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P - Is it guaranteed?
Supposing I said it was? What happens next?...Supposing I said it wasn’t?
P - “It’s more than we want to spend.”
S - That’s not unusual. Off the record, how much were you hoping it would be?
P - (continued) Replies with a number
S - That’s it?
P - (continued) That’s it
S - So fixing your problem isn’t that important?
P - (continued) Sure it is
S - Which part do you want to fix?
P - Your competition is cheaper than you
S - Looks like I won’t be getting you business then. Right?
P - I haven’t done anything
S - Let me ask you this. What am I doing here?
P - When can we get started?
S - I don’t know
Dummy up phrases
- I don’t understand
- Can you help me with that?
- What do you mean exactly?
Testing the water
S - I get the feeling that you are _____. Is that a fair statement?
P - NO
S - Then what is a fair statement?
Controlling the interview
S - That’s an interesting point. But your on page 7 and I’ still on page 3. Could we back up for a moment?
Pressure-packed moments - I feel pressure
S - Mr. Brown, why are you putting all this pressure on me?
Pressure packed moments - sense prospect is feeling tension
S - I feel tension in the room right now but I am not sure why.
Situations I can’t handle
S - We have a problem.
P - What is the problem?
S - (Outline the problem)
S - Do you see a way to overcome the problem?
Lull in the interview
- S - Don, ask me a question. (Wait for a response)
- S - Good question. Why did you ask me that one just now?
P - the price is too high
S - Which means? or And?
P - You people always do this to me?
S - Do this to me means?
“You start” reverse
- S - we need to discuss all aspects of your problem. What are your thoughts?
- P - I agree
- S - OK. You start
The Off-the record reverse
S - Off the record, what were you hoping to spend?
Multiple Choice reverse to bring up stalls and objections in advance
(When prospect picks one of the objections)
S - Really? I’m surprised by your answer. Why did you pick that one?
Multiple choice if prospects brings up an objection
S - People generally say that for a number of reasons (list multiple reasons). Which one of these if any explains your comment?
Defuse the bomb before it blows
S -One of the problems we may have Harry, assuming we decide to do business together is_________. Is that going to be a problem with you?
P - Yes
S - Do you want to talk about it?
P - Yes
S - You first
- Bonding and rapport
- Upfront Contract
Upfront contract: 3 things to avoid
- No mutual mystification
- No wishy-washy words
- No smoke
Setting the agenda:
- S - Thank you for inviting me in
- S - Bill, what are some of the things you’d like to accomplish? or
- S - Bill, I’ve in in financial services for several years, and I have numerous clients. I’ve found there are no accidents. I believe there’s a reason why we’re getting together today. What motivated you to invite me in? or
- S - Bill, last week when we spoke on the phone and you invited me in, what were you hoping I could do for you?
S - Chuck, before we begin, my biggest fear is _________. So can we discuss this? Can you alleviate my concern?
On the telephone: Call me back
- I’ll be happy to call you on Thursday. But let me ask you a question...what will happen when we talk on Thursday?
Show understand from the prospect’s point of view by asking the following:
S- Liz, I’d like to ask you some questions to make sure I can understand your business and to make sure I understand your concerns. You probably want to ask me some questions to see if we’re the right kind of company for you. As we ask and answer each other’s questions, two things can happen: You might say, your answers don’t help my problem, and if that happens, so we don’t waste each other’s time, are you OK telling me no? You can say, Hey, Kevin stop. I don’t think there’s anything we can do together. On the other hand, Liz, it’s possible that we might see eye to eye on what we are discussing, and in that case, I would expect you to say yes. What I hope you won’t say is, I want to think it over. If you feel like you have to think it over, I’d rather you say no. Are you OK telling me that? (Take time to validate upfront contract). Are you sure that you are OK telling me no? Or, if I can fill your needs, are you OK with telling me yes? It’s not unusual for me to talk to people who say they’re sure they’re OK with this, but when it comes time to say no, most people don’t like to do it. So I just want to be sure - do we have an understanding on this?
(Give prospect opportunity to say yes)
S - Let’s suppose my answers fit what you’re looking for. What happens then?
Like a chess game, it is important to establish an upfront contract prior to each move.
Verify prospect understands the contract
S - I believe I have a clear understanding of what we’re trying to accomplish, Ron, but just so there’s no misunderstanding at a later date, do you mind telling me what your take is on our meeting today so that we can make sure we are both in sync?
Client asks for literature
I’m going to send you the literature George. It’s on its way. It should be there by Thursday. How much time will you need to review it? Let’s assume you do get the literature by Thursday. You say you’ll need 24 hours to review it, so I’ll call you Friday. And, here’s what I’d like to see happen if you’re comfortable with this. I’d like you to be able to say, Kevin, I read the literature and have some questions. Or I read the literature and there’s absolutely no reason for us to get together. If you tell me you have some interest, George, then I’d like you to invite me in for a face to face meeting. Is that fair?
Verifying time limits prior to presenting
Bill, how much time have you set aside for this meeting? Your time is valuable, and so is mine, and I want to make sure not a minute gets wasted.
Well phase - might intellectually see the need but aren’t emotionally tied to the problem. Ask questions to arouse their pain
P - Can you help?
S - I don’t know? Let me ask you some more questions about your problem?
Continue asking questions. Prospect becomes emotionally involved in my presentation
Prospects validate their own problems without interference from the salesperson
Let the prospects see that you product or service can take away the pain
Review pain step with prospect
S - Do you have a budget set aside for this project?
P - No
S - That’s not unusual. How do you plan to make this investment?
(or prospects says)
P - Yes
S - Fine. Would you mind sharing that with me in round numbers?
P - I won’t share
(must have done a lousy pain step)
S - That makes sense. As you can probably imagine, we have many products that might be able to solve you problem. Some of our solutions range in price from _ to _ and others from _ to _. Now I understand that this is off the record, should we address the _ to _ range or the _ to _ range?
(Prospect picks low range)
S - That surprises me. I thought, because of the extent of your problems, that you were going to pick the higher range
- (Prospect chooses higher range)
- S - Well, that really is interesting. I thought you were going to pick the lower range.
That could be a problem reverse - addressing budget
That could be a problem. What are you planning to do if the investment needs to be higher?
(can also use this technique if the prospects budget will cover the cost)
- What decision-making process do you go through when deciding on a purchase such as this?
- When do you see yourself moving forward with this?
- Assuming that you do want to move forward, how is it going to happen?
- Who else besides yourself will be involved in the decision-making process?
P - I can make decisions myself
S - Fine, but you mean you don’t get help from a president, a committee, or a spouse?
Fulfillment: Thermometer Close
S - John, we’ve covered a lot of ground so far, and there’s still more to show you, but on a zero - ten scale, zero meaning you have no interest in my service and ten meaning you have already decided to buy my service, where are you?
(Prospect says 4)
S - John based on what you’ve told me so far, I don’t understand why you say you’re a four. Can you help me understand that?
(Prospect says 6)
S - John, what do you need to see to get to 10?
(After checking temperature again to aim for a 10)
S - What would you like me to do now?
Post-sell: Deliberately bring up a mutually agreed upon compromise.
S- Would you cancel based on the change we agreed upon?
Post Sell: Hand agreement to new client
S - Do you know what this is?
P - Yes, it is our agreement
S - Not only is it our agreement, but it’s also the solution to pain 1,2, and 3. If there are any doubts about moving forward, let’s discuss them now. If not, you’re telling me we’re moving forward and I won’t get a cancelation email from you tomorrow telling me you’ve changed your mind. Is that fair?