Monday, February 27, 2017

"The Secret To Closing The Sale"

Many people feel that they are not good salespeople. Many feel that they could never place themselves in a position where they had to ask someone else to buy what they had available for sale. That's unfortunate and entirely unnecessary.

Particularly as aging in place professionals where we may have a background that does not involve sales, we project our feelings onto others. We know that we do like someone pressuring us to make a decision when we are "just looking" so we take extra measures to keep this from occurring with others and we develop what we think is a dislike for sales and a fear of closing.

This is a false narrative.

Let's look at what sales really is. It is nothing more than conveying or communicating an idea or product that one feels strongly about to another and persuading them (hopefully in a gentle way) that this will work for their expressed or perceived need also.

Take a movie that we have seen, a book that we read, a recipe we tried, a vacation spot we enjoyed, or a restaurant where we had a good experience. Don't we tell someone that we like or care about that they should experience this also? While there is no financial component to this - no one is paying us to do this and we won't be any richer monetarily for doing it - we are doing it because we care about the other individual and want them to experience firsthand and appreciate what we enjoyed also. This, in a word, is selling.

Because there is no financial gain riding on their decision, we are very comfortable having a conversation and can be very passionate and expressive about trying to convince them why they should do what we are suggesting. Again, this is selling - especially when we know that they can benefit from choosing to do what we are suggesting to them.

This is the major disconnect when it comes to selling. We try to persuade someone that they need something they really don't or to purchase something because we will benefit financially from their decision. It's all about us and not them. This truly what irritates people about selling and gives them the wrong idea of professional selling.

When we have something that we believe it - this is an absolute must - and we firmly believe that our friend, relative, client, or customer can benefit from having and using it, even though it may be a little more expensive than we know they would like to consider, we truly appeal to them on why it can help them.

Closing the sale is nothing more than getting the person we are talking with to agree that they would like to own or have what we are suggesting to them. No high pressure, no gotcha. It's a win-win, but primarily it is a win for the customer. We just happen to be in a position to help them get what truly can help them at this moment in their lives.

The secret to closing the sale is that we have to honor our customer, believe that we are helping them, trust in what we are offering to them, and show them how to get it. We don't have to have fancy closing questions. It's nice to know how to conclude the conversation by getting a commitment, but we are just talking with our customer and getting them to agree to get what we are presenting to them.

This is sales - communicating - and this is closing - getting a commitment.
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Steve HoffackerCAPS, CEAC, SHSS, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist-Instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.