Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Another Sales Secret: Don't Talk Price!

One of the most common mistakes you can make when having a conversation with a potential client, or even an existing customer (remember…not more sales, no more closing!) is to talk price. I see people do this all the time. This is one of the easiest rabbit trails someone can take you down where you are likely to get lost.

Regardless of the temperature of the economy, most people bring up the question of price way too early in the conversation. If your potential client brings it up, be sure this is a pre-signal that they want to end the conversation. You’re being prepped for a good excuse and brush off. When you bring up price before you’re clear about customer need and desire for a solution, you’re running your own pattern (one of a couple) that will make sure the conversation doesn’t succeed.

Please understand, in today’s world for many people right now money really is an issue. When you’re looking for work after months, can’t afford to fix your car so you can get to work, or choosing between food and insulin…money is a real concern and not just an excuse. And in my experience this past year, people who truly want help and find themselves in this problem are usually upfront about their struggles in 1:1 conversations. So when it comes up for other reasons, note that reality and choose to respond in a different way.

What is that different way? Change directions. Don’t engage in this conversation unless both of you are clear about what this person needs, you have something that’s a match and that they this potential customer has a meaningful level of commitment ot make a change. Without these factors, price really doesn’t matter. So change directions from price and ask a question about the previous factors.

“What else do you need to know?”

“How would you describe success?”

Of course, you can also make up your own questions that relate to your service or product. Unless a client or potential client is clear about a need and motivation, there’s no point talking about price.

So let it go. Most of the time when price comes up, it’s out of sync with a positive conversation that builds relationship and success. Spend more time on other topics. The time and way to ever talk about price is when both of you are crystal-clear that moving forward is the best answer. Until that moment, the price conversation is pre-mature. So don't talk price--not until after all the other questions are answered.

Wishing you Success & Heart,

Heidi Sue Roth

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