If you work in Sales, which, if you’re on this site, you probably do. You need to know how and when to employ the delicate art of ‘Shutting Up.’
Too many salespeople will talk the ear off a prospective client in the hopes that overloading them with features, benefits and special offers will have them whipping their wallet out of their pocket quicker than a dueling cowboy from years gone by.
The art of Shutting Up is important, if you do all the talking, how are you even going to know if you’re actually solving the clients’ problem?
Selling is an important balance of assessing the clients’ needs, presenting your solution, and overcoming any objections the client may have. You need to know when to listen, and when to speak.
Essentially, you need to Shut Up and Listen.
A client is speaking to you for a reason, they’re not just filling the time while you prepare your sales pitch of a product you’ve already decided they need. They’re actually telling you what they want, or they’re explaining their problems and asking for your help solving them. Don’t start formulating your presentation half way through them explaining their issues. Wait until they finish. Hear them out. Then decide how you can help them.
Shut your mind up.
To truly Shut Up and Listen you need to be focused on all levels. It isn’t just closing your mouth while the client thinks, it’s also switching your brain from formulating the sales pitch, into absorbing all the information you can from the client. Only then, can you really sell them a product that you know will be perfect for them, and they can leave happy with their purchase and more likely to return.
This is also an opportunity to evaluate what is important to them in the product they are looking for (form vs function, safety vs performance, etc) and helps you highlight these features and how they will benefit the client, because you will know what you need to focus on.
If you can genuinely help the client, and listen to their needs. Chances are, you won’t even need to mention any ‘Special Offers’ or discounts, which only cut into product margin.
If you know what they need, you can sell them the value. They’ll be happy to pay for it.
When it finally comes your time to talk, to recommend a product, or to get on with your sales pitch. Don’t automatically assume that wallet will get whipped out (Whoa there cowboy!). Listen as you speak, take in their body language. If they’re not interested you’re going down the wrong path. You need to be able to acknowledge when the client is having objections and be able to pause to answer questions and help to overcome the objections. Look for things like eyes wandering to other products or away from you, fidgeting, and slight head shakes. Obviously, these mean they’re not on the same page as you. Dial in on what wasn’t attractive and see if you can overcome this as you talk through the product with the client.
Remember, selling isn’t about being the smoothest talker in the industry anymore, learn to Shut Up and Listen and you’ll be able to ensure your clients always leave happy with their purchase, and they’ll be back for return business. This will definitely help you to keep growing!