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  • 4 Effective Responses When a Prospect Asks for a Discount

    “Look, we really love your product, but it’s outside of our price range. Can you offer any discount?”

    Offering discounts can be a great way to speed up a slow-moving deal. But if you’re adjusting price before negotiations begin, you’re doing a serious disservice, both to yourself and to your product.

    Instead of caving right away, there are four tried-and-true responses you can give to turn the conversation around in your favor.

    What’s Wrong with Discounting Immediately?

    So, what’s wrong with discounting immediately. Like I said, discounting isn’t always a bad thing. It can speed up deals and give you leverage for reducing the service you’re offering.

    But there are three very real problems to offering a discount before negotiation has taken place.

    A. Devalue

    First, your buyer subconsciously devalues your service. After all, if you’re really going to deliver the ROI your pitching, why do you have to immediately discount the price?

    B. Forfeit’s Power

    Second, the instant you propose a discount, you lose some of your negotiation power. You lose this negotiation power as you’ve taken the price, your biggest variable for negotiation, off the table.

    C. Shifts the Focus

    And third, discounting shifts the focus. In the buyer’s mind, you’ve shifted the conversation from the value that is being exchanged to the emotional topic of money. Rather than the buyer thinking about the impact that your service is going to have on their business, they’re now thinking about what is going to cost them in the opportunities they will lose from this lack of cash flow.

    So with those three things in mind, it’s important that negotiations on price and discounting happen towards the end of the sales process rather than at the beginning of it.

    That being said, if a buyer does request a discount too early in the process, there are a few things you can do. And that brings us to the four word-for-word responses that’ll deflect, turn the tables, and even give you the selling advantage.

    So response number one is…

    1. The Value Probe

    The Value Probe.

    The first and easiest way to deal with a buyer bringing up the idea of a discount is to say this word-for-word:

    “We can definitely have a conversation about the numbers. But first let’s make sure that we’re on the same page about our service being a good fit for your needs…”

    So, what does this response do?

    First…

    It Reframes the Conversation

    You buy yourself time to reframe the conversation. Right now the buyer is focused on price alone. But at this point in the sales process, you need to be demonstrating value. What do you offer that your competition doesn’t? And most importantly, how does it solve your buyer’s problem? This is the perfect time to focus on that instead of the expense.

    Second…

    It Let’s You BUILD on Your Value

    It also gives you more time to build value before the numbers do eventually get discussed. What additional benefits do you offer that you haven’t talked about yet? What value can you bring to the table that the buyer isn’t already aware of?

    Alright, let’s look at response number two…

    2. The Obstacle Identifier

    The second way to deal with your buyers asking for discounts is to answer your buyer’s question with a question.

    When your buyer asks if you’re able to discount you can ask:

    “That is a fair question. Do you see price being a major obstacle in this conversation?”

    This immediately makes the buyer reconsider if they really want to discount or if they want to get the deal done. It also pushes the pressure back on the buyer to justify why there should be a discount in the first place.

    Bonus tip here. Notice show I said “that’s a fair question” before I responded with my question? The point of this extra step is to acknowledge to the buyer that I have heard them, but I need more information to answer their first question.

    This little extra ping stops the question coming across as manipulative and lets the buyer feel in control. Which of course is a great way to keep the relationship on solid footing.

    Okay so number three…

    3. “Why?”

    The “Why?” response.

    Are you feeling brave? Well when the buyer asks you about discounts, you can politely respond with the question:

    “Why?”

    Now admittedly, this does take some guts. Your buyer definitely won’t be expecting it. And taken the wrong way, it could spark some defensiveness. That’s why you’ve got to be polite when you say it and genuinely look for an answer from the buyer.

    A slight look of confusion helps sell this too. The point is you need to look sincere. Like nobody else has ever asked you this before, rather than aggressively asking them “WHY?!”.

    Responding with this question of “why?” when a buyer asks for a discount, stops the buyer from negotiating on price just for the sake of negotiating.

    In my experience buyers often respond to this “why” question by saying “I was just wondering…” which you can then shrug off and carry on with the sales conversation.

    Alright and response number four is…

    4. The Tit-for-Tat

    The Tit-for-Tat. This is in my opinion the cleverest approach. Because with the right wording, both you and the buyer will leave the conversation with added value.

    Here’s how you do it.

    When somebody asks for a discount, say something along the lines of this:

    “I can reduce the costs if we [extend the contract/change the tier of service/get a referral/etc.].”

    This turns a concession in randomly discounting your pricing into an active negotiation. Okay, you can offer a little give on price. But what will YOU get out of things?

    Now this isn’t something you want to deploy with every buyer. Because truth be told, you can shut down the discount request with most leads using the three previous responses without giving anything up.

    But if you’re dealing with a tough customer where price is obviously a major pain point, this response could be your ticket to a winning sale.

    See, it’s always a good idea to walk into your sales meeting with what’s called a BATNA:

    • Best
    • Alternative
    • To
    • Negotiated
    • Agreement

    A BATNA means if plan A doesn’t work because it’s too expensive, you’ve got a plan B that you can offer the buyer to make sure that you don’t leave empty-handed.

    Often you will find the buyer wants the extras you are offering with plan A and so when you explain you can only discount if you move them to plan B, they will fall in line with the original pricing.

    See how that works?

    With a bit of wordsmithing and gentle nudging, you can either shut down their discount request or move them to a higher-value sale.

    Win-win.

    The post 4 Effective Responses When a Prospect Asks for a Discount appeared first on Salesman.com.

    21 June 2024, 7:58 am
  • 5 Sales Questions To Uncover The Buyer’s Pain

    Are you stuck asking sales questions that take your prospects round  in circles?

    Prospects mention issues, but they're vague – surface problems that don't reveal the real challenges they're facing.  Well, there's a goldmine of valuable information hidden just beneath the surface, and the key to unlocking it lies in asking the right questions.

    This video will equip you with 5 powerful sales questions designed to cut through the fluff and uncover your buyer's hidden pain points.  By getting to the root of their problems, you can finally offer solutions that truly resonate and get deals done.

    Common Pains of Prospects

    There  are four key areas where these the buyers pains often appear. Once we understand where the buyers pain likely lives, we can then attack it with our questions.

    • Financial Pains: These often manifest in statements like “Revenue is up, but profits are down” or “We lack financial transparency for sound decision-making.”
    • People Pains: Phrases like “Low team morale” or “Employee turnover to competitors” can signal these issues.
    • Productivity Pains: Look for clues like “Missed deadlines” or “Excessive meetings hindering workflow.”
    • Process Pains: Statements like “Inefficient hiring process” or “Overwhelmed customer service department” indicate potential problems.

    Question  #1 “What’s holding you back?”

    Here's the first question to unlocking your buyer’s deepest pains:  “What's the main thing holding your company (or division) back from growing right now?”

    This might seem like a basic question, but trust me, it's a goldmine. It forces your prospect to get specific. Did they groan about “stagnating sales”? That could be a symptom of financial  pain (“We're not generating enough revenue to hit our targets”). Maybe they mumbled something about “disengaged employees”? That hints at a people pain (“We're struggling to retain top talent”).

    Here's the magic: This question acts like a shovel, digging beneath those surface complaints to expose the root of the problem. It not only unearths their pain point (financial, people, productivity, or process), but also sets the stage for even more powerful questions later on.

    Think of it like this: Right now, you're a consultant, not a salesperson. You're diagnosing their business woes. This question is your initial diagnostic tool, giving you a glimpse into the bigger picture.

