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- 1:04 Be a peer.
- 2:10 Tonality matters.
- 3:34 Soften then clarify.
- 4:58 Drop the pitch.
- 5:54 Calm and steady.
- 7:10 Less rapport, more value.
- 8:30 Opening Play.
- 9:48 Disqualify.
- 11:01 Case studies.
- 12:29 Get feedback.
- 13:26 Ask for questions.
- 14:37 Be N.S.O.
- 16:02 Slow down objections.
1. Be a peer.
Many salespeople treat prospects like they’re royalty. But putting prospects up on a pedestal is the ultimate way to ensure that they’ll have very little respect for you. Just treat them like they’re a peer, a normal person in a peer-to-peer relationship.
2. Tonality matters.
The tonality is what makes the script actually work. Pay close attention to your pace, voice fluctuations, and the way you approach the different lines in the script. That’s what makes it authentic.
3. Soften then clarify.
Soften basically means giving them a little compliment. And then you want to clarify—or in some cases, redirect.
4. Drop the pitch.
Salespeople often start their conversations right out the gate with a pre-planned pitch, aiming to be the most persuasive thing the prospect has ever heard. But the reality is that all of your competitors are doing the same silly pitch. You’ve got to drop the pitch. Instead, focus on the challenges that your prospects are facing. Focus on understanding them, not on pitching your product or service.
5. Calm and steady.
In traditional sales, it's all about enthusiasm, excitement, and passion. Old-school selling tells us to “wow” our prospects with a high-energy, overly cheerful approach. That’s all junk. Instead, stay calm and steady when talking to prospects. Engage them in a simple human-to-human conversation. Don't get excited. Don’t be overly animated.
6. Less rapport, more value.
In general—and especially in the time since the pandemic began—salespeople spend way too much time on rapport-building in their conversations. Your prospects are busy people. They don’t care about rapport. They want value.
7. Opening Play.
The “Opening Play” is simply my term for engaging the prospect in a conversation. It’s the first 25 seconds of any sales conversation, and it emcompasses how you're actually going about engaging the prospect in a real conversation. The key to a successful Opening Play is to briefly explain what you do in one short sentence. Ditch the whole monologue about everything you do, and replace it with just one concise sentence that explains who you are and what you help your clients accomplish. Once you’ve done that, leverage your bird's-eye view of your industry to demonstrate that you understand the key challenges your prospects typically face. Use those challenges to engage the prospect in a conversation that rings true to them.
Most salespeople are told that they must qualify prospects, persuade them, or convince them. Throw all of that out. Instead, adopt a mindset that's focused on disqualifying prospects. The data shows that less than 50% of the prospects we come across will ultimately be a fit for what we sell. So don’t waste your time on those who are never going to buy in the first place. Disqualify, disqualify, disqualify.
9. Case studies.
There is no better way to explain what you do than through a compelling true story in the form of a case study. Most salespeople and business owners describe what they do by giving a long-winded explanation of all their abilities, features, and benefits. But this dry explanation-approach is like the textbook of selling: boring and forgettable.
10. Get feedback.
In the presentation phase of the sale, when you're starting to demonstrate what you do, it’s important not to fall into the track of giving a monologue. The presentation should never be a one-way conversation. You should constantly be getting feedback from the prospect to make sure you’re on track.
11. Ask for questions.
Traditional sales presentations run over the allotted time and don’t leave any room for questions from prospects. But your prospects’ questions are the most important part! The only thing that truly matters is what the prospect cares about.
12. Be N.S.O.
N.S.O. stands for Next Step Obsessed. One of the most important sales techniques to learn is simply to be Next Step Obsessed—constantly. When talking to a prospect, all that matters is determining whether they're a fit, and if they are, then scheduling a next step at the end of the conversation.
13. Slow down objections.
The data shows that when most average and bottom-performing salespeople get objections, the rate of their speech actually increases. They go on these long, meandering monologues to respond to a particular objection. Top performers do something totally different. When they get objections, they slow down the interaction.