The High Reproduction Rate of Yeses If you're hoping for a yes from a potential customer, you can orchestrate a trend in that direction. Steer the conversation so that all of his or her answers are yeses, before getting to the meat of the matter. Here's an example:
Salesperson: Wow, it'll be nice when this weather lifts, won't it?
Prospect: You're right. I can't wait for sunshine.
Salesperson: So, you're in the temporary staffing business?
Prospect: That's right. I'm a rep with Temp Staff.
Salesperson: So, you probably use a database to store candidates' information, right?
Prospect: Yes, I'm using XYZ Software.
Salesperson: That's great. I'll bet you're so busy that you could use some more efficiency in that department.
Prospect: Yes, sometimes I get frustrated with moving from screen to screen.
Bingo! You've gained access, and gotten permission, to talk about your management software with a Yes Set. Because you have brought your target into a positively rolling conversation, the last yes seems so sensible to her, that it rolls more naturally off of her lips than an objection would.
Get a few yeses. It doesn't matter if those yeses are about the weather, favorite pizza toppings or the best way to fold a fitted sheet. Eliciting that little word from your prospect's mouth will start a trend -- one that can lead to your ultimate yes.
Presuppositions Presuppose the YES
You know that if a prospective client picks up the phone and you open with, "Hi, I'm Dave, I'd like to sell you a batch of super-charged, cushioned, psychedelic, lemon-scented keyboards," you might be met with silence, a click, or a bouquet of expletives.
Instead, you'll realize better sales success when you use presuppositions. I define presups as underlying, powerful inferences or implied assumptions that your YES target will accept as truths. I used a presup in the above example, in the Yes Set section. "That's great. I'll bet you're so busy that you could use some more efficiency in that department," is a presupposition that replaces what the salesperson would really like to blurt out: "You need this software." At the end of the conversation, he might say, "Should I stop by Tuesday or Thursday?" This effectively replaces a more direct statement, like, "How soon can I get your signature on this contract?"
When you use a presup, you get the yes, even if it's not a yes that correlates to a question that directly states your goal. Instead, the question infers the prospect's acceptance of the deal.
You can read your prospects' presups, too, and use the information that you find between their lines to establish rapport. For example, if a woman says, "I only have 5 minutes; I have to pick up my son from baseball practice," you know she's a mother and that this time of day is a bad time to call. You can use this information to determine your future calling times, as well as future inferences that you make, which might appeal to her feelings as a mother, such as, "I know you've got to be busy with your son. My automatic vacuum cleaner would give you more time to throw the baseball with him."
We all use presuppositions every day, maybe without even realizing it. The power of those presups can be harnessed by you, if you practiced manipulating them to lead to your most precious yeses.
Nominalizations Know No Boundaries
Quiz: What element holds the power to send prospects into their own heads, to search for, and hold onto, their own, personal ideas of bliss? What element uses words that can chameleon themselves to match up to your prospects' most positive feelings?
The answer is Nominalizations, and here are some examples: convenient, easy, pretty, relaxing. The power of nominalizations lies in your prospects' perceptions of these words. For example, if you use the word relaxing with 5 different people, each might picture, hear, or feel something different:
#1: a hammock on the beach at sunset #2: the scent of lavender #3: the feeling of a well-deserved massage #4: a gin and tonic #5: a football game with friends
And while your prospects are swimming in their own definitions of relaxing, your Yes Set, your presuppositions, and your quest for their yeses will fly right under their sunset, their music, their goal post, and their radar. They will be utterly powerless to their own "Yes."
Leaning into Your Prospect's Communication Curve
We all learn and communicate differently. Some of us learn best when we can see, others when we hear, and yet others, when we feel and do. Picking up subtle clues from your prospect can clue you into his or her communication preferences, and provide you with the tools needed to widen the path to yes.
Here are some examples of how you can connect with a target, on their terms, for your purpose:
Visually Oriented Communication
Prospect: I can't see the value in this.
Salesperson: Allow me to show you an example of how it worked for someone else.
[This example uses the word show in response to the prospect's unveiling of his visual tendencies, with the word see.]
Auditory Oriented Communication
Prospect: It sounds good, but I'm not sure about the price.
Salesperson: Maybe you'd like to hear from one of my past clients?
[Here, the target gives away her auditory tendencies with the word sounds. The salesperson effectively opens tailored communication with hear.]
Tactile/Kinesthetic Oriented Communication
Prospect: I feel like it's time for a change.
Salesperson: Yes, I can sense that.
[In this example, the salesperson does a good job of matching the prospect's tactile revelation (feel) with a kinesthetic word, sense.]
Even when conversing over the phone, it is possible to open your prospect's mind by using a key that is uniquely fitted to his or her style of thinking, learning, and communication?to unlock the door that will ultimately lead to your telephone yes.
Building Your Telephone YES
You know what you want from your sales career. You want the confidence and skills to make your way, seamlessly, past the gatekeepers that hide your real prospects; you want to build rapport, in order to establish comfort and trust; you want to score money-making commitments via phone; and you want to make the kind of positive impressions that score the return business that will equate to your future success.
Whether you're selling membership to fish-of-the-month, self-polishing silverware, blow-up furniture, or the latest in cutting-edge software, you're really selling the advantage of dealing with you. Your real competition may have nothing to do with pricing, and everything to do with how well you read and respond to your prospective customer. It might have little to do with how quickly you can deliver, and lots to do with how well you deliver an understanding of the wants of your target.
Make room for bacon in the fridge, my friend. Once you master the skills necessary for getting telephone yeses, you will own that ability. Call up these tips before you pick up that receiver?to transform yourself into a receiver of the currency of success.