    We'll get even more targeted later on, but for now, master “What's holding you back?” and watch those hidden challenges come flooding to the surface.  This is just the first step to turning you into a trusted advisor who can offer solutions they can't refuse.

    In the final step, we'll get super practical and ask “What's stopping you?” from fixing this problem right now.

    Question #2: “How do you plan to solve this?”

    Alright, sales nation , so you've identified the prospects main pain point using question number one. Now, let's get even more intel. Here's your second secret weapon: “How do you plan to solve this?”

    This might seem obvious, but it's a goldmine of information. Here's why:

    • Uneducated Buyers: They'll likely shrug and say they're not sure. This is your chance to shine! You get to educate them on how your awesome service solves their specific problem. Remember, you're a consultant, not a pushy salesperson. You're offering a remedy for their pain.
    • Educated Buyers: Maybe they have some ideas, especially if they're further along in the sales process. But there's obviously a reason they haven't tackled it yet. This question uncovers the roadblock holding them back.

    Here's the magic:  By understanding their current plan (or lack thereof), you can tailor your approach in the next step. Maybe their solution is flawed or incomplete. Maybe they're simply overwhelmed and don't know where to start.  Either way, you've got the key to unlocking the real value you can offer.

    By asking “How do you plan to solve this?” you open the door to uncovering the “why not” behind their inaction. This sets the stage for question number three, where we'll use that information to our advantage.

    Question #3: “What’s your deadline to solve this?”

    We've exposed their pain point and identified their lack of a solution in the first two questions. But here's the million-dollar question: “What's your deadline to solve this problem?”

    This might seem simple, but the answer tells you EVERYTHING. If they shrug and say “no deadline,” that's a red flag. It means the pain isn't urgent enough for them to prioritize a fix. They're not ready to buy, and trust me, chasing these leads is a recipe for wasted time.

    However, if they give you a specific date or timeframe, that's gold! It shows they're actively seeking a solution, making them a highly qualified buyer. This is someone worth your time and effort.

    Here's the key: A deadline tells you two things. First, it reveals the urgency of the the prospects problem. Second, it hints at their budget and decision-making authority. After all, solving a big problem by a tight deadline always requires some resources.

    We'll tackle budget and authority next, but for now, remember: deadlines are your friends! They expose urgency and potential buying power, making your path to closing the deal much clearer.

    Question #4: “What does your boss think about this project?”

    We've pinpointed their pain point, exposed their lack of a solution, and identified their deadline. But hold on, there's one crucial piece missing: the power struggle happening above their head.

    Question four: “What does your boss think about this project?”

    The question might seem like a casual inquiry, but it's a goldmine of information. Here's why: sometimes, your buyer might not be the actual decision-maker. They could be stuck needing approval from their manager for budget or greenlight.

    Imagine this: They tell you their boss is breathing down their neck to fix this problem. Bingo! That signals they likely have both the budget (since their boss is pressuring a solution) and the authority (since they're actively searching for ways to fix it). This translates to a smoother, faster sale for you.

    But what if they say their boss isn't on their case?  Uh oh. That could mean a long, drawn-out sales cycle where you have to convince multiple people. You might have to dilute your message as your contact relays it upwards. Not ideal.

    Here's the takeaway: This question cuts through the fluff and reveals the true level of urgency and decision-making power.  We'll tackle the final question to truly unearth their deepest pain point next.

    Question #5: “What's stopping you from solving this problem today?”

    Almost there! We've peeled back the layers, exposing the pain point, their lack of a solution, the deadline looming over them, and even the boss factor. But there's one final question to truly ignite that buying fire: “What's stopping you from solving this problem today?”

    This might seem basic, but trust me, it's a game-changer. See, all those previous questions were about the future – deadlines, boss approval, hypothetical solutions.

    Now, we're yanking them back to the present moment. What's the actual roadblock preventing them from fixing this issue right now?

    This question intensifies their pain. It forces them to confront the immediate consequences of inaction. Maybe they lack resources, are overwhelmed by other priorities, or simply don't know where to start.

    This is gold for you.  By understanding their roadblock, you can tailor your approach. You can offer solutions that address their specific challenges, turning your product or service into the missing piece of their puzzle.

    Imagine this: They say, “Honestly, I'm drowning in tasks and don't have time to implement a new solution.” Perfect! You can showcase how your service is easy to integrate and minimizes their workload.

    Remember: This question qualifies your lead. It separates those who are genuinely motivated to solve their problems from those who are just kicking the tires. When you have a buyer who identifies a clear roadblock, you have someone ready to take action.

    The post 5 Sales Questions To Uncover The Buyer’s Pain appeared first on Salesman.com.

    20 June 2024, 8:03 am
  • 15 minutes 3 seconds
    The Secret Formula to Ask Effective Sales Questions

    Ever feel like your sales questions are hitting a dead end? You ask, they answer “yes” or “no,” and the conversation goes nowhere.  What if there was a formula to ask questions that get your customers talking and expose their real needs? That's exactly what we'll crack the code on in this video. We'll break down the L.E.T.S. framework, a powerful tool to understand your customers and close more deals.

    Understanding Open-Ended and Closed-Ended Questions

    Before diving in, let's talk about question structure. Questions are either open-ended or closed-ended.

    Open-ended ones are like opening a gate, inviting a flood of thoughts.

    While closed-ended ones are like hitting a stop sign – you get a simple “yes” or “no.”

    In sales, we often rely on those quick “yes or no” questions. They're easy, but they limit your understanding of the customer's needs.

    The key is knowing when to use each type. Imagine you want to know if someone wants a promotion. A closed-ended question might be: “Would you be happy with a promotion?” But an open-ended question like: “What would an ideal career move look like for you?” gets you way more valuable information.

    Think of open-ended questions as conversation starters that uncover needs, while closed-ended ones help confirm details and move the conversation forward. We'll use both strategically in the L.E.T.S. framework.

    With that in mind, let’s break down the steps in this effective framework where each new type of question we ask, in this specific order takes us closer to getting the next step of the sales process agreed to and confirmed by the prospect

    Step #1: Logical Questions

    The first step is Logical Questions.  Think of these as getting down to business. These questions help you understand the specifics of what your customer wants to achieve. They're like gathering intel – the “what” and “how” of their situation.

    Here's an example: Let's say you're selling a new marketing tool. A good logical question might be, “Who else on your team would need to be on board to use this new system effectively?”  (Ask engagement question along the way)  This gets you thinking about who else has a say in the decision and how your product fits into their workflow.

    Logical questions can also be closed-ended to confirm specifics.  For instance, “Do we need to get the marketing director involved to make a decision on this tool?”   (Ask engagement question along the way)   See how that clarifies things?

    These logical questions set the stage for the next step, which is all about emotions. We'll dig into that in a minute, but for now, focus on getting those clear, fact-based questions out there. They'll help you understand the customer's situation and pave the way for a more emotional connection.

    Step #2: Emotional Questions

    Alright salespeople, got those logical questions down? Now let's add some feeling to the mix!  We're moving on to Emotional Questions.

    These questions dig into the “why” behind the customer's needs.  We talked about the “what” and “how” with logical questions, but here we want to understand what motivates them to solve this problem.

    Imagine you're selling a project management tool. A great emotional question might be: “If this new system helped streamline your projects, what would that mean for you?”   This gets them thinking beyond just the features and focuses on the positive impact it could have on their work life.

