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How to get prospects excited to buy and buy now!

What methods do you recommend for getting prospects excited to buy and buy now? - by Thomas
The short answer is, spend enough time on each step of the sales process to fully engage the prospect and draw them to you. When you get to the close, you won't need to close, the prospect will close themselves.

If at any point in the sales process you can't fully engage them, stop, continue with that step and get them engaged or walk away. - by Jim Klein
Thomas
The 'excite' part of what you sell, I'd guess is when you show and visit the property, that is best suited to the customer.
So I'd suggest that you'd really need to know about the features of the house / apartment and its location and how living or working there will fit with the prospect and their life style. Then when you explain and present it, link it to what you've learnt about the prospect i.e you said earlier that you have 2 children ages 7 and 10, one of the great things about living here is that there are really good schools within walking distance that cater for children of all ages, so it'll be really convenient for you won't it? - by marky
If you qualify your appointment correctly and set your client up with buying expectations, they roll up to the product excited. - by PiJiL
The short answer is, spend enough time on each step of the sales process to fully engage the prospect and draw them to you. When you get to the close, you won't need to close, the prospect will close themselves.

If at any point in the sales process you can't fully engage them, stop, continue with that step and get them engaged or walk away.
Just to make sure we're on the same page, when you say "fully engage the prospect" what do you mean? - by Thomas
Just to make sure we're on the same page, when you say "fully engage the prospect" what do you mean?
I'm with you on this completely. I run into comments like this here routinely which leave me really cold. It's like all this "vernacular" is understood by me. For the record it's not. I know what it means to engage a clutch, a gear, and a lock. I know that when someone is said to be engaging it is meant to mean "attracting or delighting" and though I think I have less trouble with the term "fully engage" the prospect to mean ask enough questions and the sale will uncover itself, but clarity (of which I lack much of the time) is important to communication.

Brevity I'm told is the "soul of wit". I heard this yesterday when a client said he wanted to look around first... ultimately for something cheaper. The answer to that from my buddy was "Sir, when you buy the cheapest, much of the time you get what you pay for, wouldn't you much prefer to buy exactly what you're looking for?" The result I'm told was, "you're right, what was I thinking!"

Aloha.... shds; - by rattus58
People BUY for their reasons, not yours. Further, sales is not something you DO to someone, it is something you do FOR someone.

In my vernacular, ENGAGING the customer is all about ASKING ENGAGING QUESTIONS that get the prospective customer to MENTALLY USE YOUR PRODUCT or SERVICE. By doing that, the prospective customer PERSUADES THEMSELVES on how the product is the best fit for them.

Here is an example of how ENGAGING QUESTIONS are different:

What many insurance agents ask today: How much bodily injury protection do you carry on your current auto insurance policy?

Common answer: State minimums. Just what I need to be legal.

An engaging question: Imagine for a minute you caused an accident and were successfully sued for $1 million. How much of that bill do you want your insurance to pay?

Common answer: All of it.

Notice the difference? The first question gets the prospect focused on price and comparing apples to apples.

The second question gets the prospect mentally using their insurance and customizing the product based on the prospects needs.

Remember, No Comparision = No Competition. - by jdedwa11
I agree with questioning. I agree with questioning that explores what you do and how you use our products... which in this above example EXCELLENT.

Aloha.... shds; - by rattus58
Thomas,

Let me give you the long answer.

Let me start out by saying that most salespeople have not taken the time to master all the steps of the sales process.

Secondly, most salespeople are more concerned with getting to end of the process and closing the sale, that they glaze over all the steps in the process that come before the close. Then they are searching for the "magic bullet" or closing technique that will make the sale.

What they are missing is that the prospect must be willing to participate in each of the steps fully and each step in the process needs to completed before going on to the next.

Let me give you an example. Let's start with the initial phone call to the prospect. When you make the call, if you have mastered this step you will have a compelling introduction and USP that will have the prospect asking, "How do you do that?" They will be truly interested in meeting with you to find out more about your product or service.

If they're not, then chances are you are wasting your time and theirs in setting up an appointment. Now there are exceptions, however, in most cases your chances of closing the sale increase the better that initial contact goes.

The same holds true when it comes time to building rapport. If you don't spend the proper amount of time building rapport with a prospect and really getting them to like you and trust you, your chances of getting them to open up and share their problems with you are slim to none.

So what does this mean? You have to spend enough time on each of the steps of the process and engage the prospect in each step before moving on to the next step. If you are not able to get their total involvement, either spend more time on that step until you do or break off the meeting and move on to the next.

By executing the sales process in this manner, you will find that closing becomes a natural progression of a process intead of you trying to convince the prospect at the end to purchase what you are selling. - by Jim Klein
What methods do you recommend for getting prospects excited to buy and buy now?
Find out what the prospect is looking for...then work to meet their needs, wants and desires you have uncovered...follow-up, follow-up. When you meet the prospects needs you will ultimately make the sale. - by The Dynamic Business
What methods do you recommend for getting prospects excited to buy and buy now?
Hi Thomas,

I see you are a Real Estate Sales Manager and I am interested in what methods you recommend for getting prospects excited to buy and buy now.

