Where and When to Establish Buyer Confidence
The prospect won’t buy if he/she lacks confidence in you or your product.
Buyer confidence must be established and reconfirmed in all phases of the selling process. Obviously the faster you establish confidence in the selling process, the easier it will be to get to the next phase of the sale.
Listed below are the prime selling opportunities to establish buyer confidence. Each situation calls for different types of confidence building techniques.
In a networking situation… If you only have time for one statement, make it one that will discuss the use of your product/service by a good company. “We were very fortunate to be awarded the toner cartridge contract from Duke Power. They selected us from among seven other bids.” This begins the process of making the prospect feel confident in you.
On the phone… Only use one item to establish confidence. Sell the appointment. For example “I believe we can help you achieve the computer training and productivity you need to cut operating costs, we just completed a similar project for Acme Manufacturing that had the same curriculum. Could we set up a brief appointment to discuss it?”
Your objective is to establish enough confidence to get an appointment.
On a cold call… Be brief, you must generate interest in about 30 seconds or less or forget it. Make a strong statement about how you can help the prospect. Don’t focus on how much money you can save, that approach seems to be wearing thin. Talk about how what you do or how your product has worked for others. If you’re not in a one call close business (over 90% are not), you only need to establish enough confidence to make the second appointment. Save your best stuff for when you make your presentation.
During a presentation… either at the prospect’s place of business or in your office. This is your big chance. You get to walk in with your full bag of tricks, and use them one by one, like building a brick foundation. Each time the prospect casts a shadow of doubt, you have something to counter that will make you shine. Letters of satisfied customers, articles, comparison charts, and lists of satisfied customers that make the prospect secure enough to buy. Write things down. Let the prospect see professional respect for their time and the importance of the meeting.
On a follow-up call… Relax, don’t sound contrived or forced. The prospect will begin to lose the confidence you worked so hard to gain. Have a specific purpose for calling, use similar situations (good things you’ve done for others), and specific benefits for the prospect, as examples of why he should buy now.
How do you know if you have established confidence? You get the business or the promise to do so. Your phone calls get returned. It’s actually easier to determine you don’t have the confidence of the prospect. They start handing you a bunch of “pat-on-the-head” responses like: We’ll get back to you in a few weeks, our budget is spent, I’m not ready to buy yet, the board needs to meet and decide, or the ever popular call me back in 6 months. When you start hearing stalls, you have not established enough confidence for the buyer to proceed.
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