We recently approached a vendor partner to discuss the expansion of our contract. We presume they were pleased to receive our inquiry, as we reached out to them asking if we could provide them with additional revenue. However, the salesperson’s series of responses included three serious flaws which now have us questioning the investment. To help us all learn from their mistakes, here are reminders of three easy ways to kill a sale:
1. Do not answer your prospect’s questions
Our vendor inquiry included a handful of basic questions. After answering the first couple, the representative immediately skipped ahead to pricing and a premature close. Be certain all of your prospect’s questions are answered thoroughly before you move ahead in the sales process. A good waiter or waitress would never ask “Do you want fries with that?” while taking your drink order.
2. Do not research your prospect’s current or past pricing structure
Long-term and mutually beneficial client relationships often include unique or discounted pricing. We enjoy a special pricing structure with the aforementioned vendor and reciprocate by rarely requesting any technical support and periodically providing strategic level expertise to their team. Our new account rep did not investigate the relationship and quoted the rack rate the service mix we were investigating. Our waitress friend would be wise to warn the table that only the first bottle of wine is half price, rather than dropping the check on the table and hoping for the best.
3. Respond to questions in a terse or frustrated manner
If you commit either of the above errors, your prospect may become annoyed. If you respond in a terse or frustrated manner, the sale is as good as dead.
Originally Posted on March 26, 2014 by John Scranton