Shut Up and Listen…3 Easy Ways to Succeed in Sales
Have you ever really asked yourself why you are so terrible at selling?
The answer is very simple…because you’re selling.
There’s a big difference between buying and selling. Buying is a happy exchange of money for something I need or want.
Selling, however, is generally a process of trying to convince someone that they want or need what you have. It involves coercion, at times manipulation, and it paints a pretty ugly picture of the sales person.
Selling is a tough gig. An uphill battle and not pleasurable at all. Likewise, being sold to as a customer is not fun either. It probably explains the reason we all have inbuilt sales resistance that’s automatically and unconsciously triggered when being sold too.
Here’s the thing…It won’t matter how good your product /service is, at a great price, or that you offer an exceptional service to your customers, if you’re selling them, you won’t get anywhere.
The critical key here is to create the right circumstance for buying to take place, then sit back and let your prospect buy.
Now there’s a little bit of science to this. In fact, 3 easy steps need to be followed if you want to create the right buying circumstance. Over the phone or face-to-face, the lesson is the same. Let’s take a look at them.
1. Ask Questions
The only way to find out what your customers problems are is to ask a few questions. To begin it’s important to make them feel comfortable so that they feel like they’ve contacted the right person for the job. Nothing works better than a friendly smiling voice/face.
Friendly banter (like commenting on the dog that greeted you at the door) will always start you off on the right foot.
That said, if they treat you in a casual manner and want a chat, then chat (but not forever!). If they treat you with a very matter-of-fact manner, then you do the same. You need to mirror the type of person they are (anyone channelling Judeth Wilson’s presentation from TIC Boot Camp 2011 about now?).
From there you can switch gear to the issue at hand:
- So, , what seems to be the problem?
- Can you talk me through/show me ……..?
Once you ask each question there is only one thing you should be doing… you need to –
2. Shut Up & Listen
Listen to their problems, listen to what their needs are and while you are listening formulate a solution in your head. Remember to repeat back to them what they’ve said in your own words so they know you are thinking about everything they are saying.
There is a rule of thumb that needs to be followed here: the customer needs to talk for 60% to 70% of the time. That said, if the customer controls the discussion, usually it produces an unsatisfactory result for you. So, you still need to steer the discussion through your questions.
And finally – step 3…
3. Give them a Solution
They’ve called for your professional advice on the problem at hand, so give them exactly that…your advice. Of course, you might want to do that face-to-face so that you can provide one or multiple solutions that come with a quote!
This is all about helping them come to the decision all by themselves. Arm them with the right information that set the scene for buying to take place.
And the killer line “Where do you want to go from here?”
Leave the decision in the hand of the customer, that way they feel like they’re in complete control and NOT being sold too.
So, next time you find yourself launching into a sales spiel, quickly shut your mouth and smile… take a deep breathe and start creating the right circumstance for buying to take place so that you can sit back and let it happen!
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