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Approaching the Prospect. Learning Objectives: Discover the purpose of the approach. Learn the importance of first impressions and ways to control them as a means of improving your performance. Understand how surface language affects the ability to establish rapport with a prospect.

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approaching the prospect
Approaching the Prospect

Learning Objectives:

  • Discover the purpose of the approach.
  • Learn the importance of first impressions and ways to control them as a means of improving your performance.
  • Understand how surface language affects the ability to establish rapport with a prospect.
  • Examine the elements of the greeting and how to control them.
  • Discover ways to get the attention and capture the interest of the prospect.
  • Explore different types of approaches and understand the best circumstances in which to use each one.
purpose of the approach
Purpose of the Approach
  • To make a favorable or positive impression on the prospect
  • To gain the prospect’s undivided attention
  • To develop positive interest in your proposition
  • To lead smoothly into the need discovery phase of the interview
first impressions
First Impressions
  • Weaknesses of first impressions:
    • Tend to be based on emotions
    • All behavioral traits do not show up immediately
    • Behavior may be deliberately controlled by either party
    • An earlier event may influence either person’s current behavior

Four minutes is the average

time that prospects take to decide whether to buy from you.

nonverbal language
Nonverbal Language
  • Includes all aspects of appearance: grooming, clothing, accessories, and posture
  • Affects first impressions even though it may actually provide limited or shallow insight into the true person
  • Dress the part - We all wear uniforms
    • Choose accessories carefully
    • Dress appropriately
    • Give attention to grooming
nonverbal language1
Nonverbal Language

Basic Dress Guidelines for Men and Women

nonverbal language2
Nonverbal Language
  • You’re projecting an image
    • Want the prospect to take you seriously
    • Work with your physical characteristics
  • Some accessory tips
    • Jewelry should be neutral and not related to an association or belief
    • Should be of good quality
      • High quality pens
      • Leather attaché cases
    • Avoid sunglasses while talking to prospects
dressed to sell
Dressed to Sell
  • Salespeople suffer from “business confusion syndrome” when it comes to deciding just what is corporate casual.
  • Professional is the key word to remember. Look good but don’t overdo it.
  • Avoid dressing too casual or “youthful.” Instead, your clothes should reflect your position.
the proper greeting
The Proper Greeting
  • Choice of greeting
    • The Rule of Ten - the first 10 words should include a form of thanks
    • Don’t use worn-out greetings
    • Plan the proper greeting ahead of time and keep it simple
    • Failure to prepare in advance could lead to stammering or faltering speech
the proper greeting1
The Proper Greeting
  • The handshake helps determine personality style:
    • Drivers - firm, may turn hand over yours
    • Amiables - may not make eye contact
  • The handshake is one of the first nonverbal signals you give and receive
the proper greeting2
The Proper Greeting
  • Rules for an effective handshake:
    • Maintain eye contact for the duration of the handshake
    • You may wait for the prospect to initiate the handshake
    • Apply firm, consistent pressure on the hand. Avoid the wet-fish or bone-crusher handshakes
    • If your palm tends to be moist from nervousness, carry a special handkerchief with powder and pat your hand several times
    • The hands should meet equidistant between the prospect and the salesperson in a vertical position.
the proper greeting3
The Proper Greeting

Use of the prospect’s name…The sweetest and most important sound in any language

  • Pay attention - get it spelled and pronounced correctly
  • Concentrate on a person’s memorable characteristics
  • Associate - any gimmick that works
  • Observe and visualize
  • Repeat the name often
the proper greeting4
The Proper Greeting
  • Use their first name or more formal name based on:
    • Relative ages
    • Prevailing custom in the region or country where you sell
    • Type of product or industry
    • Your conclusions about their behavioral style
small talk or get down to business
Small Talk or Get Down to Business

Relationship tension is common in the beginning.

  • The purpose of small talk
    • Gain an advantageous, positive beginning that will break the ice and ease tension
    • “Warm up” a cold environment
    • Provides additional information
  • Small talk can be negative if it conflicts with prospect’s social style
types of approaches
Types of Approaches
  • Self-Introduction Approach
    • Weakest approach by itself
    • Address the prospect by name (pronouncing it correctly)
    • State your name and company
    • Present your business card
  • Consumer-Benefit Approach
      • Give the prospect a reason to listen
      • Suggest a risk for failure to listen
types of approaches1
Types of Approaches
  • Curiosity Approach
      • You should know something about the prospect
      • Ask questions whose answers will reflect favorably on your product/service
  • Question Approach
      • Quickly establishes two-way communication
      • Enables you to apply the benefits of your product or service
  • Qualifying Question Approach
      • Seeks a commitment from a prospect
      • Determine if prospect is cold, lukewarm, or red-hot
types of approaches2
Types of Approaches
  • Compliment Approach
      • Signals your honest interest in the prospect
      • Make it sincere, specific, and of genuine interest
  • Referral Approach
      • Helps you establish leverage by borrowing the influence of someone the prospect trusts and respects
  • Education Approach
      • Show your knowledge of trends in their industry or market
      • Would work well in a virtual meeting
types of approaches3
Types of Approaches
  • Product Approach
    • Hand the product, or some physical representation of it to produce a positive reaction
    • It stirs interest
    • Permits a demonstration
    • Makes a multiple sense appeal
    • If bringing the actual product is not feasible, you must use other devices:
      • A piece of literature
      • A sample of the output of the machine
      • A small working model
      • A picture