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Chapter 4. Communicating Effectively. Communication to me is,………. Effective Communication can,…. Sales Communication as a Collaborative Process.

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chapter 4

Chapter 4

Communicating Effectively

slide3 Communication can,….
sales communication as a collaborative process
Sales Communication as a Collaborative Process

What’s the difference between “talking at the customer” and “talking with the customer”?

Provide an example!

how well do we listen
How Well Do We Listen?

People use 1/4 of their listening capacity

People use 1/10 of their memory potential

People forget 1/2 of what they have heard within eight hours

Eventually, people forget 95% of what they have heard unless cued by something later on

People usually distort what little they do remember

verbal communication listening


Effective Active Listening






Buyer to Talk


& Repeat

Make No


Verbal Communication: Listening
types of listening
Types of Listening
  • Marginal/Social Listening
    • Recipients hear the words but are easily distracted and may allow their minds to wander
  • Evaluative/Serious Listening
    • Listeners are concentrating on what is being said but do not sense what is being communicated nonverbally or through more subtle verbal cues
  • Active Listening
    • A process in which the listener receives messages, processes them, and responds so as to encourage further communication
sier hierarchy of active listening
SIER Hierarchy of Active Listening





understanding the superiority of word pictures
Understanding the Superiority of Word Pictures

Generate a mental picture in the receiver’s mind.

Use words and phrases that convey concrete and detailed meaning.

Integrate relevant visual aids into verbal communication.

“Tropicana juices are bursting with flavor.”

“This new system will increase weekly production by 2,100 units.”

“As you can see by this chart . . . .”

role play term assignment update
Role-Play/ Term Assignment update

Role plays will start on either October 31st or November 2nd.

I will post the presentation schedule in the next couple of days.

Term Assignments

Questions? Assignments are due and presentations will start November 23.

Groups have not notified me on their individual topics as of yet. Do this in the next few days please to ensure you get the topic you want.

reading and reacting to nonverbal signals
Reading and Reacting to Nonverbal Signals
  • Nonverbal signals are processed at a sub- conscious level
  • There are five major nonverbal communication channels
    • Body Angle
    • Face
    • Arms
    • Hands
    • Legs
nonverbal communication








Nonverbal Communication
  • Facial Expressions
  • Eye Movements
  • Placement and Movements of Hands, Arms, Head, and Legs
  • Body Posture and Orientation
  • Variation in Voice Characteristics
    • Speaking Rate and Pause Duration
    • Pitch or Frequency
    • Intensity and Loudness
  • Proxemics
  • Note page 125, Exhibit 4.8, is a guide only, not always 100% accurate.
nonverbal communication1
Nonverbal Communication
  • More information is communicated nonverbally than through any other form of communication
    • Tone of voice and accents
    • Body language (facial expressions, gestures, and attitudes)
    • Choice of dress influences nonverbal communication
personal distance proxemics



Personal Distance/Proxemics

Public Zone: >12 feet

Social Zone: 4 - 12 feet

Personal Zone: 2-4 feet

Intimate Zone: 0-2 feet

verbal communication questioning
Verbal Communication: Questioning

Control the flow and direction of the conversation

Uncover important information (disclosure)

Demonstrate concern and understanding

Facilitate the customer’s understanding

Salespeople skilled at questioning take a strategic approach to asking questions so that they may:

impact of poor grammar
Impact of Poor Grammar

Meaning and credibility of the message are significantly downgraded.

Receiver begins to focus on the sender rather than the message.

Receiver dismisses the sender and the sender’s organization as beingunqualified to perform the roleof an effective supplier and partner.

impact of poor grammar1
Impact of Poor Grammar

Presentation will be inefficient and ineffective.

Receiver will have to ask many questions to gain clarity.

