Let’s dive straight to this. People buy from people they like, trust and comfortable with. If you are able to make prospective customers admire you then half the job is done, the question then is; how can you establish a friendship with strangers so as to make it easy to convert them to customers?
Only one sure solution. It does not matter whether you are handsome or beautiful or ugly this one method works magic. And that is by asking the right questions. Most people think selling is the ability to talk more, that was before, today talking too much will not result in sales.
What has changed?
The answer is customers have more information about your products more than you ever imagine. Let’s talk about building a relationship. Using questions with strangers makes it easy for them to talk. A good salesperson talks about 20% of the time while the prospect talk 80% of the time. Let me share my personal experience with you.
I hated sales and marketing, I’ve worked as a sales rep briefly with Businessday Newspaper for 3 months and I was only able to sell one advertising space, In fact, I did not sell, the man bought it from me out of sympathy and that made me hate sales and marketing more and more. Why? Because I did not know what to do to convince people to buy.
When I join ProcessCARE and my role then was sales and research manager I stumbled on a book SPIN selling by Niel Rackhim, that book changed my life. If you need SPIN selling ebook I can send it to you, click here to send your email address. The book taught me how I can use questions to grab attention, establish a relationship and build trust. This is how I was able to build a relationship on the phone or face-to-face.
Using website design service lots of people are familiar with; I’m invited for to a meeting to discuss what our company can do to help the client establish an online presence
Me: Good afternoon Mr. A, thank you for taking the time to review our company and for inviting me to your office. For us to better serve you do you mind if I ask you a few questions?
Me: What kind of business are you into?
Prospect: We are a real estate firm, we need a website and I just want to know the cost of building one for us
Me: Mr. A, the cost is not the problem my job is to make sure you get a fair price, but I will like to know if your company sell houses nationwide or within Lagos
Prospect: We sell nationwide
Me: So what is your role in the company?
Prospect: I am the general manager
Me: Wao, you are the one in charge of growing the company, you have done a great job so far
Prospect: My brother it’s not easy in this country bla bla bla
At this point, he will start telling me about his previous job, his education, politics in some cases. He is becoming comfortable with me, nothing is said about website design, nothing is said about me, nothing is said about my company, everything about him. This shows I care about him by listening
Therefore selling is not talking, selling is listening and establishing friendship is the backbone of sales engagement.
This listening attitude helped me learned a lot from CEOs and many experienced people. I have to tell you, most of the meeting those days resulted in a sale
Before I got the SPIN book, what I normally do is to walk into someone office;
Tell them who I am
Tell them the company I work with
Tell them how good we are
Tell them what we have done
Use big tech grammars
Pull out my price booklet
Explain some more
Talk some more
Talk about how good our company is…
The only time the prospect talk is when he asked me the price, I will tell him the price and talk some more believing that the more I talk the more he will be convinced. At the end what I will get is – I like the service please drop your number and we will call you back and they will never call.
So, you use question is to establish a relationship, build trust, makes the prospects see you as a friend, that way you will not waste energy, people will like you and you will sell faster.