study notes for sales

Chapter 4 – Communicating efficiently
Open ended questions- also called non-directive questions, are designed to let the
customer respond freely. They encourage the buyers thought process and deliver richer
and more expansive information
Close ended questions- are designed to limit the customers response to one or two
words. Typically used to confirm or clarify information gained from previous responses
to open ended questions
Dichotomous questions- and multiple choice questions are direct forms of questioning.
This type of question asks a customer to choose from two or more options and is used
to discover customer preferences and move the purchase decision process further.
Probing questions- are designed to penetrate below generalized or superficial
information to elicit more articulate and precise details for use in need discovery and
solution identification
Evaluative questions- use open and close ended formats to gain confirmation and
uncover attitudes , and preferences these prospects hold. These questions are
designed to uncover prospects perceptions and feelings.
Tactical questions- are used to shift or redirect the topic of discussion when it gets of
course or when a line of questions proves to be of little interest or value
Reactive questions- are questions that refer to or directly result from information the
other party previously provided. They are used for additional information, explain further
detail and keep the flow of information going.
There are two more prominent question systems and they are so called SPIN
Situation questions- solicits data and facts in the form of general background
information of the buyers situation. They are used early is the sales call
Problem questions- probe areas of difficulty with the buyer situation, developing
problems and area of dissatisfaction that might be positively addressed by the
salespersons proposed sales offering.
Implication questions- Follow and relate to the information flowing from the problem
questions. Their purpose is to assist the buyer in thinking about the potential
consequences of the problem in a way that motivates them to seek a solution.
Need payoff questions- These questions refocus the buyers attention to solutions rather
than problems and get the buyer to think about positive benefits derived from solving
the problems.
Assessment questions- Broad based and general facts describing situation. Nonthreating , no interpretation required. Open-ended questions are more efficient.
Discovery Questions- questions probing information gained in assessment questions.
Seeking to uncover problems or dissatisfaction that could lead to suggested buyer
needs. Open ended questions.
Activation questions- Show the negative impact of a problem discovered in the
discovery sequence. Designed to activate buyers interest in solving the problems.
Projection- Projects what life would be like without the problems . Buyer establishes a
value in finding and implementing a solution
Verbal Communication listening
1. Pay attention- Listen to understand, not to reply. Resist the urge to interrupt and
receive the full message the buyer is communicating
2. Monitor non-verbal’s- Make effective eye contact and check to see if the buyers
body language and speech matches what is being said
3. Paraphrase and repeat- Confirm your correct understanding of what the buyer is
saying by paraphrasing and repeating what you have heard.
4. Make no assumptions- Ask questions to clarify what the buyer is communicating.
5. Encourage the buyer to talk- Encourage the flow of information by giving positive
feedback and help the buyer stay on track by asking purposeful, related
6. Visualize- maximizes your attention and comprehension
Sensing, Interpreting, Evaluating, responding (SIER model)
Active listening in the selling process is defined as “ the cognitive process of actively
sensing, interpreting, evaluating and responding to the verbal and non-verbal
messages or present or potential customers.
Personal distance (proxemics)
Public zone: 12 ft; social zone: 4- 12 ft ; personal zone:2-4 ft; Intimate zone:0-2ft
Chapter 5
Salespeople should spend time prospecting on a regular basis. Otherwise, lost sales
volume cannot me regained quickly enough to satisfy the large majority of sales
organizations –Those that are growth oriented. Strategic prospecting is a process to
identify, qualify, and prioritize sales opportunities whether they represent potential new
customers or existing customers. Effective strategic prospecting helps salespeople
spend their valuable time in the most productive manner
Sales funnel
Generating sales leads
Determining sales prospects
Prioritizing sales prospects
Preparing for sales dialogue
Remaining stages in the trust based sales process
1. Generating sales leads- Organizations or individuals who might possibly
purchase the product
2. Determining sales prospects- salespeople evaluate sales leads to determine
which ones are true prospects for their product. Usually called “qualifying sales
leads”. A sales prospect is typically an individual or organization that has a need
for the product, has the budget to purchase the product, has the authority to
make buying decision.
