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I have twenty minutes....

Scenerio: Customers comes into my store and tells me that he only has 20 minutes and needs to get enough information on my vans in order to bring back to his boss.

So far I have been trying to hand him as much stuff and load him up with as much benifits as i can assuming that only half of what I tell him will actually reach the decision maker. after getting him as much information as i can, i like to offer to take the time to have a meeting with HIM and his boss to go over the information....

any other ways you guys think this would be handled? should I push more to talk to the decision maker? I dont want the person coming here to feel like im going over his/her head. - by Jaron Watkins
Here's what I would recommend:

First, you validate his "20 minute rule." I understand, you sound like you're on a mission, so I'll do whatever I can to help! Let's get started. Tell me what you're looking for?" (or whatever opening question is appropriate).I think it would be an error to try to convince him, at this point anyway, that he needs to spend more than 20 minutes with you. Don't fight that battle yet. You can bring that up after 20 minutes if it makes sense.

Secondly, I would treat him like any other prospect. I wouldn't product-dump or hurry, or do anything special. I would focus on engaging him and getting him to talk. Start a full-blown needs assessment and see how far you get in twenty minutes. If he's engaged, he's happy, because engaged prospects are always happy. In all likelihood, you won't get far enough, so if he was using the "20 minute rule" merely to take control of the interaction, he'll willingly stay longer. If he really does only have 20 minutes to spend with you, he'll come back or make other arrangements because you did such a good job engaging him.

Great question, Jaron! - by Skip Anderson
I agree with Skip. Treat this person like any other normal appointment. Don't deviate from the process because he says he only has twenty minutes. He may be doing that to knock you off your game.

I have used a close for an appointment with people where I tell them if after ten minutes there not interested I will leave. Then at the appointment I treat it like any other appointment and many times I have stayed long past the ten minutes and closed the sale. - by Jim Klein
Jim and Skip have given you the best advice they can now I'll give mine. Only once or twice in twelve years have any situations like you've just described resulted in a sale - and both did not turn into repeat sales.

So how handle such a request is up to you - I won't suggest this or that method or tactic. If I had the time and there was no one else in my face who was a high probability prospect I'd use the time the best I could and hope for a sale - but I wouldn't count on it.

The best of success to you.

MitchM - by MitchM
Only once or twice in twelve years have any situations like you've just described resulted in a sale - and both did not turn into repeat sales.

I'd use the time the best I could and hope for a sale - but I wouldn't count on it.
Mitch, I have 3 thoughts:

1. To a large degree, salespeople make sales results, they are not the recipient of results.

You may be reluctant to discuss a "method" or a "tactic" to remedy Jaron's situation, but good selling is all behavioral: what the salesperson does with his/her prospect determines the outcome (a good portion of time). Hope is not a viable sales strategy.

2. I'm glad you had 1 or 2 sales in 12 years in a similar scenario to Jaron's. Yes!!! That's 1 or 2 sales you wouldn't have had if you didn't do something with those prospects! Thank goodness you did something with them so they bought!

3. Is it possible that, if one was better at handling a situation like Jaron's , one would have made 10 or 20 or 50 sales in 12 years instead of just 1 or 2?

Skip Anderson - by Skip Anderson
Jaron you already know that you're not working with the decision maker. The question in my mind is how do you get there (in front of the decision maker) from here? That would be the angle I took. - by AZBroker
1. To a large degree, salespeople make sales results, they are not the recipient of results. - Skip

We can discuss what that means etc. but I understand what you mean by it. -- Mike

You may be reluctant to discuss a "method" or a "tactic" to remedy Jaron's situation, but good selling is all behavioral: what the salesperson does with his/her prospect determines the outcome (a good portion of time). Hope is not a viable sales strategy. -- Skip

I don't have a method or tactic in such a situation other than giving the person the information he/she wants and asking questions. -- Mike

2. I'm glad you had 1 or 2 sales in 12 years in a similar scenario to Jaron's. Yes!!! That's 1 or 2 sales you wouldn't have had if you didn't do something with those prospects! Thank goodness you did something with them so they bought! -- Skip

I didn't do much at all. Those few really wanted what I had the others didn't - they had friends who wanted them to want what I had. - Mike

3. Is it possible that, if one was better at handling a situation like Jaron's , one would have made 10 or 20 or 50 sales in 12 years instead of just 1 or 2? --- Skip

Not from my experience. I've talked with many many people wanting information for someone else - I can handle conversations belly to belly ear to ear whatever they are - my experience is that if someone says he/she is getting information for someone else the someone else will make decisions totally out of mine and that carrier-of-information's control.

Okay, the few times I made the sale - this is a method - I said: I need to speak directly with that person to answer questions, etc. that's the only way I'll work.

Every one of my sales happened that way. A few got me eye to eye or ear to ear but I didn't make the sale.

MitchM - by MitchM
One of the customers I had this happen with last week, I just found out that the company did make contact with our store. Not to me, the guy just asked for the "sales department". He inquired on the vehicle I suggested and we are now in the works of quoting and trying to close the deal.

Did my information get to him? yes. Did my name? no.... I need to make sure i put more emphasis on ME beeing that companies contact. no matter who the decision maker is. - by Jaron Watkins
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