    Sometimes, people might not quite see the emotional benefit. That's where close-ended emotional questions come in.  For example, “Would getting this project management system finally eliminate some of the stress you feel managing deadlines?”  See how that clarifies the emotional connection to solving their problem?

    These emotional questions help you connect with the customer on a deeper level and show them how your product can truly improve their situation.  Next up, we'll explore Trigger Event Questions, which will help you pinpoint specific moments where the customer's problem becomes most urgent.

    Step #3: Trigger Events.

    Okay, we've been diving into the “what” and “why” with logical and emotional questions. Now, let's get specific about the “when” with Trigger Events.

    These questions connect the customer's emotions to a specific event that makes solving their problem urgent.  Imagine you're selling cybersecurity software.  A good trigger event question might be: “What's changed in your company's security needs since the recent data breach?”  This ties their emotional concern about security to a real-world event that makes them more receptive to a solution.

    We can also use closed-ended trigger event questions to pinpoint the impact.  For example: “Did the recent data breach affect your company's ability to meet its quarterly earnings goals?” See how that gets them thinking about the specific consequences of not addressing the problem?

    Trigger event questions turn a “nice-to-have” problem into a pressing need.  They light a fire under the customer and make them more likely to take action.  Coming up next, we'll explore Summary Questions, which help solidify your understanding of the customer's situation. Stay tuned!

    Step #4: Summary Questions

    Almost there, salespeople! We've covered a lot of ground with logical, emotional, and trigger event questions. Now, let's wrap it all up with our Summary Questions.

    Think of these as a way to tie a neat bow on the conversation and create a clear, memorable takeaway for the customer.  We want to summarize the situation you've uncovered and show them you understand their challenges.

    Here's an example:  Let's say you're selling marketing automation software.  A good summary question might be: “So, it sounds like you're struggling to keep up with all the manual marketing tasks, which is impacting your team's efficiency. I see this a lot, and it can definitely lead to burnout. Does that sound about right?” This reminds them of the key pain points you've discussed and shows you're on the same page.

    We can also use closed-ended summary questions to highlight the urgency.  For instance: “If you don't find a way to automate these tasks, could it put your team's ability to meet marketing goals at risk?”  See how that reinforces the potential consequences of inaction?

    Summary questions solidify your understanding, build trust with the customer, and create a clear path forward.

    The post The Secret Formula to Ask Effective Sales Questions appeared first on Salesman.com.

    22 May 2024, 7:00 am
  • 13 minutes 31 seconds
    Sales development representative? DO THIS!

    As a Sales Development Representative, your role is to generate  inbound opportunities and optimize sales channels. Without a solid prospecting strategy, you might struggle to identify and capitalize on valuable leads. This could result in missed opportunities and stagnant sales growth. But to truly excel in your role, you need to master the four steps outlined in this video. Without these steps, converting leads into customers becomes challenging. Stay tuned as we dive into each step:

    Step #1: Conduct Thorough Research

    Alright, step one in our journey to sales mastery is all about hitting the books—or in our case, diving deep into research. Think of yourself as a detective, your mission? To uncover those hidden markets and channels where your dream customers are just waiting for someone like you to show up. It's not just about guessing where they might be; it's about using solid data to back up your moves. This means getting cozy with customer behavior, analyzing profiles, and even going a little deeper  with the insights to pinpoint exactly where these potential buyers are.

    So, how do you start? Begin with the basics:

    • What do your potential customers like?
    • Where do they hang out on?

    The best way to uncover this information is to look back at your previous customers and find the trends that link them together. Did they all come from the same sales channel? Same email within a cadence? Do they all want to discuss a specific product feature?

    It’s always better to reverse engineer success rather than trying to create it from scratch.

    Use this info to guide your prospecting efforts, making sure you're not just shooting in the dark.

    Now, you might be wondering, ‘What's next after finding where these folks are?' That's where the magic of lead generation comes into play. Stick around because that's the game we're diving into next.

    Step #2: Learn Lead Generation

    Moving on to step two, we’re talking about lead generation. This isn’t just a buzzword your marketing buddies throw around; it’s the bread and butter for any Sales Development Rep. Think about it like fishing – you’ve got your pond, you know exactly what you want to catch, now it’s time to put your line in the water.. But instead of fish, we’re after leads, and instead of a pond, we’re diving into those markets and channels we talked about earlier.

    To generate those sales leads you need to master the art and science of cold calling and emailing. Yes, I can hear the groans from here, but trust me, this is where the rubber meets the road. If you’re thinking of skipping this part, let me stop you right there. The top sales development reps?  They’re wizards at this game. Cold calling and emailing are your direct lines to potential leads, so it’s time to dial in your skills.

    First up, cold calling. This isn’t about just picking up the phone and hoping for the best. It’s about confidence, knowing your pitch inside and out, and most importantly, listening. That’s right, listening to the person on the other end can tell you everything you need to know to make that sale.

    And then there’s cold emailing. This is your chance to craft a message that not only gets opened but gets a response. Personalize it, make it relevant, and above all, make it clear what’s in it for them.

    Creating cold emails that book meetings is easy. Think about your content from the perspective of hitting the right person, with the right message, at the right time.

    And hey, once you’ve got a handle on this, it’s all about expanding your network. Stay tuned as we dive into networking next, because who you know can be just as important as what you sell.

    Step #3: Networking

    Alright, we’re moving into the realm of networking, and I’m not talking about your internet connection. This is step four, where face-to-face interaction becomes your secret weapon. Networking is all about building those real, trust-based relationships that can open doors you didn’t even know existed. Think of it as planting seeds that could grow into lead-generating trees.

    Now, you might be wondering, ‘How do I even start with networking?' Simple. Begin with the circles you already move in. Attend industry events, seminars, and workshops. Don’t just be a wallflower; engage, ask questions, and share your insights. Remember, the goal is to be genuine; people can smell insincerity from a mile away.

    Ever thought about how a casual chat over coffee could lead to a goldmine of leads? That’s networking for you. But hey, don’t put all your eggs in the networking basket. Up next, we’re diving into social selling, a game-changer in how we connect and sell in the digital age.

    Step #4: Social Selling

    This isn’t just about posting random stuff online; it’s a strategic move to keep you on the radar of your potential clients. Being top of mind isn’t about spamming their feed—it’s about showing up as the go-to expert they can trust.

    Choosing the right platform is crucial. Are your prospects hanging out on LinkedIn, Twitter, or maybe Instagram? Wherever they are, that’s where you need to be, sharing content that resonates, engages, and educates. But remember, it’s not a one-size-fits-all deal. Tailor your approach to each platform to strike the right chord with your audience.

    Now, how do you turn posts into trust and opportunities? By being consistent and authentic. Share your insights, comment on industry news, and engage in conversations. This builds your reputation as an authority in your field, someone who knows their stuff and isn’t afraid to share it.

    Even if you don’t feel like you’re an expert, there are two things to consider:

    1. You have likely discussed your product tens if not hundreds of times. This might be the first time your buyers have looked at products in your sector. To them, you are an expert in your specific space.
    2. Even if you’ve only been in your job 6-months, you’re 6-months ahead of your peers who are only just getting started. You might not be the most knowledgeable person in your space, but you can absolutely help anyone who is a few steps behind you.

    So don’t feel nervous about coaching, helping and advising your peers and prospects over social media. It’s usually the best way to get attention and drive more authority in your space.

