The Best Question For Salespeople: The Pointed QuestionOct 07, 2020
When it comes to selling, questions matter - a lot. In fact, they matter so much that diserning between a true sales professional and an amateur salesperson is as simple as the questions they ask.
So, in sales, what's the difference between an normal question and a great question?
Let's pretend that Steve is selling digital marketing and advertising services to car dealerships in the auto industry. Take a look at the two questions below and try to see if you can spot the differences and which question you think would be more effective in a sales interaction.
Option #1: 'We help dealerships sell more cars by getting your dealership in front of more people, would you like more people to come to your store each month?'
Option #2: 'We do several things to increase traffic to dealerships - tell me - do you have more attention on creating content to distribute on social media or more attention on making sure your content is seen by the right people on social media?'
If you think that the second question is more effective in a sales interaction with a customer then you would be right!
What is a Pointed Question? A Pointed Question is a unique version of a close-ended question that allows the buyer to choose between two predefined options that, regardless of which option the buyer chooses, points back to the salesperson as a potential solution.
Need another example? Let's take Lizzy the life insurance sales agent for example. Instead of asking a prospect if they are interested in life insurance, Lizzy can use a Pointed Question:
'Do you have more attention on your current financial condition or do you have more attention on preparing for your future and retirement?'
Either way Lizzy's prospect decides to answer, Lizzy gets to say, 'Got it, that's exactly why I'm calling and specifically what I do.'
The Pointed Question does 5 things really well:
1) It cleverly asserts that the salesperson already understands what the buyer has attention on while bypassing the negative connotations that buyers associate with sales interactions by asking the buyer to consider what is important to them.
2) It helps the salesperson maintain control over the sales interaction.
3) Allows the salesperson to immediately transition into asking additional questions pertaining to what the buyer has their attention on and enables them to easily identify pain points.
4) Reduces the need to react to unpredictable customer responses by limiting the number of options the customer can consider.
5) Immediately allows the customer to come to their own conclusion that the salesperson may be a potential solution for the thing they have their attention on.
Crafting a Pointed Question within any industry is simple! Think about the results or benefits that your customers would like to have and make your own. Here's a few more examples..
Car Salesperson: 'Do you have more attention on performance, handling and the overall driving experience or more attention on safety features and fuel economy?'
Selling Auto Insurance: 'Do you have more attention on finding a better policy with more coverage or more attention on reducing your monthly premium?'
Selling Help Desk Software: 'Do you have more attention on implementing a faster ticketing system for your customer service department or more attention on providing your customers with quicker customer service?'
Selling Gym Memberships: 'Do you currently have more attention on losing weight and toning up or more attention on increasing muscle mass and athletic ability?'
Regardless of what you sell, there are several ways to craft your own Pointed Question and create an algorithmic approach to selling. When it doesn't matter what your customer says, selling can be much more predictable and much more fun!
If you'd like to learn more about The Sales Algorithm or creating the perfect Pointed Question, you'll find hundreds of video lessons, downloadable files, scripts and additional sales resources inside Stupar Sales Academy.
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