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The Best Sales Closing Question – Ever.

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If you are a Sales Director, Manager or Salesperson and you have been building pipeline all year and now need to close your deals at speed, then read on. This might be the most valuable piece of advice you read this quarter – particularly relevant for higher value, enterprise deals.

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein

Many of our customers in technology and telco are heading into a critical time of the year to close deals that have been hanging in pipelines for far too long.

If you are a Sales Director, Manager or Salesperson and you have been building pipeline all year and now need to close your deals at speed, then read on. This might be the most valuable piece of advice you read this quarter – particularly relevant for higher value, enterprise deals.

Close deals faster with the “Return-On-Investment Question”

Customers always need to know what they are getting back for their money. The “ROI question ” has this one purpose in mind. Here’s an example:

“Bridget, IF we could retire 3 of your under performing software applications and save you £340,000 for a £26,000 investment with us, would you sign it off?”

The construction of this question is important, as is the psychology behind it. The word IF doesn’t immediately promise anything; it’s a hypothetical question that is bound to generate a response from a customer. Also, the ROI Question puts the customer’s value (£325K) before yours (£25K), with the first amount completely overshadowing the second amount. And it’s simple – no messing around, straight to the point. Best of all, it’s a proper business related proposition with no product mentioned, which will encourage a more business-focussed sales team culture.

What’s the likely response from the ROI Question?

Importantly, one of two things is going to happen. Either it’s a ‘yes’, and you have advanced the sale to a quicker close. Or it’s a no/maybe (very close cousins) and you can find out why, which may move you towards the truth and a quicker advance. Or you can finally kill this deal and shake the remains out of your pipeline.

Your challenge is to work out the best version of this question that naturally suits your business – there’s a version of this close that fits you like a glove!

But there’s a problem with this question, right?

Now, I know what you’re thinking: “What if we don’t know the numbers we need to input into the ROI question?”

Bingo! If you don’t know your ROI numbers, you’re probably not going to close anyway, so it’s time to do a ‘Value Sense Check’ on your deal.  Note – the following questions are for use with you, not for the customer…

The Value Sense Check

  1. Who are we talking to? (Are they REALLY the right person?)
  2. What problem are we solving? (If you don’t know, then customers won’t buy)
  3. Why can we solve it better than anyone else? (Competitive advantage)

This Value Sense Check will probably result in you flushing out some of the reasons why you aren’t in a position to close. In some cases you might find you’re almost back at square one. But that’s okay – saves us from kidding ourselves that we are closer than we really are.

Time for the close:  If ‘closing’ has become a dirty word in your business, open your doors and your deals to Natural. IF we are able to deliver to you £325,000 worth of sales for a £25,000 investment would you authorise us to get started?

If you need some more convincing, please come along to our Breakfast Roundtable in London or Reading and find out how we go about it, or call us on 020 7043 1582 right now.

 

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