WHEN you’re asking an existing or prospective customer a question, the object is to get them to think and respond emotionally.
To most salespeople this strategy sounds like a foreign language.
Start your thinking here: The sale is made emotionally and justified logically. Once you understand that fact, it makes perfect sense to engage the customer emotionally to set the tone for them to decide to buy.
Most salespeople are taught the difference between open-ended and closed-ended questions. A closed-ended question is one that results in a yes or no answer. An open-ended question is one that begins to create dialogue from the customer. Open-ended questions are good, but they don’t necessarily breed emotion. This process is necessary to understand, but at its core is passe.
Here’s a new way of thinking about your questioning strategy - logic-based questions versus emotion-based questions.
This thought process and strategy will give you a new awakening about how customers think and decide. And by using emotion-based questions, you can get them to decide how they feel about you.
Caution and challenge: This is insight to a new questioning process that will help you formulate emotionally engaging questions. I’ll give you phrases to use, and a few sample questions. Your job is to understand the process and create your own questions based on your product, service, customer needs, and each customer’s desired outcome. Logic-based questions centre on the old-world ‘qualifying’ questions. These are questions that both annoy and aggravate the customer. Logic-based questions basically ask for money information the salesperson wants: ‘What’s your present payment?’ or ‘What have you paid in the past?’ or ‘What’s your budget?’ or ’Do you want to lease or buy?’ These questions fall under the category of ‘none of your business’.
Key concept: Do not qualify the buyer, let them qualify themselves because you’re so friendly, engaging, and genuinely interested. Emotion-based questions ask about their life, not their money. Prior to beginning your presentation, ask the customer emotion-based questions that begin with the words, ‘How long have you been thinking about...’ or ‘What were you hoping for.’.
Get the customer to paint their vision of outcome.
Get the customer to paint their picture of ‘after they buy’.
During the purchase, ask emotion-based questions such as: ‘Is this what you had in mind?’ or ‘How do you see this serving your purpose?’ or ‘How do you see your family enjoying this?’
Emotion-based questions draw out feelings - feelings that will lead to true engagement and honest answers about how your product or service will affect their expected outcome.
When you can get the customer to visualise outcome, you also have them visualising ownership - otherwise known to you as ‘purchase’.
Major point of understanding: People don’t actually come to purchase. They come to purchase because they want to use. What happens after the purchase is way more important to the customer than the actual purchasing process. Drawing out their emotion during the process is the key to getting them to take ownership.
So, during the sales presentation you might want to ask questions that begin with phrases like, ‘What are you hoping to achieve?’ or ‘How will you use this in your business?’ or ‘How do you envision this will add to your productivity?’ or “’How do you believe this will affect your profit?’ Whether you are selling to a consumer or a business, whether you are selling on the phone or face-to-face, the process and the emotional involvement are the same. Someone wants to take ownership, and your job is to get them to visualise it, be engaged by you, agree with you, believe you, have confidence in you, trust you, accept your price, and pull the trigger.
The key to this is emotional involvement. No manipulation, no pressure, no old world sales techniques, no neuro-linguistic programming, just friendly and genuine emotional engagement that touches the heart and the mind simultaneously.
Find their pleasure, find their purpose, find their expected outcome, uncover their true emotional motives - and you will find their wallet.
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, Customer Satisfaction is Worthless Customer Loyalty is Priceless, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Red Book of Sales Answers, The Little Black Book of Connections, The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude,
The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way, The Little Platinum Book of Cha-Ching, The Little Teal Book of Trust, The Little Book of Leadership, and Social BOOM! His website, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information about training, seminars, and webinars - or email him personally at firstname.lastname@example.org © 2013 All Rights Reserved. Don't reproduce this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer. 704/333-1112 www.gitomer.com.