    Remember, social selling isn’t a quick fix; it’s about building relationships over time. Stick with it, and you’ll see how powerful it can be in generating those much-needed leads.”

    I've added the call out to another video to make this section more practical.

    Feel free to do the same in your scripts and drop the link to the relevant video you want to link to in the script for the editor to add to the YouTube description.

    The post Sales development representative? DO THIS! appeared first on Salesman.com.

    20 May 2024, 7:00 am
  • 18 minutes 15 seconds
    Ultimate Cold Email Tutorial - Book More Meetings in 2024

    There are many Cold Email Tutorials on YouTube  but this is the most effective process that I know.

    If you've ever wondered why some cold emails set up meetings like clockwork while others vanish into the abyss, you're not alone.

    Every day, professionals spend an average of 2.5 hours checking their inboxes, sifting through a mix of potential opportunities and, let's face it, spam.

    The truth is, email remains a powerhouse for customer acquisition and retention, especially for small to medium businesses. But there's a fine line between a strategic cold email that opens doors and spammy attempts that end up ignored.

    The distinction? Personalization, relevance, and offering undeniable value.

    In this video , we're diving into a framework that sidesteps the common pitfalls of generic outreach and positions your emails to not just get opened, but to compel action.

    Get ready to transform your cold email approach from a shot in the dark to a strategic, meeting-booking machine.

    Step #1 Get Attention

    Alright, let's talk about the game opener in cold email outreach: grabbing your buyer's attention without coming off as a jester in the court of sales. You want to hit that sweet spot where your buyer's eyebrows go up in intrigue, not in disbelief. It's about striking the right balance between being eye-catching and maintaining the gravitas of a trusted advisor.

    First off, your secret weapons are the subject line and the first line of the email. Marketo says the magic number for subject lines is seven words. Yes, just seven! But how do you make those seven words count?

    You open a curiosity loop that leaves your buyer hanging on the edge of their seat, wanting more.

    Think of the curiosity loop  as the trailer to the blockbuster movie that is your email.

    A killer “How to” or “What if” subject line that hits right where it hurts, their biggest pain points, and will stand out in the prospects inbox.

    That’s the subject line sorted. What about the first line of the email?

    Add a touch of Self-interest – Everyone's favorite radio station is WIIFM (What's In It For Me?), right? Now, for the golden touch: personalization. It's not just about slapping their name at the top of your email. It's about that first line resonating so deeply it feels like you've read their diary.

    A quick comment on their latest feature launch or a nod to their recent hiring spree shows you're not just another spammer; you're someone who's done their homework and genuinely cares about what makes their heartbeat faster in business.

    And here's where it gets even better: when you mix this strategy with the power move we're going to reveal in step four, you'll see magic happen. It's like adding nitro to your sales engine.

    Step #2 Demonstrate Need

    So you've caught their eye without resorting to the digital equivalent of streaking through the internet yelling about rubber duckies. Now what? It's time to show you're not just another pretty subject line; you're here to solve real problems.

    This is where you have to Demonstrating the prospects Need.

    Think of it like this: You're not just telling the prospect  you understand their struggles; you're showing them. And how do you do that? Through the art of storytelling, my friend. It's all about painting a picture so vivid, your buyer can't help but see themselves in it.

    We're going to use what I like to call the Reality Gap Method. It's like mapping out a treasure hunt where X marks the spot of their future success, and you've got the map.

    • Current Reality: You acknowledge where they're at, maybe struggling to hit those sales targets or drowning in inefficient processes.
    • Future Reality: Then, you dazzle them with visions of what could be. Imagine hitting those targets so often they start setting them higher, or streamlining operations so they're slicing through tasks like a hot knife through butter.
    • Reality Bridge: This is the golden bridge that connects their current island of frustration to the promised land of success. It's where you hint at the tools, strategies, or wisdom you're offering to help them cross over.

    Here's a quick template:

    “Hey [Name], just helped [Another Name] turn their sales slump into a victory lap.

    They were exactly where you are now, struggling with [Issue].

    With a few tweaks and some solid frameworks, they're now smashing goals left and right.

    Want to know how we did it?”

    No gimmicks, no fluff, just a straight shot from Problem Island to Solution City.

    Step #3 Give Proof

    So, you've piqued their interest and shown them a vision of what could be. But here's the kicker: why should they believe you? It's like when you tell a friend about this amazing burger joint, but they're like, “Sure, but is it really that good?” This is where you bring in the big guns: social proof.

    Imagine you're trying to convince your buddy to try that burger place. If you say, “Dude, even LeBron James eats there!” suddenly, they're all ears. That's social proof in a nutshell. It's not just you saying it's great; it's LeBron freaking James.

    In the world of cold emails, social proof is your LeBron. It's showing that others have trusted you and saw incredible results. This could be anything from a shoutout from a well-known brand, killer testimonials, to those shiny awards you've racked up.

    Here's how to sprinkle some of that magic into your emails:

    • Name-Drop Like a Pro: Mention that time you boosted sales for a big name. “After we worked with [BIG BRAND], their sales went through the roof!”
    • Stats That Stun: “75% of companies in [INDUSTRY] are now using our solution.” Numbers talk.
    • The Happy Clients Strategy: “Did you know [COMPANY] slashed their onboarding time in half with our help?” Who wouldn't want a piece of that?

    Remember, collecting these golden nuggets of social proof should be as routine as brushing your teeth. Make it a part of your process to ask for testimonials whenever you knock a project out of the park.

    So, have you ever been swayed by what others recommend? Imagine applying that power to your emails. Stick around because next, we're diving into how to turn all this trust-building and curiosity into action.

    Step #4 Call to Action

    Alright, you've got their attention, shown them the dream, and proved we're not just talking the talk. Now, how do we get them to take that leap? This is where your Call to Action (CTA) steps in.

    There are three types of CTAs you can play with, depending on what you're aiming for:

    Straight CTA

    This is your “let's grab that coffee” moment. You're direct, asking, “Hey, does it make sense to jump on a call to sort this out for you?” No fluff, just a straight shot to booking that meeting. Because if you've got the solution to their headache, why wait?

    Two-Step CTA

    Sometimes, it's more like sliding into their DMs before asking them out. You're warming them up with, “Mind if I send over more details?” or “How about I shoot you a quick video explanation?” It's about sparking that convo, especially if they're not quite ready to commit to a call.

    Breakup CTA:

    And then there's the “It's not you, it's me” message. If they've been ghosting your emails, hit them with a light, positive note like, “Seems like this might not be the right time for us. Cool if I check back later?” It's your way of saying, “No hard feelings,” while leaving the door open for the future.

    So, ever had to choose between going straight for the ask or playing it cool with a softer approach? Implementing the right CTA could be a game-changer, huh? Keep this in mind, because mixing and matching these CTAs based on the vibe you're getting can really amp up your cold email game.

    Pulling it all together

    Here is an example of how this four step framework might look:

    Hi [NAME],

    I was chatting with [NAME] last week, and he said I should connect with you.

    I was sharing that we help [INDUSTRY] salespeople close more sales in just 28 days, guaranteed!

    That is a bold statement, right?

    We have helped [COMPANY] increase their sales by [X%] in the past few months.

    Would it make sense to jump on a quick call to see if we can do the same for you?

    The post Ultimate Cold Email Tutorial – Book More Meetings in 2024 appeared first on Salesman.com.

    17 May 2024, 3:16 pm
  • 9 minutes 12 seconds
    Unlocking the Secrets to Closing the Sale

    Closing the sales is tough, I get it. You do all the work building rapport and qualifying the lead, only to choke when it's time to seal the deal. Sound familiar?

