In order to help you create the perfect buying environment you will need to put on your buyers hat for a moment or two. What elements are present in order for you to have a perfect buying experience? How many people are there, is there video, music, how many sellers, where is the meeting held (your place or theirs), what time of day, what else makes it perfect? Now remember, this is just what you want for your perfect buying environment.
Now think about the environment you are selling your products or services in, would you describe it as perfect? So what do you think is going through the mind of your prospect when they are interacting with you?
If you go into a restaurant and use their restroom and it’s filthy, how does that affect your perception of the place? I find when I ask this question to people that their opinion is negatively affected by something as simple as a filthy restroom.
Your prospect has a lot of reservations about parting with their hard earned money when they come to do business with you in the first place. You don’t want them having one more excuse to not do business with you.
Let me share a technique that I refer to as “Lowering the Barriers” for your prospect. I’m going to share two barriers that are going through your prospects head every time they do business with someone. Your prospective client wants to know 1. how long this is going to take, and 2. how much sales pressure are they going to put on me.
Why would you want to “Lower Barriers” in your sales call? The biggest reason is that when barriers are present for either party the communication will not be effective. If you don’t have effective communication with your prospect, how do you expect to determine if you are a good fit for each other? I define good fit as, “The problems or goals you have are things I’m really good at helping you fix or achieve.” That’s my definition of a good fit.
Let’s deal with the first roadblock to effective communication that keeps barriers up between you and your prospect. How many times have you gone into a sales call either as the prospect or sales person and had no clue how long something was going to take? Your answer may sound something like, “Every time I have to deal with a sales person.” Most sales people are always so desperate to talk to a prospect they never even bother to ask a simple and respectful questions like, “How much time did you set aside today to come and see me?” You can ask any variation of this question, but the key is to define specifically how much time your prospect has.
This works both ways. Do you want your prospect taking up your whole day if you have other prospects and clients to go see? If you answer that you will give your prospect all the time they need, you need to rethink this belief. If your prospect thinks you have all the time in the world, they will have a lack of respect for you at either a conscious or subconscious level.
The perception is that sales people only get paid if they sell something, which may be true in many cases. But you want your prospect to know you are in demand, and only have a limited amount of time for your appointment. This is perception issue for both of you. Scarcity is a powerful influencer, so make your time scarce.
The second roadblock is sales pressure. This typically means that a sales person will put buying pressure on a prospect to get them to buy something. There is an old saying that states, “People love to buy stuff, but they hate to be sold.”
Why do they hate to be sold? Who wants a bunch of pressure when you’re in the process of looking for something, or doing research on a product or service to buy? Does this create an environment that people want to be around, or even be a part of?
There is a difference between putting sales pressure on someone and getting a decision if they’re going to buy your product or service, but I’m not going off on that tangent right now.
So we dealt with the first roadblock of the time pressure by simply asking or sharing with your prospective client how long the process would take. The way we’re going to deal with the second obstacle is going to follow a similar pattern of getting and creating prospective client expectations.
You are going to face the reality of what’s going through the clients head, and what previous experience your prospective client has probably been through in the past. If they have ever bought anything, they have at some time experienced sales pressure, and now dread talking to and dealing with sales people. You’re going to be guilty by association.
So here is what I want you to ask, “Mr. prospect, do you know how sometimes when you’re shopping, sales people put pressure on you to buy? Well, in my experience, most people do not respond well under pressure and I would like you to have a good experience while we’re together. My goal during our time is to find out if you and I are a good fit to do business together. That means that the problems or goals you want to achieve by investing in my product or service are things I can actually help you achieve. If we’re a good fit for each other, great, there’s a good chance we’ll do business together. If we’re not a good fit, that’s fine also, I’ll do my best to lead you where you would find a better fit. Are you OK if you and I ask and answer some questions to figure this out together with out any pressure to buy?”
It will take you less than two minutes to go through this entire process of “Lowering Barriers” and this will help you to start connecting with your prospective client. This will put you on the path of creating the perfect selling environment. In a future article I will share how you can define and create your prospect’s buying criteria to position you as the ultimate Trusted Advisor.
Now to wrap this article up I want to help you start applying the techniques we covered here and start building some competency. Did you know it takes an average of thirty hours to become competent at a skill? If you will practice the two steps too “Lowering Barriers” in your selling environment just fifteen minutes per day, you and your prospective clients will enjoy a much more productive buying and selling experience. That means in the period of one hundred and twenty days you would be competent at this skill.
Wow! That sounds like a long time. Depends on your perspective. If you’re continuously improving your skills each day, how much more effective will it make you? What could that effectiveness mean in dollars and sense to your business? The time is passing any how, you may as well make it worthwhile.
So there you have it, the first two steps to creating the perfect buying environment. Now go take action.