Limosine Company -- Help Me Close!

by Jon Martin 20 replies
Alright, so here's a quick backstory:

Last week, I began cold-calling, and after some initial beginner's luck I whipped out the phone book and thought I would give some local businesses a shot. I called a couple hair salon's, car dealerships, etc. It was then, that I noticed the limosine section of the yellow pages -- I thought it was worth a shot.

So I found a limosine company that also had a link to their website. I quickly typed in the URL and noticed that it was a few years old (via the copyright 2008 as footer) and the design was outdated. I decided I would call up the owner and see if he had any interest in purchasing an updated website.

Upon calling him, I quickly realized that he was an elderly man of whom was not very good with computer's. After making my pitch, he said "Yeah, I'd tell you to e-mail me some more information but my Hotmail has a virus". After deciding that it was best not getting into the fact that e-mail accounts themselves cannot store viruses, I decided to just go with the flow.

I told him, "If you're interested in updating your website, I could come over and show you some examples of my work -- and maybe even help you fix your e-mail account while I'm there?". The old man then replied by saying "Sure, get your ass over here!".

It wasn't the ideal appointment, and it was unusual to say the least -- but I was desperate for a lead and it was an immediate one. Better yet, he lived only about 15 minutes from my house. I gathered a few printouts from my portfolio, a couple demo's, a pen, and a notepad; and I decided to go over there and hopefully make a sale.

First and foremost, the guy wanted me to take a look at his e-mail for him. I thought that I might as well help the poor guy out, and hopefully generate a lead in the process. & so it came to be that he didn't in fact have a virus -- he simply forgot his password. I guided him through the security questions and eventually granted him access to his e-mail account once again.

At that point, I knew it was time to make a hard pitch. I didn't go there just to fix an e-mail account for a senior citizen, I wanted to make a sale as well. I pulled out my portfolio, and we discussed what he did/didn't like about the current website. I asked him what his budget was and he told me that anything under $500 would be in his range. -- fine with me.

For the remainder of my visit, he was busy upstairs with some customers, and so I didn't get as much time as I wished to make a close. It seemed that although he was interested in updating the website, he may have been a bit unsure about whether or not it was worth it monetarily.

He had some business downtown to take care of at that time, and told me that he couldn't commit to anything at the moment. He did however have some interest and told me to give him a call at the end of the week (today).

All in all, I ended up spending an hour helping an old guy get access to his e-mail account, and at best garnered a nice warm lead for later in the week. Oh, and he offered to give me a ride home in his 1958 Rolls Royce -- which was quite fun and gave me the opportunity to talk to him about the website for a few more minutes.

Anyway, I am to call him back TODAY and I am not sure what the best way to approach him in terms of closing the deal. I don't know if he's looking to put down a deposit or if he is willing to pay the entire amount up front.

What should I say to ensure that I get the deal closed?

If you read all of that, thank you! If not, I understand, haha. I tend to ramble on a bit but I hope those of whom took the time to read it enjoyed the story.

Feedback is appreciated!
#offline marketing #close #company #limosine
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  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    Does he even care about growing his business?
    Is his existing site ranking well?

    Answer those two questions and I can help guide you
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

      Does he even care about growing his business?
      Is his existing site ranking well?

      Answer those two questions and I can help guide you
      He does, but because he's not really with the times I'm not sure if he knows exactly how much of an impact online prominence has on his company. He is generating leads online though -- basically people send him e-mails and he responds with his phone number and carries out each lead by phone.

      Surprisingly, he is ranked moderately well. #5 on google for some important keywords - could be higher though!
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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Good luck, Jon.

    It's funny how all sales is the same. Whether you're pitching websites, peddling burial insurance, or selling uniform services at Fortune 500 companies. It's all the same.

    I've had similar stories like yours where you go out of your way to help someone and they end up boning you, wasting your time and stringing you all the way, not doing business with you.

    I am NOT saying that'll happen, BUT... what the other poster said was true:

    Is Mr. Limo Driver QUALIFIED on urgency?

    Also, there could be a case that you didn't ASK for the commitment or sale when he gave you his budget. "Mr. Limo Driver, can we do business TODAY if I can measurably show you how to improve your website and drive new business to you for $497? (assuming that's his need/greed)."

    Every sales person has had calls where outside elements prevent a smooth presentation; that happens.

    Bottom line, ask the tough questions up front so YOU can decide how to spend YOUR valuable time (you have to look at it as such) to determine if you have a shot at doing business with this dude.

    ALSO, interconnected to the prior paragraph -- you must take the lead and the responsibility for the outcome of each call, and learn from the result.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by Rearden View Post

      Bottom line, ask the tough questions up front so YOU can decide how to spend YOUR valuable time (you have to look at it as such) to determine if you have a shot at doing business with this dude.
      Excellent point - I should have paid more attention and taken that into consideration. I was just so excited to get (one of my first) appointments and I didn't give it too much thought.

