My Advisor clients often ask me: What’s the best language to use to get a Yes? What should I say to close more business?
They are nervous about potential rejection at this critical juncture and want me to give them the ‘perfect words’.
There’s no such thing.
But there are essential steps you can take in every sales interaction that will guarantee you a higher closing rate. Have a look at them, then do a diagnostic review of your own sales conversations. If you’re not happy with your closing rate, you’ll probably recognize in these steps something you’re skipping or skimming over too quickly.
Uncover a compelling need.
Make this your Number One task in each and every sales conversation. You’ll notice that this directive automatically means being client-focused instead of you-focused or product-focused. Your clients don’t need your product or service. They need the benefit of what your product or service will create for them. The lack of that benefit is your opening. Speak in that language when asking your discovery questions, and you will uncover what they need enough to compel them to listen to your offer.
Once you have their interest, they could still take that interest and go elsewhere. It’s important to demonstrate that you care about them, not just the sale. The building blocks of trust in early sales conversations come from attentive listening, being present, reflecting back what you hear, offering empathy, and carrying yourself with confidence.
Articulate your value.
You’ve identified at least one need, you’ve built some trust. That must be accompanied by clear, confident description of the value of your expertise. A skill that has become more important than ever for Advisors is the ability to articulate your value beyond market performance or product features. With transparency legislation putting more knowledge in the hands of your clients, you’ll be faced with the question ‘what exactly am I paying you for??’ on a regular basis. Answer it well and you’ve gone a long way towards closing the business.
Objections are a normal part of sales conversations. They are to be expected. An objection is an indication that your prospective client is taking the offer seriously. They are ‘trying it on’ to see if there’s a fit. When you can welcome their objection and respond with warmth, poise and professionalism, your prospect will see that they can freely express their desires and concerns to you. This is the basis of a strong Advisor-Client relationship.
And finally, Ask!
When you’ve done a good job with the above steps, your prospective client is primed to say Yes. In fact, you’d be doing them a disservice to abandon them after they’ve clearly said that Yes, they need what you are offering. Summarize what you’ve covered, then initiate the closing step. The ask can be as simple as:
Based on what we’ve discussed, you’ve identified critical illness coverage as a priority, and you’re interested in corporate class investments. I can put together a couple options for each and get back to you by Friday. How does that sound?
Closing is simply the next step in an effective sales conversation. What steps are you good at? Which of them do you feel you need to work on? Put a little time in there, then be bold and ask!
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Kira Callahan is an expert sales conversation coach serving the financial industry. Her private clients typically experience 30% – 100% increase in appointments and business booked. Click here to find out more about Kira.