Sincerely, if I/we can get a better idea of how you see this from your perspective or experience I for one might help with some answers that are more helpful to your situation rather that shotgunning a book of tidbits. - by Tony_B
Remind them of the dissatisfaction they have with their existing situation, the dissatisfaction that caused them to realize a need originally. Then fan the flame of intensity and urgency. - by Houston
This goes along lines of the impulse factor's.

Jones Theory: "Mr. and Mrs. Jones choose this item/service because of......" "Everyone's buying this" Goes along the lines of people wanting to be accepted by society.

Mr Jones buys a new car and within 3 months 2 of his neighbors buy a car as well.

Fear of Loss: Fear of loss is greater than the need for gain. People don't want to lose out on a good deal.

Indifference: Not used by alot of sales consultants but highly effective, especially if the customer tries to use your competition against you.
"There's alot of dealership's out there"
I perfectly understand Mr. Customer, I know your looking for a great deal, and I'm sorry you don't feel this is a great deal for you, I know there is other competition out there, but I also know their is alot of other customer's that believe that this is a great deal. I just hope that you find the deal your looking for, or if you can't, I hope the product is here when you come back.

Sense of Urgency: Time to buy is now! It's the best time, and you are a very busy person.

These 4 factors work well for the auto industry, but the best way to get the customer to act and act now is simple.

If your selling a $25,000 product, then you give a $40,000 presentation. If the customer believes that the precieved value of the product is greater than the actual cost of the product, the will take it 90% of the time. - by jrboyd
my mistake - see below! - by Gold Calling
If your selling a $25,000 product, then you give a $40,000 presentation. If the customer believes that the precieved value of the product is greater than the actual cost of the product, the will take it 90% of the time.

Great point!

I submit that they will take it 100% of the time if they truly believe the value is greater than the cost.

And don't say "if they can afford it" bgwnk;

Look at the Financial Meltdown, Credit Crisis we're in right now. Though I am intimately familiar with this, one could boil it down to people being sold the idea that they must leverage their wants with credit. Having 'it' now was of greater value than waiting to pay for it or even affording paying for it! - by Tony_B
Remind them of the dissatisfaction they have with their existing situation, the dissatisfaction that caused them to realize a need originally. Then fan the flame of intensity and urgency.
Houston, you know I have great respect for your posts. So, I am sure you will understand;

It is important to realize that there are many opportunities to sell where there is no dissatisfaction and even where there is NO PAIN.

When we meet with a prospect and dig for needs, we can, very often, develop/uncover the need. Especially where there was no need known to the prospect.

Let me supply a real example; in the early sixties when a copier sales person took in a demo to show people what they could do they were amazed. They also saw no need, saying;

"Wow, that's amazing [and they were legitimately impressed]. But what do we use it for?"

Can you imagine an office without a copier today? The point is, the sales person had to find needs - there was NO DISSATISFACTION!

Remind them of the dissatisfaction ...
The first stage of developing effective sales training is realizing that dissatisfaction is not the word best suited to exampling this part of what we do as professionals. The next mistake that is commonly made is as follows;

Remind them of the need(s) ...???
Why is the answer is not a need(s)? because it is a benefit or benefits the prospect is interested in ... but, the question is, what kind of benefits? The ones we recognize as sales people or … ???

Sales people – in general - to a great degree assume the prospect will see the benefit once we mentioned how our product addresses the (uncovered) need, but it is the benefit(s) that are accepted by the prospect.

Now we have this;

Remind them of the ACCEPTED BENEFIT(s) ...
Remembering that, in some sales, there is only one benefit.

Clearly, the example of a copier buyer when they had never bought one before - or, put another way, a new or unique product/service - is not applicable to all sales. In other words, we must look else where to prove that we have to adopt a new way of thinking about salesmanship.

When a car buyer walks onto the lot, they already have the idea in mind to buy. They are more likely to have a dissatisfaction but not necessarily, as a person buying their first car also does not fall into the "remind them of the dissatisfaction" category either.

I trust everyone can see why we cannot go on with this premise as a way to explain "How to get prospects excited to buy and buy now"? Or a way to explain how to sell, which is really what this question is about.

You can call it NEED SATISFACTION SELLING - you can twist it around a bit and call it CONSULTATIVE SELLING ... you can adopt a few proofs and then try and say it is new and call it SPIN ... the facts are; almost every known selling school agrees on the fact that selling is about providing value to or perhaps better stated "in the eyes of the customer".

"Too many notes" .... LOL - by Gold Calling
Houston, you know I have great respect for your posts. So, I am sure you will understand;
I did not know but I do now.

It is important to realize that there are many opportunities to sell where there is no dissatisfaction and even where there is NO PAIN.

