Tag Archives: Closing & Objection Scripts

Preview of My New Book: Power Phone Scripts

Great news everyone: Wiley, a publishing house out of New York City, has picked up the domestic and international rights to my new book: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-for-Word Questions, Phrases, and Conversations to Open and Close More Sales!!

The release date is July 11th, 2017. When you get back to the office after the July 4th holiday, be on the lookout for it. I consider this my best sales book ever!

Power Phone Scripts is packed with everything I’ve learned in over 30 years in the inside sales industry, and anyone who reads it will have everything they need to be a top producer in their industry.

Here is a sneak preview of a couple of scripted approaches to handle the “I’ve already got a relationship with someone for that” objection:

Existing relationship close—#1:

“I totally know how that is, and I’m not here to come between you and that relationship. But hey, everything changes, as you know, and if something should change between how you are doing things now, it’s always good to have done your research in advance so you are not scrambling later…

“Why don’t we at least get together briefly, and I will give you some solid options in case you ever need them …” (Set the appointment)

Existing relationship close—#2:

“I understand and you know , every now and then initiatives change. Sometimes you might need a lower price, or more variety of product, or who knows. The point is that it’s always good to know what your options are.

“How about this: it doesn’t cost anything to at least compare what else is out there these days, and who knows, if things change with you at least you will know who to call to ask questions. Let’s do this …”

As always, adjust these two scripts to fit your personality, your product or service. And then practice with them until you deliver them perfectly!

And mark your calendars and be on the lookout for my new book on July 11th: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-for-Word Questions, Phrases, and Conversations to Open and Close More Sales!!

How to Sell A Pencil – Or Any Product or Service

NOTE: While this article talks about using this technique as an interview question to determine what kind of sales rep you’re about to hire, it’s also a great technique for managers to use to diagnose what is wrong with reps who may not be hitting quote consistently. Call them in, one by one, and see how they do…

If I gave you a pencil and asked you to sell it, how would you go about it?

This is one of the most basic of interview questions I use for prospective sales reps, and the answer reveals so much about their previous training, their understanding of the sales process, and ultimately about what kind of sales rep they are going to be.

So, what is the most effective way to sell a pencil?

Let’s first look at how most sales reps go about doing it. When I’m interviewing sales reps this is my favorite question. After letting a rep tell me how good of a closer they are, I pull out a pencil, hand it to them, and tell them to sell it to me. And off they go!

80% of sales reps start the same way – they start pitching. “This pencil is brand new, never used. It has grade “2” lead and a bright yellow color so it’s easy to find. It comes with a built in eraser,” etc.

Some reps can (and do!) talk about it for 5 minutes or more before they ask a question or ask for an order (more rare). As the sales rep rambles on, I begin to yawn, roll my eyes, etc. Amazingly, this just makes them talk even more! “What’s wrong with these people?” I think.

Now let’s look at how the Top 20% go about selling a pencil. As soon as I give a top rep the pencil, they pause, and then they begin asking me questions:

“So how often do you use pencils?”
“How many do you go through in a month?”
“What other locations does your company have that use pencils, and how often do they order them?”
“What quantity do you usually order them in?”
“Where are you getting them from now?”
“Besides yourself, who’s involved in the buying decision?”

Quite a difference, isn’t it? I’ll tell you right now, I listen to hundreds of sales reps in a month and they can easily be separated into these two groups: Those who pitch, pitch, pitch, and those who take the time to understand their prospect’s buying motives and properly qualify to understand the entire selling process.

Now let’s see which category you fit in. When you speak with a prospect for the first time, how much of your script is focused on describing and pitching your product or service as opposed to questioning and uncovering buying motives?

If yours is like most scripts I review, then it’s filled with descriptions of what you do and how your product or service helps people. Most scripts attack the prospect with a barrage of “value statements” that turn people off and make them want to get you off the phone as quickly as possible.

Want a better way? Then take a tip from some of the best “pencil sales reps,” and change your script and your opening so it focuses more on questioning and qualifying. Seek to discover whether or not you are actually speaking with someone who is a good fit for what you offer.

