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  • Category Archives Closing
  • An Easy Fix To Help You Close More Sales

    Guest Post By: Kitty Barrow

    One of my coaching clients (we’ll call him Bob), was completely frustrated with his closing percentage. He was doing his 5-step Introduction as we had scripted it out. He was building trust and rapport a lot quicker. He was able to modify how he presented based on why they said they would buy in the Introduction.  Yet his closing percentage hadn’t increased much and he couldn’t figure out why.k1

     

    Because Bob is a great student of his game, he recorded his presentation for us to review. As we listened together, within 10 minutes we were able to figure out where he was losing the sale.

    Does this ever happen to you? Do you ever sit down with a prospect. You know they need your product/service. They say that they need your product/service. You still aren’t able to get them to move forward at the end of your conversation? Do they end it with things like, ‘let me think about it’ or ‘call me in 6 months’? When this happens, does it drive you nuts?!?

     

    Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 8.53.25 PMWhat we discovered when listening to Bob’s recording was that he was making one of the most COMMON mistakes of all sales people.

    What is that?

    When asking them about what they needed to ‘alter or change’ about their current situation, often they would speak of their pain. Then Bob responded like most sales people. He said, ‘Ok’ and moved on to the next question. ALL HE SAID was ‘Ok’ and moved on!!  Bob didn’t dig deeper into the pain of their current situation. Bob admitted that since they spoke of their pain, then he thought they understood their pain. Plus, he is a sales person and like most sales people, Bob wants people to like him.  He thought that if he got them to speak of their pain, then they wouldn’t like him.

     

    Here are 2 important rules that you MUST understand when asking your prospect about their pain:

    1. You must get them to talk more about how this pain is negatively affecting their life until they have some emotion tied to it.  They will NOT change their situation without the emotion.
    2. You did not cause their pain! You did not cause their pain so why would you think that digging into a pain that they have would cause them to not like you?!? If anything, once you help them realize how much it is costing them to stay in that situation and you offer a solution, you are going to be their savior. Think of it like being a ‘doctor of selling’. If you go in the doctor’s office and they ask, ‘where does it hurt?’, are you upset with the doctor that they want to know all about the pain and where and when and how? Of course you aren’t!

     

    The good news is that Bob was able to start digging into the pain revealed by his prospects and his closing percentage soared! Bob was making more money in LESS time. This is just one of the cool ways that we are able to help our Top Producers Edge Coaching Clients with their Time Management.

     

    k4

     

    A couple of questions that you can try the next time your prospect shares what they would like to alter/change with their current situation:

    • Mmmmmmm….. (just respond with a deep ‘mmmmmm’ letting them know that you feel their pain and they will often keep elaborating more)
    • Tell me more….
    • Is that frustrating?…..
    • Wow, what is the cost of that?….
    • How is that affecting you?….

    STAY HERE with your prospect until you are sure that they FEEL the frustration of their current situation before offering the remedy. And OF COURSE, the remedy is your product/service!

    After trying this out, please email or comment below with your results!

    Kitty Barrow is a Senior Partner and Executive Sales and Leadership Coach of Southwestern Consulting. She specializes in creating successful systems that are easily duplicated. Her motto is “Keep Things Simple for Stress-less Selling.” Kitty has trained thousands of sales professionals in companies such as Wells Fargo, MassMutual, New York Life, Xerox Global and Allstate


  • Closing is a Series of Stoplights

    Guest Post By: Emmie Brown

    Does this frustrating situation sound familiar? You get to the end of your presentation and ask, “What do you think?” Or, “Do you want to move forward?” Then, your prospect responds with “Sounds good, but I’ll need to think about it.”

    You did not get the prospect to move forward because you did not create enough momentum to get your prospect over the proverbial fence. Your prospect is left on the fence and you are left without a signed agreement in hand and nothing in your pocket.

    • To create the momentum that you need, one technique that works is the yes-momentum close. It is a series of questions designed to create momentum. The first question in the series is often a general yes question. This is a question to which you know the answer is going to be “yes.” And, you got it- the point is to build momentum.
    • The second question that you ask may be an alternative choice question. When you give people a choice of two positives, whatever they pick is fine with you. It is a question of how they will move forward rather than if they will move forward.
    • Next, you can ask a tie-down question. A tie-down question is a selling statement with a little hook on it, to get you to agree with the selling statement. The “hook” may sound like: “wouldn’t you agree,” “isn’t it,” “don’t you,” “right,” “aren’t you,” etc.
    • Last, you might ask a boomerang question. A boomerang question is when you respond to a question with another question. For example, at the end of the of the presentation, if your prospect is over the buying line and you have started to take them down this closing funnel, and they then ask you “how much is it,” you may answer with a question, “as long as it fits in the budget does this sound like something you would like to move forward with?” If they say “yes,” they have essentially said yes to working with you.

    Now, all you need to do is use an assumptive close and say, “Well, to get started, I just need to get your okeedokee right here.” If you take your prospect down this closing funnel, they are agreeing on minor points along the way to make the major point of working with you a foregone conclusion.

    Closing is never just one question that you ask at the end of the presentation. Closing is a series of incrementally more committal questions that funnels someone logically to a point of agreement. Think of it like a series of stoplights. If you get a green light you go to the next question. If you get a red light then they are a “no,” and you can stop. If you get a yellow light, then you have an objection to answer. Take someone through a series of questions rather than just asking one scary big “do you want to do this” kind of a question. Make closing feel smooth an natural by using yes momentum.

     

    Emmie Brown is an executive level coach and an expert in the Psychology of Scripting. Emmie started her career with The Southwestern Company as a student intern at the University of North Carolina. She continued to work with Southwestern over the next 10 years as a top producing sales manager until joining Southwestern Consulting in 2009. Emmie has spent the last 4 years traveling the country as a professional sales trainer, executive coach and business consultant with Southwestern Consulting and the Success Starts Now! conference series. She is also the author of the audio series Talk Less, Sell More and a breakout presenter at the Success Starts Now! sales training conference.


  • Navigate Handshakes

    Guest Post By: Dustin Hillis

    When it comes to identifying people’s natural buying behavior styles, one of the best ways to identify someone’s style is by taking note of how they walk, move and shake hands.

    Fighter

    Visual: Arnold Schwarzenegger has just entered the room, straight off of the movie Terminator.  He is coming straight at you!

    Fighters pump their arms and move their feet quickly.  It almost looks like a fast-speed, militant-style walk headed toward you.

    Once they get to you, they’ll often shake your hand in one of two ways.

    1. They’ll extend their hand in a tomahawk chop motion.

    -OR-

    1. They’ll extend their hand in a javelin-jab motion.

    –> Click here to continue reading…


  • My Favorite Closing Technique: The 1 to 10 Close

    Guest Post By: Amanda Johns Vaden

    Screen shot 2014-08-07 at 5.30.34 PM

    Today we are going to cover my number one favorite close which is what we call the 1 to 10 close. It’s a scale of 1 to 10. So this is how you use this close and then we can talk about where you use it. So how do you use this close, it’s probably going to sound something like this…

    “Now Mr. Prospect on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being completely non-existent and 10 being absolutely I’m ready to do this today where would you say that you fall on a scale of 1 to 10?”

    Then you pause and you wait for them to give you an answer. Now here is the best part of using this close, regardless of what they say the real magic happens next. So if they tell you they’re a 7 you’re next statement is this…

    –> Click here to continue reading…


  • Sales Tips: Characteristics of a Great Closer

    From: Gary Michels

    Gary MichelsAll great sales closers have a few things in common. They are:

    1. Great closers have a burning desire to close the sale. They know that closing one additional sale per day, per week, or even per month will greatly increase their income. As I have traveled around the country with great closers, I have noticed that they often have a score sheet on the wall or in their car and they can’t wait to fill in the numbers after closing the sale.
    1. Great closers really believe that their prospect is going to buy. Believing the customer will buy and selling with conviction greatly increases your chance of making the sale. Great closers expect success. They don’t think it was just “their lucky day.” In the car on the way to the presentation, they do a lot of positive self-talk, assuming the person is definitely going to buy. They say things like: “I am now pulling into the parking lot of my next big client!”, “I know that I have the best product and the best price for this customer, at this time. Now I will prove it to be true!”
    1. Great closers are sincere. People can tell when you are not sincere. Sincerity will always sell more than anything you do, and your lack of sincerity will almost always kill the deal. Look people directly in their eyes and tell them how it really is. Listen and really care about what they are trying to accomplish.
    1. Great closers talk low and slow. When you are calm and talk low and slow, your prospect will listen and believe you. If you talk too fast in a high pitched voice, you come across as pushy and tend to sound like someone they cannot trust.
    1. Great closers keep the close simple. Your prospect must fully understand what you are talking about.
    1. Great closers ask a lot of questions that will elicit a positive response. The more you get prospects saying “yes” during your presentation, the more likely they are to say “yes” during the close.
    1. Great closers realize the importance of names and examples. They will “name drop” appropriately throughout the closing process. Once again, remember that the close is supposed to be a natural ending to your presentation that makes people feel comfortable to move forward. By using names of other people whom they know, you subtly make them feel comfortable because they feel they are not taking such a huge risk. After all, others they know have done well with your product or service, and so should they.
    1. Great closers never argue with their prospects. They agree with objections and continue closing the sale. Whenever they must disagree with a prospect, they do it in a light, agreeable way. The rule of thumb that I like to follow is: “If I win the argument, I lose the sale!”
    1. Great closers never lose their cool. They let customers upset them occasionally, but they never show it. They always keep their voice low and a friendly expression on their face. If you get the reputation as a friendly sales rep, you can more easily build a large client base. Remember, more often than not, if people like you, they will overlook some of the bad points of your product or service.
    1. Great closers are politely persistent. They are not overbearing, yet they give prospects a number of chances to buy before judging whether or not the sale will actually happen. The key here is to walk the fine line of trying a little harder to get the sale without the prospect feeling any pressure from you.
    1. Great closers leave people happy. They make sure their prospects are in a good frame of mind before they leave. They want to brighten people’s day. They are also aware that their reputation precedes them in the community. Additionally, they know that by leaving prospects happy, they, too, will be happier, thus increasing their chance of making a sale at the next appointment. When I walk out the door of a prospect or client, I always say to myself: “I hope he or she thinks I am a cool guy!” If the prospect thinks that, I will likely get to work with that person at some point in the future.

    To learn more about Gary Michels visit his website here.


  • Building a Strong Company Culture – JOIN US THURSDAY 5/10 ON OUR MONTHLY CONFERENCE CALL

    JOIN US FOR OUR MONTHLY SALES TRAINING
    TELESEMINAR THURSDAY, MAY 10

    TOPIC: Building A Strong Company Culture

    Featuring Sales Experts:
    Gary Michels, Amanda Johns, Kitty Barrow

    The Southwestern Consulting’s Top Producers share tips that will give you the edge over your competitors – The TOP PRODUCER’S EDGE!  Take control of your own success.  Develop super sales skills.


    DIAL IN:  712-432-0404 (code 555575#)

    Thursday, May 10, 2012 at 8:00 PM EST
    (7:00 PM CST, 6:00 PM MST, 5:00 PM PST)

    LIVE Q&A DURING CALL ON FACEBOOK FANPAGE

    Gary Michels – Building a Clear V.I.S.I.O.N in Your Business
    Amanda Johns – Creating Loyalty by Creating Opportunity
    Kitty Barrow – Beginning With the End in Mind

    For more information on our Sales Experts, Click Here.

    ALSO join us on our Facebook Fan page for LIVE Q & A during the call at www.facebook.com/southwesternconsulting

    The dial in phone number is 712-432-0404 (enter code 555575#)

    Limited to the first 100 callers!


  • Characteristics of a Great Closer

    All great sales closers have a few things in common.

    1. Great closers have a burning desire to close the sale. They know that closing one additional sale per day, per week, or even per month will greatly increase their income. As I have traveled around the country with great closers, I have noticed that they often have a score sheet on the wall or in their car, and they can’t wait to fill in the numbers after closing the sale.

    2. Great closers really believe that their prospect is going to buy. Believing the customer will buy and selling with conviction greatly increases your chance of making the sale. Great closers expect success. They don’t think it was just “their lucky day.” In the car on the way to the presentation, they do a lot of positive self-talk, assuming the person is definitely going to buy. They say things like: “I am now pulling into the parking lot of my next big client!” “I know that I have the best product and the best price for this customer, at this time. Now I will prove it to be true!”

    3. Great closers are sincere. People can tell when you are not sincere. Sincerity will always sell more than anything else you do, and your lack of sincerity will almost always kill the deal. Look people directly in their eyes and tell them the truth. Listen and really care about what they are trying to accomplish.

    4. Great closers talk low and slow. When you are calm and talk low and slow, your prospect will listen and believe you. If you talk too fast in a high-pitched voice, you come across as pushy and tend to sound like someone they cannot trust.

    5. Great closers keep the close simple. Your prospect must fully understand what you are talking about, so be straightforward.

    6. Great closers ask a lot of questions that will elicit a positive response. The more you get prospects saying “yes” during your presentation, the more likely they are to say “yes” during the close.

    7.. Great closers realize the importance of names and examples. They will “name drop” appropriately throughout the closing process. Once again, remember that the close is supposed to be a natural ending to your presentation that makes people feel comfortable enough to move forward. By using names of other people whom they know, you subtly make them feel comfortable because they feel they are not taking such a huge risk. After all, others they know have done well with your product or service, and so should they.

    8. Great closers never argue with their prospects. They agree with objections and continue closing the sale. Whenever they must disagree with a prospect, they do it in a light, agreeable way. The rule of thumb that I like to follow is: “If I win the argument, I lose the sale!” One way to disagree in an agreeable way is to say, “I totally understand how you feel. Let’s move on to the next point.” If the disagreement occurs on a major point that could derail the sale, you could say, “If we were to work together, what would it take for us to move forward on this point?”

    9. Great closers never lose their cool. If customers upset them occasionally, they never show it. They always keep their voice low and have a friendly expression on their face. If you get the reputation of being a friendly sales rep, you can more easily build a large client base. Remember, more often than not if people like you, they will overlook some of the negative points of your product or service.

    10. Great closers are politely persistent. They are not overbearing, yet they give prospects a number of chances to buy before judging whether or not the sale will actually happen. The key here is to walk the fine line of trying a little harder to get the sale without the prospect feeling any pressure from you.

    11. Great closers leave people happy. They make sure their prospects are in a good frame of mind before they leave. They want to brighten people’s days. They are also aware that their reputation precedes them in the community. Additionally, they know that by leaving prospects happy, they too will be happier, thus increasing their chance of making a sale at the next appointment. When I walk out the door of a prospect or client, I always say to myself: “I hope he or she thinks I am a cool guy!” If the prospect thinks that, I will likely get to work with that person at some point in the future.

    Gary Michels
    CoFounder Southwestern Consulting™
    Author/Professional Speaker

    CONNECT WITH GARY ON LINKEDIN