The Basic Oral Close

This is the simplest close you’ll ever learn. In fact, it’s so simple that you may doubt it’s effectiveness. However, a UCLA study done many years ago proves its worth. When folks were asked why they didn’t go ahead with a purchase after talking with a salesperson about a product at length, many (too many) said, “We were never asked.”

Please understand that your job is not one of a professional presenter. You are not meeting with clients for their entertainment. Your #1 goal is to get people to like you, trust you and want to listen to you. While you have their attention it’s your job to show them the benefits of your offering and if and when you truly feel it’s good for them, to ASK FOR THE SALE.

In case it’s be awhile since you operated so simply, here are a few phrases to consider:

Alternate of choice: “Would you prefer handling the investment by cash, check or credit card?”

“Do you prefer to have the invoices for this service sent to your home or your office address?””We can begin to service your yard on Monday or Wednesday. Which would you prefer?” 

Open questions:“By the way, Mary, what purchase order number will be assigned to this acquisition?””What method of payment do you plan to use for this investment?”I’m sure you can come up with others that are specific to your product or industry. The point is to come up with them and USE them. Simple questions that ask for the order are often the best way to go. Make yourself a promise right now that you will never leave a client contact without asking for the sale.

To read all of my closes, get a copy of Sales Closing for Dummies. To listen to them delivered and learn how to write your own, listen to my audio titled, Academy of Master Closing — available in both CD and MP3.

This information is copyrighted by Tom Hopkins International, Inc. for reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).

 

 

Closing Strategy, The Lost Sale

It’s bound to happen that you’ll reach the point in a sale where you just cannot get your prospective client to make a decision. When this happens, relieve any pressure that may have built up by packing to leave. Then, since you have nothing to lose, deliver these words:

Phraseology: “Pardon me, John and Mary, before I leave, may I apologize for not doing my job tonight? You see, if I had done my job tonight, I would have said the things necessary to convince you of the value of (the name of your product or service). Because I didn’t, you won’t be enjoying the benefits of this fine product, and believe me, I’m truly sorry.

So that I don’t make the same mistake again, would you take a moment and tell me what I did or what I said wrong?”

In most cases, they’ll be willing to help and will tell you just what turned them off to the sale. This will give you an opportunity to correct that error and close the sale after all!

To read all of my closes, get a copy of Sales Closing for Dummies. To listen to them delivered and learn how to write your own, listen to my audio titled, Academy of Master Closing — available in both CD and MP3.

This information is copyrighted by Tom Hopkins International, Inc. for reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).

Barriers to Closing

What are you really doing when you close a sale? There are four issues you are addressing, and, perhaps overcoming.

The first issue is that the client really does want to make the decision to go ahead and they need your help rationalizing it. That puts you in the position of the “rationaliz-er”–the one who validates their emotional decision or backs it up with facts and other evidence that they’re making a wise decision to go ahead. [Read more…]

Asking Final Closing Questions

final closing questionFinal closing questions are part of a topic I’m asked about quite often.

The key point is that after you ask your final closing questions that your presentation is finished. You should not say another word. In most sales situations, whoever speaks first after the final closing question has been posed will own the product. If you speak first, you will likely keep it in your inventory. If the buyer or potential client speaks first, they will likely buy.

After that final closing question the buyer is obligated to answer one of two ways. They either accept the offer you’ve made or they don’t. If they do accept it, you can quickly move onto the paperwork or whatever method you use for completing a sale. If they say “no” or hesitate in any way, hopefully, you can keep the discussion about their needs open. You will then need to discover what about your product does NOT serve their needs (in their minds anyway). If you can keep them talking about their needs and the solution they’re seeking you will have an opportunity to save this sale. If they just say “no” and do not utter another word about the product, you may need to ask for permission to continue to speak with them about your products.

A lost sale is never truly lost. Do not burn bridges with non-clients. If they buy from someone else today, they may be unhappy with their decision. By checking back with them regularly, you may win their future business.

The Benefit Summary Close

Many prospective clients will want to negotiate or hold back from making a decision. It’s a natural response. They won’t want to give in too easily, even though the product or service is right for them. With someone like this, the benefit summary makes what they’re getting seem like so much, they’d look silly if they held out for something more.

Phraseology: “John, I can appreciate any hesitation you may have about going ahead. However, let me reiterate the benefits you’re gaining by joining our fitness center today. With the plan you’ve chosen, you’re getting 18 months of additional membership for an investment of only two years’ service. You’re receiving three private sessions with a personal trainer. All of our equipment is state-of-the-art, and we increase the number of machines in the club as demand increases, sothere should hardly ever be at ime when you can’t get on the machine of your choice when you want it. There’s always a trainer on the floor to assist you with questions. We offer over forty fitness classes per week. With your initial membership, you’ll receive three 10-day passes for friends (etc., etc.). What aspects of a club were you expecting that we may be missing?”

When he or she replies with the obvious, “nothing,” they’ve bought!