Without knowing this, you will just end up with a lot of frustration and a lot of unsold pencils at the end of the month.

The Three Times to Handle an Objection

Most sales reps hate getting objections. When they get them, their hands start to sweat, their heart takes the elevator down into the pit of the stomachs, and they start wishing they had gotten that graduate degree and avoided sales altogether.

This is how most sales reps react when they get objections, but not the top producers. Top producers view and react to objections very differently. To start with, because top producers thoroughly qualify their prospects up front they generally uncover and deal with many objections during the qualifying stage. Objections like, “I’ll have to show this to my partner,” and others are already known and dealt with.

In addition, top producers have taken the time, long in advance, of scripting out two or three different rebuttals to the objections they get, so when they do get them, they know exactly what to say to overcome them. In other words, they are rarely caught off guard, because they know what to say to deal with them.

Third, because top producers know what the objections or stalls are likely to be in advance, and since they are prepared for them with solid scripts and techniques to overcome them, they are able to take advantage of the timing of “when” to handle an objection. Unlike most sales reps who feel they have to handle an objection the moment they get one (and hence instantly lose control of the call), top producers realize that they have three options as to when to handle an objection. They are:

1) When it comes up. Again, because top producers know what to say and how to effectively deal with objections, they have the choice of handling the objection when it comes up or of postponing it for later.

The first choice may be to handle the objection when it comes up. This is usually good if the prospect is rejecting a product or service at the beginning of the pitch because they haven’t been through all the details (features and benefits) of the pitch yet.

The way to handle this is to use a script, of course. But the key is to handle the objection and then move back into the pitch. An example would be if a prospect objects to the price at the beginning. It might go like this:

Prospect: “This is out of our budget – the price is just too high.” (Or any other objection.)

Rep: “You know, it might seem that way now, but the price actually breaks down to about $2.00 per (lead, incident, etc.), and when you look at it that way, it becomes very affordable – especially when you see how much time and effort it saves you. Let me just show you a couple of things…”

In this example, the rep answered the objection but instead of checking in with the prospect to see how the close landed, they instead kept control of the call by continuing on with the pitch.

2) The second option to handling an objection is to postpone it till the end of the pitch. This is ideal if the prospect seems willing to keep listening but is stuck on an issue or two. The important thing is to acknowledge that you heard the objection and promise to handle that at the end. It goes like this:

Prospect: “This is out of our budget…,” (Or any other objection.)

Rep: “I can understand that but let’s do this. Before you make any decision on this, let’s talk about all the things this can do for you first, and then you’ll be in a much better position to decide if this is worth it for you. I even have some payment options that might make the decision easier for you as well.

But first, let me show you this…”

What you’re doing here is delaying answering the objection and thereby retaining control of the call. The nice thing about this is that by the end of your pitch, many times the prospect won’t even bring up the objection at all! You’d be amazed by how often that actually happens once you begin using this technique.

In addition to this, if you know what the objection(s) are at the beginning of the pitch – or in the middle – you can begin pitching and building value around the known problem area (objection).

Postponing answering the objection like this is a great way to get your pitch in, keep control of the call, and prepare yourself for what you know might be coming at the end.

3) The third time to answer an objection is…never! That’s right. So many time prospects will test you and try to put you off with many questions, stalls and objections that it’s just best to not respond at all. Here’s how you do that:

Prospect: “This is out of our budget…” (Or any other objection.)

Rep: “Some of our clients felt like that until they heard about…” (Now give a benefit or two and keep pitching).

This way you’ve acknowledged the objection but you remain positive and so sold on your solution that you let your enthusiasm drive the call – and often times your prospect’s mindset. It is said that enthusiasm sells, and that’s true in many cases. The problem with most sales reps is that as soon as they hear an objection they start to give up.

But by acknowledging, remaining positive, and continuing on with your pitch, you can often override any initial objection and get further into your pitch. In fact if you’ve done this before, then you’ll often find that the prospect changes to a different objection the next time they bring one up!

