1. Understand why people buy and why they don’t

Does your prospect need your product or want it – how do you know and is the prospect clear about this? Make them want it and let them justify why they need it.
2. Use your prediction skills to help you

Most behaviour and thoughts are predictable – better than chance alone.  Use this pattern of behaviour to your advantage, pre-empt their actions and influence them so they see the benefits of your suggestions
3. People buy from you not the organisation

It may be an overused cliché but people really do buy from people first.  No matter how great your products or services, if I dislike you I am unlikely to buy from you
4. Listen for and quickly identify buying motives

Why is your prospect buying from you?  Is it a good deal or value for money?  Is it a prestige purchase and will it make them look good? Or do they simply not want to buy but feel obliged to do so because of their competitors actions?
5. Do not try to hurt your prospect

If you tell your prospect why they need you they might agree but will resist because no one likes to be sold to – they like to buy
6. Help them realise they are hurt and then rescue them

If they tell you they are hurt – you can rescue them. Create the environment where they feel happy enough to reveal that they are hurt and you will convert more sales
Pre Call Planning

1. Always set call objectives

Where do you want the conversation to go – a sale, a stepping-stone to the next step or an appointment?

2. A little research pays large dividends

Like a good job interview, the more you know about them and their circumstances the better it is for you
3. Get the secretary on your side

They make a better friend than an enemy – after all it is they who decide which calls are put through, which appointments are made and kept and whose contract is put in front of the decision maker for signing
4. Do not pitch the secretary

It is a rare occurrence for the secretary to be the decision maker, although they can be an influencer.  Remember they are rarely interested in what you do – they want to know is your call worth putting through or not
5. Qualify the M.A.N.(Money, Authority and Need)

Just because you are through doesn’t mean this person is the right one to speak to. Ask whether they have the ultimate decision or establish how contracts are signed

Understanding Your Customers

1. Think about your prospects’ circumstances

What are they likely to be doing when you call? What is their industry like, hours, behaviours and norms? Factor this into your calling
2. Alleviate suspicion

Chances are they will be suspicious of you and your motives – give them a reason to suspend their suspicion long enough for you to continue the call
3. Break their pre-occupation

If they are only half-attending to what you are saying, include an interest-grabber that will help them focus on what you have to say
4. Interest established early on

Do not build up to a crescendo – hit them with something that they find of interest straight away
5. Qualify the M.A.N.(Money, Authority and Need)

Just because they dealt with you last year doesn’t mean they are still responsible for it again this time – beware of assumptions
6. Ask if it is a convenient time after the interest statement

It is polite to do so, but only ask after what they have heard is of interest – otherwise they will default to “NO!”

7. Set an agenda

You would do this face to face or at in internal meeting – so why not on the phone? It helps you gain control but do not impose it, suggest it as a helpful strategy
8. Get control

If you do not control the call they will – then who knows where you will end up?

Identifying Needs

1. Establish the need / find the hurt
You have to establish why they might need or want to use your products or services – without this a sale becomes an accident
2. More needs are better than single needs (don’t quit after one)

The more badly ‘hurt’ the prospect, the greater chance you have of rescuing them. Probe thoroughly and establish as many needs as possible
3. Question Thoroughly

Most sales people do not ask enough questions – you will never fail to sell through too much questioning, whereas too few may do
4. Listen to their answers

Asking questions is great – but you must also sound like you are interested in the answers and not just questioning because you have been told to
5. Resist the urge to contribute with product knowledge

Your role in the questioning process is to gather info and not provide it – your turn to speak will come later
6. Pre-empt objections or price condition as necessary

If you think they will give you a specific objection pre-empt it or position your products and services in such a way that this is reduced or eliminated
7. Summarise their needs and get verification

This shows you are listening and have understood. It also helps the prospect realise they have a need for your service
8. Ensure prospects realise their needs

Without this you are fighting an uphill battle.  Make life easy for you and them
Making Recommendations

1. Match needs with Benefits

If you have identified their needs, match them with your rescue package in term of benefits to them
2. Only discuss items of interest

Keep extra information up your sleeve – you ma need to refer to it later and if not the prospect doesn’t need to hear it
3. Do not assume that customers will translate features to benefits

Remember people buy benefits not features – help them see the benefits by spelling them out

4. Establish commitment

Ensure your prospect gives you commitment to the next step or the sale as appropriate
5. Use Sharp Angles and Half Nelsons!

It is never too soon to close or pre-close
Handling Objections

1. Test every objection

They say ‘Buyers are Liars’ so test each objection before handling a false one
2. Listen, pause and empathise

Don’t be too keen to give your solution – customers like to feel they have stumped you.  Play the game
3. Qualify your understanding and rephrase

Ensure you and the prospect are clear about the issue before diving in

4. Test concerns and ask whether they would proceed if answered

This should stop too many more objections being raised and ensures the true objection is being addressed
5. When in doubt use the three ‘F’s or the LIARS formula

There are many ways to address concerns – find those that suit you

6. Above all else, do not get defensive – be reassuring

Customers need re-assurance rather than allowing human nature make you feel and respond defensively
Closing Skills

1. Remember your ABC – Always Be Closing

The worst they will say is that they haven’t yet decided – so help them

2. Vary the close to suit the situation and the prospect

You don’t want to sound like a broken record so vary your techniques and closes
3. Don’t be scared of getting a ‘No’ – it’s the worst they are going to say

The best time to decide is when you are there with them – sales rarely get stronger over time
4. ‘No’ means you can handle the next objection before closing

If they say no – find out why and ask what you need to do for the no to become a yes
Adding Real Value

1. Remember that people treat you as you let them so treat them as you would like to be treated

Be friendly, business-like and professional at all times – build the relationship and change with it
2. Add value to your products and services

What can you do to add value rather than just sell more?
3. Select your words carefully and include power words that incite action

Think about the words you use and their implication and connotations
4. Attitude is all!  Develop a positive style

Always half-full – in fact practically over-flowing!