3. Prioritize sales prospects- The most productive salespeople prioritize their sales
prospects to ensure that they spend most of their time on the best opportunities.
Create an ideal customer profile and analyze sales prospects by comparing them
with the ideal customer profile
4. Preparing for sales dialogue- Preparing for initial contact with a sales prospect by
planning the sales dialogue
MAD customers = M oney to by A uthority to buy D esire to buy
Different methods for prospecting
Cold canvassing- occurs when salespeople contact sales leads unannounced with little
or any information about the lead. “merely knock on doors”. It is a very inefficient
prospecting method. Referrals are a name of a company or person given to the
salesperson by a customer or prospect who didn’t buy at that time.
Networking- Many salespeople join civic and professional organizations, country clubs,
fraternal organizations. These memberships provide the opportunity for them to build
relationships with other members where they can meet “centres of influence”. Business
Networking International (BNI) is a formal organization with each local group consisting
of noncompeting salespeople. The members generate prospects for each other.
Company records- Company records can be a useful source of prospects ( identify
previous customers and those who have not place an order in while )
Advertising inquiries
Inbound telemarketing ( company 1-800 numbers)
Outbound telemarketing (normal)
Trade shows- purchase booth space( demonstrations, product/ company info)
Seminars-provide information to prospective customers who are invited by direct
mail, word of mouth, or advertising on radio or TV
Published sources- directories are electronic print sources that provide contact
The use of a strategic prospecting plan can help salespeople continuously improve their
prospecting effectiveness. It should fit the individual needs of the salesperson. The focal
point of the prospecting plan is the goal starting the number of qualified products to be
Sources of information- Secretaries and receptionists can be a friendly service of
information and can help with name, title, pronunciation, and correct spelling. Also, a
non-competing salesperson can help fill in information on accounts. By having contact
with many influencers in and organization the salesperson will always have a number of
people who have previous experience to pass on the new purchasing agent or team
Chapter 6
Need discoverySales presentationsFollow up: build more value.
Sales dialogue occurs overtime and includes all sales calls and other forms of buyer
seller communication. Throughout the process the selling strategy must focus on the
customer needs and how the customer defines value.
Linking solutions to needs
M = Money to buy
A = Authority to buy
D = Desire to buy
Appointments are efficient and also allow for time to prepare. Setting up and
appointment the most common methods are : telephone, face to face, emails, letters,
and third party introductions.
Third party referral is an extension of the referral technique of prospecting. Not
only supply names and information but the customer writes a letter introducing you to
that prospect. (B2B technique)
There are 3 types of sales presentations
1. Canned presentations- include scripted sales calls , memorized presentations.
Little training is required. It is inflexible and not adaptable to customers. Assumes
buyers needs are the same.
2. Organized presentation-Customer will take several sales conversations over
multiple encounters. Extensive training is required. Fosters trust and
3. Written proposal- A complete self-contained sales presentation but is often
accompanied by a sales dialogue before or after the proposal is delivered.
Customizable only when it is being written. Associated with high dollar volume
sales transactions
Organized sales dialogues and presentations
Address individual customers and different selling situations
Allow flexibility to adapt to buyer feedback
Most frequently used format for professionals
SMART steps to set sales objectives
S= specific- establish a specific major objective for the sales call
M= Measurable- ensure that your major objective is quantifiable
A=achievable- realistic and achievable goals
R= Relational- always try to develop a long term relationship
T=Temporal-If you can try to establish a time frame to complete major objectives
Free gift or sample
Dramatic act
Mutual acquaintance
Sales Dialogue/ template
Prospect information
Customer value proposition
Sales call objective
Linking buying motives, benefits, support information and URT
Competitive situation
Beginning the sales Dialogue
Anticipate questions/objections
Earn prospect commitment
Build value through follow up action
Chapter 7
Solution selling is the stage at which the salesperson
Assumes a knowledge role
Begins to earn the right to advise the prospect
Customizes their presentation of feature/benefits to the needs and wants of the
Check backs- are commonly employed to clarify, check for understanding, or confirm
resolution of a concern.