To read all of my closes, get a copy of Sales Closing for Dummies. To listen to them delivered and learn how to write your own, listen to my audio titled, Academy of Master Closing — available in both CD and MP3.

This information is copyrighted by Tom Hopkins International, Inc. for reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).

Overcome the “I want to shop around” Objection

Have you ever heard this from a potential client: “Okay. Well, thanks for the information. I want to shop around and will get back to you if this is really what I want.” Unless you’ve only been in business a day or two, you have.

In most cases what are they really saying to you? They’re saying, “I want to know if I can get it cheaper somewhere else.” It’s usually a money issue when you hear those words. Occasionally, the client will not really be certain that the product meets their needs and be looking for other colors, options, or services along similar lines to what you have offered. [Read more…]

What’s the Decision Process You Need to Match by Charlie Cook

Charlie Cook Marketing Expert“I hate sales pitches!” You may have felt this way yourself or heard others say it. If it’s such a common response, what’s the best way to organize your marketing to attract new clients and customers?

While getting all aspects of your marketing right can be complicated, the simple truth is that you can attract many more clients and be far more successful by doing just one thing. [Read more…]

Closing Sales = Sweet Success

In the selling profession, closing is the winning score, the bottom line, the name of the game, the point of it all. If you can’t close, you’re like a football team that can’t sustain a drive long enough to score. It does you no good to play your whole game in your own territory and never get across the other team’s goal line.

Many salespeople are afraid to close. They’re afraid of asking for the order. They’re so fearful, you would think they were having to personally reach into someone’s pocket for their money. To have any kind of success in sales, you have to get over that fear because this is where the money is.      [Read more…]

Be Aware of Unique Cultural Needs in Sales

If you do business with people from cultural groups different than your own, you would be wise to invest some time understanding their cultures as well as their needs in terms of your products and services. You may not necessarily be doing business with people in another country, but with those from other countries who have relocated near your place of business. If you want their business, you have to understand their needs on many levels.

Also, if you are building a web site for your business, you need to consider who the viewer might be and their cultural situations. Some words and phrases just don’t translate to have the same meaning that you may wish to impart, thus, confusing the visitor.  Or, worse, the translation may unintentionally be offensive when made.

Here are a few things you need to be aware of when dealing with clients from different cultures than your own.

* Be patient when building trust and establishing relationships. People from countries other than the U.S. generally need more time to build trust. It is important to observe a greater degree of formality when becoming acquainted than you would use with a client who was born and raised locally.

* Speak more slowly than you normally do, but don’t raise your voice because you think the other person can’t understand you. Volume doesn’t usually increase comprehension. Also, don’t speak down to them as if they are children.

* Avoid slang, buzzwords, idioms, jargon, and lingo. These can all be easily misunderstood by those who may not speak your language as their primary language. Just use simple language until you can get an idea of what level of your language they understand.

* If you’re using an interpreter, make sure the interpreter meets with the people for whom they are interpreting before you actually begin to sell them your product or service. This will allow the interpreter to learn the language patterns, special terminology, and numbers used by the people they’re translating for. If you’re business sells to other businesses, you need to be certain you are both using the same product identifiers or other codes specific to that company or industry to ensure that you both understand the needs and terms of any transaction.

* Pay attention to nonverbal interaction cues. The word yes or an affirmative nod often means, “Yes, I hear you,” in Asian cultures, not, “Yes, I agree.” If you see a nod and move on to closing the sale, you may frighten them off with what appears to them as over-zealousness.

Culture is as much an influence on people as their personal experiences, so knowing about your clients’ customs and traditions only makes sense. That way, neither you nor your client will be made to feel uncomfortable and selling can be done.

If you need or want to find out about another culture, some wonderful resources are available to steer you in the right direction and tell you everything you need to know. Spend some time browsing through your local library or bookstore to see what’s out there. Or go online and look under the topics of “protocol,” “diversity,” or “cultural awareness.”

Depending on your product and how much business you might be doing with clients from cultures unfamiliar to you, a good source we found is: http://www.usaprotocol.com/. This where you’ll find the 25th Anniversary Edition handbook for U.S. diplomats on proper etiquette and protocol for engagements with people from diverse cultures around the world.

Remember: Knowledge is power when properly applied to the right situation.

Learn more now>>

This information is copyrighted by Tom Hopkins International, Inc. for reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).

 

 

The Top 10 Killers of Sales

Any veteran in business can tell you a story about the one that got away. Veterans who are successful in business today learned valuable lessons from those situations and, hopefully, never repeated them. As challenging as the business of selling might be for some, losing sales is unbelievably easy. Learn from the mistakes of others so you won’t have many of the sad stories to tell.

Sales Killer #1 – Lack of professional appearance. If you want people to listen to you and heed your advice regarding your product or service, you have to come across both in appearance and demeanor as a professional expert. This means that you are appropriately groomed. You walk with confidence. People will buy from you based more on your conviction and enthusiasm for your product than they will your product knowledge. [Read more…]