This week in Velocity Selling TV, sales gurus Bob Urichuck and Matthew Whyatt share another crucial sales technique: Let’s Pretend.
Try Velocity Selling for Free
Velocity Selling Episode 49: Let’s Pretend- Sales Strategy
Bob: Welcome back Matthew to another episode. This week let’s talk about a strategy called ‘Let’s Pretend’.
Matthew: Bob, I actually really like this one because it really helps salespeople who have a demo kit or a brochure kit or a price list that the customer knows about or the buyer knows about. And one of the great challenges is, I’ve actually had it myself, is the person calls up and says ‘Hey, can you send me a brochure?’ and the salesperson tries to get involved, ‘no, no just send me the brochure’. They send the brochure, maybe they’ve got the email address or maybe the phone number and that’s about it and the sale falls flat. And I think every salesperson out there listening can relate to that. Now Bob, you had a really extreme example of one of those situations where you had a client in Singapore wasn’t it?
Bob: Yeah. Actually it was quite interesting they were in heavy equipment and their main sales strategy was to demo their product. So they would actually transport heavy equipment from Singapore up to Bangkok to do a demo. Never asking the question, what would happen next? And that’s what the Let’s Pretend technique is about is getting a commitment upfront before you do anything as to what the next step would be. Remember earlier we talked about, or I think it’s coming up, the four positive outcomes of a sales call?
Bob: This is one of the things that relate to. We haven’t talked about that yet I don’t think Matthew have we?
Matthew: I don’t think so.
Bob: Ok, that’s coming up in the next…
Matthew: Sorry, let’s explore that ‘Let’s Pretend’. So let’s say that a customer says ‘Hey, can you send me a brochure, let’s do a demo, whatever that particular step is the client thinks they need to take and often the clients, in their own mind are creating the process and the sales person needs to take back control. But let’s talk about ‘Let’s Pretend’ for the moment. And so the client says, can you do a demo for me, salespeople will dive into yes, I can and hoping they’re features and benefits, their dog and pony show will actually be selling.
Bob: Oh yeah.
Matthew: And all the client wants to do is use you as a human form of Google. Let’s just ask some questions, let’s get some questions answered. So how the salesperson might respond to that is, ‘I’m very happy to provide you a demonstration or send you a brochure. Let’s pretend you’ve actually finished the demonstration and are at that point, what happens next?
Bob: You got it.
Matthew: And so what that does is it moves the client past that point of ‘I want a demonstration’ or ‘I want to understand more about what they’re doing’. So I use this very often in my sales conversation, customers will say to me, ‘I’ll get back to you’ and so I actually had this exact situation happen just a couple of weeks ago- ‘I’ll get back to you’. Most salespeople say, ‘No problems, I’ll follow you up in a couple of days.’ And what that does is it makes a commitment to the customer.
Matthew: What we try to do in Velocity Selling is…
Bob: No, I’m saying you’re right. We would do the opposite. It’s like when someone says ‘I’ll get back to you, my natural response is- when?
Matthew: Exactly. So I dress it up a little bit more and say ‘Great. When will you have a chance to think about it?’ ‘Oh, probably this week. ‘So when will it be reasonable for me to expect a call back?’ ‘uh, by Friday.’ And so what happens is they start making commitments to you. “So hey, Mr. Jones, if I don’t hear from you on Friday, do I have your permission to follow up with you on Monday?’ and they say yes. And what would you like me to say on that call? I’ve had some people use humor at that point, but what happened if you think about it, the client is making a commitment to you, I’ve got permission to follow up and not be a stalker and all those things sink in so actually are psychologically taking and holding control of the sale. And that’s what as a salesperson, you’re a professional, you’re the expert, the business owner needs you, needs your product, so by taking control, you’ll have control of the sales process and if they don’t follow up, I’m sorry, if they don’t call you back and you do happen to have to follow up on them, then there’s just a little twinge of guilt that they didn’t actually make the commitment and if there’s a little twinge of guilt, maybe they’ll be more inclined to buy.
Bob: Exactly and that’s really part of it is getting that commitment upfront and that’s such an important part. So Matthew, Let’s Pretend it’s the next episode. I think what we’ll do is get into another technique- you’re on page seven, I’m on page two.
Matthew: I actually used this in a presentation…
Bob: Next week Matthew.
Matthew: Last week.
Bob: Stop! Next week, we’ve got enough for this week.
Bob: I look forward to speaking with you next week Matt.
Matthew: Thanks Bob, bye for now.