Mark Shonka

Sales Tip: The Last Question

It's inevitable. In some opportunities, no matter how strong the fit is between the customer's needs and our solution, we don't get the "yes" we were looking for. When this happens, sometimes we get a "no" outright, but more often than not, we get a delay.

The customer's delay may be a simple objection such as, "We need to think about it", or "We need to discuss this as a group". This is often a stalling technique because they are not ready to make a decision, or an excuse to avoid telling us they are going another direction.

But in reality, these statements are often true. They might actually have other team members to talk to and additional input to get before they are ready to make a decision. It's just that we hate leaving a meeting with no action items or follow up plan.

For many of us, our curiosity and our desire to keep things moving forward will kick in and we will ask a series of follow-up questions, such as:

  • "What are the open items that you need to discuss?"
  • "Who else is involved in those discussions?"
  • "Is there anything else I can do to help you prepare for these discussions?"
  • "What is your timing and when do you think you will be ready to make a decision?"

At this point, we are concerned. We've exhausted our questions and fear losing momentum and possibly the deal. Making it even worse, the delay is open-ended.

A simple question that can make us feel better is a variation of, "I would like to get a call scheduled next week to follow up and see how your discussions are going. What time would work for you next Monday?" This can give you a little peace of mind, and a milestone to look forward to.

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Mark Shonka

Sales Tip: Selling From Home

Selling from home. Most of us are doing it, and for many of us, it will become our permanent way of working. For some, selling from home is challenging as it seems more difficult to create strong connections with customers and prospects via the phone and web meetings. It doesn’t...