Over the years there have been numerous surveys concerning the honesty and ethical conduct of business professionals. As you are probably well aware insurance salespeople and car salespeople are consistently ranked at the bottom of the list in these surveys.
However, you can change people’s perception in your world, if you’ll take a few minutes to learn the sales skills that will have your prospects thinking differently about you. You can quickly become the trusted advisor people want to see. And, you’ll be amazed how many more life insurance and annuity sales you will close!
But, only if you’ll follow these 11 sales success strategies:
- Get people to talk about themselves!
During the first few minutes you are meeting with a prospect, whether it’s in an elevator, at your seminar, or during the initial fact-finding meeting resist the temptation to talk about yourself, your products or services. No one cares how great you are until they understand how great you think they are. Ask questions to get them to talk about themselves and what they really need and want. Resist the temptation to throw out any “sales pitches” about your product or service. At this point, what could you possibly talk about? You have no idea how or if you can help them!
- Telling is not selling!
If you tell the prospect something, they may or may not believe you. Remember, in their eyes you are just another salesperson trying to make a sale. If you want to sell most of the people you meet with, then you have to get your prospects to “tell themselves” what’s important to them and their family. To do this, you need to get fascinated with your prospect; you need to ask questions with no hidden agenda or ulterior motives.
- Pretend you’re on a first date with your prospect.
Get curious about your prospect. Ask about their dreams, concerns and problems. The more you get them to talk about their dreams, concerns and problems the more important they become to them, and the more they’ll want to find a solution. Then ask… What products and services are they already using? How did they happen to choose that product or service? Are they happy? Is it too expensive, not reliable enough? Find out what they really want. If not from you, then perhaps from someone you could recommend.
- Speak to your prospects as you would speak to your family or friends.
This isn’t the time for you to switch into the “sales mode” with heavy-handed persuasion techniques. Speak normally, like you do when you’re around your friends and loved ones. Keep it simple. Don’t try to impress people. And, don’t use technical jargon. “If you speak at sixth grade level, then even the college professors will understand you!”
- Pay close attention to what your prospect is and isn’t saying.
Most salespeople are so concerned about what they’re going to say next that they forget that there’s another human being involved in the conversation.
- If you’re asked a question, answer it briefly and then move on.
This isn’t about you or your knowledge; it’s about whether you’re right for them.
- Find out what they need and want first.
Only after you’ve correctly assessed the needs and wants of your prospect do you mention anything about what you’re offering.
- Keep it simple.
Don’t try to impress people. And, don’t use technical jargon. “If you speak at sixth grade level, then even the college professors will understand you!”
- Refrain from delivering the three-hour product seminar.
Don’t ramble on and on about features and benefits that have no bearing on anything your prospect has told you. Pick a handful of benefits you think could help with your prospect’s particular situation and tell him/her about them. And if possible, reiterate the benefits in their own words, not yours.
- Ask the prospect if there are any barriers to them taking the next logical step?
After having gone through the first eight steps, you should have a good understanding of your prospects needs and wants in relation to your product or service. Knowing this, and having established a mutual feeling of trust and rapport, you are now ready to bridge the gap between your prospect’s needs and wants… and what you’re offering. You’re now ready to…
- Invite your prospect to take some kind of action.
If you learn and use the previous ten ‘Sales Success Strategies’ you’ll obliterate the need for any of “101 closing techniques” you’ve learned, because the ball is now placed on the prospect’s court. Using a “closing technique” keeps the ball in your court and put’s the focus on you, the salesperson. You don’t want the focus to be on you. You don’t want the prospect to be reminded that he or she is dealing with a “salesperson.” You’re not a “salesperson,” you’re a financial advisor helping them to solve their problems by offering a particular product or service.
If you want more people to buy more life insurance and annuities from you, then you must get them emotionally involved! People buy for many reasons, but they all boil down to avoiding pain or gaining pleasure, which are emotions. To get people emotionally involved, you must ask open ended questions so they will see and understand the dreams, concerns and problems they have. The more emotionally involved people are in the sales process, the more likely they are to take action.
Yours In Success,