Trending This Week: Too Many Questions

August 17, 2018

The discovery call often sets the tone for the relationship. By asking questions, we can ascertain interest and ensure a good fit while, at the same time, attempting to position ourselves as trusted advisors. So, we should be thorough in our questioning, right?

It turns out C-suite sales prospects don’t have the patience to play 20 questions. They are too busy to take joy in answering the same questions every time they interact with a new rep.

When meeting with senior decision makers, those who answer generic questions with their homework and lead with relevant insights tend to earn more listening time. And when both parties get a chance to request and impart insight, understanding and commitment is more easily achieved.

The leading article in this week’s content roundup digs into the heart of the challenge when selling to high-level decision makers. Also trending is a process for retaining your customers, along with a few thoughts on a common afterthought, the sales proposal, and how it could be a differentiator.  

Here’s What Sales Professionals Are Reading and Sharing This Week:

The Sobering Truth: Why You Can’t Sell to C-Suite Executives

When meeting with high-level decision makers, does it ever seem like their answers get shorter with every question you ask? It’s not all in your head. Chris Orlob uses the analysis of nearly 40,000 deals to highlight a negative correlation between asking discovery questions to SVP-level buyers and closing deals. Check out the post for the optimal number of sales questions during a first meeting and how to alter your approach to achieve greater success.

Customers for Life: The Art of Keeping your Best Clients

Alice Heiman explains a process for improving your customer retention. Check out the post to learn how to wow customers through the onboarding process, build and strengthen relationships, facilitate future purchases, and create true fandom.

How to Write a Proposal: The Last Guide You'll Ever Need

Most sales pros don’t relish the idea of writing proposals. After all, by the time you present one, you probably have a good idea of whether you’ll close the deal. At best, it can feel like administrative paperwork. At worst, it can feel like a delay tactic. However, a powerful proposal can give you the competitive edge, especially since many salespeople just phone it in. The great news is that great sales proposals don’t need to be an onerous task. Check out this post by Sujan Patel for helpful tips for developing proposals for maximum impact.

The Value of Persistence in Sales

“Dream clients require persistence,” writes Anthony Iannarino in this post highlighting the power of persistence in sales success. Sometimes the stars align and a stellar account falls right into your lap but often wins can only be won through persistence. You may consistently hear “no” from a buyer but if you don’t continue to monitor and follow-up when warranted, how will you know when people move and needs change. Click through for more insights on how persistence can help you secure more wins.

Stop Networking and Actually Get to Know People

If you are challenged with strengthening connections with prospects after networking events, you might be interested in the approach Colleen McKenna takes in forging meaningful relationships.

For more tips on discovery questions and nurturing customer loyalty, subscribe to the LinkedIn Sales Blog.