A recurring problem many companies have is actually asking a potential client for business, or as it’s professionally known as ‘closing’. This skill can make even some of the most professional sales people nervous and fearful, and it’s often seen as a stressful moment in the business relationship. But it shouldn’t be.
When I work with my development clients on sales techniques that grow your business I like to do two things early on: a) dismiss the fear factor around the worse-case scenario for the outcome, and b) provide them with a magical and simple closing technique.
So let’s think what the worst thing that can happen will be – well of course it’s when the clients says “No”. Now note: they didn’t say “Never cross our threshold or else” or “I never want to see you again”, they simply said “No”, and all that means is that what you have offered the client so far is not acceptable to them – that’s all.
There’s a statistic that says on average buyers say “No” three times before they say “Yes” – so guess what happens if you stop after the first “No” – your business goes to a competitor!
So all a “No” really means is that you have a little bit more work to do.
Now a worrying aspect of this for many businesses is that they don’t even get to this part. So what is there was a way you could ask for a sale, without directly asking for a sale?
Well there is, and it’s called the Assumptive Close, and it’s one my favourites! This technique is great for people who find asking for the sale directly too upfront. The basis of the technique is simple, in that all you do is assume the deal is already done, and you ask a follow-up question relating to the sale.
For example, let’s say you’re selling packaging, the assumptive sales close would be something like: “So, when would you like us to deliver the new specification P1 pack kits to you, and is there someone we should ask for specifically?”.
No direct close, just an assumption that the sale is going ahead that’s neat and stress free; as someone once said “Simples!”.