When we meet with a prospect and dig for needs, we can, very often, develop/uncover the need. Especially where there was no need known to the prospect.
It is my opinion that some of the most lucrative deals can be traced back to a salesperson helping buyers recognize a need for change and being there with the solution. There is rarely better timing.

When a car buyer walks onto the lot, they already have the idea in mind to buy. They are more likely to have a dissatisfaction but not necessarily, as a person buying their first car also does not fall into the "remind them of the dissatisfaction" category either.
It is my opinion that even a person buying their first car has a sense of dissatisfaction with their existing situation. That person may be dissatisfied with having to walk, dissatisfied with not having a car when everyone else does, etc. It is dissatisfaction with their current situation that causes people to realize a need to solve a problem or exploit an opportunity. The wise salesperson will uncover the source of that dissatisfaction and develop the need. - by Houston
… my opinions; (A) that some of the most lucrative deals can be traced back to a salesperson helping buyers recognize a need for change and being there with the solution. There is rarely better timing.
Okay, literally speaking any purchase is a change. The issue is; was the change considered before the meeting? If not there is a subtle difference in the way such a prospect is approached.

Timing again is a function of how you sell. If you call up a company offering to improve their profit by 10 to 20% ... and get the appointment. If they had no reason to make a change before you surprised them with a call, how is timing a factor?

This is why trigger events is a little bit weird as a sales training concept. It is a function of how you sell - you may not care less about "events" of any kind.

How about another example – again using a copier; let’s say I am opening a new branch and want to buy a copier for it. Do I feel PAIN, where is my dissatisfaction? Maybe I am dissatisfied with the job landing on my feet – maybe not. I certainly have no dissatisfaction with a current system.

As for the lucrative nature of sales, I think we need to say that a deal is a deal, some are more lucrative than others, regardless of how they began. I think what you are alluding to is more sales happen where the buyer knew they were about to buy and had needs and/or dissatisfaction before the S.R. met with them, however, there is not necessarily PAIN or dissatisfaction felt even if they know they have to buy.

Sometimes this is a function of what you sell, as in a new system that no one has ever heard of (when the copier was new) and/or how you sell, such as; the greatest sales prospectors develop opportunities to sell where there was no buy about to happen, liking the fact that there is no competition. But, again, this is a function of what you sell – not many car sales people sell cars where there was no “up”.

… (B) even a person buying their first car has a sense of dissatisfaction with their existing situation. That person may be dissatisfied with having to walk, dissatisfied with not having a car when everyone else does, etc. It is dissatisfaction with their current situation that causes people to realize a need to solve a problem or exploit an opportunity.
It gets harder and harder to make this point, especially in a literal situation – meaning in text in a forum as apposed to a live training session where we can talk and you can hear my voice. Nevertheless, this subject – suing the car sale - deserves another stab;

Suppose I just graduated from school and my dad offers to buy me a car. To date I lived in downtown Toronto, where the subway is a great way to get around and I hardly ever left the city core, so I felt no pain not having a car.

Is this prospect feeling dissatisfied or dissatisfaction … or is this prospect’s main or predominant emotion more like “elation”?

Is it a good idea to try to use PAIN (dissatisfaction) in this situation? No, it is not.

The wise salesperson will uncover the source of that dissatisfaction and develop the need.

Going back to the last example and in all sales, the needs certainly should be developed, which is done by sharing a benefit(s) – again it is only the accepted benefit(s) that are of interest to the prospect. And, clearly, there is not necessarily dissatisfaction or pain present in all selling situations. To make sure we understand this fully, let’s look at one more example;

We called on a company that was making money hand over fist. Their annual profit was $180 million, meaning each of the executives was getting their maximum bonuses and had been for years (and did for several years after – till I lost contact with them). The main benefit was sustained increased profit. The minor benefit was reduced stock. We got the order and this is where it gets interesting.

Because these execs were not going to get paid more and therefore felt no pain, it was beyond difficult to get them excited – they literally showed almost no emotion about the eventual increase, I believe it was 12% per annum.

There was NO PAIN, no dissatisfaction then or for years afterward. We could not sell it on this basis. In fact, the sale was matter of fact and so was the consulting contract, like I said; we never managed to get them excited, before, during or after.

Now, it was not that there were no master sales people involved (there were two), so don’t blame me. I wanted to use the excitement and the PAIN … but it did not work.

There was no DESIRE of any real measurable amount in the benefit – TO THEM (it should have been there or you would think so, nope!). Even though the benefit ended up being a sustained increase of approximately $20 million annually plus one time stock/inventory decrease of $2 million – we barely got a rise out of this country club loving, golf playing executives who literally had it made whether we showed up or not!

Trust me, sell the benefits. If emotion is there, obviously, the wise sales person takes advantage of it. If not, they not only don’t, they can’t!

Remember, the emotion may not be one associated with PAIN, it may be one associated with desire instead, as with the example of the person getting a car as a gift. Or there may be a devoid of almost any feeling in a decision, like buying a copier for a new branch or the consulting contract explained above.