    Many reps leave money on the table because they wait until the very end before asking the big “will you buy?” question.

    Talk about awkward! No wonder we avoid it. My buddy Sam would sweat bullets trying to close at the final sales meeting. But my other friend Walter takes a smoother approach by closing throughout the entire sales process. He asks micro-closing questions after each call to see if the prospect is ready to move forward. That way, there's no big scary finale – just a series of small commits.

    Want to boost your commissions? Then get comfortable asking for the sale my friend! Sprinkle micro-closes throughout your calls. The more times they say “yes”, the likelier it is they'll say YES to that final purchase.

    Stick around, as I'll share a the 3 simple steps to micro-close throughout the sales process.

    Step #1: “Does It Make Sense To [X]?”

    Alright, let's dive into the first step of micro-closing, which might just be the simplest tool in your sales toolkit.

    Have you ever thought about just asking, “Does it make sense to [X]?” depending on what you're selling? This isn't just a question; it's your secret weapon. “Does it make sense for us to get this installed for you next week?” or “How about we jump on a call to sketch out a rough business case for your manager?” It's smooth, isn't it?

    What's genius about this question is it's all about timing, not commitment. You're not cornering anyone; you're just checking if the stars align for a small step forward. If they hit you with a “no,” it's not about you; it's just not the right time. And that's your cue to figure out what needs to shift  for the buyer to move forward.

    Why does this ninja move work so well? First off, it drops the pressure. No one's expecting a laid-back question like that. You're updating the prospect  on the process, nudging them to think logically about the next step without the emotional baggage of a hard sell. And here's the kicker: it's simple. It's about collaboration, not coercion. You're showing you care about being on the same page, building trust and rapport without even trying.

    Now, if you're nodding along, thinking, “This could change the game,” you're right. But what if you get a “no”? Stick around because that's exactly what we're tackling next.

    Step #2. “What Do We Need To Do To Move This Forward?”

    Hit a “no” on your first micro-closing attempt? Don't sweat it. Remember, a “no” isn't a door slamming in your face; it's just a nudge towards a different path. So the prospect says, “Now's not the right time”? Perfect opportunity to pull out your next move.

    Ask the question: “What do we need to do to move this forward?” This isn't just any question; it's like asking for directions when you're a bit lost. It's collaborative, not confrontational.

    Your buyer is your co-pilot here, guiding you through their buying  process. They haven't shut down the idea of buying; they're just not ready to take the leap. Yet. By asking for their opinion on what the  next step should be, you're not guessing what they want; you're letting them lay down the roadmap. This way, you're not playing a guessing game; you're building a strategy together.

    And if you want to notch up your game, sprinkle a little bit of social proof into your question. Something like, “I hear you. Company X was in the same boat and found that doing Y helped them immensely. Could that be a step we explore?” It's subtle, yet powerful. It shows you're listening, and it leverages the ‘follow the leader' instinct we all have.

    Step #3. The Loop

    Ever felt like you're running in circles with a buyer, getting “no” after “no”? Welcome to the final game-changer in our micro-closing saga: The Loop.

    Here's the play: you start with, “Does it make sense to do X?” They say “no.” Cool, no panic. You pivot, “What about Y, then?” Another “no”? Alright, onto “Z sounds good, how about it?” Still no?

    No problem, next you ask, “Alright, what do we need to do next to move this forward? ” It's like a dance, where every step, even a backstep, moves you forward.

    This looping isn't just a trick; it's the art of staying in the game until you both agree on the next move that makes logical sense. It's about keeping the conversation flowing, avoiding that dreaded silence where leads vanish. Sure, it might feel like you're on a “no” train sometimes. But remember, each “no” is actually a step closer to “yes.” IThe sales process is a  learning curve, for them and for you.

    As we wrap up, remember, those final sales meeting jitters? They're a thing of the past with micro-closing. Each time you have micro-closed throughout the sales process,  you've built up to this moment, making the final “yes” just part of the journey, rather than a bold   leap of faith. You've been in sync with your buyer all along, turning potential stress into just another productive chat.

    The post Unlocking the Secrets to Closing the Sale appeared first on Salesman.com.

    12 April 2024, 7:28 am
  • 20 minutes 51 seconds
    How To Sell A Product: 2024 Step-by-Step Guide

    In today's fast-paced market, knowing how to sell a product is crucial for business success,. he truth is, the art of selling has evolved, and staying ahead means adapting. The good news? I’m here to guide you through this transformation. To sell a product effectively, you need to navigate through six essential steps we'll uncover in this video. These steps are designed to not only grab attention but convert that interest into tangible sales. Let’s begin:

    Step #1: Find Your Ideal Customer Persona

    Kicking off our journey into mastering sales, the first thing you gotta nail down is finding your ideal customer persona. Think of this as detective work where you're piecing together a profile of your dream buyer. Why? Because aiming your pitch at the right crowd makes everything else smoother. You're looking for folks who get what you're selling, feel the pain it solves, and basically have their wallets out already.

    Now, you might be wondering, “How do I find these dream buyers?” Easy! Dive into your past sales and spot the common threads.

    • What job titles keep popping up?
    • Which industries?
    • Any patterns in company sizes or locations?

    This detective work helps you sketch out a buyer persona that’s not just a shot in the dark but a targeted blueprint of who you’re after.

    Now, why bother with all this profiling? Because knowing your ideal customer is like having a treasure map. It leads you to sales gold. Once you’ve got this down, crafting a killer value proposition becomes a piece of cake. That’s what we’re diving into next. Step #2: Build A Value Proposition

    Step #2: Define Your Value Proposition

    Alright, you've got your dream buyer in mind; now let's chat about your value proposition. Imagine you're at a party, and someone asks, “So, what do you do?” Your value proposition is that killer response that has them saying, “Wow, tell me more!”

    Instead of looking for the nearest exit. It's your sales pitch's secret sauce, promising your buyer why you're their best bet.

    Think of a value proposition as your business's pledge to your customers,

    minus the fluff and filler. It's where you spell out the perks of choosing you over the guy next door. But here’s the twist: it’s not just any promise; it’s a laser-focused, jargon-free promise that shows you get your buyer’s needs like no one else.

    Why’s it a big deal? Because when what you’re selling fits like a glove with what they’re itching for, it’s like magic. They’re more likely to say, “Where do I sign?” This alignment is crucial, and it’s your job to broadcast it loud and clear.

    Crafting this golden message isn’t something you leave to chance or pass off to a marketer who’s never chatted with your buyers. You've got to roll up your sleeves and build it yourself, with insights gleaned from understanding your audience inside out.

    A good structure to present your value proposition is – I help X person, solve Y problem, by doing Z thing.

    For me selling sales training to B2B salespeople and small business owners at Salesman.com I might say – I help B2B sellers, find and close more deals using proven, step-by-step frameworks.

    A rock-solid value proposition isn't just a nice-to-have. It's your secret sauce when we get to the last step: Closing. That's right, stick around because, in our last step, we’ll dive deep into how this all comes together to seal the deal.

    Step #3 Use A Cadence

    So, you've got a killer value proposition. Now, how do you get it in front of those dream buyers? Welcome to the world of sales cadence—a fancy way of saying “a killer follow-up plan.” Without a plan, you're just throwing darts in the dark, hoping to hit the bullseye.

