Do you Speak Prospect? The Importance of Question Based Selling

I’m very fluent in prospect. In fact, let me interpret some of the more common phrases prospects speak. The first part is what you hear . . .  the translation is what they are really saying.

  • I’m getting tired of Zoom meetings…
    • Translation: You’ve done nothing new that I haven’t already seen or heard.
  • Can you send me some information?
    • Translation: I’m tired of speaking with you, and you seem like a nice person, so this is my way of saying “Please go away” without hurting your feelings.
  • I’m not interested
    • Translation: During the conversation you talked about how great and wonderful your products, company, or services are, but nothing about me, my opportunities, or challenges.

To put it bluntly . . . your prospect is saying “Ya bore me.” I like this saying “Ditch the Pitch.” They don’t want a pitch, and it isn’t working.

Every business has these three things they think about all the time:

  1. Growth goals or opportunities to grow their business
  2. Obstacles to achieving their goals or obtaining their opportunities
  3. Finding someone to help them with #2 so they can achieve #1

If you are going to be relevant, and someone worth speaking with, you need to break the “Forgetting Curve.” Studies prove that we forget about 80-95% of what we hear in a week. The Forgetting Curve gets broken when two things occur:

  • The event is emotional
    • Think 9/11, weddings, graduations, etc.
  • The event was unusual or different
    • The conversations you have with prospects

How can you accomplish these two things? First and foremost, get out of your world and get into theirs. Make a statement that proves you look at the world like they do and then ask a “What” or a “How” question. Question based selling is ultimately the most effective. Example:

  • Statement
    • Many businesses we work with are (insert challenge here).
      • Examples—having a hard time finding new suppliers, opening new markets, hiring and retaining good employees, etc.
    • Question
      • What have you done to alleviate that situation?
      • How have you addressed that situation?

Relationships aren’t built on cold outreaches. They are built over time and your ability to break the Forgetting Curve. Be memorable, be consistent, and you won’t be boring.

Sales Development Expert, Jack Kasel 

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