Tag Archives for " Sales Questions "

TSE Hustler's League, Sales Questions, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 745: TSE Hustler’s League -“Start…Stop”

TSE Hustler's League, Sales Questions, Donald Kelly, The Sales EvangelistOne of the reasons people have a difficult time asking questions is they don’t feel confident they’re able to do it.

They feel they’d come off as too disrespectful or they’re not worthy enough.

They feel like they’re on a lower level to the prospect so they don’t have the right to ask them questions.

So what kind of questions should you ask your prospects?

Business-related questions:
Examples:

  • What’s your business goal?
  • What are your plans to achieve that?

Challenging questions

This kind of questions will help the prospect think. It also shows you’re well-prepared, you’re listening, and you’re mindful of their needs. You’re showing them that you’re not just shooting in the dark. The better you understand them, the better your presentation is going to be and the better chances of closing the deal.

The Start-Stop

Start to answer a question they have but then stop to get clarification from the buyer or reposition the sales process.

For example, if they ask how much your product costs at the beginning of your presentation, this could mean they’re just fishing.

What you can do is begin to answer by saying, “Great question, but first…” Naturally stop and try to clarify by asking, say how many customers they have or why is xyz so important to them.

Now, you have become the consultant. You take control of the situation.

Episode Resources:

Check out the TSE Hustler’s League.

Tired of PowerPoint decks? Use Prezi Business and your presentations will never be the same.

Donald Kelly, TSE Hustler's League

TSE 530: TSE Hustler’s League-“Questions Your Customers Want You to Ask – Part 2”

Donald Kelly, TSE Hustler's League This is Part 2 of the snippet which I’ve pulled out from one of our sessions over at the TSE Hustler’s League where we talked more about appropriate questions your customers would want you to ask so you can get to the real pain of your prospect and make sure you’re able to bring the best value to the table. (If you haven’t yet, please check out Part 1 of this episode where I already shared some strategies for asking the right questions.)

More strategies for asking the right questions:

  1. Find out the people who are part of the purchasing community.

Most companies have multiple individuals in their buying process. Find out their time frame and their budget.

Example:

Who else is a part of making the decision or selection?

  1. Put on some “softeners” or buffer to your questions.

This means saying a little phrase to serve as a buffer right before asking the question or just to show them you are listening.

Examples:

 

  • It sounds that this has been affecting the business for a while, what is the time frame for implementing the solution?
  • Out of curiosity, what is the time for this project?
  • Off the record, do you guys have a budget for this?
  • Out of curiosity, what is the budget range you’re looking at? I want to make sure we’re a good fit.
  • Besides price, what are the most important criteria when it comes to selecting a company?
  • If you don’t mind me asking, why is that so important?
  • Off the record, why didn’t you select the vendor the last time you did this project?
  1. Talk about the price range.

What is the projected budget for this project?

  1. Ask questions that elicit them to speak to their why.

As mentioned last week, try to dig deeper into their real pain by adding the softeners mentioned above to your “why” questions.

  1. Come prepared to answer them.

Think about the questions your prospects are going to ask. The questions they’re going to ask you are probably the same ones the other prospects are asking you on initial meetings as well. Coming to the meeting with an understanding of those questions makes you look more professional. Practice.

Episode Resources:

Coaching Salespeople into Sales Champions by Keith Rosen

TSE 525: Questions Your Customers Want You to Ask – Part 1

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Donald Kelly, TSE Hustler's League

TSE 525: TSE Hustler’s League-“Questions Your Customers Want You to Ask – Part I”

Donald Kelly, TSE Hustler's League Today’s snippet taken from one of our past sessions over at the TSE Hustler’s League is all about asking the appropriate questions to help advance your deal and let you bring more value to the table.

Regardless of what you’re selling or who your selling to, you have to ask the appropriate, value-rich questions. These are questions your prospects would be glad that you asked.  Reduce your talking. Help them feel they’re buying and not you selling. Then price would no longer even be a question.

If you find some of these questions to be missing in your process, then feel free to tweak it and fix it.

Strategies for asking the right questions:

  1. Do your basic research before the call/meeting.

Don’t just wing it. You have to come prepared with information. You can find details about anyone just by going online. Find out about the company in advance and don’t ask questions where the answers are already accessible. Make sure you come as a consultant by showing them you’re bringing intelligence to the table.

  1. Get access to their why.

The more you can get access to what’s really powerful and meaning to them, the more connected you’re going to be. Remember, people do business with people they know, like, and trust.

Bad example:

“How long have you been around?”

Good examples:

  • “I know you’ve been around for 13 years and as an individual solopreneur, why did you decide to get into the x-ray business?”
  • “You mentioned you currently have a system, what would cause you to look at something else?”

Sometimes you may have a solution that they already have. So it’s important to find out what caused the disservice.

  1. If you feel it, say it.

If you feel you have a question you really want to know the answer to, then don’t be too shy to ask it. Ask. Be bold and be open. Remember, you’re here as a consultant. And they will respect you for that.

  1. Acknowledge they’ve also done their research.

Examples:

“I know you’ve done some research already, what are your must-haves in a new system?”