No matter how you slice it, if you are to be a master sales person, you have to know more than just selling using PAIN. Sell value – benefits … that is the road to the greatest possible success.

[sorry … “too many notes!”] - by Gold Calling
Timing again is a function of how you sell. If you call up a company offering to improve their profit by 10 to 20% ... and get the appointment. If they had no reason to make a change before you surprised them with a call, how is timing a factor?
Timing is optimal when the salesperson is first on the scene at "Need Recognition" before the prospective buyer moves into "Evaluation of Alternatives".

How about another example – again using a copier; let’s say I am opening a new branch and want to buy a copier for it. Do I feel PAIN, where is my dissatisfaction?
Nobody said anything about Pain. If you want to buy a copier it is likely because you are dissatisfied with your current situation whether that be no copier at all, not enough copiers, etc. and buying a copier for the branch satisfies that need.

As for the lucrative nature of sales, I think we need to say that a deal is a deal, some are more lucrative than others, regardless of how they began.
Price shopping is less likely when the salesperson is first on the scene at "Need Recognition" before the prospective buyer moves into "Evaluation of Alternatives".

Suppose I just graduated from school and my dad offers to buy me a car. To date I lived in downtown Toronto, where the subway is a great way to get around and I hardly ever left the city core, so I felt no pain not having a car.

Is this prospect feeling dissatisfied or dissatisfaction … or is this prospect’s main or predominant emotion more like “elation”?

Is it a good idea to try to use PAIN (dissatisfaction) in this situation? No, it is not.
In your example as soon as you learned of the potential opportunity the decision process started. That is a common first step, "buyers appreciating potential challenges/opportunities" with the next step being the recognition of a need to solve a problem or in your example exploit an opportunity. - by Houston
Timing is optimal when the salesperson is first on the scene at "Need Recognition" before the prospective buyer moves into "Evaluation of Alternatives".
Timing is completely irrelevant if the buyer had no idea you could help them (and, say for argument sake, your product or service existed in the past as well as today). It is very clear, the unknown need that exists today existed last year and was just as unknown then - we simply had not the time to contact that specific prospect then, that is all.

This style of sales thinking appears to root itself with timing being an issue most closely related to a prospect who already knew they were buying, or dissatisfied if you like, prior to the rep being in contact. Though the differences in selling may seem subtle and to some degree are, the person who is not a master does not succeed very often in such situations.

It is the same thought process used by those who talk "trigger events" ... and, unless you say my picking up the phone to call a prospect is a TRIGGER (which is not the way 'trigger happy' trigger event proponents explain their ideology ...) then you must admit there are times when a sale happens that timing had nothing whatsoever to do with the decision, at least not timing in the case of the prospect. In fact, the decision ONLY HAPPENS because the sales person took/takes action. Very different from retail or car sales.

Nobody said anything about Pain.
Really, why are we talking about it then? Come on now.

I could swear this discussion is as close to being identical to one I had with Paulette as I have had on this forum. She used the word PAIN and made almost exactly the 'argument' as you. want to know why?

Dissatisfaction and pain are synonymous (meaning; identical, the same, one and the same). If I am said to be dissatisfied I am feeling emotion or, if you like; suffering. Then can we not say as I buyer "I want the suffering to GO AWAY!" Now, simply replace the word "suffering" with the word "PAIN" ... try and tell me after you say it out loud that the new expression does not fit perfectly!

This is where the term PAIN comes from and, incidentally, why I argue profoundly against it (and, to be clear, must also argue against all sales being "likely" to be the result of "being dissatisfied", for the same reasons).

If you want to buy a copier it is likely because you are dissatisfied with your current situation whether that be no copier at all, not enough copiers, etc. and buying a copier for the branch satisfies that need.
Geez Loise ... you are kidding, aren't you?

Never mind that it is "likely" ... turn this from theory into a real expereince (like roll playing - man is it ever effective!). On the off chance you are not kidding ... let's make this even as real as we can without sitting across the desk from a prospect;

I go and sign a lease at a building managment office, for my branch location, which I do not take possession of for a month, meaning it isn't even open yet. How is it I can register "dissatisfaction" - an emotion tied to expereince, based on your use of the word - when I have not even experienced anything yet?

Let us further make sure there is no misunderstanding by saying I have never had a prior experience of not having a copier in a new office. So, my purchase is not based on anything to do with the past.

Carrying on, before the office opens, I go to the Canon dealer, because my company has a deal with Canon nationally. I sign a lease and arrange for delivery on the day I get possession. How is it I have any emotion involved in that decision at all?

Please don't tell me it is fear of future dissatisfaction. ;st

Price shopping is less likely when the salesperson is first on the scene at "Need Recognition" before the prospective buyer moves into "Evaluation of Alternatives".
When the buyer did not know there was a need, the one who prospects this prospect is "first on the scene", yes (and often the only one on the scene depending on what you sell). Not sure if we agree here - due to your use of terminology that could be said to be up for debate, like "Evaluation of Alternatives" ...

