3 Questions Your Customers Aren’t Saying Out Loud


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When making a sales call, it’s important to ask questions of your customers, and really listen to their answers. Asking questions is a great way to build rapport, open up a dialogue, and identify the customer’s problems, goals and needs. Ideally, your questions will also prompt additional questions from your customers, as you help pique their interest and get them to ask for more information. Customers often ask specific questions about product features or benefits of your solution; they might wonder about costs and implementation details. But some of the most important questions are the ones that your customers are not saying out loud.

Here are a few of the most common unspoken questions from your customers – and how to address their biggest concerns that are going unsaid.

“Can I Trust You?”

The primary question on the mind of your customer – even though they might never say it out loud – is whether they can trust you. Establishing trust with your prospect is the most important part of building a new sales relationship. You need to show your customer that you are not just trying to sell to them; you are a trustworthy, knowledgeable industry peer who is looking out for the customer’s best interests overall. Be ready to talk with the customer about their overall business operations. Share the latest business intelligence and industry trends – show them that you really know your stuff.

“Why Should I Buy From You Instead of Someone Else?”

Keep in mind that when you’re selling B2B solutions, you don’t just need to explain why your solution is good – you also need to demonstrate why your solution is better than others. Many of your prospects are already working with an incumbent vendor that is already delivering the type of service or solution that you sell. So you need to make a compelling case for why your solution is good enough to replace the existing vendor – with all of the added costs and complexity that go with that.

“How Much is This REALLY Going to Cost Me?”

B2B buyers are often a big skeptical of sales people who talk about the cost of their solutions or systems – because too often, when a complex B2B sale goes through, the costs of implementation, maintenance, product installation, training, and other aspects tend to mushroom. This can make the final total cost of a new B2B solution much bigger than the sales person might have initially estimated. So how can you assuage your customer’s doubts on this question? Develop accurate, detailed ROI estimates that have comprehensive calculations. Be conservative in your cost estimates – leave plenty of budget cushion in case things go wrong or in case unexpected complexities arise. And communicate upfront with the buyer about the various stages of the sales and implementation processes – and which costs will be incurred along the way.

By speaking to the unspoken questions and hidden concerns of your prospective customers, you will be better able to build trust, convey your company’s key advantages, and reassure your buyer that they are getting good value for their money. Customers might not come right out and say it, but understanding and answering these questions will be one of the biggest drivers of your sales success.

Al Davidson
Al Davidson is the founder of Strategic Sales & Marketing, a "leading light" among lead generation companies, delivering B2B lead generation and b2b appointment setting services for clients ranging from local small businesses to the Fortune 100. Since 1989, the company's sales agents have generated over 7 million sales leads, and created millions of dollars for clients.


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