      Oh well - Can't change the past. Here's to hoping I can get a sale out of him, and if not at least it was a nice learning experience.

      Thank you for the EXCELLENT feedback!
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      • Profile picture of the author Rearden
        Originally Posted by Alanis Morissette View Post

        Excellent point - I should have paid more attention and taken that into consideration. I was just so excited to get (one of my first) appointments and I didn't give it too much thought.

        Oh well - Can't change the past. Here's to hoping I can get a sale out of him, and if not at least it was a nice learning experience.

        Thank you for the EXCELLENT feedback!
        That's a good attitude to have -- the quicker you learn from your mistakes, the better.

        Had the same thing occur on a ride-along with a guy working for a Fortune 200 company who had nearly a decade of sales experience.

        Was so excited he set appointments, he didn't qualify any.

        He got stood up on 2 of his 4 appointments; the other 2 were totally unqualified, and he could have asked them one simple question to determine exactly where they stood, and could have saved his ENTIRE day, prospecting for people with a REAL, actual NEED for his product.
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        • Profile picture of the author Joel
          It's a good idea to always keep in mind, that there are three types of people for whom a sale of any product/service is possible:
          1. those that have a need
          2. those that have a need and know they have a need
          3. those that have a need and know they have a need and are ready to buy

          As you develop prospects, I suggest evaluating each of them on the above scale. Everyone obviously wants more three's than two's or one's.

          My suggestion is very simple .... after all your presentations or discussions, simply say, "Is this something you want"?

          Joel
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  • Profile picture of the author maxrezn
    I would recommend you learn a bit about Sandler Sales. It's principle is where you get the prospect to sell himself with the use of well asked questions. It's really fun closing a sale when the prospect does 80% of the talking. For this case in particular, you didn't discover any pain. You just offered a product. You should have found out what is keeping him up late at night. Hint: Competition, low sales, revenue slump..

    Then once you find his pain point...you can make it obvious to him that your service is the cure he needs.

    Amazon.com: The Sandler Rules: 49 Timeless...Amazon.com: The Sandler Rules: 49 Timeless...
    That's a good start.
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    • Profile picture of the author Rearden
      ...The assumption is, of course, he is wide awake at night, worried/scared about something...

      You should be able to find that stuff out pretty quick.

      Originally Posted by maxrezn View Post

      I would recommend you learn a bit about Sandler Sales. It's principle is where you get the prospect to sell himself with the use of well asked questions. It's really fun closing a sale when the prospect does 80% of the talking. For this case in particular, you didn't discover any pain. You just offered a product. You should have found out what is keeping him up late at night. Hint: Competition, low sales, revenue slump..

      Then once you find his pain point...you can make it obvious to him that your service is the cure he needs.

      Amazon.com: The Sandler Rules: 49 Timeless Selling Principles and How to Apply Them (9780982255483): David Mattson: Books

      That's a good start.
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  • Profile picture of the author mark5
    I find that the customer in question are lonely and just want to waste one's time. I get alot of these types over the years. Remember to value your time. People in general are always looking for something for nothing no matter what it maybe. The more free stuff you give the less you will get back.
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  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    How did it go?
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    • Profile picture of the author midasman09
      Banned
      Someone above mentioned "Sandler Sales" and I'd like to add that that was one of the best Sales Courses I ever took.

      Sandler....uses the "Submarine" pitch. When a sub is being attacked it closes the hatches between sections so that if one section is blasted just that section fills with water.

      Similarly with sales pitches. Sandler likes to "close off the Price" section early; "Mr prospect....if I were to show you a way to get MORE customers calling for your Limo Service what kind of a budget do you have for this? Less than $500....more than $500....more than $1,000?

      He mentioned "Less Than $500" so....close off another section; "What Time Frame are we talking about? Are you ready to go today?....tomorrow, next week?

      The one I like is....after I've shown the Benefits to having ME improve his site....and I'm ready to show my price....I say; "Mr Prospect...OTHER THAN PRICE, is there ANY OTHER REASON WHY WE COULDN'T GET STARTED ....NOW?"

      If he says, "Nope! It ALL depends on your fee!" He CANNOT come back after seeing the price and use ANY excuse for not buying NOW....other than the price is too high. Then...negotiate and work out a Payment Schedule.

      If he brings up anything OTHER than Price....he "loses Face" and admits he Lied to you when he said there was "No Reason for Not Buying today, other than price!"

      See if you can get a copy of Sandler's System. It helped me close hundreds of sales.

      Don Alm
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

      How did it go?
      I was able to reach him on his cell but he was on the road with an unexpected client - giving him a call back on Monday. I'll be sure to post my results afterwards!

