Cindy here. If you’re like I was in my early days in sales, the prospect of using the rest of your days washing floors in a convent starts feeling like a reasonable option when some things just don’t land no matter what you do. I’ve got a tip for you.
First, a confession. I admit, after many years of face-to-face sales, that I have an unfair sales advantage. As much sales training that is available about sales processes and buying techniques, reading body language, doing homework on your prospect, etc…sometimes that’s not enough.
If you are in the business of “one-call-closing”, it can be irrelevant how “good” you are – some people are simply not wired to buy the first time they are exposed to a new product, idea, service. You do your best work, pull out all the stops, hold nothing back, you have a fantastic product, even a killer promo! Yet, you can’t close the deal. What’s with that?!
Well, sometimes, it’s not about you. “Those” people seem to be everywhere, especially when you are having a rough day having anything close to acceptable results. Even the most seasoned sales professionals experience this phenomenon, knowing it is to be expected.
‘Tis the season for State Fairs, so let’s consider an example: Say you are your company’s best promoter, set up in your booth for the duration of the entire fair, doing demo after demo of the chopper, mopper or stoppers your company sells. Your company considers you “that good” at explaining the solutions of your genius widget. Anyone with a need even remotely close to what you provide would pull out their Visa. Except some don’t. Because they can’t. IF they are interested, they might even watch repeatedly, or seek your stage out later in the day – and not buy. You repeat that you only sell your device at the fair and you have a “Fair Special” that expires when the fair ends in 3 days! Um, too bad. Your interested prospect lingers – that’s a good sign, possibly a buying signal. If you really push a sale to these wonderful folks, you need to remember your “3-day right of rescission” stands a darn good chance of being utilized.
These “Ready-Aim-Aim-Aim-Aim-Aim-Fire!” types have all they can do to pull the “I’ll take it!” trigger. Time and information helps them to lower their buying “risk” as they don’t want to make the “wrong decision” for themselves, based on not enough information. In contrast, the “Ready-Fire-Aim” buyers that don’t need that much detail before they give you their payment – no, make that an order of two (their friend MUST have one as well) – and hurry it up because the corn dog stand awaits! Geez.
What gives? Well, let me whisper to you my unfair advantage. See, I am a hand analyst, too. Considering people don’t sit on their hands in public, I can tell from their fingers if they are likely to buy today – or not. A simple clue: Long, knotty fingers. People who posses this trait typically need lots of information, what might feel like a lifetime to process all that info, and some form of boundary or deadline (the State Fair ends in 3 days). Alternately, those possessing shorter, smoother fingers who love your product, easily want to know, what’s the bottom line – stat! – so they can decide or not and move on. Don’t confuse the two and let that hot iron cool!
What to do if you are selling to customers you can’t see? Do the same with your marketing messages. Speak to both. I’m grateful to my writing partner, WQ Kath, who very easily creates one-scroll-Blackberry-bullet-point written content for the shorter-fingered info gatherers/buyers. Some copywriters, like me, suck at that style and some are not really story tellers. That’s one of the reasons our clients have the advantage of Kath and I writing as a team. BTW…those bullet-point readers were not likely to get this far in this long post, so you know who YOU are. Just sayin’. For those like you, give detail, testimonials, stories, information over time with a deadline for action, if you want your prospect or client to DO something. You may need to exercise your patience muscles, yet these clients can become your most loyal fans. So worth it for them and for you!
You know you’ve “made it” when the person who has been oh-so-interested in your genius product at the State Fair sends his sister-in-law with 2 kids in strollers back to search for your booth on the last day of the fair with cash in hand…because you were that good!
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