“I know you’ve probably looked at many different services like ours already or done some research on systems like ours, what are some of the must-haves in your service?”

  1. Dig deeper than just the features or benefits they’re looking for.

Asking these type of questions will let you know whether they like the system or it’s just a legacy system that was in place which they wanted to change.

Examples:

“What are some of the criteria you’re looking for when selecting a system? Why is that so important to you?”

“Were you part of the original selecting committee? Who is also part of the selecting committee.”

  1. Bring up their band-aids that would reaffirm to them that they need to do some changes.

Example:

“What do you do to fix this challenge? What are the band-aids you’re doing? Is that something you’re going to keep doing? How long can you keep doing that band-aid before it becomes ineffective to you?”

  1.   Delve down to their true pain that’s affecting them.

Emphasize how it affects their business by asking, for instance, the 5 why’s. Ask with a why and keep following it up with a why. By the time you get down to the fifth why, you usually get to the true issues.

Example:

“How does that affect your business? How much is that costing you?”

Episode Resources:

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

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The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Donald Kelly, PandaDoc

TSE 500: The Sales Evangelist 500th Episode-“I Can’t Believe We Are Here!”

The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Donald Kelly, PandaDoc

Today marks our 500th episode! And to celebrate this marvelous milestone, we’re having this fun Q&A session where I pulled out some questions sent to me through email or from the Facebook group.

 

Q: How do I get current customers and referral partners to write recommendations about me on LinkedIn aside from skills endorsements? How can I help influence them?

A: The best way to get something is to GIVE something. Give them something of value. There’s a feature on LinkedIn that allows you to write a recommendation and you’re asked if you want to write a recommendation in return. These people are already your partners so they’re willing to do this but people are usually afraid to initiate the process. So try writing them recommendations first.

Q: What comes to mind when you hear $8,500?

A: When I began doing speaking engagements, I was practically taking opportunities to speak for free and getting paid $500 blew me away. Fast forward to now, I’m closing deals to speak for over $500. One of the highest I’ve had is $8,500 for a speaking opportunity and I am now on the $10,000 range.

This is HUGE! The point here is to not undervalue yourself and to not be afraid of asking for more. Don’t hold yourself back. So when I hear $8,500, I think about the idea that the sky’s the limit. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing, you can’t let yourself hold you back.

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Q: How would you coach someone who has recently been hired to do outbound sales for a company who has not had anyone in this role before?

A: Understand the ideal client for the organization. Go into the CRM. Look at the top deals closed in the past 2-3 year and look at client demographics. Then figure out how long does it take to close the deal and what products/services you have to offer to your ideal customer.

Find out why they went with you and what issues did you solve for them which you can use as a talking point to other customers. Then outline your sales process. How do you find your ideal customers? (Outbound and inbound strategies). Set a discovery meeting to see if you’re a great fit. Have the right people on board. Then bring value. Make sure to have a standard operating procedure and qualifying metrics before going to the next stage.

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Q: When you recorded Episode 1, what did you hope to be getting out of podcasting and 499 episodes later, can you say that you’ve achieved your goal?

A: I was excited to create a community of people that I could help overcome the pitfalls that I also went through when I started off. That was the dream. 500 episodes later, I did accomplish that. I’ve seen so many individuals whose lives have changed because of the things our guests have shared or the lessons they’ve picked up from the podcast.

Q: How do you hustle to get promoted?

A: Just give value and go above and beyond your call of duty. Bring value to the table. Find the challenges and offer solutions. Work early and stay late. Bring something to the table to help you get noticed. Act rather than be acted upon. Also help other departments.

Q: How did you go from working a full-time sales job to creating 500 episodes and give time to your wife, church, community, traveling, and taking time to take care of yourself?

A: I found the most important elements in my life and I made sure I put time in for those. I have always loved planning and was always writing things out and making goals. I put the big things in place. So put the times in for the things that matter the most. Then I started delegating other tasks to my team members (ex. writing the show notes, audio editing, etc.)

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Q: How did you make yourself productive without losing sleep?

A: Just put the most important things first. Don’t jeopardize your family or friendship for your career. Make sure you give them your time. Sometimes you have to work early too.

Q: From the time your dream hit you, how long did it take before launching? What steps did you take to help others achieve big things as well?

A: I got introduced to listening to podcasts by my friend Jared Easley and so I started listening to Seth Godin’s Startup School Podcast and got hooked on podcasting since then. I listened to Pat Flynn and I was thinking about how this stuff could work and how I can talk about sales and sales challenges. So it took me around 3-4 months from the time the idea was conceived to the actual execution.

My key takeaways:

  • Strike while the iron is out so you won’t talk yourself out of things. Keep that dream alive and keep going.
  • Start small. Big things will come when you start small but you have to start in order to get there.

Do you have any questions? Email me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com and I’d love to hear from you.

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Episode Resources:

Predictable Revenue by Aaron Ross

Asana project management tool

Seth Godin’s Startup School podcast

Let’s go down memory lane and listen to the very first episode of The Sales Evangelist

Join our Facebook group, The Sales Evangelizers

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Donald Kelly, PandaDoc

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