Everyone wants to close the sale. Few seem to know how to do it properly.
Most will simply tell you to ask for it. That seems logical. Wouldn't it be convenient to know that is all we have to do? We would all be closing a lot more deals if all we had to do was ask people to buy our stuff.
I have a very unique approach to the end of the close that I teach to my team and coaching students, which is too complicated to go into here but in short, it's based upon asking about THEM instead of making it about me. You see, it's obvious to the prospect (when you are in sales) that you want to sell something. Prospects are expecting it, and while there's nothing wrong with selling or being sold to, most prospects have already prepared how they will handle the close before the call even began. Haven't you done that yourself? Said to yourself before you met with someone in sales, "I'm just going to get info. I'm not planning to buy anything". That mantra will hold true. You won't accidentally buy it because you've already decided it. Then when you hear the big finish. . . "Why wouldn't we get you started today?" you recognize it and are prepared. The classic ending trial close is an outdated method. It's purpose involves asking an open-ended question which our prospect can't answer with a yes or no. After listening to the reply, we have an opportunity to overcome the objection then ask for the sale. This isn't entirely bad, but knowing WHEN is the most important part of the process because if the prospect has already decided they weren't buying, they won't deviate from that decision and will recognize the 1990's tactics you are delivering - especially if they've been in sales since the 90's. They will immediately shut down with a response similar to, "Well I'm just getting info right now. I'm not ready to buy anything today". The exception occurs when the prospect has already decided to buy before the call began. You see, the misconception is that the end of the close is what closes the deal. I wholeheartedly disagree, and maintain that the decision was predestined. The mind of the prospect is already made up before the call began, regardless of whether or not the prospect even realizes it. One could argue, "but the top sales trainers in the world teach this method successfully". That would be correct. "I use these methods and make millions!" To that I would reply, "Imagine how much more you'd be making with a modern approach". Old methods are very effective when selling to a younger audience who may not be familiar with sales tactics. Sales tactics are not wrong, but what is, is treating PEOPLE like a SALE. That is what turns people off. Many people think they hate sales - either selling or being sold to. . . or both. In reality, they hate being treated less than human or treating others in that way - like nothing more than a commission. People have true problems, needs, and desires. They want to buy from someone who isn't just able to fulfill their need, but who actually cares about their desires. You've heard it said, people buy from those they know, like, and trust. Sales and marketing people work dilligently in being known and liked, but as soon as you revert to old-school sales tactics, you risk reducing your prospect to nothing more than a commission and thereby losing their trust. Is it possible to be wildly successful using classic tactics and techniques? Sure. Can you close ME with them? Never? Because I'll quickly realize you don't really care about my needs. You're not really listening, or paying attention to the conversation. You're only thinking about what you're going to say next, and regurgetating what you paid too much to learn. The sales landscape has changed. The internet has dehumanized it and people want to connect with others (and brands) in deeper, more meaningful ways. When you are able to realize that and properly address it, you will no longer find contentment in your 10-20% closing ratio, realizing that 50-90% actually IS possible, regardless of what the billionaire course creating sage guru told you was the industry standard.
People want to be led through the sales cycle. They want to be advised and guided. They won't let you do that if they don't trust you.
How do you build that trust? Well you can STOP SELLING PEOPLE THINGS THEY DON'T NEED, for starters. Regardless of how much your prospect wants it or thinks they need it, it might not be right for them, and it's your job to know that. Are you capable of telling them that and walking away while they are waving cash in your face? If not, then they may be right to not trust you - and as slick as you think you are on the phone, they can hear it in your voice. You don't care about them. You are a sleazy used car salesman in their mind.
Practice saying this. "I'd love to sell you our product today, but I really don't think it's right for you".
Does it make you cringe to say it? Then keep saying it. Get used to losing for the right reasons instead of winning for all the wrong ones. You'll sleep better at night as you become a better person, and close more deals in the process.
Now I know some of you are saying, "I don't have any problem with that. I tell people all the time that we're not right for them. I'm already awesome".
Okay, but you are still asking for the sale, which has more to do with you then it does them.
So what should you do instead? Get clarity in the beginning of the call. WHY are they on the phone with you? Do they just have a few questions? Then answer them. Are they gathering more info? Then inform them. That is the purpose of the call. Hearing them. Understanding them. Caring about them. Fulfilling their desire. That's it. NOT SELLING THEM.
If they called with questions and still have questions after they got off the phone with you, then you've failed. If they called for info that you didn't provide, then you've failed. In both cases you were selfish and not only don't deserve the sale, but don't expect that simply asking for it is going to close it. It won't. Ever. I promise you.
However, if you have done your job properly (like a human) then you won't have to ask for the sale. They will ask you, "So what's the next step".
Then you would proceed to explain the purchasing process and effortly close the deal.
I believe the future of commerce is an empathetic human-centric process. Those that recognize this reality now, will thrive both now and later.
If you find this post helpful, let me know in the comments and I'll consider posting more.