These three times to handle an objection also work for questions as well. The important thing to remember is that it is up to you as to when to break your rhythm and deal with an objection. The whole point is that you must remain in control of the call.

Try using the techniques and scripts above during your upcoming week of pitching your product or sale. You’ll be amazed by how much easier your sale becomes – and how many more deals you’ll get.

5 Ways to Get Better at Handling Objections

I coach a lot of sales professionals, one on one, in individual sessions every week. Sales managers, business owners and also individual sales reps who are committed to moving into the top 20% or op 5% of their profession.

Prior to working with someone, I send out a “coaching intake” form that they fill out and return to me prior to our first session. This gives me insight into their particular sale, what they want to work on, what’s standing in their way, and what they hope to accomplish during our time together.

When working with individual sales reps, one of the most common requests I get is that they would like to get better at handling objections. I tell them all the same thing: “If you just do exactly as I’ll teach you to do, then in 60 days, you will know exactly how to handle objections, and you will no longer be scared when your prospect or client brings one up.

In fact, I tell them, you’ll even welcome them!

So what’s the secret? Well, there are five of them, really. And I’ve listed them below. If you want to get better at handling objections, if you want to confidently learn to handle or overcome them like the top pros, then simply follow the secrets below:

Secret number one: Take time to carefully script out rebuttals to the common objections you get day in and day out. Remember, the best thing about sales is that you get the same objections, stalls and put offs over and over again. You already know what’s coming!

The true pros recognize this and take the time to script out best practice responses to them, so when they get them, they can confidently and effectively handle them.

Other sales reps still choose to adlib their responses which means they are making up one poor response after another. This is why they are discouraged and unsuccessful.

So take some time right now and script out your best practice responses so you’ll never have to scramble for what to say again!

Secret number two: Memorize your best practice responses. Don Shula – the famous Miami Dolphin coach – once said that his players practiced, drilled and rehearsed their plays and techniques over and over again so they could internalize them and act automatically without thinking when they needed to.

He said that football moves so fast that: “If you get into a situation and have to think about what to do next, it’s already too late.”

Same thing in sales. By internalizing your best practice responses to objections, you’ll be able to handle them automatically, without thinking or stressing.

Secret number three: To effectively memorize your rebuttals, you’ll need to put in some time. The most effective way to memorize and internalize them is to record them into a recording device (and you’re already carrying one of these around in your pocket – all smart phones have one), and then listen to them 30 to 50 times.

This is the same thing you did with your favorite song, and it works for rebuttals to objections as well. In fact, you’ll even remember the exact inflection and pacing as well, so make your recording a confident one!

Secret number four: Record yourself and listen to how you sound when delivering your rebuttals. Listen for if you’re using the right rebuttal to the objection your prospect or client just gave you.

By recording yourself, you’ll learn tons of things that will make you better, including how to deliver your rebuttals more convincingly. You’ll also learn whether or not your rebuttal is the best one to use – which leads me to secret number five.

Secret number five: Be prepared to revise your rebuttals often. After listening to your sales calls over and over again, you’ll find ways to improve. Perhaps a rebuttal can be shortened? Maybe it can include a few key words or phrases? Perhaps you could deliver it with a bit more energy? Or less energy?

Never stop learning, critiquing and getting better. The top professionals in any industry are always adapting, always learning and always improving. You should, too.

So there you have it: the five ways to get better at handling objections. If you’re truly committed to becoming one of the best producers in your company or industry, then commit to using the secrets above.

I guarantee that if you do, your career and your life will change in exciting and fulfilling ways.

Ten Ways to Soften the Price Objection and Keep Pitching

Many sales reps get thrown off their pitch when a prospect objects to something early on during the close.

For example, if when talking about the price of a product or service, the prospects says something like, “Oh, that’s way too much,” many sales reps don’t know how to respond – and often do the wrong thing.

The wrong thing in this case is to stop and try to overcome the objection. Instead, a sales rep should retain control of the call, soften this objection and move on to build more value.

