How to Write the World's Best Sales Question

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I was listening to Jeffrey Gitomer’s excellent audio book The Little Red Book of Sales Answers, and came away with a real gem.

In one section, he covers the best questions to ask a prospect, and from that I crafted my own to fit our business.

The steps I used to put the question together will work for any industry.

The question is designed to be right on point and to convert a mildly interested prospect into a fully-engaged prospect.

Second, the question is designed to create a little unease that is resolved with the product presentation.

Third, it positions the salesperson as a solutions person who is working with the prospect toward a mutually beneficial conclusion.

My business is selling local advertising to small businesses, so the question cuts to the heart of what we do.

OK, enough waiting.  Here’s the question.

“Do you want to know the three biggest mistakes people make when they buy local advertising?”

I love this question because if someone is mildly interested in advertising, they want to know so that they avoid making that mistake.

If you are selling hybrid cars, chimney sweeping services, or dog walking services, you just replace “local advertising” with your service.

The answers to the question are the core of your presentation.

In local advertising, the three biggest mistakes are:

1.  Reaching the wrong people. Our directories are hyper-local, so we talk about only reaching people in the immediately surrounding community as opposed to a far-flung advertising campaign.

2.  Reaching them at the wrong time. The beauty of a community directory is that people use it as a reference guide when they are making a buying decision.  The best time to sell something is when someone is looking to buy it.

3.  Reaching them with the wrong message. I developed a system to create highly effective ads for local businesses, and this is when my sales people start designing ads that get vastly better results and eliminate price competition.

So what are the three biggest mistakes people make when buying your product or service?

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