I’m not buying today!
What kryptonite is to Superman is what “I’m not buying today,” is to a salesperson, debilitating. If you want to decapitate the high hopes of a salesperson, just whisper those four words and watch him fall faster than Michael Spinks did when he fought “Iron” Mike Tyson (91 seconds by the way).
A customer may be shouting that they aren’t buying today, but secretly they are asking you to give them reasons why they should. Unfortunately we as salespeople quit before we even get started. As my friend Mark Tewart says, “You aren’t selling vehicles, you’re selling solutions.” Customers don’t suddenly get beamed in to your dealership-they are there for a reason, but it’s up to you to discover what that reason is.
Don’t react to your customer’s negative emotions, instead respond by thinking in terms of solutions that are logically oriented.
- Vehicles don’t sell themselves. Contrary to mainstream media, customers still (and always will) need salespeople. Why do 80% of online shoppers who submitted a lead end up buying something different? Because they didn’t know what they thought they knew. Just because you can read about a procedure on Web MD doesn’t make you qualified to perform open heart surgery-you need not only years of study, but also thousands of hours of practical application to become an expert. Similarly, customers need your practical wisdom in order to cut through the cloud, clutter, and confusion when shopping for a vehicle. Established credibility leads to earned trust and the more your customers trust you, the more apt they are to buy from you.
- Know vs. No: The less a customer knows the more likely they are to say No. No is defined as expressing disapproval. Take No professionally not personally. Often customers disapprove because they don’t know enough about you (trust), your dealership (life after the sale), or your product (is this the right solution). Slow down and mine the minds of your customers to discover their knows; that’s where the treasure is buried.
- Expect, but prepare: A few years ago I called to check on a friend who works for the New Orleans Fire Department as they readied the city for another hurricane (the city was still recovering from Hurricane Katrina). When I asked him how bad he thought the storm would be and he simply said, “We’re expecting the best, yet preparing for the worst.” As a sales consultant, you too should expect the best (in every customer and opportunity), yet prepare for the worst. The cancers of discouragement and self-esteem are career killers to salespeople. As the rejections begin to mount, salespeople let up on their work ethic and let in negative thoughts and feelings. The Bible warns you, “More than anything you guard, protect your mind, for life flows from it.” (Proverbs 4:23) If you wouldn’t let muddy feet walk across your home’s white Berber carpet-then stop letting people’s negative feats muddy up your mind. Daily, expect to win, learn to move up and on from your setbacks and losses, and guard your mind by feasting on positive relationships, books, messages, and podcasts.
When the customer says, “I’m not buying today,” and you’re unwilling to remain a life-long student to your profession, short-sell your opportunities by taking NO for an answer, and allow others to define who you are and what you should think and feel? Then that’d be your fault they aren’t buying, not theirs.
I’ll see you next time on the blacktop.