    Here’s the deal: winging it in sales is like trying to bake a cake by guessing the ingredients. Spoiler alert – it doesn’t work. A structured sales cadence is your recipe for success. It simplifies your outreach, lets you scale without turning into a spam monster, and gives you insights to tweak and improve.

    The endgame of your sales cadence? To get your ideal customers to book a call, not to seal the deal right off the bat. Here's a pro tip: open a “curiosity loop.”

    Highlight a problem they might not even realize they have, tease them with the possibility of a solution, and make them understand that the only way out is through a call with you. If you spark enough curiosity about solving their issue, they’ll be dialing your number in no time.

    The final thing to do with your sales cadence, when you’re happy that you’re sparking enough curiosity to book a meeting is to systematize your outreach.

    Stick to a predefined series of sales activities, group them together into daily plays and then finally stick to the same message across multiple days to share the different angles of value that you can potentially offer the prospect.

    Now that you’ve got the gist of a sales cadence, stay tuned. Next up, we’ll dive into how to uncover and diagnose your buyer’s real challenges. Ready to become a diagnosis detective?

    Step #4: Diagnose Their Issues

    After setting the stage with your sales cadence, it’s showtime: the diagnosis call.

    We’ve lots of content on how to run a diagnosis call on this YouTube channel. There is also a full chapter on it in the Selling Made Simple book which you can download for free from Salesman.com.

    Something to think about within your diagnosis call though is to ease into your pitch with a smooth transition rather than diving straight into it.

    Imagine saying, “I think we can help. Would you like me to explain how?”

    When they say yes (because who wouldn't?), you've just earned the green light to share your solution. It’s like asking, “Mind if I show you a trick?” And everyone loves a good trick.

    This approach is gold. Why? Because it feels less like a sales pitch and more like you're offering a helping hand. You're asking permission, turning the whole conversation into a two-way street. It’s a game-changer, breaking the pattern of those pushy sales calls we all dread.

    Now, for the grand finale: moving towards closing without making it awkward. Picture easing into it with, “Does it make sense to take the next step?” It’s smooth, it's respectful, and it opens the door for them to say, “Yeah, let’s do this.”

    Now it’s time to learn how to follow up!

    Step #5: Follow up

    When you're following up and hitting a wall of objections, it's time for a reality check. First, sketch out where your buyer currently stands. Ask them to lay out the facts—the real numbers showing where things are at. Then, dive into how this problem is actually affecting them. Are they pulling extra hours? Missing out on personal goals? How's that making them feel? Stressed? Overwhelmed?

    Next up, paint a picture of what life could look like if they solved this issue. . Get the prospect to imagine hitting those sales targets, feeling the stress melt away, and regaining confidence.

    But here’s the clincher: measure the gap between their now and that brighter future. If that future doesn't seem worth the leap, it's your cue to amp up the appeal or dial up the pain of staying put.

    Your goal? Make that gap look like the Grand Canyon. They should feel like they’ve got no choice but to jump to the other side—with your help, of course.

    This can be the basis of the majority of your follow up communication with the prospect. You both agreed that they have a pain and they know you’re the right person to fix it in the previous diagnosis call. All you have to do now is make the pain of not taking action so great that they get the contracts signed.

    Step #6: Close

    Getting agreement that you can help doesn’t mean anything until the buyer pays the cash and your product is delivered.

    To do that we’re going to use the Salesman.com closing framework.

    Lots of sellers get stressed about the closing process. They think it’s this big, crazy, magical moment where you ask for the business and the buyer… maybe gives it to you.

    There is a better way of closing in sales. Follow this two-steo process –

    • Ask the question “does it make sense to…” It could be, does it make sense for me to send over the contracts or does it make sense to get this wrapped up today.
    • If the buyer sales “yes” then congrats, you just closed the sale.
    • If they say “no”, then you ask “No worries, what do we need to do to move this forward?”

    That’s it. Closing the sale shouldn’t be scary, it’s as simple as that.

    The post How To Sell A Product: 2024 Step-by-Step Guide appeared first on Salesman.com.

    10 April 2024, 7:24 am
  • 11 minutes 50 seconds
    5 Strategies to Increase Sales in 2024

    In this video we cover 5 strategies to increase sales no matter what you sell or the industry you sell within.

    Strategy number one is to make your value proposition more specific.

    1: Specific Value Proposition

    The more specific your value proposition is, to the needs of your specific buyer the more meetings you’ll book from your prospecting and the higher your closing percentage rate will be.

    Most sellers try and aim for a broad value proposition during their cold outreach thinking that if they cast a wider net, they’ll hook more prospects onto a call.

    This isn’t how it works in reality.

    Imagine you need to get rid of a body. I won’t question why you have a body that you need to get rid of… but it needs to be gone ASAP.

    Lets say you get an email that offers to get rid of whatever waste you have in your home. Well that is somewhat compelling. But if you were to get an cold email that shares a new way of getting rid of a body, when they need to be disposed of FAST, then obviously that’s the one you’re going to reply to.

    You have to be bold with your value propositions when engaging with potential customers.

    You have to avoid playing in the zone of indifference. Push the fact that you can improve or solve a specific problem to get out of this zone of indifference in the middle that most sellers play within.

    Next up, I want you to stop talking about features and benefits.

    2: Features, Benefits, Desires

    Stop talking about the features and benefits of your product. Literally, nobody gives a shit.

    Your widget or software has this button? Comes in this colour? Does this thing?

    Nobody cares.

    Instead, focus on the buyers desires.

    Think of the buyer's desires being at the very core of their decision making process.

    Let me give you an example:

    • Feature – com Academy has step-by-step training videos.
    • Benefit – The training videos will help you better implement our frameworks.
    • Desire – We will remove the stress and overwhelm from executing an effective sales process and achieving your financial goals.

    This third layer of value that we call desire should be the focus of 90% of your communication to the buyer. This only shifts towards the end of the sales process when we might communicate more of the practical features of the product as the prospect justifies their emotional purchase decision with logic.

    Next let's take a look at how we can put the right desires in front of more of the right prospects.

    3: Refine Your ICP

    If you are booking meetings, then you should constantly be refining your ICP or Ideal Customer Persona.

    B2B sales becomes way easier when you put the right message, in front of the right person, at the right time.

    Once you’re booking a steady stream of meetings from your cold prospecting each week, it’s time to sit down and refine your ICP.

    Look at all the people who booked a meeting with you and see what they have in common. It could be:

    • Job titles
    • Industries
    • Locations
    • Company size
    • Specific goals
    • Target pain points
    • Current solution
    • Buying process
    • Technologies leveraged

    Your goal becomes simple: Find more of the people who buy big and buy quickly.

    Stop wasting time with the wrong prospects. Start spending more time with the people that actually want to work with you.

    Once you have a better idea of your ICP it’s time to start building a step-by-step sales cadence.

    4: Step-by-Step Sales Cadence

    Most salespeople live in what I call the roller coaster of sales. That is, some weeks they prospect, other weeks they don’t. Some days they cold call, other days they chase their tails with another random task.

    That leads to an up and down, boom and bust cycle of results and failure.

    This is stressful for both you and your sales manager. Your sales manager wants to work with sellers who are foracastable. They value reliability in their sales planning almost as much as they do new revenue generation.

    That is what you need to implement a step-by-step sales cadence.

    You remove so much of the stress from the sales process and you’ll get your sales manager off your back if you can show them that when you put 100 prospects into your sales cadence, you book X number of meetings out of the other end of it.

