Top-Shelf Tip No. 086:

"Value the relationship more than making your quota."

Jeff Gitomer

Powerful Questions That Close The Deal

Being part of a large corporation, I get to experience what I call "creative forecasting." While much time and energy is spent on long sales pipeline calls, it's questionable whether the potential sales reported are strong opportunities, or if these targets are a salesperson's slight potential. It's my experience that more and more of what's reported comes from the school of "go-get" versus "highly secured."

In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share these recommendations for the realistic forecasts that make a real difference in your daily performance.

It's been months. You've nurtured the sales relationship. You've completed the extensive request for proposal. You've pitched to multiple teams ... and still you sit. Without a closed deal. Without a contract. Without the sale.

How can you move the client to seal the deal? Sometimes it just takes asking the right questions that unveil where and how you can deliver value, as we explain in this edition of Promotional Consultant Today.

The questions below will provide you with the insights to determine how or where you may be able to offer value throughout the sales process. These questions will encourage the customer to speak freely; maybe even prompting the response, "Nobody ever asked me that before." Ask them at your first client meeting.

• What has changed most about your business in the past ___ year(s)?

• What do your customers most value about your company?

• Describe the biggest challenges you are facing? Is there a financial impact?

• Which suppliers are you currently using? Who are the most effective?

• Can you tell me about some of the most exciting future business opportunities?

• How do you measure success in the area of _______?

• What is your competition doing that you should be doing?

• Where do you have a competitive advantage?

• Other than yourself, who else will be involved in the decision to move forward?

• What one thing, if you could finalize it this week, would make you really excited?

• What three major things have contributed to your success so far?

• What conditions need to be satisfied for our companies to do business together?

• What do your salespeople tell you about the market (or your competition or customers)?

If there is only one practice you decide to change as a professional salesperson, make it the mastery of asking better questions―great questions, and thought-provoking questions.

No question about it―PCT returns on Monday with more tips for your business success.

Source: Stephen Peady is a marketing and media industry veteran of 30 years with significant experience in sales, sales management and general management. He is based in Sydney, Australia, and specializes in providing high-performance sales training for salespeople and sales managers via his company, Sales Solutions.

Compiled by Cassandra Johnson


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