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What's the key to the deal?

 

This is a very simple question, but one that hardly gets asked by lower-producing sales reps.  This question is asked as soon as you determine your prospect is qualified.  You don’t want to ask it too early because your prospect might not even know at that point what the key to the deal is.  But when you start hearing things like; “We’re in the midst of reviewing all the alternatives.” Or, “We finished putting our results into our requirements document.”  That’s the time to say, “Ellie, it looks like you have all the information you need to make a decision.  What’s the key to earning your business?”

A great thing about this closing question is that it can be asked at different stages in the customer’s buying cycle.  It doesn’t necessarily have to wait until the final stages of the deal.  If they tell you exactly what the key is, you have a clear target and have a much better chance of closing the sale.  However, many customers will respond to this question with something like, “There is no real key.  We’re looking at a lot of things.”  Even with this answer, you can keep drilling without really questioning that statement.  “Oh, I thought price (or delivery, or quality, etc.) was the real key.”  Then shut up.  They will either tell you price really is the key or they will correct you.  “Well, price of course is important, but we really want to do business with a company that has a 24/7 support department.”

Unlocking the key to the deal will open up opportunities very quickly.


Sales Homework
– List at least three current prospects that you have not asked this question and ask them this week.

1.____________________________________________________

2.____________________________________________________

3.____________________________________________________

4. ____________________________________________________

            Sales Managers – This question helps uncover so much about the deal.  Make asking it part of your sales reps list of questions.

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