Step #4: Closing

I have seen many great presenters get to the point of closing only to see their wheels fall off. I remember one young man in particular that was wonderful at presenting, but he just wasn’t bringing in the sales. So, I decided to go with him on appointments one day.

As we went to each one, they became progressively worse at the same point in each presentation, the close. He would be going along smooth and gracious and then, right on key, his brow would start to sweat, stains would grow under his arms, and his voice would start to crack and stutter. After the last appointment I asked him about my concern. He told me that he just couldn’t ask people for money. His career in sales was over.

And, so it is with so many salespeople. I have found that I can minimize or eliminate that challenge for most people. You see, most people separate the close from the rest of the presentation when, in fact, it is just a part, and a natural conclusion, to it.

When you use the steps I have discussed prior, it all flows flawlessly. Here’s why: You have taken the time to understand your prospect’s wants and needs, you understand why it is important to solve the concern they have, you know that they have researched other resources and haven’t found a solution. Enter you on a white horse!

You have just shown your prospect that you have a solution that fits their wants and needs, you have a way of relieving the burden that was hanging over their head, you have made them feel the emotions of a bad situation and helped them feel that compared to a great situation, and you will probably make them look like a star for doing business with you. You ARE the solution! You have every right to ask for their business. In fact, if you didn’t, you would be doing them a disservice. It’s as simple as ending your presentation and saying, “Do you see how _________ will solve the problem of __________? Are you ready to move forward?” or “What would you like to do next?”

You may be asking, “What about stalls and objections?” With this method you should have very few, if any, to deal with. Here’s how to effectively deal with stalls and objections. Don’t try to do fancy footwork or give some sly answer. Your prospect is too educated. Answer it succinctly and to the point. Then, ask, “Why do you ask?” or “Why do you say that?” Probe for specifics for the question or objection and then isolate it. Let me give you an example:
  • Prospect/Buyer: “Your price is too high."
    You: “Based on what we’ve discussed this can save you over time, I’m curious, why do you say that?”

  • Prospect/Buyer: "One of your competitors has given me a lower price."
    You: "Let’s explore what their price includes to make sure we’re talking about the same thing. But, first, let me ask, other than the price given to you by the competitor, is there anything else that would stand in our way of doing business?"
By proceeding with answering a question or objection without knowing if there are other items that stand in the way of doing business is sales hari-kari. If you’ve been around sales for any length of time, you made the mistake of answering a question or objection only to have one after another follow.

Especially when you’re dealing with pricing, you must know if there is anything else that needs to be addressed. If you decide to discount your price and there were other things yet to deal with, it could become a win for the prospect / Buyer, but a losing situation for you.

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