When I wrote my first book more than twelve years ago, I included a chapter on closing and asking for the sale. One of the closing techniques I suggested was the “choice close” which essentially means telling the customer to make a choice between two options. It sounds something like,
“Which of these two do you prefer?”
I was so dumb.
That line might have been effective ten or fifteen years ago but I doubt that today’s sophisticated buyer (B2B, B2C, or retail) would feel compelled to make a buying decision if they were asked that question.
But that got me thinking … what other outdated closing lines do some salespeople still use? Here are a few I hear.
1. “If I can get you a better price, will you buy today?”
Dude, if you use this as a closing line you are doing yourself AND your company a disservice. It smacks of desperation and tells the prospect that they can get a better price…even if they hadn’t considered it beforehand.
2. “You need to act right now; this is limited time offer.”
I remember a salesperson in a car dealership saying, “I dunno how long this rebate offer is gonna last. You better make a decision right away.” That was 30 years ago and car manufacturers are still offering rebates, but instead of $500 cash back, they offer rebates in excess of $5000.
This approach is effective for television ads, infomercials and sales copy but I don’t believe it has a place in professional selling.