I was asked this question and thought many might benefit from my answer.So here is how to put pressure for a buyer to take action now.
1.What’s the action you want?In B2B selling low level people can’t buy.They can only recommend.In B2C be careful of spouses, children and other influencers.They can cause the buyer to hesitate.
2.Fear, greed, pain, want are all drivers for people to take action.So the first step is to find out which of these is motivating the buyer and the details of that driver.If none are in play, there will be no action taken.
3.What does the buyer want to do about relieving the pain, securing the want / greed, or eliminating the fear?
a.If nothing, you’ve got to find another driver or move on.This person will not take action.
b.If s/he does want to do something, you’ve got to find out how this person wants to accomplish or get it.Buyers don’t just buy the want, they buy their path to get the want.So you’ve got to know and deliver both or you’ll meet resistance, which means delays.
4.Feed back to the buyer how you can give him or her the want / greed or eliminate the fear / pain with the least risk of failure (or best chance of success) and with less effort than any other alternative.
5.Ask how she feels about your presentation as described in #3.If good, ask for the action you want.If s/he doesn’t feel good, there will be no action taken.Feel is the operative word, not, “What do you think?”
a.If the feel is not so good, ask for an explanation of the concern or uneasy feeling and what s/he suggests you do about it. Do what s/he says - if you can - and then ask for the action again.If you can’t, this person will not take action.
6.Don’t assume you know any of the above. Without the words coming from the person’s mouth, you don’t know the drivers or their path to the drivers - no matter what anyone tells you.
7.For details on how to do all the above look for my Interviewing and Presenting CD’s at https://www.sammanfer.com/Products/CDs.htm as well as a ton of free articles, etc.
It is amazing to me what people believe they should do when business slows down.
I was at an association networking event the other night asking someone to network me to other associations as a speaker on Developing Business during This Recession. A gentleman approaches and so we all talk for a few minutes and then I ask my favorite question, “So what are your major issues as it relates to business development during this economic down time?” And he like most others says, “Getting more business.” So I ask my next favorite question, “Well, what are you going to do about it?”
He then starts to tell me how they have all the business from one big private company and the rest of their work is in the private sector. However, all the private companies they do work for have slowed tremendously. So his strategy now is to go after government jobs.
To this I say, “Do you have 100% of the business of your private sector clients?” To which he honestly said, “Obviously not.” So I then began to lecture him on how breaking into a new market is very tough and requires time and resources to penetrate, which is ok, if you have time and resources. He then said, “Well we already have closed three government jobs.” So I said, “Tell me who you were working with?”
Well, come to find out the people he was working with were all old relationship from his company and other private companies he’d worked with that moved into the government sector.
It’s amazing to me that most sales people, mangers and corporate officers believe they know what their prospects and clients are thinking and wanting. On the surface and/or in general terms they may be correct sometimes. However, it’s not the vague generalities that win sales. Besides, when in a selling situation you don’t know if you are working with the rule or the exception.
As I’m mingling at a networking meeting an elderly gentleman stops me and offers a hello. He asks me who I’m with, so I say, “I help people develop business. So what are your major issues as it relates to business development during this economic down time?” And he says, “Getting more business.”
Then I ask him, “Do your current clients have business that you’re not getting?” At first he says yes, but then quickly moves to tell me how he’s getting all the business from one of them. So I say, “What about getting more from the others?”
Well, somehow he dodges this question and tells me what his company has that others don’t. “We can react within a day,” he says. “Our competitors need 1-2 weeks.”
So I tried to say, “What if your other customers are not in a hurry, then what?” But he didn’t answer this. He just kept bragging about what he felt made his company special.