A prospect needs to see themself in a solution to believe it’s possible for them. Storytelling is what helps your prospects put themselves in whatever situation that you’re talking about. When they can relate to the story and hear what the moral is, they’re more likely to move forward. But you have to tell the right story. And according to Kendra Lee, the key to choosing the right story is listening. Learn how she utilizes this simple tool to realize extraordinary results in this episode of Sales Reinvented!
According to Kendra, you have to begin with the problem that the prospect or client has. Start with a common problem of the hero of your story. Share in detail—using emotional words—what the hero went through trying to solve that problem. You have to infuse feeling words into your story. Then you must share what the result was and what happened when they solved their problem. The beginning, middle, and end must be related to the prospect.
Kendra believes great storytellers are great listeners. You can’t throw in a story in your sales conversation just because it sounds good. You have to listen to what you are hearing in the sales situation. What will help your prospect or client relate to what you’re talking about?
You can’t do that if you’re thinking about yourself, when you’re going to say what, etc. You have to immerse yourself in what your prospect is saying and imagine yourself in their situation before inserting a story. Listen and draw upon your memory to share something relatable.
Kendra shares some poignant dos and don’ts that every salesperson should keep in mind:
When Kendra was a brand new sales rep and nowhere near reaching her quota, her manager offered to come with her on a sales call to help close the sale. When they arrived, Kendra’s manager asked to speak privately with the prospect. She came out of the office with a sly smile on her face. Kendra asked what she had told the prospect.
Her manager had told the prospect that Kendra was a brand new sales rep and that it would be important for her to get a sale. She implored him to sign the order so Kendra could make her first sale for the year. Kendra was horrified. She has never forgotten that experience and vowed to never put herself in the situation again.
She emphasizes that it’s up to you to control your client conversations—even when your manager is with you. You can be the one telling the stories and setting up the situation. Kendra could have gone in and been part of that conversation and controlled the narrative.
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