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Closing to an existing business customer

My new project is a very easy sales call. We call IT managers and inform them that their warranty is due to expire on their servers or other IT kit.

The opening call is easy and friendly. However the problem is the close.

The structure of what I do is this.

1. Call and send quotation via email

2 Follow up call and ask if they have got the info. If yes, then ask when will a purchase order be raised.

This process of closing can take up to several weeks. How can one get a quicker close, a quicker purchase order during a call? - by puttyshankleton
My new project is a very easy sales call. We call IT managers and inform them that their warranty is due to expire on their servers or other IT kit.

The opening call is easy and friendly. However the problem is the close.

The structure of what I do is this.

1. Call and send quotation via email

2 Follow up call and ask if they have got the info. If yes, then ask when will a purchase order be raised.

This process of closing can take up to several weeks. How can one get a quicker close, a quicker purchase order during a call?
Putty, I have a couple of questions about the process.

You mention the "process of closing". Are you disatisfied with results (i.e. conversion ration) or the time lag? It seems to me that if the results are there, the time lag might be liveable because the three step process is proving to be effective. However, if the results if aren't satisfactory, the process might have to be re-evaluated.

My second question is where did you get that selling process? Is it from your company's training? When I look at the process, I don't see the value (to you) of duplicating your sales offer by putting it into an email. I'm not saying the value doesn't exist--I just don't see it. Also, finding out "if they got the info" is usually not a strong purpose for a follow up call. Emails sent are usually received. So are faxes. Someone sent me a fax recently and called me later to ask if I received it. I found it a tiny bit annoying.

All follow up calls or second, third, etc, contacts in selling should be promise-generated. That means you set the stage for a second call by making a promise to do so--usually with some further information. The process is a cousin of "permission marketing". The best calls--the best follow-ups--are expected calls--expected by the recipient. - by Gary Boye
Thanks for the reply Gary. Here is exactly a breakdown of what happens.

Call #1: Find the man in responsible for extending the warranty on IT Servers.

( I seem to get ones that say yes, but during negotation at close they say 9 times out of 10 ' Ive passed this on to my manager. ' Which is frustrating! )


Ask what is the company policy on warranty extension.

E-mail the list of serial numbers, contract end date, price list.

Call #2: Follow up and see if they would like a quotation. Send quote.

Call #3: (Here is where the problem arises ) ' ive not had a chance to look at quote etc etc ' Or, ive passed it on.

The sale takes at least a week to be processed, if not weeks..


Now obviously there might be a problem in my opening call in getting the correct person. Any good opening lines? - by puttyshankleton
Now obviously there might be a problem in my opening call in getting the correct person. Any good opening lines?
Once you think you have the man in charge. Ask "If my product/service meets all of your requirements and you want to move forward, who else would have to agree with your decision?"

If there is someone else that has to agree, then you don't have the man in charge. - by Derek
Thanks for the reply Gary. Here is exactly a breakdown of what happens.

Call #1: Find the man in responsible for extending the warranty on IT Servers.

( I seem to get ones that say yes, but during negotation at close they say 9 times out of 10 ' Ive passed this on to my manager. ' Which is frustrating! )


Ask what is the company policy on warranty extension.

E-mail the list of serial numbers, contract end date, price list.

Call #2: Follow up and see if they would like a quotation. Send quote.

Call #3: (Here is where the problem arises ) ' ive not had a chance to look at quote etc etc ' Or, ive passed it on.

The sale takes at least a week to be processed, if not weeks..


Now obviously there might be a problem in my opening call in getting the correct person. Any good opening lines?
It's not a matter of an opening line so much as it is asking sharper questions. First drop the word "policy" from your vocabulary in these efforts. Use the word "practice" which is an active term. "Policy" is a bureaucratic term and those language patterns serve to stall the buying process. Example: "Is it the company's practice to extend warranties on.....?"

If the answer is "yes", or the more common "Sometimes.." or, "That depends..", then ask who is the person with that responsibility? Or better yet, "Who actually ends up taking care of that?" The key phrase is "ends up".

That is the person you should be talking to. When you reach that person, take charge of the facilitation process yourself. That way, it takes the fluff out of your follow-up and puts more accountability on the prospect to take part i.e, take the time to review the information. Basically you do this by outlining your steps in quoting--not his/her-habits of handling quotes. Big difference! If you are telling the prospect when you are calling back and for what purpose, the implication is for him to be prepared. Being prepared means reviewing the information. - by Gary Boye
Those tips actually helped!. I raised 30K of revenue this week..:) - by puttyshankleton
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