Are You Selling to the Wrong People?

by | Monday Oct 08, 2018

Are you Selling to the Wrong People?

Have you ever experienced the annoying sales person selling you something you don’t want?

It may have been a retail experience in a store when the sales person jumps on you.   Maybe it was at a trade show when someone wanted to give you a demo of their latest gadget.   In all cases, you just weren’t interested enough to spend your time with them.  The sales person never learned to recognize a buying signal from a prospect.  They have only learned to pitch their wares.  

What is a Buying Signal? 

A buying signal from a prospect is simply a sign of interest in your MESSAGE or value proposition. It opens the door to a conversation.   If you don’t get one, then don’t engage with the prospect.    

One of the biggest mistakes we see salespeople make is engaging with prospect that will never buy from them.   In the process of engaging they also erode the trust they are trying to earn.   

How to Create Buying Signals 

Create buying signals through words or phrases in your message (value proposition) that cause the prospect to engage in what you are saying.  These are called sales triggers.  So, you must build a statement that reveals the value you offer to a prospect.   Some call this the elevator pitch, but we like to call it your MESSAGE because your goal is not to pitch anything.  We want the prospect to open the door and give us permission to start the sales conversation.  

For example, when someone asks you what you do, you simply reply:   

I am with XXXX, we create efficiencies (Trigger 1) that improve your customer and employee Experience (Trigger 2) 

If they connect, then it means they may be interested.   If they don’t, you don’t have to spend time with them.   This is exactly what we want.    

Don’t spend time with prospects who don’t connect with your message. The number one cause for a sales person to miss quota is selling to people that are never going to buy from them.   It is just as important that the sales triggers in your message dissuade prospects from engaging with you as persuade them to engage with you.   

Recognizing a Buying Signal 

If the prospect gives you a buying signal, you must know how to recognize it.  The first step is to understand that a question about your message is a sign of interest in the sales trigger and a buying signal.   

Here are a few examples: 

  • How do you do that?  
  • I have done that before and it didn’t work! 
  • That sounds interesting, tell me more!   

Read between the lines 

Don’t make the mistake of answering the buying signal with a barrage of product centric gibberish.   You must read between the lines when they give you a buying signal and respond properly.   

You must “guess” at what is really going on for this prospect.  Why are they responding this way to your message?  Read between the lines.   The buying signal is revealing something going on in their business and you must figure out what.   Here is what we mean:  

When they ask the questions listed above, it could mean the following: 

  • They bought the competition, and the project failed. 
  • They have tried to create a homegrown solution to the problem and couldn’t get it done. 
  • They have had the problem in their business before. 

Make an educated guess to understand their situation and then ask a question to clarify your understanding.    

So, the next time you meet a prospect for the first time, listen for a buying signal.   If you don’t’ get one, walk away my friend walk away…   

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