      Thanks to everyone for all of the feedback thus far!
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

      How did it go?
      Thought I'd give an update:

      I ended up getting a $500 sale! Picking up the check tomorrow! I'm happy, but at the same time recognize the mistakes I made when booking this guy. It was one of my first actual face-to-face closes though, so at least I've been learning.

      Thanks to everyone for all of the help. This has been a nice learning journey for myself.
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      • Profile picture of the author LEIVA
        Originally Posted by Alanis Morissette View Post

        Thought I'd give an update:

        I ended up getting a $500 sale! Picking up the check tomorrow! I'm happy, but at the same time recognize the mistakes I made when booking this guy. It was one of my first actual face-to-face closes though, so at least I've been learning.

        Thanks to everyone for all of the help. This has been a nice learning journey for myself.
        That's amazing. congrats for you
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  • Profile picture of the author Bokva
    Congrats on closing a deal.

    Now, you have to get to work, or you're outsourcing... Anyway, I hope he'll not be tough. I had such picky and tough clients in my life. Ugh...
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by Bokva View Post

      Congrats on closing a deal.

      Now, you have to get to work, or you're outsourcing... Anyway, I hope he'll not be tough. I had such picky and tough clients in my life. Ugh...
      He's an older gentleman who runs the small business by himself. He doesn't come off as the type who would be too picky. He just wants his website to look nicer, which should be easy!

      $500 is at the height of his budget right now, but my plan is to maybe give him a call in 2 months and try to sell him some SEO services. So I guess this wasn't too terrible of a client after all -- if anything, it was a learning experience.

      Thanks Bokva!
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  • Profile picture of the author John Williamson
    Congrats Jon!

    Now perhaps use the language I talked about here with this guy and just tell him you can grow his business, get him more customers, etc. - This is a prime example of a guy who sounds like he doesn't want to hear anything about SEO, backlinks, etc. - you don't have to say any of that. Just use lingo he can understand and perhaps use the free-til-results approach so that he has no objections.

    Sounds like some SEO to bump him up higher and some good copywriting for his website could definitely boost his business. Show him that; then he'll love you.

    Good luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author Entrecon
    The other thing to do is make sure you know his rates and talk to him in terms of those. So, if your website makes you X more sales then the website ill have made you X dollars. When customers can see the revenue side and not just the expenditure it helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author SydMichael
    Good Job! I love how you made that into an opportunity to sell him. One thing i have notice in sales with a guy like that is you have to leave a little to his curiosity. next time you call him Say something like "hey if you liked how i fixed your email. You havent seen nothing yet" But dont say "what"

    people get curious you know?

    Also he sounds like a guy that would like to hear

    "Once i take over,you wont have to do anything. I am turn KEY"

    "All you will have to do is read my Bi weekly reports and handle the calls i generate"

    Also when leaving messages (if you leave messages) never say what you are calling about in too much detail. People wont need to call you back then.

    I say "Hey Mr Customer i want to tell you something, Call me back"

    Leaves them hanging! know what i mean? Hope this helps you GET THAT DEAL!
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    • Profile picture of the author Jon Martin
      Originally Posted by John Williamson View Post

      Congrats Jon!

      Now perhaps use the language I talked about here with this guy and just tell him you can grow his business, get him more customers, etc. - This is a prime example of a guy who sounds like he doesn't want to hear anything about SEO, backlinks, etc. - you don't have to say any of that. Just use lingo he can understand and perhaps use the free-til-results approach so that he has no objections.

      Sounds like some SEO to bump him up higher and some good copywriting for his website could definitely boost his business. Show him that; then he'll love you.

      Good luck.
      Awesome! I'll check out the thread. You're completely correct here. Thanks.

      Originally Posted by Entrecon View Post

      When customers can see the revenue side and not just the expenditure it helps.
      I've come to notice how true this statement is, haha! Thanks for the heads up!

      Originally Posted by SydMichael View Post

      Good Job! I love how you made that into an opportunity to sell him. One thing i have notice in sales with a guy like that is you have to leave a little to his curiosity. next time you call him Say something like "hey if you liked how i fixed your email. You havent seen nothing yet" But dont say "what"

      people get curious you know?

      Also he sounds like a guy that would like to hear

      "Once i take over,you wont have to do anything. I am turn KEY"

      "All you will have to do is read my Bi weekly reports and handle the calls i generate"

      Also when leaving messages (if you leave messages) never say what you are calling about in too much detail. People wont need to call you back then.

      I say "Hey Mr Customer i want to tell you something, Call me back"

      Leaves them hanging! know what i mean? Hope this helps you GET THAT DEAL!
      I'm always sure to do that with my voicemails! Thanks for the excellent feedback, Syd!!
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