    Having a proven, systematic prospecting system means that if you’re ever slightly behind on your numbers you can add a few more prospects at the top of the funnel. Heck, if you’re ever miles ahead of your numbers but you’re feeling close to burning out, then you can titrate these numbers down too.

    This allows you to work within your “stretch zone”.

    Working within your stretch zone feels good. You’re pushing yourself but it’s still fun. You feel challenged but not overwhelmed.

    Your stretch zone is where you’ll earn the most commissions, for the longest, most sustainable amount of time.

    And that leads us into the final and maybe most important sales strategy in this video, to micro-close more often.

    5: Micro-Closing

    Micro-closing is when we confirm where we are within the buying process with the prospect throughout each of our conversations with them.

    It might sound like, “OK, sounds like we’re a good fit, if I can solve X, would you commit to Y?” during a discovery call with a potential customer.

    Or even just asking “Does that make sense?” regularly during a sales demo.

    The most important thing is that you’re consistently micro-closing throughout every, single interaction with your prospects. This is because your buyers are human and humans are easily distracted.

    Micro-closing narrows the focus of a conversation. It can be used to pull a buyer back on track if they’re unsure what the next steps of the buying process is.

    Additionally, mico-closing keeps you informed as to if you are on the right track too.

    Lots of sellers don’t micro-close until the very end of a call or even worse until the end of the entire sales process. They then get hit with an abrupt objection or paniced rejection from the prospect.

    Micro-closing as you go throughout your conversations with the buyer allow them to tell you if you're helping them move along their buying journey.

    If not, you can ask them “OK, no worries, what do we need to do to move forward?” and if you have enough trust with the prospect, they will coach you on how to close them.

    The post 5 Strategies to Increase Sales in 2024 appeared first on Salesman.com.

    8 April 2024, 9:47 am
  • 7 minutes 22 seconds
    Creating Urgency in Sales (Obliterate the Status Quo)

    If your buyers don’t have a reason to move forward in their buyer’s journey, then they will stand still.

    This leads to 26% of all deals that are forecasted as a likely win, to turn into a “no decision” according to CSO insights.

    That is a massive amount of revenue that you’re leaving on the table every quarter. It could be the difference between hitting quota or not.

    So, let's take a look at why this happens and then what we need to do to create too much urgency in our buyers that they get the deal done, quicker than ever before.

    Pain of Implementation

    The main thing that kills urgency in B2B sales is the “pain of implementation”.

    This is where the buyer has casually come to the conclusion that the pain of implementing the solution and then seeing the benefits, is more painful than just plodding on with the issues they are currently facing.

    For example, lets say someone is dramatically overweight. They might come to the conclusion that even though the benefits of losing the weight and becoming healthy would be life changing, they don’t want to go through the effort of dieting and exercising to get there.

    Outside looking in, everyone else can see that this is dumb. But for that individual, it makes sense in their brain. They’re thinking short term, rather than long term.

    In a business context, lets say that the prospect is struggling to use excel spreadsheets to complete all their financial reporting. You offer them a new software solution, designed specifically to fix this issue, it seems like a no brainer for them to get started working with you, but they don’t.

    It’s likely that the prospect feels the pain of learning a new tool and then getting the benefits of that software don’t outweigh the small, niggling pain that they’re in right now where excel crashes once every couple of hours.

    You’ll know if you’ve a lack of urgency in your deal because of the pain of implementation if you get hit with objections like:

    Which begs the question, how do we turn these objections on their head, add more urgency to the deal and get it over the line?

    To do that we need to re-enforce the “reality gap”.

    The Reality Gap Method

    If the buyer doesn’t have a clear understanding of their current reality and their future reality then they can trick themselves into a state of procrastination.

    Alternatively, if the prospect truly knows the risk of staying where they are and the upside of taking action to move to the bolder, brighter future reality they could be living in, then the amount of urgency to make the change increases.

    It’s our job to coach the prospect to better understand their current and future realities with questions like these.

    Current reality:

    • You shared that this problem takes X time each week, what is the financial cost of that to the business?
    • What is stopping you from solving this yourself?
    • When does this problem need to be solved?
    • What happens if it doesn’t get solved by then?

    Future reality:

    • If you could stop this issue happening in the future, how would that make you feel?
    • What would be the knock-on, positive consequences of this being fixed?
    • What’s stopping you from getting started with this today?

    These questions need to be asked constantly, throughout the entire sales process. This is because buyers get distracted easily.

    Sure, right now you are their main priority but tomorrow something else is bound to break. The next day, their wife is threatening to leave them. The next week they’re not even sure if they want to be working for their current employer at all.

    Buying Temperature

    So, urgency needs to be managed at all times. If you haven’t spoken to your prospect for a couple of weeks, their buying temperature will decrease.

    So, urgency needs to be managed at all times. If you haven’t spoken to your prospect for a couple of weeks, their buying temperature will decrease.

    The prospect might have been past the “activation energy” of getting a deal done last time you spoke with them on the phone, but since then a bunch of other crap has been dumped on their desk.

    That means you must keep reinforcing the pain of their current reality and the pleasure of their bolder, brighter future reality regularly.

    That is how you build massive urgency and that is how you get the buyer to leap over the initial pain of implementation so that they receive all of the benefits you know that they will receive from your product.

    The post Creating Urgency in Sales (Obliterate the Status Quo) appeared first on Salesman.com.

    19 March 2024, 9:00 am
  • 14 minutes 4 seconds
    How to Weed Out Bad Clients – 9 Discovery Call Questions

    Want to find better buyers and weed out the crappy leads that only end up wasting your time? Then be sure to ask the 9 qualification questions we’re talking about in this video on each of your discovery calls.

    Diagnosis calls are slightly different to traditional discovery calls because they cover discovery, qualification, product positioning and micro-closing in a single call rather than spreading all of this out over multiple engagements.

    1) Uncovering Pain

    Is your prospect dealing with a problem? And are they in enough “pain” to drive the right amount of urgency to buy?

    A “yes” to both is downright necessary. And to get to the bottom of it, you can ask two questions in particular…

    “You booked this call with me today, what led to getting this call booked in?”

    What’s the main reason they’re talking with you right now? You’ll have to do a bit more digging of course. But even in the most tight-lipped buyers you’ll still uncover at least a kernel of truth.

    “What’s stopping you from solving this issue yourself?”

    One of my favorite follow-ups to the previous question. Not only does this question uncover any roadblocks to implementation you may hit down the road. But it also gives you a clearer idea of how big this problem really is. Because if it really was a problem, the buyer should have been working to solve it themselves.

    2) Timeframes

    Not all timelines will line up. And one of your chief concerns when qualifying is whether your prospect’s timeline matches your own.

    When do they want this problem solved? Today? This quarter? Next year?

    As a rule of thumb, the buyers you want to work with should all want to solve their problems quickly. Because if they don’t have urgency, they won’t be compelled to act. And that might mean feet dragging, ghosting, and an overall waste of your time.

    “When does this issue need to be solved by?”

    This straightforward question gives you no-bullshit timeline you can use to assess if your timeframes are a match.

    3) Confirming Fit

    And for this category, you actually need to ask yourself

    “Do I have the solution for this buyer’s problem?”

    Honesty is key here. The best reps don’t oversell their product’s capabilities. Why? Because they know a dissatisfied and duped buyer ruins reputations, doesn’t provide referrals, and never ever comes back to buy again. So you need to think long and hard about whether your solution will really make the buyer’s problem a thing of the past.

