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The 3 questions every prospect is asking

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Every prospect you come in contact with has some level of hesitation in doing business with you, but it all boils down to three main questions.

I am long-time fan of the work of John C. Maxwell, who is known as the world’s leadership guru. One of my favorite books from John C. Maxwell is “Everyone Communicates, But Few Connect.”

This book discusses what separates average communicators from world-class communicators. As a long-time salesperson and entrepreneur, I have seen first-hand the power and effectiveness of great communication.

In the book, John explains that there are three questions that every single person you come in contact is asking about you when you wish to serve them. To be an effective sales producer, business leader, or influence a prospect in a positive way, you must answer these three questions effectively.

1) “Do you care for me?”

Every human being desires to be cared for in some way. To make connections with prospects, they must feel and see that you genuinely care for them and their best interest.

Running a business or being a sales producer is tough work. Every day can feel like a grind. I often hear words like hustle, determination, desire, confidence, and so on when discussing traits of top business leaders.

As important as those traits are for being successful, empathy goes a long way to make your prospect feel cared for and respected. You need understand their situation and circumstances. Ask yourself the following questions.

  • What is your prospect feeling?

  • What concerns does your prospect have?

  • What is your prospect seeking?

  • What does your prospect value?

  • What makes your prospect smile?

Les Giblin, former national salesman of the year and speaker stated, “You can’t make the other fellow feel important in your presence if you secretly feel that he is a nobody.”

Business leaders and top sales professionals understand that relationships are everything.

Just remember what John C. Maxwell said: “Whenever you can help other people to understand that you genuinely care about them, you open the door to connection, communication, and interaction.”

2) “Can you help me?”

Have you heard the phrase, “Nobody wants to be sold, but everyone wants to be helped.” It’s 100 percent true.

Nobody likes an “in your face” salesperson trying to pitch their product or service. However, have you ever seen a product or service on TV or in a store and thought, “That would really help me.” Maybe it would help you feel better, solve a problem you have had, make life easier, or make someone else happy.

The point is that it’s the outcome buyers seek, not the product or service. When I sold insurance products, in my first few years, I would often go on about how important a certain liability coverages or why maintaining higher liability limits would be important to the prospect.

I soon learned that the prospect didn’t care about specific instance policies or coverage amounts, they just wanted assurance that if someone sued them, they would be protected adequately. They wanted to know how I would help them, not what I was selling them.

Focus on how you help your prospects, not what you are selling them.

3) “Can I trust you?”

At the heart of every business transaction is the question, “Can I trust you?” Trust is the foundation to every business relationship.

Trust is not earned by chance. Trust is earned through consistent action.

It’s not earned in a day, but day by day. How can you build trust? Here are few questions to get you thinking about it:

  • What are you doing with your current clients to prove that you do what you say you will do?

  • What value are you giving your current prospects to show that you care more about them than their checkbook?

  • What is your reputation in the community?

  • What is your reputation online?

  • What are you doing each day to grow as a person and business leader?

The bottom line

These three questions are the questions every one of your prospects is asking themselves when determining if they should even consider doing business with you. So…

  • You must be an intentional listener

  • You must find out what they value the most

  • You must build your relationship with consistent actions that favor them

When the other person truly feels valued, then a true connection blossoms.

Ask yourself: What do you do in your business to care, help, and build trust with your prospects?

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