Asking someone for their business seems simple enough, yet so many of us mishandle the process and, in some cases, all around skip this vital step in closing the deal. After all, asking for the sale is what prospects are expecting from you, right? We make the pitch, ask all the right questions and just as we’re about to pull the trigger, we pull down our weapon in hopes that the prospect will get just a little closer to us. Why do we get so nervous about pulling the trigger and asking for the sale? Asking for the sale is the moment of truth where we find out if our hard work has paid off while simultaneously having judgment passed on us. There is a lot at stake at that moment.
We’re worried about hearing the dreaded ‘No!’ The pain of that rejection can shatter our egos, break our hearts and send us sniffling back to our car. Handling rejection is an entirely different topic to cover, but using it as an excuse to not ask for the business is just that; an excuse. Some of us don’t even bother asking. We either expect to have done such a nice presentation that customers will throw their money at us or that today just isn’t the day. Asking for the business didn’t feel right at the moment so I’ll wait and do it the next time we are together. We again become victims of our own excuses and miss the perfect opportunity to get a deal done. The problem is really that you weren’t properly trained in how to ask for the business. Here are the three essential components for asking for the business.
- Ask, and ask with confidence – Asking someone for their business is like going in for the kiss. First, you have to work up the nerve to do it and then you have to let your body follow along into the motion. The same is true in sales. You turn off your inhibitions and let the words come from your mouth, ‘Let’s make a deal!’ You must kiss with confidence just as you must with asking. Assume that you will get kissed back and they will say yes. See it, feel it and touch it in your mind, otherwise, your hesitance will be evident and the odds of you being rejected are greatly increased.
- Listen upon asking – You made the ask and now you must wait for a response. This is the moment that eons may dwell in. Some people take time to craft a response and this will play tricks on our minds that mislead us into talking someone out of the sale. While tempting, don’t automatically offer a discount after 3 seconds of silence. Allow your prospect to process what they have heard and what it means to them. Saying too much too soon and you will talk yourself out of the sale.
- Prepare for objections – Objections are a natural part of the sales process and it is not the same as a rejection. Objections sound like, “”Your price seems too high”, “I need to think this over””, I don’t know if this is right for me”. They didn’t tell you ‘no’, but they have an emotional and informational barrier to overcome. They need your help now more than ever. The best way to be prepared for objections is to anticipate the 5 most likely scenarios, craft a proper response and role play it like crazy. You never want to wing this part of asking for the business because this can and will make or break your success. You should have your “ask” and responses be as well rehearsed as your elevator pitch because you will use it. If you need a script, template or some concrete practice to nail the “ask”, Scorecard Sales can help you. Just ask.
If you master your emotions then you can master the objections and therefore you will master the sale. Sometimes the ask is more critical that the presentation leading up to it. Rehearse this process often as you would your actual presentation. Everyone likes a confident kisser and they respect a confident salesperson.