It is important that we effectively find out if things are great, OK or could be better for the prospect in order to improve selling and determine which prospects it makes sense to keep speaking with.  In the event that things are simply OK or could be better, there could be pain present and focusing the conversation on that pain brings strong benefits.  On the opposite side, if we’re unable to find pain and things are great, some very powerful factors will be present that will put a wall up against anything we try doing.

No Pain – No Reason to Meet

The best goal for a cold call when at the beginning of the sales cycle is getting the prospect to commit to a first conversation.  In the event that no pain is uncovered in which the prospect may be experiencing in the area which our products and/or services affect, there’s not a valid reason for the prospect to meet with us.

In demonstrating this, we’ll use the example of a doctor’s office making a cold call to a potential patient/client.  We all know this isn’t practical in the real world, but if it was, the following are two extreme scenarios in which we can look at to see how imperative pain is to improve selling.

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Scenario A – No Pain

Caller: Hello, this is Dr. White’s office.  How are you feeling currently?
Prospect: I am feeling great.  I’m running in a marathon next week.
Caller:  Ok, I see.  Would you like me to schedule an appointment for you next week?
Prospect: No, I am feeling great.  There is no need.  Thank you for your call though.

Scenario B – Extreme Pain

Caller: Hello, this is Dr. White’s office.  How are you feeling currently?
Prospect: I’m horrible.  My head is pounding and I can’t sleep or eat.
Caller:  Ok, I see.  Would you like me to schedule an appointment for you next week?
Prospect: Yes, I would.  But is next week the earliest I can get in for an appointment?

What we should grasp from the example above is if our goal is to get a first conversation and/or schedule an appointment, it may not make sense for the prospect to meet with us if we are unable to find pain.  Also, when pain isn’t found, it isn’t logical for us to spend our valuable time meeting with the prospect.  By not giving prospects a valid reason to meet, we are not helping to improve selling.

No Pain – No Change

Now, we’ll review a scenario where no pain is identified, but because of effective sales techniques as well as strong relationships, discussions were established with a prospect and created a lead/opportunity.  In this example, the prospect might be ecstatic and very interested in our products and services, but at the end of the sales cycle when it is time to motivate the prospect to close the transaction, things may stall or the purchase could get forfeited because the fact that there isn’t enough of a need to go forward because of the absence of pain.  Quite simply, if pain isn’t present, there is no valid reason to make a change and this doesn’t help to improve selling.

SalesScripter provides sales training helping sales pros to improve selling.


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