    4) Calculating ROI

    No matter how big or how small, every new solution takes effort to implement. Buyers need to change vendors, hire new staff, train on novel systems, or fight for a change to the budget.

    The question is, is the value your solution provides worth that discomfort?

    How much will they have to change to accommodate it? And when all is said and done, will they look back on the investment as a good purchase or one that ate up too many resources?

    You can start figuring that out by asking…

    “How would things be different if we solved this for you?”

    What will actually change for the buyer once they implement your solution? Is it a simple quality of life difference? Or does the switch lead to real change for the business on a fundamental level? This one’s key because no matter how well you think you understand the industry, every business is different. And asking the buyer outright will give you better insight into the real value your solution offers.

    5) Understanding Process

    Be sure your buyer is willing to adapt to your process before working with you. Check to see if they’re willing to stop working with current vendors, put in the necessary time for training, and whatever other “musts” need to be done to get maximum value from your solution.

    To get to the bottom of this one, ask…

    “When your organization has done similar projects in the past, what process needed to happen?”

    This question gives you a clearer idea of what lies ahead should the buyer be a reasonable fit. How much work will they have to put in to overhaul their system? How much work will you have to put into training and getting their team up to speed? Basically, is the work required reasonable or out of line?

    6) Agreeing Budget

    As Experiment 27 Founder Alex Berman told me in our interview…

    “Find the right people because if your buyers have a budget and they're ready to buy, it's very easy to close them.” Interview with Alex Berman, Founder & Chairman of Experiment 27 [23:35] – Salesman.com Podcast

    Budget talks can be touchy subjects, it's true. Which is why you may want to avoid the topic until later in the conversation.

    But on the other hand, you need to be 100% clear on whether your prospect has the funds to pay for your solution. Otherwise, what are we talking about here?

    “How are projects like this funded?”

    Not all projects fall under a clean and uniform budget. Sometimes they’re spread over multiple teams and departments instead.

    With this open-ended question, you’re getting a better idea of how many hoops your buyer will have to jump through to get proper funding.

    On top of that, you’ll have a better idea if they’re the final decision-maker or if they’ll have to loop in other department heads before settling on yes or no.

    7) Identifying the Champion

    Your buyer’s decision is going to be influenced by other individuals in the business. It could be heads of other departments, higher-ups in the C-suite, or even influential team members below them.

    That’s why it’s important to figure out who these other individuals (or “champions”) are before you decide the buyer’s a fit. And is there someone else you should be talking to here?

    “If you were to make a purchase decision, who else would help with that process?”

    Without asking the question directly, this subtler approach will help you uncover any other decision-makers that may influence the passing of the deal. It also avoids hurting the buyer’s pride. After all, no one wants to feel like they aren’t in charge here.

    8) Getting Agreement

    It’s up to you to get your buyer’s verbal commitment on the call. Otherwise, they’re liable to walk away after days or even weeks of your hard work. So when you’ve determined that a buyer is a solid lead, don’t end the call before asking the discovery call question below.

    “You’re a good fit to work with us. If we can solve X, will you commit to Y?”

    This time-tested formula has it all—validation, a hint of flattery, results anchoring. By asking this question, you’re tying your solution to a specific result. And equally importantly, you’re influencing the buyer to commit to that solution, provided you can achieve the results you promise. After that, the only thing left to do is nail down the specifics and sign the papers.

    So there you have it, 9 probing questions you should always be asking in your discovery calls.

    If you ask each of these questions, you’ll have all the intel you need to know if the prospect you’re talking with is a picture-perfect fit or a fish you should throw back to sea.

    The post How to Weed Out Bad Clients – 9 Discovery Call Questions appeared first on Salesman.com.

    14 March 2024, 9:16 am
  • 8 minutes 9 seconds
    Winning at Selling: The 3 Best Sales Strategies

    If you want to consistently win at sales then you need to be strategic in your approach.

    It’s not good enough to randomly be connecting with prospects and hoping that they will buy from you. You need to implement step-by-step systems that allow you to find and close business like clockwork.

    And that’s where the three sales strategies that I’m going to cover in this post come in.

    Right Message, Person, Timing

    The first sales strategy is designed to rapidly improve your prospecting.

    It’s deadly simple. For every prospecting activity you do, ask yourself if you’re sending the right message, to the right person, at the right time.

    If not, then don’t send it.

    This simple framework forces spammy sellers to stop spamming and it encourages sellers to share too much information to pull back.

    When I’m coaching the students in my Salesman.com Academy program I find that most prospecting issues come down to the fact that the individual isn’t:

    • Sending a message that is going to leave the prospect in a position where they are excited to book a call.
    • Connecting with the real decision maker that can move a deal forward.
    • Communicating at a point in the buyer’s journey where the prospect has enough urgency to get a deal done.

    Critique every single step of your sales prospecting cadence against the criteria of; right message, right person, right time and your meeting booking conversion rate will sky rocket.

    Which leads me to the next sales strategy of understanding “buying temperature”.

    Buying Temperature

    Understanding the required buying temperature for your prospects to commit to getting started is integral to sales success.

    Think of your sales process as needing a certain level of temperature put into the system before it hits an “activation energy” where the deal happens naturally.

    Your goal as a seller is to increase this buying temperature with every single interaction you have with the prospect.

    Every time you send a crappy email like, “Hey, not heard from you, just checking in?” The buying temperature decreases.

    Alternatively, every time you share an insight, build trust or create curiosity in the fact that your product is likely to help the prospect solve a painful problem, you increase the buying temperature.

    As the temperature in the system increases you go from the prospect thinking “I don’t care”, to “OK, I’m interested”, to “Let’s do this!”

    It’s only at the point that the prospect commits to becoming a customer. The sooner you can help them make that psychological shift, the shorter your deal cycles will become and the easier it is to increase deal sizes.

    So remember to ask yourself, “is this going to increase or decrease the prospects buying temperature” every time to attempt to interact with them.

    And that leads us into our third sales strategy. This strategy is how you practically increase your prospecting buying temperature by leveraging the “curiosity loop”.

    The Curiosity Loop

    The curiosity loop is essential when prospecting to book your first meeting with a buyer and when you’re trying to get a deal over the line.

    When you implement the curiosity loop you eliminate the risk of oversharing which is a trap most sellers fall into.

    Most sellers try to explain the problem that they solve and then how they solve it in their communications to the buyer.

    This often leaves the buyer with the feeling that they know the “how” and so they can then go and resolve the problem themselves. Of course nine times out of ten, they don’t solve the problem and continue living in pain.

    A much better way to increase buying temperature whilst keeping the attention of your prospects is to open a curiosity loop and then only close it on the next meeting.

    For example, in your cold outreach you might explain that you hypothesize the buyer has a problem. You share that you might just be able to solve this painful issue for the buyer.

    But rather than tell them how you will solve it, you ask them to jump on a quick call to see if you might be a good fit to work together.

    If you’ve sent the correct hypothesis of pain (right message), to someone who has this specific pain (right person), at a moment of time where they have the budget to resolve the issue and the power to make that final purchasing decision (right timing) then this person would be crazy not to jump on a quick call with you.

    Humans all, naturally have high levels of curiosity. When you can pique it and then give them a logical next step to fixing an issue, you’ll see your calendar get flooded with new meetings.

    The post Winning at Selling: The 3 Best Sales Strategies appeared first on Salesman.com.

    12 March 2024, 9:00 am
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