Pre-Sales Checklist Part 5. More on Questions

We know that being prepared improves any performance.  You wouldn’t dream of getting up on stage without practice or preparation.  You wouldn’t think of trying to take a test without preparing for it.  Are those things as important as putting a roof over your head, or food on your table or saving for your retirement?  Are those things more important than helping your customers keep their doors open?

Hopefully you are reminded again about why it is so important to prepare before you sell.

More on Questions.

In the last article on questions we asked a keystone or building block question of a potential advertising client who was a contractor,   “How much is your average job?”  This is not a question that gets asked right away.  It has to be set up.

So here is your math question.  If it takes six calls to lead to an appointment and two appointments to lead to a bid and four bids to lead to a job, how many calls does your advertising need to deliver to lead to a job?  48 calls per job.

Join this author, John Cameron for a wonderful sales training webinar for one hour a week over seven weeks. John’s famous Selling When You Can’t See the Whites of Their Eyes 357 Page Workbook and the audio CD program is included.

Example of another important question later in your series of questions:

The important question here is how much is each sale worth?  If you can’t take on any new jobs, then it doesn’t matter.  If you have idle crews on salary, then it matters a lot.  How much could you spend to generate those 48 calls and how confident would you be that we could deliver them at that price?  We have contractors getting 20 calls a month and others getting 80.  And, I have to tell you that there is a direct cause and effect with not only how much they spend, but how much freedom they give us to design the right 30 second radio spot. 

Questions are not asked in isolation.  They must be set up.

Some of my favorite questions in the prospecting process are, “Do you have three minutes now, or is another time better for you?  Would tomorrow morning at ten be better?”

Other great questions with their setup statements:

When selling training:  I know that finding the time to train is tough. What if you were confident that I could reduce your folks’ call reluctance by ten percent, increase their appointments by that same ten percent and increase sales and referrals? Would you be able to invest three hours a week of your rep’s time for six weeks and a few hundred dollars per rep?

Activity Triggers/Action Items.

1. Ask questions in the right order

2. Preface questions with supporting facts

3. Know enough about your target audience to identify the key questions

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