For many professionals, closing the sale always seems to be the toughest part of the sales cycle. If you have had this problem, don’t think you are all alone. It is the toughest part of any business. In fact, “closing the sale” applies to professions you may not have thought of.
- The teacher is constantly selling. He/she is trying to get students to “buy into” the fact that this knowledge can be beneficial.
- Men and women of the cloth are “selling” in their sermons. They not only are selling the fact that their message is beneficial, but also that it is urgent.
- Politicians? Boy, do they sell! They are selling a beneficial message, with urgency and with the hope that their message is novel.
- Parents? Of course! Parents are doing all the above selling and many times are more specific. For example, “You will study or you won’t get into college and you will not get a good job!” This is a classic sales pitch!
What all of these effective “sales persons” do that you may not be doing is “setting the stage” for the closing. They know, perhaps instinctively, how to prepare their “clients” for a definite conclusion.
Setting the stage includes:
- Having a steady stream of qualified prospects. Bad prospects mean low sales. Too few prospects and you will look hungry and not get the close.
- Knowing your market. Thoroughly knowing your market requires lots of time and study, but it is truly worth it. It’s part of “setting the stage” for the closing.
- Understanding of why people don’t purchase from you or anyone else.
Here are four (4) general reasons that people don’t buy:
- No money
- No need
- No hurry
- No trust
Furthermore, during this fact finding process, you should never introduce new needs or concerns. The successful advisor always sticks to the big picture. If you do present new topics, you will sidetrack your discussion and move away from not toward closing the sale.
Now, I know you’ve heard these tips hundreds of times. You know what to do ... but are you doing it? If not, you should review your branding and prospecting methods, examine your knowledge of your market, evaluate your time management procedures, and scrutinize your sales presentation.
Again, at the heart of the process – the beginning of the sales call – is the use of fact finder interview. You would be amazed at the high percentage of advisors who don’t bother to use a fact finder. Most advisors simply walk in and try to dazzle their clients with their footwork and close a sale fast. Using a fact finder will separate you from the majority of financial sales people, because your clients and prospects will see you as the true, professional advisor.
Do your homework – know your prospect, your products, and your market. Engage in some careful fact finding to identify the true needs of your client. Then, begin your “pitch” while staying on track throughout the conversation until you reach the conclusion. You will find that if you accomplish these steps, closing the sale will be the obvious and normal conclusion you and your client reach.