You’ve delivered the elevator pitch, you’ve asked the right questions, now what? In our recent CB&A Expert Series Webinar with Joyce Whitby, CEO and Co-Founder of Innovations4Education, Joyce shared with us how to seal the deal in the education sales conversation. Explore the tips below from Joyce and learn how to get your deal across the finish line:
Improve your listening skills
It’s important to have a plan at the beginning of your sales conversation. Once you’ve hit the question portion, it’s even more important to actively listen to the challenges your potential client faces. For example, are the district’s teachers struggling to re-engage students after remote learning? Does the district face staffing challenges? Are leaders looking to minimize learning gaps from the COVID-19 pandemic? You want to advocate for your product or service in a meaningful way that benefits the client. The only way to do that is by actively listening to the concerns they are sharing.
Some of the ways that you can do this include:
- Avoiding “premature” avocation for the client before hearing EVERYTHING they have to say on the matter
- Don’t jump the gun by saying things like, “What I hear you saying …”
- Do not answer “premature” questions before hearing the whole issue at hand
- When the client asks the inevitable “How much does your product cost?” make sure you clearly outline the price points that would benefit your clients
You can also improve your listening skills in a sales conversation by learning how to question the question. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just a technique to buy more time, but it actually gives you time to think so you can provide a helpful response. This strategy allows you to prepare the correct, detailed response for your client that hits all of the right points. It also creates time for all parties involved to think on the question, details and circumstances of the situation.
Handle stalls and objections strategically
When you hit a bump in your sales conversation, there’s no need to panic. You just need to know how to combat any objections before they come up. Dealing with stalls can come in many different forms:
- Tell them that you understand the struggle they are feeling
- Restate a feature that they really liked earlier on in your conversation
- Tie the conversation back to a specific feature and point out an important benefit
- Offer help in any way you can and ask for a commitment in some degree
Now when you get a flat-out objection, we recommend you…
- Take a pause
- Question the question
- Talk less
- Slow down
- Validate their concern
When it comes to the sales process, now is not always the right time for a potential client to implement your product. Once they’ve made up their mind, the best approach is to respect their decision and stay in touch with decision-makers in case they need your services in the future. By applying these steps to your sales process, you will have done everything you could to facilitate a great relationship with a potential client.
Want to learn more about the entire education sales process and tips to succeed with it? Register to watch our October Expert Series event replay.