In many sales there is never price shopping. Take the cases where the sale involves a company coming in to do a two-man two week analysis of the manufacturing process, looking for ways for show improvement. These prospects, if they allow the two week assessment, with an eye to a three or four month project to improve manufacturing efficiency, they are not going to go through having another team in, it is simply too time consuming and disruptive.

If what I have just stated reflects your wording above then on this at least we agree.

What is very clear is; prospecting for business where no business existed if you did not - meaning the buyer is not looking for a solution nor is aware of a challenge - is the road to no competition selling in a much higher percentage of cases.

In your example as soon as you learned of the potential opportunity the decision process started.
No offense but it is not what I learn as a professional sales master sitting there in a sale meeting that starts a decision process, in these situations it is what the prospect learns. Or, more aptly put; what I help the prospect learn.

That is a common first step, "buyers appreciating potential challenges/opportunities" with the next step being the recognition of a need to solve a problem or in your example exploit an opportunity.
Again, this language makes it unclear to me that you are seeing what I am saying. That is a distinct issue with sales education today - buzz phrases mean little to those who are not in the habit of using those exact expressions. This is a little like saying - your apparent misinterpretation of my use of the term PAIN as another way of saying dissatisfaction is similar to me not being exactly sure what is meant here.

My effort was put in here in this thread just to prove that there is no dissatisfaction (or pain) in sales that "exploit an opportunity". As long as your definition of this phrase includes the fact that there was no need known to the prospect when you had a first meeting, which cannot be the case of an "up" in car sales or any sale where the buyer is aware of the need prior to the sales meeting taking place. - by Gold Calling
I must say, part of your last post is getting a little out of hand Houston, at least from a common sense viewpoint.
Pardon? Would you please explain what "out of hand" means? - by Houston
Pardon? Would you please explain what "out of hand" means?
I am not sure I need to. I am confident my response/post stands for itself. But just so you are clear, it seems like you are arguing a point to the extreme.

I trust the post I made explains what I mean by that clearly enough. - by Gold Calling
I am not sure I need to. I am confident my response/post stands for itself. But just so you are clear, it seems like you are arguing a point to the extreme.

I trust the post I made explains what I mean by that clearly enough.
I do not follow and I do not choose to argue. Instead I will post my opinion and readers can take it or leave it.

Dissatisfaction Defined
Pain and Dissatisfaction are not synonymous to me. Dissatisfaction to me is a desire for something better.

Dissatisfaction can be prompted by helping the prospective customer appreciate potential challenges to be solved and or opportunities to be exploited. Help them appreciate the gap between their current situation and where they potentially could be.

(*Many believe the wider the perceived gap between the customer's perceived situation and the customer's desired outcome the higher the likelihood of dissatisaction resulting in change.)

Buying Decision Process
When people make purchasing decisions they go through a similar decision process:

1. Need recognition
2. Search for information
3. Evaluation of alternatives
4. Purchase
5. Post-purchase

Timing
At what point in the decision process are you working with the prospective customer? It is my opinion that some of the most lucrative deals can be traced back to a salesperson helping buyers recognize a need for change (Stage 1) and being there with the solution. There is rarely better timing. You are first person on the scene when the customer recognizes a need, his desire is red hot and you are the only person around with the solution in hand.

Once the prospective customer has shifted gears mentally and moved into the "Evaluation of Alternatives" (Stage 2) of the decision process you are on a different playing field.

How can you get prospects excited to buy and buy now?
Remind them of the dissatisfaction they have with their existing situation, the dissatisfaction that caused them to realize a need originally. Then fan the flame of intensity and urgency. - by Houston
Pain and Dissatisfaction are not synonymous to me. Dissatisfaction to me is a desire for something better.
And feeling PAIN with an existing system is not hand in had with "a desire for something better"?

I seriously don't care what word is used, DISSATISFACTION or PAIN, to me they are just words, one coexists with another and neither exists in all sellign situations, so I am far from married to either word.

However, it should be noted, with much interest, that the argument used by the people who do favor the term PAIN - rather than your word - is almost identical in that;

They believe that there is always PAIN felt as you believe it is "most likely" that a decision is made based on dissatisfaction. And they are just as adamant as you are.

Buying Decision Process
When people make purchasing decisions they go through a similar decision process:

1. Need recognition
2. Search for information
3. Evaluation of alternatives
4. Purchase
5. Post-purchase
Question Houston, if I am there with the "information' ... is there a search (as in #2). Are you inferring that this is the beginning of looking at competition? Same with point #3? In other words is evaluation of alternatives in your list meant looking at what is out there or just looking at what you are there to present?

This is what is unclear to me, since I do not use your expressions.

