Even the gurus have it wrong

By Lew Nason

Insurance Pro Shop

Let's face it, the old-style sales techniques that have been taught for 40 or more years have completely lost their effectiveness. People today are too smart to fall for those sales mind games and tricks. Sales occur 98 percent of the time because the prospect has developed some respect and trust for the salesperson. That type of relationship is born from having real conversations. Today, you must learn to ask the right questions to get your prospects to tell you about their problems and what they really want, so they'll want to meet with you and they’ll practically sell themselves! Here are some points to consider:

Old-style sales technique #1: "Selling is a numbers game."

Sales is only a numbers game when all you know is traditional selling techniques. There is a better and easier method of building trust and getting your product or service message across — simply by changing your sales approach and asking the right questions you'll begin a serious conversation with intelligent back-and-forth questions, answers, insights and clarifications, all for the purpose of attaining deeper understanding for both parties.

Old-style sales technique #2: "Use a sales script to sell."

People can tell when you're using a script, even if you think you're pretty good at it. There's nothing personal about it and people will pick up on that. Being artificial just puts you into the typical salesperson category. If you learn to ask the right questions to get people to tell you what they want, you'll eliminate the negative triggers that can lose your sale within seconds.

Old-style sales technique #3: "Rejection is part of the sales process."

It absolutely is not! Rejection is triggered by what you are telling them. Remember, no one likes to be told. Ask the right questions to get them to tell themselves.

Old-style sales technique #4: "Focus on closing the sale."

Are you "going in for the kill" with your 101 closing techniques? If you are, you could end up killing your deal instead. Old school closing techniques do nothing more than pressure the client or prospect. As a result, they naturally want to retreat away from that pressure, and that pressure is created by you. By learning to ask the right questions and getting them to tell you, you'll be able to move the sales process forward to get the result you want.

Learning to ask the right questions is the critical key to consistently setting high quality appointments with your ideal prospects. Asking the right questions is how you establish immediate trust and competence with your prospects to build strong and lasting relationships. It's how you get your prospects emotionally involved in the sales process. It’s what makes them want to solve their problems right now!