Receiver may dismisses the sender as incompetent.

verbal communication strategic application of questioning
Verbal Communication:Strategic Application of Questioning

Generate Buyer Involvement

Provoke Thinking

Gather Information through disclosure

Clarification and Emphasis

Show Interest

Gain Confirmation

Advance the Sale

types of questions

Free Response

Types of Questions:

Open-end Questions

How do You Feel?

types of questions1

Limit Response

Types of Questions:

Open-end Questions

Closed-end Questions

Do You Feel Good?

types of questions2

Specify Response

Types of Questions:

Open-end Questions

Closed-end Questions

Dichotomous/Multiple-Choice Questions

Do You Feel Happy or Sad?

questions classified by strategic purpose
Questions Classified by Strategic Purpose

Probing – used for digging, useful during discovery and objection handling

Evaluative – uncovers attitudes, opinions and preferences

Tactical – used to shift or redirect the discussion/conversation

Reactive – used in response to the reaction of a buyer/customer

spin questioning system
SPIN Questioning System

Four types of questions:





situation questions





Situation Questions

Finding out facts about the buyer’s existing situation.

How many people do you employ at this location? How do you manage your customers and contacts?

Least powerful of the SPIN questions. Negative relationship to success. Most people ask too many.

Eliminate unnecessary Situation Questions by doing your homework in advance.

problem questions





Problem Questions

Asking about problems, difficulties or dissatisfactions that the buyer is experiencing with the existing situation.

Have you ever had trouble managing your time & customers?Which parts of the system create error?

More powerful than Situation Questions. People ask more Problem Questions as they become more experienced at selling.

Think of your products or services in terms of the problems they solve for buyers—not in terms of the details or characteristics that your products possess.

implication questions





Implication Questions

Asking about the consequences or effects of a buyer’s problems, difficulties, or dissatisfactions.

What effect does that problem have on your productivity?Could that be impeding your ability to develop good relationships with your customers?

The most powerful of all SPIN questions. Top salespeople ask lots of Implication Questions.

These questions are the hardest to ask. Prepare for these questions by identifying and understanding the implications of various suspected needs prior to the sales call.

need payoff questions





Need-Payoff Questions

Asking about the value or usefulness of a proposed solution. They seek the buyer’s opinion as to what life would be like if the problem was solved.

How would better time & customer management help you?Would you like to discuss how we can do that for you?

Versatile questions used a great deal by top salespeople. These questions help the buyer to understand the benefits of solving the problem.

Use these questions to get buyers to tell you the benefits that your solution can offer.

funneling sequence of adapt

Assessment Questions

Discovery Questions

Activation Questions

Projection Questions

Transition Questions

Funneling Sequence of ADAPT
adapt techniques for needs discovery

Assessment Questions

  • Broad bases and general facts describing situation
  • Non-threatening as no interpretation is requested
  • Open-end questions for maximum information

Discovery Questions

  • Build on Assessment Questions
  • Questions probing information gained in assessment
  • Seeking to uncover problems or dissatisfactions that
  • could lead to suggested buyer needs
  • Open-end questions for maximum information
  • Show the negative impact of a problem discovered in the
  • discovery sequence
  • Designed to activate buyer’s interest and desire
  • to solve the problem.

Activation Questions

Projection Questions

Transition Questions

  • Projects what life would be like without the problems
  • Buyer establishes the value of finding and
  • implementing a solution
  • Confirms interest in solving the problem
  • Transitions to presentation of solution
ADAPT Techniques for Needs Discovery
reacting during the questioning stage
Reacting During the Questioning Stage

Question-basedpresentations are the link between salespeople’s ability to listen and to uncover buyer motivations

Salespeople who are empathetic are better able to understand their prospects’ motives

“Check the pulse” of prospects regularly

Remain alert for any signals that prospects may send

responding to tough questions
Responding to Tough Questions
  • When your prospect asks you tough, uncertain questions
    • Restate the question to make sure you understand it correctly.
    • Ask:
      • “Can I think about that for a while?”
      • “That is a good question and I do not readily have the answer”
    • You could also start with a general reply
    • Don’t fake it