Timing
At what point in the decision process are you working with the prospective customer? It is my opinion that some of the most lucrative deals can be traced back to a salesperson helping buyers recognize a need for change (Stage 1) and being there with the solution.
So, we are having two conversations about the same thing then, good. I was unsure if you meant TIMING as in the way that certain groups use trigger events - timing being some event that is external. Clearly you are not.

There is rarely better timing. You are first person on the scene when the customer recognizes a need, his desire is red hot and you are the only person around with the solution in hand.
Once again, this depends on whether there is competition. If you are in a situation with competitors, the best "timing" is last in.

If you have gained access to a prospect with no clear need, developed one ... you have a chance to sell without competition. A rather enviable position indeed. I think that is what you are saying too.

Once the prospective customer has shifted gears mentally and moved into the "Evaluation of Alternatives" (Stage 2) of the decision process you are on a different playing field.
This, in my opinion, is not clearly understood unless the terms you use are known to the reader. In other words, if I am unsure what you mean, others are too.

How can you get prospects excited to buy and buy now?
Remind them of the dissatisfaction they have with their existing situation, the dissatisfaction that caused them to realize a need originally. Then fan the flame of intensity and urgency.
You can only remind people of dissatisfaction if they feel it.

I have provided quite a few examples of when it is not felt, from retail and at the highest level of selling (corporate C LEVEL). Those examples stretch the belief that this is there all the time - therefore it is unwise to beleive that there is always THAT emotion in a sale, it really is not true.

What is my dissatisfaction if I am buying season tickets to the Blue Jays? I assure you nothing but elation/excitement. So, if it were your job to sell these season tickets you could not "fan the flame of intensity and urgency" through my dissatisfaction, as I don't feel it.

The reason why I used this example is; I nearly bought a corporate box for the Jays. I can tell you, I felt no dissatisfaction of any kind going into that meeting and the greatest sales person in the world would not have made me feel any nor should they have tried, which I will get back to after a minor clarification.

I am not saying that dissatisfaction, what certain sales schools would refer to as PAIN, is not felt in many sales. What I am saying is it is not felt in every sale - and the more you stretch to prove this point the more the theory begins NOT to look good, as it becomes more and more complex.

Take the situation where the buyer does not feel an improvement of the manufacturing line is beneficial. Instead they think they should buy new equipment - not work with the people to make it run better. You could certainly say that they FEEL dissatisfaction, as they beleive they need new machines. And your job is to sell them something else.

In this case, you run head long into an objection. "Why improve the line when packaging is manual labor, we should automate packaging!" Now, if I was sellign the new automated packaging equipment I certainly could use this dissatisfaction ... but I wasn't, so I dealt with a serious objection and I very definitely wanted them to BUY NOW before the guy selling the packaging equipment showed up!

It is far easier to say that dissatisfaction is common than to say it is always present or almost always so.

Once we get to that understanding as sales trainign leaders, we can then state that people buy value (and this is based on what they perceive is their need or needs). Because, whether you feel dissatisfaction or not, you have needs and if I have a feature of my product with a benefit that addresses the need, I can and do get the order - often!

"Buying now" can be set up through fear of loss and other techniques. with or without PAIN or dissatisfaction.

Buying is usually an emotional experience. That is why ... if there is no dissatisfaction with an existing system or product, we need to key on the emotion (if it is felt) - like excitement or elation - that goes with buying Jays Season Tickets or a CRUISE or a FIRST CAR (when you were not feeling dissatisfied by not having one), or; on needs, like the example I gave of selling a CONSULTING TEAM (when the improvement of profit did not matter because the buyer was getting their bonus anyway and already had 20% a year increases in sales for years and a nice cushy country club membership with the other execs!).

It is there often - it isn't always a part of a sale. And this is exactly the same argument used in this forum (in another thread about 4 months ago) with a sales trainer who is a proponent of PAIN. No amount of twisting and turning to try and make this rule of selling fit works - it simply does not fit in all cases, it is that simple. And to me it is out of hand to try and suggest that it does, this of course is my "opinion" ( i have only studied the subject for 30 years, I may have missed something - LOL).

Since you and I are ranked the highest in this forum - in terms of reputation points, you at # 1 and me #2, out of what ... 30,000 subscribers? I beleive this to be a very interesting argument. And I think it is beneficial for us all to air this stuff out. I trust you see it that way, and thanks for all that you do to promote selling.

Lastly, if the "out of hand" remark seemed out of hand, allow me to apologize. It was not intended as an insult in any way. - by Gold Calling
Gold Calling I see no reason to argue the point. You have your opinion and I have mine.

For others who are following my posts remember that
  • Behind every action is a cause.
  • Behind every behavior is a motivation.
  • Behind every motivation is a need.
The inability to perceive or recognize the cause, motivation or need does not mean that one was no present it only means that you were not able to perceive or recognize it. - by Houston
A Comment from the Lower Reputation Ranks: (gotcha!)

Interesting discussion, and now that it's apparently over, I want to say that the two of you are coming from different observation points somehow. Houston clearly states cause and effect while Gold Calling seeks to ignite cause and effect.

