There is a very short window of time that you have when you initially contact a new prospect by telephone or in a face-to-face meeting. If you fail to make an impression quickly, you have tuned them out.
Here are some of the things I’ve experienced that the prospect lost my attention quickly…
- Opening your conversation by introducing yourself, your company, and what you do.
- If you are in their office, making small talk about the “stuff” you see.
- Explain to them how your product or service will benefit them.
- Telling them what other companies you have worked with.
- Show them the awards you have received
- Giving them a brochure immediately.
- Starting a telephone conversation with, “Hi, how are you?”
Again, these are just a few of the things that have turned me off and you have probably experienced the same. The moment your prospect senses that you are trying to sell them something that they don’t need or want, they will tune you out and look for a way to disengage or disconnect from the call.
They really don’t care about you.
They don’t want to know about your company, listen to you talk about your products or services, or making small talk.
What they do want is a solution to a problem.
They want to know how you can help them improve their business. Here are some thoughts on how you can accomplish that.
You must direct all of your attention on their situation and resist the opportunity to talk about you or your company.
When you meet someone, say something like the following, “Mr. Prospect, many of our clients are currently experiencing (insert the problem here). How does that compare to your company’s situation?”
This demonstrates that you are knowledgeable of their business and/or the industry and it gives them the opportunity to tell you about their most important concerns.
Over my last 40 some odd years, I have found that most people will tell you anything you want to know providing you give them a reason to do so. The key is to develop and ask high-quality questions.
Here’s really the bottom line:
The more time you spend talking about your product, the less inclined a prospect will want to continue that conversation.
The more you focus your attention on their situation, and their problems, and demonstrate how you can help them improve their business, the more you differentiate yourself from the competition.
And this goes for anything you do in life. Whenever you are in any situation, if you talk about yourself, you lose them.
You only have a few moments to connect with a prospect so keep it brief.
Keep it focused.
Keep it about them and you will keep their attention.
You’ve all experienced this, so let me know about them.
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