One of the basics of selling is to get the right kind of information from prospects. There is a big focus on asking about prospects’ goals, target audiences, marketing budgets and previous campaign results. That’s how we put ourselves in position to create effective ad campaigns.
Monica, a long-time sales manager for a publishing company, told me about a different kind of question. “Years ago, I heard about a technique to turn the process around and ask questions to ourselves,” he said. “The objective is to create more interest in what you are selling. It all starts with the words, ‘If I were in your position, I would want to know…’
“For example,” she explained, “let’s say you’re meeting with someone who doesn’t talk much or someone who seems to be running down rabbit trails during your presentation. Simply say something like, ‘If I were in your position I would want to know how The Gazette’s coverage compares to other media outlets in this market.’ Then transfer ownership of the question from you to them, by asking if that is something they would like to know. That opens the door for you to answer the question and cover an important sales point. It’s a way to keep everyone on the same path.”
Let’s take a closer look at this technique that works so well for Monica:
“I’ve learned that it’s better to concentrate on specific areas, like audience numbers, procedures, and print and online options.”
Monica’s approach makes a lot of sense. There’s no question about it.
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John Foust has conducted training programs for thousands of newspaper advertising professionals. Many ad departments are using his training videos to save time and get quick results from in-house training. E-mail for information: email@example.com