Sales people do a wonderful job answering clients’ questions, even if the questions take you in the wrong direction, and they are forced to respond as if they are a commodity. Even if you created the value of your products, some questions can trick you to reduce the importance you create. We are all humans and we know that we do not know many things. Limited knowledge is a kind of obstacle for you to understand what ”they really want”.
Questions open up the possibility to create something innovative and valuable. Questions lead you to additional information and help you to create a happy atmosphere. However, even if you are a smart person, you need to think wise and be a good strategist. Think that you are not selling, but you are a best friend consulting to cover needs.
”What can we do for you?” is definitely a nice and polite way to touch the base but what if you simply rephrase ”Tell me please about your favorite experience you had in……’‘ – you will be listening to your client and sharing his good emotions with him. This technique will help you to prepare your company’s offer in a friendlier manner. Danger in ”what can we do for you?” Simply, you will be blocked with diplomatic answers that will have just one message ”nothing, nothing you can do for us”. When you dig for the actual examples of delight, you can better determine the real target for your new deal.
“Tell me a little bit about your business” is probably a nice way to show your interest but for a real professional you need to investigate before about the industry and even at a very basic level – start with the discussion about the problems in the sector. Feel free to start ” I’ve heard recently many companies have got some problems related to … How do you find a challenge and what is your personal response to it?”
”What is your target market?” is a very nice question and it cannot help you to get better information out of such a narrowed thing. Better way is to ask ‘who are your potential customers? What is their age and gender and which issues they may experience?” You will be provided with much more information rather than general polite responses.
Remember that you are a trusted advisor and this is the Great role in your own Hollywood benefice.
”Which needs you have to strengthen in order to support your business growth”? This question will help you to uncover areas of weakness in your clients business. All this information will help you additional flexibility to find some alternatives and fix the core issues rather than offering a price list of services that maybe completely irrelevant.
“Who will be making the final decisions on this project and who will be in charge of implementation?” This is another critical question that amateur consultants forget to ask. This should be asked early in the conversation as you want to ensure you’re dealing with the person in charge that will be writing you the check. At one time or another, early in their careers, consultants find themselves working hard to ‘sell their services’ only to find out they’ve been talking with the wrong people. This wastes time and can really drain your energy and knock your confidence level.
When you are asking these questions, do not be shy to challenge your client on their responses. The more you dig the more you can help your client find the core issues…and the greater the value you will be able to help them discover and enjoy.
And last but not least, take a CRM Project Management tool that will totally help you organize perfectly your clients and tasks and help you boost your productivity!