Before we can sell to prospective customers, we need to get to know them and take the time to hear what they need. The only way to do this is to get them talking.
When you approach a prospective customer, however you do that, it can be a challenge to get the customers attention. Sometimes it can take days if not weeks to get someone on the phone, so once you do that you have to strike up a conversation with you. Most people don’t want to be bothered, their perception of a salesperson is that of a used car salesman or the person at Macy’s who approaches you in the aisle and wants to squirt perfume all over you. Yuck, right?
Another reason people don’t want to be bothered, is because they believe they will end up wasting their money on something they don’t even need. If you can get them talking, you can figure out what it is they do need, and then explain the products you have that could possibly satisfy their needs. Getting someone to talk to you is not as hard as you may think. People love to talk about their job, their company, their family, and their pets.
Believe me, if you call up to a customer and introduce yourself only to be blown off, say something along these lines; “I’m really sorry to bother you, but how are the patients you service unique to your area and how do you reach them?” Ninety-nine times out of one hundred, the person will tell you the answer to that quest, and what their challenges are in marketing to new patients.
Everybody is proud of what they do, and they should be. Once you have established what it is that your customer does to market to patients, get them to elaborate on it. Say things like; “That’s really interesting, how do you know what your cost of patient acquisition is?
What’s the best media you use in your area to reach potential patients?
Now that you have your customer talking, start digging for more, find out what his needs are. Most important, as your customer is speaking, listen intently, look for identifiers that can lead the conversation in other directions. As you listen to your customers talk, try to match up your offerings to their needs.
Once you have the customer talking, don’t be discouraged if you don’t get the sale right then and there. Not all is lost, in fact, it is just beginning, you have just taken the first steps toward building a relationship with your customer. Remember, people love to talk about themselves, their jobs, their pets, their hobbies, etc. Go in that direction from time to time to keep them talking. Ask the question, it will get you on your way to more relationships and sales.
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