Which makes a sale? Clearly the most important question.

Regardless of whether you discuss further with one another, I would want to know how the discussion effects the readers here with regard to that question.

Anybody? - by Ace Coldiron
Gold Calling I see no reason to argue the point. You have your opinion and I have mine.

For others who are following my posts remember that
  • Behind every action is a cause.
  • Behind every behavior is a motivation.
  • Behind every motivation is a need.
The inability to perceive or recognize the cause, motivation or need does not mean that one was not present it only means that you were not able to perceive or recognize it.
It is a terrible shame that you do not wish to continue, as we could have advanced selling knowledge. In my opinion, one of the biggest losses on this forum since it began.

In addition, I doubt that everyone could follow the phrases you used in your posts, it would have been or would be great great if you converted them to more common language rather than your propensity to use buzz phrases, as I will try to explain ...

"Behind every action is a cause" - yes, but so what? Can you not see that most people here can't follow you? It is not that you are not brilliant, it is that you are cryptic in a fashion - only in that you use phraseology that is known to only a few.

I have studied sales all my life and I am unsure exactly what it is you intend to communicate. And I'm a decent writer, so if I can't, how can those with less knowledge and expereince?

I am not unsure about sales or recognition of attitudes as well as behaviors and do nothing but uncover needs every day. It is your language and how it converts to the way I would express it ... at least partially ... for me and others here, that is a breakdown.

There was at least one point where we thought we were saying different things and were not. If that is the case, then surely you must see that there is much of this going on not only in this thread but throughout the forum. And, you and I, plus a small handful of others - those who made a commitment to this forum, like Ace, Skip and others - are the ones in the best position to help the group advance.

I will say one more thing; in the practice of charting live sales calls, all the fly-on-the-wall does is recognize expressions of needs, emotions and missed opportunities, as well actions of the sale rep, like probing to uncover needs. The whole job is to "recognize" what is happening and open the eyes of the sales rep to see what they are not grasping, it is truly fascinating, as this could be, if you would only give it a chance.

If we could talk, much of what is breaking down due to slightly different interpretations of words would disappear - then we could see each other. Without that luxury, we can but try.

I do perceive tremendous benefit from continuing to try and understand each other (as I would with a prospect). In this case not only would we benefit personally but the forum would or could be taken to a new level.

I must ask you in all sincerity to reconsider. - by Gold Calling
Ok time for me to step in this lil debate here. Houston's process is right on. The question asked about the customer's buying process and the salespersons role in each step.

First and foremost is the customer has to believe there is a need or want for a new product/service. (Need Recognition) I have yet ran into someone who wakes up one morning and decides hey, this house I have is perfect for me, let me go buy another one.

Secondly.. Information gathering. That is ofcourse what the customer will be doing. Again this was the customer's buying process and the sales consultants role in each part. One thing you did say and I find hard to swallow is:

"Question Houston, if I am there with the "information' ... is there a search (as in #2)."

Are you infering, that because a customer believes he has all the information he needs, that you dont have to do step 2 in the sales process? The customer interview?
OFCOURSE there is a search. That's part of the sales process. Are you saying that as salespeople we should skip steps in the sales process, because the customer thinks he has all the information? You can do that, but in my humble opinion, you are shooting yourself in the foot.

Evaluating Alternatives. OF course a customer is going to do that. REMEMBER this post is about the buying process, and how it relates to the sales process. And the salesperson's part in this phase? GIVE THEM ALTERNATIVES. Doesn't have to be competition, could be different products that your company provides. But as a sales consultant, in this stage you have to be ready for them to bring up the competition.

I have the utmost respect for you G.C. and I do see some validity in what your saying most of the time, but I can't agree with you this time. - by jrboyd
Kudos to you JR for picking up the mantel and forwarding this discussion. I believe GC would say the same. - by Ace Coldiron
Are you inferring, that because a customer believes he has all the information he needs, that you don't have to do step 2 in the sales process? The customer interview?
No, that is not what I said at all or even remotely close to what I am inferring. And I am glad you posted as you did, because now you have the opportunity to see that you misinterpreted me, as well. Which leads me to;

I am strongly asserting that LANGUAGE is a barrier in this forum to understanding and forwarding the general knowledge of sales for those who use this site.

I was unsure of two things that Houston stated, what he meant - his phraseology, which is quite different than disagreeing with some of his ideology (That too - I had issues both ways). So, I'll start with the misunderstanding first, ok?

I have studied almost every major sales training and coaching company with the possible exception of Sandler (I only read their white paper on PAIN vs. NEED).

Give you an example; I just finished ACTION SELLING, which was sent to me to review. This book breaks the stages of a sale down as ACTS ... they separate the "act of showing the benefits" from the "uncovering" of them. And, what seems to be called NEED RECOGNITION by Houston appears as if it may be approached the same way (with the emphasis on "appears" - I don't know unless he tells me). The concept of separating the sales process into distinct sections, is something I do not do, at least not at this stage.