Here’s an example:

If a price or price range is given (say, anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000), and the prospect objects with, “That’s more than we want to spend,” then instead of stopping and trying to overcome the objection (which only gives control to the prospect and throws you off your momentum), you should respond with any of the following:

Response One:
“That’s only a range, and I’ll explain how that works in just a moment…”

Then continue on with your pitch.

Response Two:
“There are some other options, but first let me explain how this works and how it can impact you (or your company or other departments, etc.).”

Then continue on with your pitch.

Response Three:
“Based on what you know now, it may seem like a lot, but let me get through exactly what you get for this…”

Then continue on with your pitch

Response Four:
“_________, you obviously don’t have to go with this at all, and I’m not asking you to make a decision right now. Instead, let me finish explaining how this works, what you get, and how it might work for you (or your company, etc.).

After that, you’ll be in a position to decide what to do next, fair enough?”

Response Five:
“Let’s put the budget aside for a moment and first see if this is a solution that would even work for you. What I’ll do is explain everything to you, answer your questions, and then we can address whether or not it provides the value to justify the investment, O.K.?”

Response Six:
“The budget and the value this provides is quite worth it – as you’ll see. Let me finish explaining how this works and what my other clients are getting out of it, then you can decide what – if anything – you want to do. Now…”

Continue on with your pitch.

Response Seven:
“Let’s put budget aside for a moment and let me show you how this can positively affect what you’re spending now…”

Back to your pitch

Response Eight:
“I know at this point it might seem like a lot, but I guarantee once you understand the whole picture, you’ll easily see the value here…”

Back to your pitch

Response Nine:
“_________, those are only the price ranges and what you decide to ultimately spend will be entirely your decision and based only on whether you see enough benefit to move forward. Let me show you…”

Back to your pitch

Response Ten:
“_________ until we qualify your business, we won’t know what your payment options are, so let’s not get ahead of ourselves. What I recommend is we go through the approval process and then you can decide if this is worth it for you or not – fair enough?”

Remember, the point here is not to get thrown off early in your pitch just because a prospect objects to the price. Instead, you want to maintain control, build value and get buy in during the close.

And you can do this by using one of the rebuttals above to soften the objection.

How to Overcome the, “My relative handles that for me” Objection

If you’re in B2C sales (business to consumer), then you’ve no doubt gotten the objection, “My relative handles that for me, and I wouldn’t be interested in changing.”

In B2B sales (business to business), this objection often manifests as, “We’ve been doing business with X for years and we get the best (rates, service, etc.) and we wouldn’t be interested in switching.”

Other variations include:

“We have a rep who visits us each week and we don’t want to do business over the phone,”

OR

“I’ve known my rep for years and we have a great relationship so I wouldn’t be interested,”

OR

“Our supplier is the boss’s son (or father, sister, pastor, etc.) and we only do business with people we know.”

The list can go on and on.

The tricky thing about this objection is that we can all relate to having a personal relationship with a family member or someone we really like and trust, so we feel awkward trying to overcome it.

Here’s the thing: sometimes this is a real objection, and sometimes it’s just a smokescreen that works on salespeople so the prospect keep using it. Either way, below are some ways to get around it, or, at least, set the prospect up so they’re thinking about you when that relationship changes:

Response One:

“I totally know how that is, and I’m not here to come between you and that relationship. But hey everything changes, as you know, and if something should change between how you’re doing things now, it’s always good to have done your research in advance so you’re not scrambling later.

Why don’t we at least get together briefly, and I’ll give you some solid options in case you ever need them…”

Response Two:

“I understand and you know _________, every now and then initiatives change. Sometimes you might need a lower price, or more variety of product, or who knows. The point is that it’s always good to know what’s out there.

How about this: it doesn’t cost anything to at least compare what’s really out there these days, and who knows, if things change with you, at least you’ll know who to call to ask questions. Let’s do this…”

Response Three:

“Glad your (brother in law, sister in law, etc.) is handling this for you, but heaven forbid anything ever happen, you know a divorce or a falling out, you’ll be happy you’ve got a good backup!

