Question of the Month: How do I improve chemistry with prospects?

by Shannon F.

A client recently told us, “I set the appointment – but I feel like it didn’t go well because I failed to “click” with my prospect.”

Like a failed high school lab experiment, good chemistry is no guarantee. Sometimes, the people you are selling to simply won’t like you, or you will feel like you aren’t seeing eye-to-eye with them. So how can you channel Walter White when making a presentation to prospects? Check out our tips for maximizing chemistry during your next appointment, even if you and your prospect just don’t mix.

Tailor your sales presentation to them. Poor prospect chemistry sometimes happens when the person you are presenting to is bored or feels like you aren’t sharing relevant information. After your initial conversation, you should  have some idea of their needs and concerns – covering these should be the bulk of your presentation. A little research on your part can also help you to predict some possible needs, based on what’s happening in the prospect’s industry. Keep it short and sweet. If you have to delete slides from your Powerpoint or skip over some of your favorite facts and statistics in order to quickly address your prospect’s REAL concerns, so be it.

Don’t talk too much. A good listener speaks volumes. It makes your prospect feel good when you hang on his or her every word, so don’t rush to get your point across. Try asking a question, sitting back, and letting your prospect do most of the talking.

Take a cue from improv actors. The most important rule of improv is “Yes, and….” Improv actors depend on one another to keep the performance going, and a negative response on the part of one participant, like “No, that’s simply not true,” can cut the whole skit short. You don’t have to agree with everything your prospect says, but try to build the conversation by acknowledging and adding to, rather than subtracting from, what he or she is saying. The conversation will flow, and the prospect won’t feel rebuffed.

Admit when you don’t have a ready answer. Bluffing or stumbling through an explanation of something you don’t actually know is usually obvious to the person on the other end of the table. Be honest and say, “That’s a great question. Let me confer with my colleagues and get back to you on that one.” Of course, always promptly follow through as soon as possible after returning to the office.

Be appreciative of your prospect’s time. Gracious manners can go a long way, so even if you aren’t feeling any love for your prospect at the end of your appointment, warmly thank him or her for the time spent learning about your product or service. A follow-up email that reiterates your thanks rather than pushing for the sale is also a good idea.

Have a sales-related question? Email me at [email protected]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *