A Suspect Remains a Suspect until…
By Jack Kasel
- The suspect has a problem and they have told you it’s a problem
- You know what that problem is costing them
- The NEED to fix that problem
- They need to fix that problem NOW
Play The Sales Brew:
By Jack Kasel, Sales Development Expert, Anthony Cole Training Group
Make No Sale Before Its Time
Back in the late 70’s Orson Welles was the spokesperson for a wine manufacturing company and the company’s slogan was “We will sell no wine, before its time”. The tag line simply indicated some things simply should not be rushed.
If you try to harvest wine before it’s time, it will be flat, not reach its full flavor potential and quite possibly taste horrible. If you try to make a sale before it’s time, it will likely stay in your pipeline longer than it should, the prospect may not communicate like they had been. You will feel frustrated because you thought they were REALLY interested. If you don’t follow a milestone-centric sales process you will try to harvest a sale much sooner than you should.
A suspect must remain a suspect until you know with full certainty the following four things:
- The suspect has a problem and they have told you it’s a problem.
- You know what that problem is costing them.
- They NEED to fix the problem.
- They need to fix the problem NOW.
Next, they have the Capacity to fix the problem, in terms of Time, Money, and Resources. Lastly, you have met all the decision makers and the prospect has given you a Commitment to make a decision (not that they will choose you, but simply they will make a decision). Then and only then, is it time to ‘harvest the sale”.
If you look at opportunities in your pipeline (or even sales you have lost recently) and did a real hard and critical self-examination, you would find something in the process I just outlined missing.
Lastly, don’t let the prospect dictate your harvest schedule. Just because they ask for a term sheet, a quote, or a proposal and you don’t have all items listed above covered, you simply need the courage to say something along the lines of “Now’s not the time”. If you acquiesce or fold like a cheap suit, the result will be a whole lot of wasted time.