Let’s do this….(set an appointment)”

Response Four:

“Well _________, you know how life is – people can get sick, or change jobs, or whatever – the smart thing for you to do is to always have a ready back up, you know just in case…

Since it doesn’t cost anything to learn about our services and prices, why don’t I drop by…”

Response Five:

“Because things have changed a lot since you’ve been working with (him/her), I’d suggest you at least be prudent and learn about what the current market has to offer you. Who knows? You may find that there’s an even easier/less expensive option available to you and you can let them know about it!

Let’s do this…”

Response Six:

“I’m happy you’ve found someone you’ve been able to trust for all these years. Let me ask you this: If something changes with that relationship and you find that you need to look elsewhere, could I be the next in line person you speak to about getting this (product/service) from?”

[If Yes – get information and give yours, then]

“_________, just out of curiosity, what might have to happen for you to even begin looking?”

Now you have a variety of ways to handle what may have seemed like an almost impossible objection in the past. Will all these work? No. Will some of them work a lot better than what you’re probably saying now? Yes!

How to Overcome the, “Market, Industry, Economy is bad…” Objection

You hear it all the time: “I/we can’t do anything now because the _________ (fill in the blank with market or economy, or company, or industry, or budget, etc.) is down.”

And the crazy thing is that sales reps actually buy into that objection! I guess if you’re not prepared to overcome it with a good script, and you keep getting it day in and day out, you’re susceptible to buying into it.

I’ve even begun hearing sales teams jump on the “Oh, things are terrible, the world is coming to an end…” objection and actually agreeing with their prospects! As soon as a sales rep gets this objection, I’ve heard them pile on with, “Oh, I’ve been hearing that a lot and things are bad out there! Some of our clients have even closed down their offices, and let people go – oh, it’s terrible!” And then add:

“Well, if things turn around, then definitely give us a call…”

Empowering, huh?

Remember: on every call somebody is going to be sold. The only question is: Are your prospects going to sell you on why they aren’t buying (from you), or are you going to sell them on why they need you more than ever right now?

Because your product or service can almost always save them money or time or energy or manpower, OR produce more and better results which will mean more revenue or business to them, then let’s face it: they can’t afford not to listen or meet with you!

Here’s the only script you need to overcome the “Everything is terrible” objection and earn the right to meet or do a demo with your prospects:

The next time you get any variation of the, “I/we can’t do anything now because the _________ (fill in the blank with market or economy, or company, or industry, or budget, etc.) is down.” objection, you simply say:

“Well, because of that reason, I’m sure it’s more important than ever for you to (reduce costs, save money, get more results, etc.) and that’s exactly why other companies are meeting with us to see how we can do just that for them. You’ll be happy we met, too. Here’s what I recommend we do…”

You have to be prepared with a positive, upbeat message to overcome their negativity – you have to believe in what you’re selling, in your solution enough – to earn the right to meet with your prospect.

Use the script above as it is, or adapt it to fit your personality and your product or service, and start closing your prospects – rather than letting them closing you…

Ask for the Sale Five Times – At Least!

How many times have you seen a commercial (either a TV ad, a public billboard, ad in a magazine, etc.) for Coca Cola? Perhaps I should say how many times a DAY do you see one?

Now you’d think that people already know about Coca Cola, but did you know that Coke still spends billions of dollars a year on advertisements?

Why do you think that is?

It’s the same reason that infomercials run over and over and over again. After you’ve seen the same infomercial 50 times, you begin to consider it. After another 50 times you think you might actually use it. Another 50 and some of you decide that you’ve got to have it – I mean, heck, they’ve run this commercial at least a thousand times, there must be some value to this, right?

I remember my first sales manager used to say to us that we weren’t even in the closing arena until we had asked for the sale at least five times (and gotten a “no” five times, by the way). After that, he’d say, you’re finally closing…

How many times do you ask for the sale? Do you ask for it in a round-about, soft way and then give up if your prospect says no? Or do you even ask for it at all?

