(Post 10 in the Sales Series)
In the last post, I listed out the three points of progress accomplished in a successful Set Up. This post is about the 3rd one- The Framework. Of course, you wonder why I’ve named this gear of the Sales Process the “Set Up”, right?
You might be thinking that we are setting someone up – we are not.
We are setting something up.
To my prospective Business Coaching clients in Edmond, OK (or perhaps to other business owners that want a focused 7 Gears of Sales Training Program conducted by 7th Gear onsite for your business) you are asking, “Chris, what are we setting up? I gots to know!” (movie line reference)
The reason why over 90% of unsuccessful presentations happen isn’t that the product wasn’t good enough or priced properly. It isn’t because of a lack of need for the services. It’s simply because there was not a successful decision framework being used by the prospect.
The thing you are setting up is The Buying Decision. (capitalization intentional – it’s that big of a deal)
Short of not working effectively, the #1 cause of failure in Sales is simply failing to get the buying decision made with the client.
So what do we do to ensure we get that decision made?
Glad you asked.
There is one moment of awkwardness we must respect, be prepared for, and be 100% intentional about bringing about: the moment of decision. Most salespeople “hope” this happens. As a good friend of mine always says, “Hope is not a course of action.” We must contemplate the reality that every single interaction with a client is an opportunity for a buying decision to happen. We must ask ourselves what we can do to ensure it happens and increase the likelihood of the decision being well informed and positively motivated.
Most people do not have an established buying decision process. When they are presented with a decision, this creates emotional stress as they have to choose between moving ahead or staying put. Staying put almost always feels like the safer state so we wind up with a response of procrastination. The world of “I don’t know, I’ll get back to you, I’ll think about this.”
It’s what I call the Land of Maybe’s where most salespeople go to die.
Successful salespeople know that most people avoid making decisions. Therefore, you need to learn how to build what I call the Decision Yardstick. And you introduce the Yardstick now, before the presentation but after the client has told you what their needs are.
Right now you want to introduce the concept of the impending decision that you know will occur to remove the hesitation about it while getting some agreement on how that decision will be made.
“So, Jennifer, I think I understand exactly what you’re looking for and I’m excited to show you how this will work for you. But I’ve got a question first. If we can find a (widget) that will meet almost every one of your needs like this, that, and the other, and you’re happy with the price, do you think we could move forward with the decision today?”
Then shut up and listen to whatever they have to say. Most of the time, clients will say something like, “I suppose so.” This makes your path to the buying decision so much easier and exciting for you both. If they say, “I don’t want to say yes because I don’t know.”
Great, you can now address the habit of procrastination and minimize it.
Reassure your client by saying, “I’m not asking you to make the decision to buy anything Jennifer. I know we haven’t even discussed the details of how it will work yet. I’m just asking that if this knocks your socks off, does everything you want it to, and it’s priced reasonably, would THAT be something you would want to do?”
Business owners and Entrepreneurs are invited to take my Free Online Assessment on the main page of the 7th Gear Website.
Other Articles of the Sales Series: