The Art of Sales (Chapter III) — “Process”
To complete the trio of the series ‘The Art of Sales’, I decided to follow through with a third chapter of the. This chapter is shorter than it’s predecessors, and elaborates further on how to ask the right questions, while integrating those questions into a sales funnel, that may help you stick to a model, that assists you in in breaking down the sales process and ultimately closing a deal.
The sales funnel coming up, can be found in many variables, however I decided to break it down into four sections: Client Scan, Open Questions, Closed Questions / Tie Downs, (This is where the Mini Commitments are made!), and DECISION.
The Sales Funnel
1. SCAN CLIENT
- Get all the personal information about your client, as you possibly can. Get personally involved with your client. (This will help you later).
During the client scan, you are to get to know the client personally, and make them like you. Through initiating talks, you will quickly discover your client’s likes and dislikes, whether your client is direct or indirect, and if he or she is likely to chit chat, or prefers facts.
- Where are you from? What do you like to do there?
- Do you have kids? What are their names?
- What do you do? How did you get started in your career / business?
The questions are endless. Just fire away, and get a feel for your client. A good tip before going into whichever consultation or meeting is to find one thing that you admire about your client. Once you admire something about the person in front of you, it is hard to see him or her as a business target, and so you will easier find a connection with the person, and build rapport.
2. Start firing away questions! Get on point!
Start by asking your client OPEN QUESTIONS, for example:
- “Can you explain this for me?”
- “What’s important to you?”
- “How long have you been here? / How long have you been selling?”
- Why do you want to sell? What do you do?”
- What are your plans? Long term, short term?
- Are you looking to invest? Are you looking for a home? What are you looking to do with this home? Why?
Basically break down your “How’s”, “What’s”, “When’s”, and “Why’s”, until your client and yourself are comfortable with one another, and the conversation starts to flow naturally.
3. TIE DOWN your client using CLOSED QUESTIONS.
Once the conversation starts to flow naturally, you can start to ask your client more direct (closed) questions. Narrow it down:
- Should we agree on 4% commission?
- Should we agree on a day to meet? What time should we meet?
- Does it sound OK to you, if we list it at X price?
- If we find you a client who’s willing to come in pretty close to asking price, would you be willing to sell?
- Should we start bringing you clients this week?
At this point, what you really want from your client is a YES or a NO. No more long talks and no discussions. Put your clients in the picture, and get them into the feeling of actually selling their property. This will build confidence, as they feel that they are dealing with an expert sales person. At this point, it is also important to KNOW YOUR FACTS, so you can answer whichever question your client has about the sales process, taxes, etc.
4. DECISION MAKING TIME
- DO NOT LEAVE BEFORE YOU HAVE A CLEAR YES OR NO.
A decision must have been made before you decide to leave. Parting with your client before a yes or a no is given, could very easily lead him or her to continue looking for a property to buy with a different agent, or for a different agent to sell their property. Whether you have 5 minutes or 2 hours to convince your client to work with you, you have that time to assure them that you are quality and that they will get the most benefit by working with YOU, and nobody else than you. Stick to the process, and you surely will get the most out of your appointments and meetings with new prospects and/or returning customers, for the benefit of both you and your client.
I hope you enjoyed this series. Please give me feedback, and feel free to share it, if you believe that my words can help any of your relatives.
Checking out for now. Stay tuned in for future stories.