On the other hand, how much more successful would you be if you asked for the order five times and had a prepared response to each objection and, after answering it, asked for the sale again?

Now I know there is a fine line between being obnoxious and being persistent, but the more you’re able to be persuasive and persistent, the more deals you’re going to close.

It’s like Coca Cola. If they had run one ad and quit, we’d all be drinking Pepsi today…

So, how do you ask for the order over and over again? You have options: you can use trial closes, assumptive closes or flat out closes. Here are some scripts to get you started:

Close One:

“Have I given you enough to say yes yet, or do you need to hear more?” (Soft trial close)

Close Two:

“Do you have any more questions or have you decided to put us to work for you?” (Soft trial close)

Close Three:

“Most people choose the starter pack and that works out great. Would you like that, or do you think the professional package is better for you?” (Alternative close)

Close Four:

“Our system can be set up in a matter of a week – and the sooner you give us the O.K., the sooner it’ll be working for you. Would you like to get started with this today?” (Close)

Close Five:

“….And that’s how my other client got over that hurtle. I’d recommend you do the same; you’ll always be glad you did. Let’s go ahead and get you signed up for this – which credit card would you like to use today?” (Close after overcoming an objection)

Close Six:

“Since your (partner, spouse, etc.) goes with whatever you think is best, they’ll probably go with this as well. In the meantime, let’s go ahead and get the paperwork done and a delivery date set. If they change your mind, you can simply call back in, but in the meantime, you’ll have all this completed. Now how would you like to pay for this?” (Overcoming the partner objection close)

Close Seven:

“Now ________, we can go back and forth on this and I’m sure you can come up with many more reasons not to do this – but let’s face it: you know you need it, and I know you want it! So let’s go ahead and move forward. What’s your preferred payment method today?” (Flat out close)

Close Eight:

“It sounds like you understand this now, so let’s get you started. What address do you want this delivered to?” (Assumptive close)

Close Nine:

“Did I answer that for you? Do you have any more questions? No? O.K., great – then welcome aboard! I know you’re going to enjoy this as much as my other clients do. How would you like to pay for this today?” (Close)

Close Ten:

“As my dad used to say, “There’s nothing to it but to do it!” So let’s do this today. Where did you want us to send this to today?”

If you’ve done your job and properly qualified your prospect, then chances are they actually want to buy from you. So make it easy on them by asking for the sales at least five times. Remember, the magic happens around the seventh close.

How to Handle the Wife Stall

If you sell B2C (or even B2B) and you get the “I have to convince my wife,” stall, how do you handle it?

If you’re like many of the sales reps I’ve been listening to lately, the answer is: Not very well.

So let’s start at the beginning. The first thing you need to do with this stall/objection is to isolate it. You begin by qualifying that the prospect you are speaking to is sold on your solution regardless of that the wife would say. You use:

“I understand completely – let me ask you: if your wife says she is fine with whatever it is that you want to do, would you move forward on this right now?”

If you get buy in with a “Yes I would!” then you have several courses of action to take. I like to then qualify what it would take to sell her (in other words, find out in advance of speaking to her what her concern is), so I would then ask:

“O.K., and what do you think it will take to convince her?”

OR

“All right, and what do you think is holding her back?”

OR

“What are some of the concerns she has?”

OR

“And what do you think she would need to hear to say yes to this?”

OR

“And how can I help you convince her on this?”

After you’ve gotten some input on what the potential objections of the wife are, and/or gained insight on what her possible buying motives are, then you can set up a time to speak with her (with the husband on the phone, of course) and move to close the sale. You can say either of these:

“Is she available now?”

OR

“Why don’t you go get her on the other phone now?”

If she is not available, then you need to set up an appointment to speak with her at the soonest possible time:

“How about first thing evening, what time would be good?”

To reiterate the steps above:

1) Make sure the husband (or whatever spouse or decision maker you’re speaking to) is on board.
2) Find out what the concerns or buying motives of the wife are.
3) Move to speak with her right then or at the soonest opportunity.