When I uncover a need by probing, if a prospect says "Yes, that is exactly what I need" then three things are certain in my mind. One, Houston would be correct, it is highly likely that this person was dissatisfied with their current system or product - some say this buyer is feeling pain (not me, I use the word need). The 2nd is even more simple, it is also very likely that they are not only talking to me - there is competition.

It is desirable to be in a position where there is no competitor.

So, getting back to the misunderstanding, because I do not separate the process of the sale, rather addressing each need as it comes up, then searching for more needs, I am not in favor of the use of this term "Information Gathering" ... it indicates to me that they are looking to getting info from several people selling similar solutions to the buyer's issues or that the sales person is not directing the call or both.

Again, I cannot speak for Houston, that is why I tried to get Houston to clarify, because I wanted to be absolutely certain what he was saying, in order that we would not be having two conversations, which I beleived was happening for a while, at least in regards to; 'timing' ... perhaps that is not all I was not following correctly.

Once that clarification was received I felt that a truly amazing debate could take place and still do. This feeling is totally profound and, I will say it again, it is a shame if does not, as I think that any time heavy weights passionately debate separate ideas it is good for everyone one, especially the debaters!

I also feel this forum fails again and again because there is a breakdown in communications between many different parties all trying to explain the same thing with different words.

Getting back to sales - I relate to PROBING, not to the phrase NEED RECOGNITION ... because though there are two people involved (minimum) I am the professional, it is my job to recognize the need exists and to make sure that need is clearly stated by the prospect. That means I am directing the process as much as possible. It is me that is asking the questions, clarifying 'the information that I am gathering' ...

Look, what turned me on big time was Houston is a top pro and one of the mostly highly respected people in this forum. And, I am as certain as I can be that the depth of his knowledge is met by my own. Neither of us lack passion either.

If you are interested in seeing where this could have gone, I suggest PM-ing him.

As for this post, there is so much more I can say about the process of sellign that I could go on and on. Right now, I will be late for a sales call if I am not careful. So I will check back later. - by Gold Calling
I do believe we are getting off track. It really does not matter what you call the need, want, pain or dissatisfaction. Some believe the way to get the client to make a decision use the pain want, need or dissatisfaction as a way to increase the desire to make it happen. This is not the way I like to do business however it is quite effective for those who use this style.

I prefer to get the client excited by an enjoyable sales process that guides and slides the client towards an ownership exchange. I do this by building a relationship of getting to know the client. Gathering information about their personality and how it develops our relationship. Gathering this information informs me on how I must discuss their situation and how they want it to become a better situation. This does not happen one hundred percent of the time. I must adapt to their wants, needs and desires with the process and fit their personality or motives to own. This is how I find the way for excitement with the client and the ownership exchange.

When they do not know they need a change or want a new product I still must drive the want, needs and desire to own once they discover the need. Educating the client is part of the process. There are three basic concepts with sales to clients these are relationship, consulting and education. When we use the example of the copier to a client presently without a copier would you not drive the need to have a copier and the benefits of having a copier over using carbon paper? With all businesses the proposals need a copy. What are the benefits to having a copier? The puppy dog close gives them a copier for thirty days to give them the experience of owning and using the copier. I point this out due to the cycle sales of b2b sales. There is more than one way to gain excitement from the client to own. Sometimes more than words are needed. The show and tell or the puppy dog close must be added to gain that excitement.

I wish it was as simple to gain excitement with words alone however it is not. We must be smart enough to figure what our clients need and want in order to gain the excitement to own then give it to them. I have found at times I must be eloquent along with times where I need to be straight forward and blunt. Sometimes I must inform the client they are just being stupid and other times I must simply add isn’t it about time you made the correct decision and move forward to make this a thing of the past.
rich
- by rich34232
I do believe we are getting off track.
I'm not sure that the thread is off track. Your points are well-stated, and I think they enhance this thread. Nice job!

That said, I wonder--not sure--if what GC said is demonstrated by your well-written post. He said: "I also feel this forum fails again and again because there is a breakdown in communications between many different parties all trying to explain the same thing with different words." - by Ace Coldiron
Better late than never; "A need is defined as a lack of something, a feeling or state of inadequacy, a dissatisfaction with things as they are, or a desire to have something more or better. In order to buy, the prospect must be aware of and acknowledge his need." - by Johnny Fairplay
I just read Jr's post to GC pretty well thought out fer a "goofball" (his terms of himself folks).

Houston had an excellent post I thought as well
  • Behind every action is a cause.
  • Behind every behavior is a motivation.
  • Behind every motivation is a need.
except probably the entirety of my last 14 firearm purchases wouldn't quite have fallen into the category of "need" except when discussing my allowance with the missuse.

I'm still digesting Houstons post, but the question here was how to get prospects to buy and buy now. If I knew the answere to that, I'd have a heck of a lot more free time, that's for sure... :) - by rattus58
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