It’s Not About You!
Questions – the best tool in your sales toolkit. All too often, sales people are perceived as having to pitch, sell, convince, charm, and so on. In reality, be 180 degrees different, don’t talk about you – find out “What’s in It For Them?”
Answering a Question with a Question
Sounds annoying – but in reality its very effective. Seek to answer the prospects question with a question task manager app.
So, when they ask for example, “do you supply X” or “tell me more about the services you offer” – you will want to answer their question, but don’t, not just yet anyway.
Answer along the lines of “well, we have a range of services we offer, but before I go into them, can you tell me the issues you are facing, and what you’ve looked at so far?”
Soften you question
The three most important words in communication are Nurture, Nurture, Nurture.
Answer every question with a question, but soften it first.
Some softening statements include:
- “Good question”
- “Interesting point.”
- “A lot of people ask that.”
- “I’m glad you asked that.”
- “That sounds important to you.”
- “That makes sense.”
A bare question can sometimes sound blunt or not very nurturing. It helps to soften with a short phrase that will ease us into the question. Don’t be quick with answers to your customer’s questions. The struggle to understand the question thoroughly is part of reversing a question posed by a customer or prospect. You can also begin to answer a question, then stops to create the reverse.
Very often you will probably know all about the issues they are talking about, but don’t become the instant expert, ask them more questions about their situation, such as “tell me more” or “how does that impact your business”. Take time to explore the issues they are having, even though you probably have seen them many times before.
Vary your questions
Another approach to think about when asking questions is to use a menu approach, ie “when you looked at this before, did you find out x was happening or was it more a case of y happening”
Also, think about using third party stories – “we had another company with a similar problem, and they invested in ….. and as a result …..how does this relate to your situation?”
The Short but Simple Reverse
Very often, all we need to do ask a powerful question is use short words such as
- “how so”
- “which means”
What makes these so effective is their brevity, providing we use the right tonality and do it in a nurturing way
Rule of Three
Expect it to take at least three questions to get to the real issues. Do not be afraid to ask three questions or more sometimes to really find the key issues.
When your prospect starts to talk about personal issues and how it is affecting them, then you know you have found the real issues. Take time to discuss carefully before gently summarising and moving on with the sale process.
Learn more from our video here:
So, using questions is one of the best approaches you can use in sales.