Who says Follow the Leader ended in elementary school?
Adults play the game daily behind sales desks and in store aisles. Every savvy salesperson wants to be the leader, assume the sale, and have their incredulous prospect become an eager follower.
Taking the lead in a sales conversation requires more than a silver tongue and a killer sales script. If you listen carefully to the best salespeople in the business a very interesting secret will be revealed.
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The language they use with their prospects is always assumptive. You will quickly realize that these top sales producers’ prospects are eagerly following the lead of these salespeople, into the sales funnel because of the assumptive language they’re using.
In my experience, this is the most powerful sales technique I’ve ever learned. But it takes practice. It’s hard to project the necessary confidence to assume the sale.
Getting into the assumptive mindset
Top sales producers are often brimming with positivity and confidence. Those personality traits are no coincidence. Positive attitudes are infectious and confidence is reassuring. Combined they make fertile ground for productive sales conversations.
Positivity and confidence also put you in a state of mind to assume the sale.
Assumptive sales language assumes the customer will buy; it does not leave room for ifs or buts. It assures your prospect that they making the right decision. It assumes that they will ultimately make the logical decision to buy your product or service.
Why use assumptive language?
Because the seller/buyer relationship is one of push and pull, and whoever exerts the most force wins the tug-of-war. This is standard business practice and, in fact, markets could not function without it.
Assumptive language places sellers in a position of leadership and authority. At the conclusion of a sale, the salesperson has made an undeniably sensible case, and any smart customer should go along.
10 basic assumptive sales phrases
These questions and statements are phrased to eliminate subjective words such as “if,” “were,” “would,” “could,” and to replace them with active words such as “when,” “where,” and “will.”
1. “Let’s move forward.”
This phrase encourages the seller and customer to work together to finish the purchasing process.
2. “What’s the next step?” and “When should we start?”
These phrases assume that there must be the next step, and force the customer to make a progressive decision.
3. “Let’s Go Ahead and Get Your Appraisal Ordered” and “Will you be using Visa or Mastercard?”
Both phrases assume simple pertinent facts: the appraisal must be ordered and the deposit made.
4. “How do you think _____ will look with this _____?”
Tie with the shirt? Rims with the car? House with the perfect neighborhood or school district. Mixing-and-matching products or motivations can make for an enjoyable and engaging consumer experience. Help them envision the end result they are looking for. As we always say – no one wants a mortgage, but everyone does want a beautiful home in the perfect community.
5. “Since this market is so hot – home prices and rates are rising …”
In other words, “Everyone wants this, and you – the lucky customer – have a limited opportunity to get in at the perfect time.”
6. “What other loan products have you considered?”
This simple question can garner valuable information about competitors and how they are selling to this potential client.
7. “What questions do you have?”
This query compels the customer to ponder the sales pitch and consider its benefits.
8. “What motivated you to start thinking about buying a new home or refinancing?”
An invaluable sales tip, this question makes a customer recall the initial reason why he or she chose to reach out and start this journey in the first place. It reminds them that they are the one that initiated this sales process.
9. “When can we begin…?”
Setting a date is a great way to pivot into an assumptive close. This simple question often gets your prospect into their calendar and thinking about how your product or service fits into their personal or professional schedule.
10. What happens next?
I love this question! Not only does it assume that we have begun working together, but it also will almost subconsciously get your prospect to start spilling out how their procurement process works. Short of actually getting the name and phone number of the household decision-maker or procurement officer, this yields the treasure map to where X marks the spot for the final signature on the contract.
And always remember the cardinal sales tip of closing: He who speaks first loses.