FAB leads to SELL
Lead to
S how the products featers
E xplain its advantages
L ead into the benefits of product
L et the prospect talk
S tart a trial close
Presentation tools/ sales aides
Capture prospects attention
Generate interest in the recommended solution
Makes presentations more persuasive
Increases buyer participation
Two-way communication
Evidence and proof for believability
Enhances professional image
Sales aides: Verbal support
Voice characteristics
Examples and anecdotes
Comparisons and analogies
Sales Aides: Sales call setting
Positioning /seating arrangements(proxemics)
Sales Aides: Proof providers
Case historys
Sales Aides : Visual aides
Product and demonstration models
Printed materials
Photographs and illustrations
Graphs and charts
Sales aides Electronic media
Computer based presentations
PowerPoint slides
Take time to pre-sell to individual members and prepare/anticipate tough
questions. There are sales tactics when selling to groups; They include:
1. Arrival- be early and have all your stuff set up so you can meet them personally
when they walk in
2. Eye contact- periodically with each group member
3. Communication- solicit opinions and feedback from each member of the buying
Chapter 8
Sales resistance- Buyers objectives to a product or service during a sales presentation.
There are many reasons why prospects will raise objections
1. Want to avoid sales call b/ they think it is a waste of time
2. They did not prospect/qualify properly
3. Many buyers may say no during the first sales call to see how persistent the
salesperson is
4. The prospect resists change. Dislikes making decisions
5. The prospect fails to recognize a need
6. The prospect lacks information
Types of sales resistance
Need objection - buyer has recently purchased or does not see a need for the product
Product/service objection- buyer may be afraid of product liability
Company objection- Buyer is intensely loyal to the present supplier
Price is too high- Buyer has a limited budget
Time/delaying- buyer needs time to think it over
LAARC is a process negotiating buyer resistance.
Here are some recommended approaches for responding to objections.
Forestalling- include and answer to objection within the sales presentation before it is
voiced by the prospect. This technique should only be used when there is high
probability that the prospect will indeed raise the objection.
Direct denial- Directly telling the customer that he or she is mistaken but does not
humiliate or anger the prospect.
Indirect denial- Never tells the prospect directly that he or she is wrong. It is a softer
more tactful approach
Translation or Boomerang- Converts the objection into the reason that the prospect
should buy. The goal is to turn an apparent deficiency into an asset or reason to buy
Compensation- The attempt to show the prospect that a benefit or advantage
compensates for an objection
Questioning/ assessing- This technique is good for clarifying the real objections of the
prospect ( the true nature)
Third party reinforcement- Uses the opinion or research of a third person or organization
to help overcome and reinforce the salespersons sales points
Feel-felt-found- The salesperson goes on to relate that others found their initial thoughts
to be unfounded after they tried the product.
Coming to that/postpone- The salesperson tells the buyers that they will be dealing with
their objection later on in the sales call.
The salesperson must determine the confirmed benefits and make these the
focal point of the sales summary. Salespeople today attempt to gain commitment whent
the buyer is ready to buy.
Buyer commitment is the creation of an obligation between buyer and seller
and can be attained by
An appointment
Agreement for another meeting
Agreement for product demonstration
A sale
Guidelines for earning commitment
Look for commitment signals
Ask trial commitment needs questions
Resolve red light statements made by prospect
Techniques to earn commitment
1. Direct commitment – a straight forward request for an order
2. Legitimate/alternative choice- asks the prospect to select from two or more
3. Summary commitment- Summarizes all the major benefits the buyer has
confirmed over the source of the sales calls
4. T-accounts- Left hand side brainstorm reasons to buy, on the right reasons not
5. Success story commitment- salesperson tells a story of a business that
successfully fixed a problem by buying their product
On average it takes 5 sales calls to complete a transaction