When I evaluate a salesperson’s performance I become a virtual participant, much like a die-hard sports fan on Sunday afternoon. Sometimes I’m a cheerleader; sometimes I’m the coach, and more often than not, I’m a little overzealous. Case in point: While watching a new home video shop my family once thought our youngest had mastered the potty when I shouted, “Yes! She DID it! I’m so PROUD of her!” You could’ve cut the disappointment with a knife when they realized a sale had been closed.
It was the summer of 1989 when our daughters grew three inches taller and abandoned their skateboards in favor of nail polish, curling irons, and shoes. Our family was growing and changing. We were clearly outgrowing our home. Before long the girls would need larger closets and an area to entertain friends. We would need our own space, separate from the rest of the home, where we could relax and escape late night giggles during sleepovers.
Back then, before Internet was a household word or Google a twinkle in its founders’ eyes, we turned to the Real Estate section of our local newspaper…
You will never overcome this objection without finding out what the “it” is, so begin by clarifying the objection. When a customer wants to think it over, ask, “What exactly is it you want to think about? Is it the home’s layout, color scheme, design? Is it the community, location, amenities?” By providing choices, you make it easier for them to be direct with you about why they’re not buying, which provides you the information needed to overcome the objection.
My first encounter with a salesman was the day my Dad took me shopping for my first car. “Before we go,” he said, “you need to know the rules of the game.”
He went on to tell me that the majority of salespeople are as slick as snakes, ready to lie like a dog to get you to buy what they’re selling. He warned me not to say a word; to let him do all the talking, and to keep a poker face. According to Dad, if a sleazy salesman sensed interest or excitement, we would have a slim chance of negotiating a better deal. “Salespeople are in business to make money. They don’t care about the customer.” By the time we arrived at the dealership, I expected to meet Satan face-to-face!
Talking About the Competition
People who are in the market for a new home ask a gazillion questions. It’s what prospective buyers do when preparing to make the largest investment in their lifetime. As their sales counselor, you don’t just answer their questions, you educate, motivate, and facilitate them every step of the way. It’s what you do to ensure your prospects are able to make a well-informed decision.
But is it risky talking to buyers about your competition?
Make Time for Discovery
Q: Can you name the five features that top every new home buyer’s must-have list?
A: Of course not!
The most seasoned sales professional knows that customer wants and needs vary as widely as paint colors. The examples below represent a very small portion of a very long list: