In-home sales and one-leggers

19 replies
I'm dealing with one-leggers for the first time."I'll have to talk to my wife". I haven't generated my own leads so I'm using company appointments.

I have a couple rebuttals I use. I get the real objection, but still get the "wife" excuse. I follow-up and have closed two of those so far on the follow-up.

My easiest sales have been with non-married homeowners...

What is the most polite or most professional way you let a prospect know you will only set an appointment if all decision makers are present? I plan to make this a requirement for the leads I generate.

Thanks for the tips
#inhome #oneleggers #sales
Avatar of Unregistered
  • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
    FWIW, I learned from and appreciated Matthew North and Jason Kanigan's takes on this in this thread https://www.warriorforum.com/offline...ments#comments
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11623978].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

    I'm dealing with one-leggers for the first time."I'll have to talk to my wife". I haven't generated my own leads so I'm using company appointments.

    I have a couple rebuttals I use. I get the real objection, but still get the "wife" excuse. I follow-up and have closed two of those so far on the follow-up.

    My easiest sales have been with non-married homeowners...

    What is the most polite or most professional way you let a prospect know you will only set an appointment if all decision makers are present? I plan to make this a requirement for the leads I generate.

    Thanks for the tips

    I sold in people's homes for 35 years. After the first 100 "one leggers" with only 2 sales, it finally got through my head not to give them a presentation..no matter how much they promised "I make all the buying decisions".

    When I called to make the appointment, I would say;
    "What's the best time to catch you and your (husband/wife) at home?"
    "So you'll both be there tomorrow at 6:15?"

    "Good, I'll see you both then".

    If they asked "Why do we both have to be here?'

    I just said "Company rules. I don't get paid if only one of you is there". And it was true. I didn't get paid if only one was there, because I almost never made a sale.

    Trying to convince them that "If you aren't both there, you'll have to explain it to your spouse" or "Most couples need to both be there to make a decision" won't work. Don't try to explain it, you'll just get an argument...that you cannot win.

    When I was selling to businesses, I would just ask "Who else has been involved in buying decisions in the past?"

    Asking it that way doesn't trigger "I can make my own decision". And when they say "Well, my partner was usually involved", you just ask when you can see them both.

    Don't give in. I used to refuse to talk to them if, when I arrived, only one of them was there. I would reschedule, or (usually) just not do the appointment.

    You'll find that couples are slightly better than single people, because they can talk to each other while you are there....and you can hear which way it is going.

    Same with referrals. If they give you names of couples, make sure they will both be there.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624107].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
      Thanks Claude. I plan to also send the leads I generate, a little about myself and the company, to begin the relationship before the actual appointment. I've read your books.

      In the meantime, I'm dealing with these company leads. They're set for the next day. And I don't have the clout yet to refuse to see appointments they set without both parties present.

      You'd think they would make that a rule anyway, based on everybody's numbers.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624143].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

        Thanks Claude. I plan to also send the leads I generate, a little about myself and the company, to begin the relationship before the actual appointment. I've read your books.

        In the meantime, I'm dealing with these company leads. They're set for the next day. And I don't have the clout yet to refuse to see appointments they set without both parties present.

        You'd think they would make that a rule anyway, based on everybody's numbers.
        I don't know the company rules you have to stick to....

        But I've worked in offices that supplied "appointments" before.

        Generally, the qualification was "Anyone willing to set an appointment".

        It didn't take long before I would just set my own appointments, and get my own referrals. I was already booked for the day, before they started handing out appointments. that's how I got around it.

        If I didn't have an appointment (that I set), I'd just go out knocking on doors cold. It took me an average of 3 answered knocks to get in the door, and 6 doors for each presentation.

        One way to approach your company business owners about getting both spouses on the appointment is to approach it as market research. Find out (or figure out), based on everyone's appointments, how many "one leggers" actually bought, compared to how man couples bought.

        Offer to look over the appointment logs for free with the idea of finding patterns in who buys, and from what kind of appointment..

        If your company doesn't already have that information, they should want it.

        As an example, I used to have the opposite problem as you. I was convinced (for reasons that escape me now) that single men didn't buy. So I would not set appointments with single men.

        Then one day we had an appointment with a single guy, and I decided to go on the appointment myself. He bought. The next several single men bought as well.

        Within a month, by crunching the numbers, I found that single men bought just as well as single women, and nearly as well as married couples.

        Here were my actual office sales percentages from cold appointments (not referrals or inquiries). This includes the sales from my salespeople.

        Single men 41% bought.
        Single women 41% bought.
        Couples 45% bought.
        One leggers 2% bought. And half would call to cancel the next day. It didn't matter if it was the husband alone, or the wife along. and they all promised that "I can make the decision on my own" at the beginning of the presentation.....even after I told them the price and payments. But at the end, I always heard "Well, of course I'll have to talk to my husband/wife".

        Those percentages held for both appointments and cold knocking on doors.

        Eventually, after a couple decades, I figured out how to just see people who were highly likely to buy from me.

        And those were;
        1) Referrals from my buyers.
        2) People who had bought from an in home salesperson (no matter what they sold) before.
        So I got lists of people that bought other high end vacuum cleaners (which is what I sold), and lists of people who bought fire alarms, encyclopedias, water purifiers, or any home improvements from an in home salesperson.

        When I went to see people in one of these two groups, my closing % was about 80-85%.

        There were months when I didn't miss a single one. It was like magic. It actually frightened me the first few months. Those results were so out of the ordinary.

        And. lest I forget...when I ran company generated leads, my closing % was at about 15%. The leads were so unqualified. So much wasted time, so much work for nothing.

        By the way, what do you sell?
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624298].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
          Thanks Claude, I actually closed a guy today - married but clearly the sole decision maker. He was an older guy, and "old school" is the way I'd put it. As we were talking, he mentioned that he used to sell water softeners door to door in the 70's. He hated it, but did it for almost a decade with moderate success. I think that helped me close him - the fact that he had done in home sales himself.

          - other people's customer lists - Did you promise them not to mention where you got your prospects names from? Or did you use the other salesman as your foot in the door? I wonder if this still works as well today? Companies often promise "never to sell your information". Have you done this recently with any of your other ventures? I do love the idea and fully understand the concept behind it. Home improvements are my best bet.

          I spoke with the boss last night and he agrees about the one-leggers being a poor use of time. We're buying leads not creating our own. My plan is to start doorknocking this weekend and generating my own leads with sales letters. I've done this before with business to business event sales and was successful. PLUS, the relationship was started. The more time somebody sees you or even hears your voice, the more rapport you build...

          As of now, we buy these leads, and the homeowner doesn't even know what company I'm from. I arrive at their home as a stranger and introduce myself.

          I'm thinking of putting together a fluorescent light bulb package to offer before I leave. I can buy them pretty cheap from a wholesaler. I would include information on how much money it would save them per year, etc. I need something additional to the bulbs. My item is the expensive purchase, so I'm looking for something small to offer before I leave as a pity buy or consolation prize if they can't qualify. I'd just keep a couple boxes of them in my car.

          Added: forgot to mention, selling solar panels.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624338].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
            Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

            - other people's customer lists - Did you promise them not to mention where you got your prospects names from? Or did you use the other salesman as your foot in the door? I wonder if this still works as well today? Companies often promise "never to sell your information". Have you done this recently with any of your other ventures? I do love the idea and fully understand the concept behind it. Home improvements are my best bet.
            The way I got other people's customer list depended on who I was talking to;

            One list I got from another vacuum cleaner dealer that was going out of business. He had 5,000 files of customers over the last ten years. I bought the information for $5,000. I didn't tell the prospects where I got the information, but I would have if they asked. Never try to hide these facts It will kill any chance of a sale.

            One list of hundreds of encyclopedia buyers I got by buying the names and addresses for $1 each. Again, I just knocked on these people's doors, cold. I didn't mention where I got their name. To them I was just randomly knocking on doors.

            One list of vacuum cleaner buyers I got for free (a competitive seller). I promised to service the customer's vacuums for free. I'd call, mention that I was offering a free servicing of their vacuum cleaner in their home. I told them where I got their information. Most made appointments with me. Most bought my vacuum from me.

            You can also just trade lists of buyers with other sales organizations. I never did that, but it would certainly work.

            A secret in the in home sales business....most salespeople (and business owners) have no idea how valuable their list of customers is, and that they can keep going back with different offers every 5 years or so.

            If you are going to call ahead, instead of just knock on their door, I'd probably say where the name came from. But one of the core values of these names is...they let salespeople in their home...and they buy from them.. It's hard to exaggerate the value in that.




            Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

            I spoke with the boss last night and he agrees about the one-leggers being a poor use of time. We're buying leads not creating our own. My plan is to start doorknocking this weekend and generating my own leads with sales letters. I've done this before with business to business event sales and was successful. PLUS, the relationship was started. The more time somebody sees you or even hears your voice, the more rapport you build...

            As of now, we buy these leads, and the homeowner doesn't even know what company I'm from. I arrive at their home as a stranger and introduce myself.
            Are you buying the leads, and then calling to make an appointment? or are the appointments already made? If you're calling the lead, I'd make sure both will be home, even if your lead source didn't ask about that.



            Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

            I'm thinking of putting together a fluorescent light bulb package to offer before I leave. I can buy them pretty cheap from a wholesaler. I would include information on how much money it would save them per year, etc. I need something additional to the bulbs. My item is the expensive purchase, so I'm looking for something small to offer before I leave as a pity buy or consolation prize if they can't qualify. I'd just keep a couple boxes of them in my car.

            Added: forgot to mention, selling solar panels.
            Me? I'd take some of these bulbs, create a small package...with a retail value of $50 or so...and just give them away as a gift in exchange for an in home presentation.

            Even just leave flyers on doors with the offer of $50 worth of fluorescent light bulbs if they will give their opinion (in their home) of your solar power information.

            Before you make the appointment, ask enough questions to make sure they will probably qualify; Homeowners? how long? jobs? how long? and then ask when they will both be there to deliver the bulbs and talk to them?

            And give the bulbs at the beginning of your visit, not at the end. And if the husband has to leave in the middle, or you find out they aren't really qualified, give them the bulbs anyway and leave.

            Let's say it costs you $20 for the $50 worth of bulbs. You may have to give away 3 sets before you make a sale. So? That's $60 for every sale you make. Cheap appointments.

            And, if you get lists from other salespeople/companies, offer the free bulbs to those prospects as well.

            My best front gift, decades ago, we a portable TV I bought for $28. I put fliers on doors saying they could get the TV for an hour of their time. And I listed several qualifications right on the flyers. We had more appointments that we could run. Highly qualified prospects too.



            If they buy but don't qualify, you can offer a larger set of bulbs for some money.

            But the value of the bulbs is to use as a gift to get the appointment, not sell for a few dollars if you miss the sale.

            In my opinion, it would be useful if they know you are selling solar power (in some form), but it isn't necessary. Many of the people that made appointments with me, didn't know it was a vacuum cleaner they were going to see.

            By the way, solar power is the perfect offer to get referrals for. Offer to give a set of the bulbs to anyone the buyer refers you to. You'll sell way more than half the people that let you see them, if you're any good at all.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624361].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
              I like the idea of using the bulbs as a gift to get in front of them to present! I agree with you now. I was looking at using them in the wrong way...

              These leads are bought for me and the appts are also set for me. Like every lead company will claim, "they're pre-qualified and ready to buy!"
              But they don't seem to be very good. A lot of these people are just price shopping or gathering info. There's no way to tell how far they are into their buying process. I don't have any idea how much information they have or if they have accurate information - lots of misinformation out there about solar on the web... I'd like to know that they had the information I want them to have, before I go see them. It would be different (and better) if we were generating these leads through the company website.

              It's a high priced item. It's 40k. Tax rebates cut that in half. We're also probably the highest priced in the area. So we have to introduce ourselves, build value to justify the price, especially if they've researched at all, and then close on one call. Not trying to make excuses though. I've gotten a few closes now.
              I just know the odds would be so much better if I could get my own leads and get some sort of rapport and pre-qualification on them. And get BOTH husband and wife to be present lol.

              Added: when you're qualifying after leaving a flyer, and they contact you. Won't they then know that it's a sales call? Any pushback from that ever? What if they don't qualify? Would you tell them they can't have the bulbs after all?
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624365].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
                Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                I like the idea of using the bulbs as a gift to get in front of them to present! I agree with you now. I was looking at using them in the wrong way...

                These leads are bought for me and the appts are also set for me. Like every lead company will claim, "they're pre-qualified and ready to buy!"
                But they don't seem to be very good. A lot of these people are just price shopping or gathering info. There's no way to tell how far they are into their buying process. I don't have any idea how much information they have or if they have accurate information - lots of misinformation out there about solar on the web... I'd like to know that they had the information I want them to have, before I go see them. It would be different (and better) if we were generating these leads through the company website.
                People requesting information aren't the best leads for in home sales. That means that they are likely looking for competitive bids, or just perpetual information gatherers.



                Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                It's a high priced item. It's 40k. Tax rebates cut that in half. We're also probably the highest priced in the area. So we have to introduce ourselves, build value to justify the price, especially if they've researched at all, and then close on one call. Not trying to make excuses though. I've gotten a few closes now.
                I just know the odds would be so much better if I could get my own leads and get some sort of rapport and pre-qualification on them. And get BOTH husband and wife to be present lol.
                Can you request that the qualification is added that both husband and wife be there?

                Again, do you call the leads to set the appointment, or does the lead generator (you buy the leads from) set the appointment. If you set the appointment, it's a good time to ask them to both be there.



                Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                Added: when you're qualifying after leaving a flyer, and they contact you. Won't they then know that it's a sales call? Any pushback from that ever? What if they don't qualify? Would you tell them they can't have the bulbs after all?
                Of course they know it's a sales presentation. Don't try to hide the fact. That's why they are getting the gift, for their time to be there for the sales presentation...as per your qualifications.

                You need to list the qualifications on the flyer, and then ask them again when they call in.
                No small print. Make it the same size print as everything else. And don't try to hide it on the other side. When you are offering a good gift, to qualified people, for their time...you can be a little choosy.


                If you find out (on the phone) that they don't qualify, then just tell them that they don't qualify as per company rules. If you get to the home and find something you can't live with (like finding out they just declared bankruptcy) you just give them the gift. Once they are giving you their time for a presentation, they deserve the gift, even if you decide not to go ahead with the presentation.

                By the way, of course you will occasionally get someone who wants the bulbs for nothing, or won't agree to your terms and still wants the bulbs.

                When I got the "I want something for nothing, no matter what!" people on the phone, I would just tell them that the flyer plainly states the terms, and thank them for their time...and hang up. They never call back.

                You may end up giving half the packages of bulbs to people that you decide not to pitch. But so what? It's the cheapest way to buy an appointment.

                With the added bonus that these homes will be close together, and you'll be able to see more people a day.

                I used to have an office with staff and sales reps. But even when I was working on my own, I'd put out flyers in people's screen doors, the calls would go to my voice mail, stating the qualifications again, and then I'd call them back later in the day, and again go over the qualifications.

                Nobody ever mentioned that they noticed that everyone they heard was me.

                Added later; If you're the most expensive in your area, mention it. It's great positioning. Of course, you better have a reason you charge more. Saying that you are the highest priced, and the reason for it....stops quite a lot of shopping.

                Saying you're the cheapest, creates the desire to shop around. That's pretty advanced stuff I just gave you.
                {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624370].message }}
                • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
                  No, I don't call anybody. The leads are bought and appts are set. I just show up. I did request this morning, that from now on both husband and wife are there. And I did just find out about an hour ago, that it is requested that both husband and wife be there, since it's a financial decision. Bit it's just a "recommendation" by the lead generation company. I was told that is not an acceptable reason to return the lead to the lead generation company. Age and location of house, shade, not the actual homeowner, and a couple others are reasons for a refund. But they won't guarantee both are present at the appt.

                  I'm going to give your idea a shot. I think it's great. And I do mention the price and the quality and warranty and customer service being the reasons. I mention all of the specifics.

                  I've never thought of flat out telling them that we're more expensive. It's usually a rebuttal to an objection. Or when I sense the price objection coming up because they're mentioning a competing company. I read somewhere to never talk bad about a competitor or a prospects previous buying decision

                  Do you recommend mentioning this at the beginning of the presentation?

                  As it is, I briefly show them how solar works, how the cost savings work, then get to price. I don't make them wait long.

                  Additional: not sure I mentioned, I don't pay for these leads either. It's straight commission. Obviously the company wants us to one call close as many as possible, since it's them paying the lead. But like you said, $60 appts aren't bad, especially when I know they're better qualified.
                  {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624377].message }}
                  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
                    Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                    I'm going to give your idea a shot. I think it's great. And I do mention the price and the quality and warranty and customer service being the reasons. I mention all of the specifics.

                    I've never thought of flat out telling them that we're more expensive. It's usually a rebuttal to an objection. Or when I sense the price objection coming up because they're mentioning a competing company. I read somewhere to never talk bad about a competitor or a prospects previous buying decision

                    Do you recommend mentioning this at the beginning of the presentation?

                    As it is, I briefly show them how solar works, how the cost savings work, then get to price. I don't make them wait long.
                    It's better to bring up your price earlier in the presentation, and I would mention that you are more than the competition. Do you have any demonstration materials? Sections of your solar panels or something like that? You need to show the specific reasons you cost more.

                    Show the average price of solar panels.
                    Show your price difference.
                    Show the reason for the difference.

                    It's far better that you bring this up before they do. If you bring it up, it's a feature. If they bring it up as an objection, it's a problem.

                    You should also have some information (like company brochures) from the competition. Something to definitively show the difference in the product.

                    Your product should be physically different, not just having a longer warranty. Sell the difference. Make that difference the focus of the presentation.

                    Your prospects need to have a real feeling that they have already shopped around, and compared their options. You need to do that in the presentation.
                    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624467].message }}
                    • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
                      Panels are all the same. They all have 25 year warranties and are virtually indestructible...

                      We use union electricians and have micro-inverters versus string inverters. Ours are more efficient and newer longer lasting technology. These are the two big things we have that I must use to justify price.

                      I start with brief small talk, then a 2 min video about the panels being indestructible. I then write things out on paper. - a basic diagram of a house and show the basics of how panels actually work. Then I write out how much they'll lose each month and year to the utility company, by not taking any action. Then I tell them the total price, tax rebates, new monthly payment, etc. I do a couple calculations in front of them and write all of this out.

                      Then I go into property value increases, tax exemption from that value increase, specific features of the system etc.

                      It's hard to find out the costs of prices at other solar places. Nobody offers that information. I've found out a little by word of mouth. Enough to know we're more expensive. Our company is the same in that aspect. In fact, that's the only reason some prospects have had the appt. " well I'm interested in the cost savings and the price. But nobody would tell me the price. They said they had to come out to the house first. So I thought well, alright then..."

                      That's why I want to get to people first to qualify, build a little rapport and trust. I'm not sure if all home sales are like this or if it's just the solar niche.

                      I'm new to in-home sales so it's been a learning process. And it's only been a few weeks. The frustrating part has been figuring out where they are in their buying process. I agree, they need to feel like they've shopped around.
                      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624581].message }}
                      • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
                        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                        Panels are all the same. They all have 25 year warranties and are virtually indestructible...

                        We use union electricians and have micro-inverters versus string inverters. Ours are more efficient and newer longer lasting technology. These are the two big things we have that I must use to justify price..
                        Do you have a physical micro inverter handy? You should have one to show. Also you should have a string inverter to show the difference. Buy one of each if you have to. Hand them to the buyer. Ask their opinion as you explain the difference.



                        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                        I start with brief small talk, then a 2 min video about the panels being indestructible. I then write things out on paper. - a basic diagram of a house and show the basics of how panels actually work. Then I write out how much they'll lose each month and year to the utility company, by not taking any action. Then I tell them the total price, tax rebates, new monthly payment, etc. I do a couple calculations in front of them and write all of this out.
                        .
                        "I start with a brief small talk". This is what all salespeople do, and it's wrong. Ask them about their feelings about saving energy, being "Green", Ask why they would consider solar energy. Listen intently. Show interest in what they think. . I would take 30 minutes to find out their thoughts that applied to what I sold, and included qualifying information. I'd ask what they had seen already, in the same business (Something you need to do as well). Don't rush this part. The sale is made here.

                        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                        Then I go into property value increases, tax exemption from that value increase, specific features of the system etc.
                        You absolutely have to ask them what they estimate these figures to be, and work the math with their numbers. It even helps if they do the math. It involves them, and they can't doubt their own math.


                        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                        It's hard to find out the costs of prices at other solar places. Nobody offers that information. I've found out a little by word of mouth. Enough to know we're more expensive. Our company is the same in that aspect. In fact, that's the only reason some prospects have had the appt. " well I'm interested in the cost savings and the price. But nobody would tell me the price. They said they had to come out to the house first. So I thought well, alright then..."

