Episode 21: How to Get the Decision Makers in the Room—and therefore avoid the pitfalls of not doing so
In this episode of Evolutionary Sales, Jason D. McClain answers an important listener question about how to deal with not being in direct contact with the decision maker especially in the case of it being a spouse or multi-party process.
This is critical for any practitioner or small business person in that your success depends on getting in front of the person who holds the string to the “purse”; the one who holds the final sway over where and when the invest in yours or others’ services.
Jason D. McClain not only tells explains to Debra of the Apple Real Estate Group how to overcome this—but explains how he is certain to avoid this pitfall for all sales professionals.
Listen, learn, and prosper.
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McClain: Welcome to Evolutionary Sales. I’m your host Jason McClain and your guide in the 21st Century Marketplace. Avoid giving them any information, any documentation and just focus on getting them in person. I have to say in the last couple of years the only time I’ve ever been tripped up in terms of opening a relationship or, as we used to call it, closing a deal, is when I didn’t have the decision maker in the room. Now usually it’s because I simply haven’t asked this very simple question and the question is ‘are you empowered to make your own financial decisions?’
This week on Evolutionary Sales we have a really great listener question from Deborah of the Apple Real Estate Group. Deborah is asking--well first she says ‘I really enjoy listening to your permission-based selling podcast’ and her question is ‘I’m used to dealing with professionals and have used some similar techniques to get through the gatekeepers in my previous profession. I was quite successful in dealing with those professionals. However now I’m dealing primarily with home owners. I may be personally speaking--not over the phone--with a husband who seems genuinely interested but the wife--or it could be vice versa--is the decision maker. The husband may have given my information to the wife but won’t let me speak with her or, if I’m speaking to him at his work, hasn’t agreed to give me the phone number to contact her and she hasn’t contacted me. How would you change the situation so that you’re dealing with them both or have permission to speak with them both?
McClain: Great question Deborah. I have to say in the last couple of years the only time I’ve ever been tripped up in terms of opening a relationship or, as we used to call it, closing a deal, is when I didn’t have the decision maker in the room. Now usually that’s because I simply haven’t asked this very simple question and the question is ‘are you empowered to make your own financial decisions?’
A more gentle way to ask it--because that can bring up people’s self esteem or ego issues, especially if the woman is actually the decision maker. Some men have problems with that. You simply ask ‘is there anyone else who needs to be involved in this decision or in this process?’ What I would do as quickly as possible is, first of all, schedule a meeting with them both. Maybe it’s a coffee, maybe it’s lunch, whatever it is for you. Whatever would work in your business. But I would actually decline to give brochures or anything like that to the non-decision making person. If they say ‘well do you have any materials or do you have anything I can look at?’ You say ‘you bet I do and I would love to give those to you in an in person meeting with your spouse. When can we schedule that?’ And if they say ‘well I’d really like to see some information,’ you say ‘I would love to have you see the information and I would love to give it to you in person because there are some things I’d like to guide you through. When can you and your spouse get together with me?’ Make sure you do an in person. Stay away from giving people brochures, particularly not the decision maker. So that’s what I would do. Here’s another thing too. If you avoid that objection, in other words you take it out of the picture--that variable--because some people use it and it’s not even true. They’re actually are the one making the decision but they just can’t say ‘no, I don’t want to work with you.’ Or ‘no, I’m not interested.’ They just blame it on their spouse or you never know, the wife may have a brother or sister who is in the real estate business and they want to use those services but the person you’re talking to doesn’t actually even like them. So there are all those interesting interpersonal dynamics going on that you’re unaware of. But to avoid all that, whether it’s a made up excuse or whether there’s some family dynamic or whether it’s an ego or self-esteem issue is to simply avoid giving them any information , any documentation and you can just focus on getting them in person. My experience over the phone almost never works for anything except for initial information gathering to make sure you can schedule an in person meeting. With a service that’s a lot of money that you’re asking for and in your business it’s jut a large percentage--maybe not large to you but large to them--and it’s a very important decision for people which real estate people agent they’ll go with or mortgage broker. It’s really important to their lives and to their future. So they have to trust you. And the way they can trust you most is to get with them in person. You have a picture attached to your email. If you’re a very attractive woman make sure that you use that attractiveness to you advantage. Make sure you’re gracious, of course. Make sure you don’t intimidate anyone with your attractiveness but you get them in person and your personal magnetism will assist you in them liking you and in them trusting you.
Thanks for the question Deborah. This is going to be a short podcast. In the next podcast we’re going to talk about some changes in the structure of the show so that we can integrate both giving you all the tools necessary for you as well as financial prosperity. We’ll talk about that more in the next show. I’m your host, Jason McClain, and your guide in the 21st Century Marketplace. For transcripts of this show or any other shows on the Personal Life Media Network, please visit personallifemedia.com and if you have any questions about this episode or any other episode--and I need your questions--please email me at Jason@personallifemedia.com. There are two l’s in personallifemedia.com Thanks for listening and I look forward to contributing to you further.
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