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Gerry Weinberg & Associates, Inc. | Southfield, Michigan

Asking Questions

Nick was having a real string of successful closes. The experienced salespeople were jealous. But then Nick started having a problem.

The last three sales were canceled within days of being made. In one instance, the color was all wrong. In another, the customer said that she couldn’t wait two weeks. Finally, although the quality of the product was first rate, the customer decided she couldn’t afford it. In every instance, none of the folks wanted to have any further discussion – the orders were canceled. Period.

Nick decided that he really needed to attend the company sales training program.

Later that same day, a young couple came in and chose the highest- quality and most expensive product in the store.

“This is the one we want. We’ll order it now.”

As Nick was writing up he order, he stopped and stared at the couple. He could not believe the words coming out of his mouth.

“I hope you don’t change your mind, but let me ask you something. When you first came in, you were looking for a moderately priced item, and you’ve selected the most expensive item in the store. Are you sure you really want to do this?”

“You’re right,” replied the woman, “I’d probably think that tomorrow, but looking at it now, I know the price is worth it. Yes. We want it. No doubts.”

When you first meet with a new prospect, how do you position your product or service? How do you characterize its various feature, functions, and advantages? Which elements do you emphasize as having the strongest potential appeal to the prospect?

It’s difficult to determine which aspect of your product or service will hold the most meaning for the prospect until you understand the prospect’s motivation for the potential purchase. Once you’ve discovered that, you’ll be able to position your product or service as a best-fit from the prospect’s perspective.

So, what motivates people to buy? There’s been a lot written on the topic. The prevalent theory is that people buy to either gain pleasure…or avoid pain. Broadly speaking, that’s absolutely correct. In fact, psychologists suggest that those are the two reasons that drive people to take any action.

Jane was having problems uncovering accurate information during her discussions with prospects. Her conversations during sales calls tended to be unfocused, and she spent a lot of time pursuing options that her prospects ended up rejecting. Her manager suggested she try something called Negative Reversing.

Negative Reversing is a “reverse psychology” selling technique. It helps you steer a conversation in a particular direction to explore another avenue or test a prospect’s reaction to a particular aspect of your product or service.

If the prospect responds favorably, you continue to explore the topic. If the prospect is cool to the topic or reacts unfavorably, you move to another topic.

Have you ever wondered, “What am I doing wrong?” or, “How can I take my practice to the next level?” If you have, you’re not alone, and you’re in luck. Our newest book release, Asking Questions The Sandler Wayanswers both of those quandaries and reveals so much more. In the book, Sandler trainer and author, Antonio Garrido, outlines how he revitalized his practice by changing his approach. Below we have identified a few key takeaways from the book.