “present” the typical product or service feature/benefit “we-we-we,” you’re trying to sell. “Sell” and “engage” are mutually exclusive.
If you are selling, at the end of the pitch you have to “ask for the sale.” Better known as the traditional “close-the-sale.” If you engage, at the end of the meeting the prospect is eager to buy. My first rule of sales is, “people don’t like to be sold, but they LOVE to buy.” In the big picture, engagement, or should I say, intelligent engagement makes the customer want to buy. The question is, “how engaging are you?”
Here’s the meaning: To engage means to attract and hold someone’s attention, to involve, and eight other interactive actions — add intelligence and they will buy.
Here’s the premise: How can you ensure that intelligent engagement will take place? You gotta look intelligent, act intelligent, speak intelligent, and be PERCEIVED by the prospect as intelligent. The latter being the test of the other three.
Here’s the good news and the strange news: This method will make the sale 50% more often, yet only 5% of the sales people will do it. Sounds almost unbelievable, but I assure you it’s true.
Here’s the answer: make a 4-section quadrant on a piece of paper — leave a little room at the bottom of the page.. In each of the quadrants write one of the following:
1. My preparation.
2. My questions.
3. My ideas.
4. My presentation skills and communication skills.Now at the bottom of the page write BOLD:
4.5 My enthusiasm and positive attitudeEnthusiasm and positive attitude are the characteristics that bind all the others together. Actually they’re the glue that makes each one happen. And the contagious energy of your presentation and your information.
Well all that sounds pretty simple until you look at the WORK involved. Rats, work. I told you, only 5% of you will do this. The rest of you are watching TV. (Hey, raise your hand if you’re making money watching TV. Just asking.)
Here’s the work in each of the quadrant it takes to get to success:
1. Your preparation. What do you need to know about the prospects business to engage? I mean if you just walk in the door and say, “tell me a little bit about your business” how unprepared does that make you look? Answer: TOTALLY UNPREPARED. Prepared is going to their website and printing out several strategic pages, reading them, and making notes so you can ask about what you don’t understand, or need elaboration on — not ask about them from TOTAL IGNORANCE.
NOTE: Just so we understand each other, “tell me a little about your business” is the third dumbest thing you can say to or ask a prospect. The second is “let me tell you a little about my business.” The prospect could CARE LESS about you or your business, and probably already knows enough to not want to hear it again. The first most dumbest? Read on baby, read on.
And it’s not just internet preparation. It’s other research like finding mutual friends, calling a few vendor, maybe a few customers. Getting VITAL information as relates to the buying of your product or service. One more thing in preparation. Be prepared with an objective or two about what you want to accomplish in the meeting.
Proper preparation takes time, but I assure you it’s impressive to the prospect. He or she knows that you have prepared, and is silently impressed. It’s an advantage that very few sales people use. They make the fatal error of getting all their own stuff ready. PowerPoint slides, samples, literature, business cards — you know, all the same things the competition is doing. Biggest mistake in sales. And almost every salesperson makes it.
And it’s not only preparation about the sale — it’s your personal preparation for sales — your personal training. How ready are you?
Get ready baby. Turn off the TV and get ready.
Well, that’s only ONE of the 4.5 intelligent engagers. If you’re smart, you’ll return here next week for the rest of what will not only double your sales — it will also kick your competition into THE DIRT (where they belong).
The single dumbest question in sales? Stay tuned…
Free GitBit… Want a list of places you can gather information about the sales call? Sure you do. Go to www.Gitomer.com (register if you’re a first time user) and enter the word RESEARCH in the GitBit box.
Jeffrey Gitomer, author of The Sales Bible, and Customer Satisfaction is Worthless, Customer Loyalty is Priceless. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts internet training programs on selling and customer service at www.trainone.com. He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org