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SALES PROFESSIONALS have two ears and one mouth for a reason. The formula for sales success is 80 percent listening and only 20 percent talking. Good listeners “hear” more than just the words their prospects speak. They also pick up on nonverbal cues. Interested prospects inevitably communicate buying signals once they make the decision to do business with you. That decision is typically made first from a place of emotion. Once that emotional commitment is made, the prospect begins to seek rational justification for the decision, which is when buying signals emerge. If you’re not tuned in to these buying signals, you may make the fatal mistake of overselling by continuing your sales pitch past the point when your prospect is ready for you to close the sale. Not only are you providing your prospect with superfluous material that could raise further objections that aren’t already on the table, but talking too much is also an indication of insecurity and weakness. Overselling can quickly cause the death of a sale. Some of the most common buying signals include: smiling and nodding, a sudden leaning forward in the seat, reading the fine print, working through related calculations, suggesting you review the proposal with another person on the team or asking questions related to closing the sale. Closing questions are often about pricing, financing, payment terms, production details and delivery logistics. While it may seem counterintuitive that objections could be buying signals, when prospects object to your price, they are really admitting that they’re interested in working with you, provided you can help them get comfortable with your price tag. They are seeking rational justification to support the emotional decision that has already been made. Help them get there by restating your value proposition’s relationship to your price. Savvy sales professionals pick up on subtle cues by watching for behavior and body language changes that differ from the prospect’s previous behavior, indicating purchase intent. It can be as though a switch were flipped. If the prospect didn’t look through the product samples in the first part of your meeting but all the sudden begins browsing your materials with a renewed interest, he may have decided to move forward and is simply seeking more details regarding how he might do that. Most often, when a prospect holds his chin, he’s giving serious thought to your proposition. If there’s a natural break in the conversation, allow the prospect time to think by avoiding the inclination to fill up the silence. If your prospect looks up and makes eye contact with you, the decision to proceed has likely been made, and it’s time for your closing question. To avoid overselling, just open your eyes and ears. All the answers are right there in front of you.

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RedRover Sales & Marketing

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