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Generate Leads, Set an Appointment. Once the appointment is set, the next part of the Sales Mountain is where we really begin to make the ascent to the top. I know what you may be thinking. Now that I have the appointment set, I have my chance to talk about all of the things I can do to help the person. Buzzzzz. Wrong answer. I don’t know how many times I have met with someone and they show up and as we call it throw up. They talk only about themselves, how great their product is, why we should do business with them, even though they are selling water slides and we live at the beach.
When you get together for an appointment, the first objective of the meeting should be to establish trust and rapport. Find common ground, people, places, likes or dislikes that give you commonality to talk about. It has been said that people will do business with people they like and trust. This is partially true. People will do business with people they like and trust provided the person can satisfy the primary customer wants or needs. If you can satisfy a clients wants or needs they don’t have to like you. If they like you but you can’t satisfy their needs and wants they won’t buy from you. If you can satisfy their needs and wants and they like you, you are golden and you will have a customer for a long time.
One word of caution here. Be genuine and authentic. Attempting to establish trust and rapport in a superficial way will fail. I have been in meetings where I was asking questions about a person’s background or family and in some cases I would realize the person across the table just wanted to do business. I would stop and move on because the meeting wasn’t about me, it was about the customer.
One time my family and I were in a store shopping for furniture. The kids were about 10 at the time. I was just beginning learning about sales so I was armed and ready to deal with the sales people. This one unlucky sales guy approached us. At the time I wasn’t really in the mood to talk to a salesperson anyway, so here is this guy and one of the first words out of his mouth was you have great kids. Now, in retrospect I know I was being a bit harsh, but all I could think about was how the heck did he know anything about my kids and his attempt to establish trust and rapport in this way was almost an affront to me by using the kids to get through to us. He did not read me well at all.
For salespeople at stores, I know this is a difficult situation which is why I like compensation based salespeople not commission based. By paying a wage, the salesperson can be truly interested in making sure the customer’s needs are satisfied, not seeing how another sale can be made for the benefit of the salesperson. It’s an inherent conflict of interest that can be an obstacle. For me personally, when I am shopping, I like it when someone simply comes up, introduces themselves, and says if there is anything you need or I can be of help just let me know. That’s it. For people that want to look around it’s not intrusive. For people that want to open up a bit and further the conversation they will. Everyone’s style is different and everyone’s needs are different. There is no good way to find the right trust and rapport, however, it’s amazing how I have met people with seemingly nothing in common only to find out either we grew up in the same neighborhood, kids have the same birthday or something small that creates a little smile and light on our face when we find something to talk about.
The good news is that once you have established a good trust and rapport the ascent up the mountain becomes much easier. For those of you thinking now you can go into why your products or services are so good, that is the bad news. There are a couple more steps to be taken.
The next one is…. Stay tuned for next week’s Straight Talk. If you would like more information on the unstoppable sales system please contact our office.
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