When you then get the spouse on the phone, you can open the call in many different ways. Here are a few:

First, use the information you received from questioning the husband:

“Hi _________, your husband has been telling me that he likes the XYZ and that you like it, too, but you just need a little more information on (whatever the concern is). Can you tell me what you’d like to know?”

OR

“Hi __________, it’s nice to meet you. I’ve been talking to (her husband’s name) and he’s quite interested in moving ahead with XYZ. What might it take to get you onboard as well?”

OR

“Hi _______, this is ______ _______, and your husband wanted me to reach out to you about the XYZ he’s been looking at. I’d like to answer any questions you have so you can feel as confident about it as he is. What would you like to ask me today?”

OR, if you know what the concern is and have a good response to it, open with:

“Hi ________, this is ______ _______, and I’ve been talking to your husband about XYZ. He tells me that you’re concerned with (go over reason), is that right?”

Now Listen….then,

“I’m glad you brought that up – you’re not the first person to have that concern. But the good news is that …” (overcome objection, then ask): “Do you see how that works? Does that make you feel better?”

If and when you get buy in, you simply close the sale with:
“Well, I guess you can see why your husband likes this. Here’s what I recommend we do…”

And ask for the deal. If she is not ready to move, repeat the above steps all the while ending with asking for the order.

Adjust any of these scripts as necessary, but then commit to using them – they’ll work for you as long as you’re willing to use them!

Boost Your Sales by Using This One Word

Catchy title, huh? “Boost your sales using just this ONE word.” Wouldn’t it be nice if there was just one magic word that could really increase your sales?

There is…

Before I tell you what it is, though, let me give you a brief background on how I discovered it. Years ago as I was struggling to make sales, I found a bad pattern had developed in terms of how my sales attempts were ending up. After pitching and pitching, most of my sales were being stalled with some variation of:

“Let me think about it,”

OR

“I’ll have to discuss this with my partner…”

OR

“O.K., why don’t you get back with me in a few weeks…”

Sound familiar? It should. Most sales presentations end this way. After racking my brain for the reason, I finally began listening to how the top closers in my company were closing their sales. And how they were opening and qualifying their prospects as well.

Turns out they all were using one magic word. And the word was….

“Today.”

Or some variation of it when they were qualifying. And that’s when I started using it as well and it didn’t just boost my sales, it catapulted it! In fact, it had much more impact than that. It also greatly reduced the number of unqualified leads I sent out and spent hours of useless time with.

Here are some examples of how to use the word today in both your opening and closing statements.:

For qualifying you must qualify the prospect’s timeline and set the proper expectation for the close. At the end of your cold call and before you schedule your demo or send your information, you must ask something like this:

“So _________, I’ve got you on the calendar to do a walk-through of our solution next Wednesday, and if after we’re done you really like this, is it something that you can make a decision on at that time?”

OR

“So _________, I look forward to our demo next Wednesday, and if after we’re done you really like this, I’m going to ask you for a simple yes or no, is that fair?”

Now in some situations if you’re dealing with an influencer, your question will be about what the next steps are, what the decision maker’s time frame is like, how many other companies they’re looking at, etc..

But if you are dealing with the owner or decision maker, you must get a firm commitment as to timeframe, ideally confirming a decision right after your pitch.

For closing calls, you use the magic word:

At the beginning of your presentation, before you go into your slide show or however you do it, you requalify by asking:

“I’m excited to show you this, and at the end if you feel this is the right solution for you, this is something you can move on today, right?”

That’s it. No wishy washy way around it. You must set a clear expectation right from the beginning (and that means on the qualifying call) and then reconfirm it at the beginning of the close.

I know what you’re thinking: “What if they say no?” Then you adjust your presentation to target their buying motive and start overcoming what their objection is. I’ve written many of scripts to help you do that, so check out my blog if you need them: http://mrinsidesales.com/insidesalestrainingblog/

Bottom line: You will make more sales faster and with less struggle if you set the proper expectation on the front call and confirm it by opening your closing call using the magic word: today.

Try it today and see for yourself.