                        That's why I want to get to people first to qualify, build a little rapport and trust. I'm not sure if all home sales are like this or if it's just the solar niche. .
                        Some industries have prospects that show an interest before the appointment, some do not. Most don't have competitive prices before you get there, but all industries have their own peculiarities.



                        Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                        I'm new to in-home sales so it's been a learning process. And it's only been a few weeks. The frustrating part has been figuring out where they are in their buying process. I agree, they need to feel like they've shopped around.
                        You find out where they are in the buying process by asking what they have already done. Are you the first person to talk to them? Has anyone else been to their home? What happened? You need to know all that before you start presenting what you have.

                        A few weeks? Is there someone in your company that's been doing it for years, and makes a great living? If there is (there certainly should be), it's important that you spend a day with them and see what they do. Believe me, it isn't what you have been taught to do. A very valuable way to spend a day. In fact, a week would help. Just don't try to help on presentations. And never talk to a prospect when someone else is doing the presentation.
                        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624951].message }}
                        • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
                          I'll have to ask about getting the physical items...

                          Sometimes I'm the first person they see, sometimes I'm not. It depends how many times they have reached out to other companies.

                          By small talk, I meant what you said. "What interests you in solar?" We call it the warmup. I ask if they'd researched much or if they'd talked to anybody else about it yet. Each one has different answers. Some are just looking to find out an approximate price. I would prefer them to have that already. Sometimes they know right away they're not getting financed for 40k. It would save me a trip.

                          I have been in sales for a couple years (part time). I've done b2b selling mostly through the phone and email. I've never done b2c in-home sales like this. I've sold leads to call centers, and events and advertising to businesses. This was mostly over the phone and email. I did use usps to get a couple clients for events. I hunted the prospects down myself. I liked that because I felt like I had more control over the entire process.

                          I did shadow somebody for 4 appts for this stuff. He did the pitch like we were taught. He didn't close any. He has since followed up and closed one that I watched him pitch. He's our team leader in the business 4 years.


                          Additional: as far as where they are in the buying process- they lie. They'll tell me they haven't researched anything, etc etc. but based on questions they ask, they've clearly been looking into it. Anybody would. It's a large long-term investment.
                          I will supply my own leads with the information I want them to have. It will be accurate and pertaining to their specific home and system. I'll at least know they have something accurate. And they will have that info before I ever go to their home.
                          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11625042].message }}
                          • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
                            Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

                            Additional: as far as where they are in the buying process- they lie. They'll tell me they haven't researched anything, etc etc. but based on questions they ask, they've clearly been looking into it. Anybody would. It's a large long-term investment..
                            Everyone lies.

                            They lie because they think they will lose something by telling you the truth.

                            You have to ask the questions in a way that they don't see the question as a threat...or that they would have a reason to lie.

                            "Nearly everyone I talk to has researched solar power in one way or another. To save some of your time, could you tell me what you have already found out?"

                            To draw them out further, I just say "Oh?" at the end of their answer.

                            My favorite question is "What happened?'. I want the story. After a few minutes, they aren't guarded...and just spill the information you really want.

                            In my selling, one of the most important question I asked was "Have you ever had another salesperson in your home?" Be general, don't sound alarms....

                            I want them to tell me the whole story. Any salesperson selling anything? I want to know what happened. Don't lead them or give them choices...let them vent.

                            Customers want badly to do one of two things, complain or brag. They are either the hero of the story, or the victim. I want those stories.

                            You will be astounded at what they will tell you, and how much trust you build by simply listening.

                            Most adults haven't been truly listened to their entire lives.

                            Originally Posted by misterme View Post

                            I usually said something about how I wanted to "honor" the other spouse by including him, in case something comes up he'd like to know about.
                            That's maybe the best rationale for wanting them to be together. It's non-threatening and complimentary. (Like you didn't already know that)
                            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11625057].message }}
  • Let's assoom I shacked up with sum dope called Sam.

    We are intertwined as mandala colors blurred ovah the lines by time-wasters so stressed they can't even hold no pen straight.

    We pool vulnerabilities an' dreams via myootyool exchanges fleshin' out through time.

    That is why we discussed gettin' way snakey butt tattoos dun TOGETHAH.

    "Gotta go green," says Sam. "Cos snakes prowl the grass, they got venom, plus also it matches my eco-centric philosophy."

    "So evry time you strip down I gotta double take jus' in case no LETTUCE fell out your sub down your pants? What is so bad 'bout a real fiery snake fulla trooly draconic prowess?"

    "Are you getting at me because I don't eat meat? You don't do so bad bcs all the spiritual guidance I offer, which is why I suggested snakes in the first place--"

    "You absolootely DID NAHT! I said snakes ... then I asked you what you wanted for color an' stylin'"

    "And I said green. Because it is natural for snakes to be that way."

    "I like a snake fulla danger. Hot & red & spittin' fire. Tellya, if'n I am turnin' my butt flesh into a slave for your personal ideology, las' thing I want when I changin' my joggers at yogah is for the gals thinkin' I got a frickin' cabbage in my ass."

    "You said lettuce! A cabbage is not the same as a lettuce! How can you generalise so much about vegetables simply in order to spite me?"

    "Because the las' guy I dated was also one?"

    "Yeah -- and what butt tattoo DID HE WANT that your PERNICKETY SENSE OF COLOR and MYTHOLOGY and WHATEVER didn't agree with?"

    "Frick Moi, Sam -- you think I have a choice ovah evrythin'? Rafael's cheeks were already spoken for. Mostly thanks to the wretched Racquel an' her ass backwards floristry biz, which I tried so desprit to help with jus' so's Rafael quit lookin' morbid evry time we went dancin'. Not my fault his rear end looked like a rose garden hosed down with the blood of saints."

    "OK. I get it, babe. You're the sort of girl who won't commit, right? The only reason you don't want a green snake on your ass is because you got no qualms about airbrushing me from your life when you're done -- just like Racquel!"

    "Hey, I nevah airbrushed Racquel, I was helping her out. When you're in a relationship you figure is gowin' sumplace, you do what you can to smooth ovah any rough edges. Incloodin' gals with names look like they been spelled wrong by goober parents."

    "Rough edges. Yeah. Like running with a green snake. For the lettuce-eating schmuck who gives you a sweet massage."

    "Yanno what really makes me real angry rn, Sam? I don't even know why you want a snake on your ass anyways."

    "Ok, fine, Mrs Anything RED. Mrs Angry Pisspants."

    "I am not an alcoholic! I do naht do that!"

    "Quit being smart, you know exactly what I mean."

    *SMACK*

    *Uugh!*

    *Random Wrestle Scene*




    Hey, but ain't dialog so revealin'?

    When it runnin 3 ways cool, prolly that is when stuff gets real cute.
    Signature

    Lightin' fuses is for blowin' stuff togethah.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624140].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author StevenTylerPjs
      That was frightening. Is that a personal conversation you've had? I'm worried about you...
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624164].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    This idea needs its own post.

    A very successful approach I used to use was doing a consumer survey.

    I'd just knock on the door, tell them I was doing a survey for my company, and ask if they had a minute.

    They would let me in, and I'd ask survey questions. In your case, these questions would be about they opinions on types of energy, the environment, and what they think of solar power. Then you ask a few qualifying questions about home ownership and job.

    So far, they just think it's a survey. If they aren't qualified, just thank them for their time and leave.

    If they are qualified, tell them that you'll give them a package of light bulbs for their attention for 20 minutes of their time. Most will say OK, because you are already there and rapport has been established a little.

    Then just go to your car, get the bulbs and your sales kit, and get to work.

    You are not there to make an appointment. You are there to make a presentation right then, assuming everything is what you want. In a three year period that I used this approach, I never went an 8 hour period (8 hours of work, prospecting or selling), with out a sale. It's a very solid approach.

    The reason I say "20 minutes" (or whatever you choose) is because if I say "2 hours" nobody will agree to it. And after 20 minutes, they will either be very engaged and interested, or they won't be. If they aren't, finish after 20 minutes. If they are engaged, nobody will complain about the time.

    It's never happened to me in 12,000 presentations.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11624371].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    Originally Posted by StevenTylerPjs View Post

    What is the most polite or most professional way you let a prospect know you will only set an appointment if all decision makers are present?
    I usually said something about how I wanted to "honor" the other spouse by including him, in case something comes up he'd like to know about.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11625003].message }}
Avatar of Unregistered

Trending Topics