By Leah Turner, Sales Coach & Trainer, Melinda Brody & Company
As the Sales Coach & Trainer for Melinda Brody & Company, I have watched literally THOUSANDS of mystery video shops. I have seen it all….the good, the bad, and the REALLY ugly! I can typically tell within the first 10 minutes of watching a video shop if it is going to be an outstanding success or a colossal failure! In addition to watching these video shops, I’ve had the opportunity to coach and train new home sales associates across the country. Having observed the practices of the nation’s top producers, I will share the 5 critical skills that one must have in order to master their sales presentation.
5 Steps to Master Your Sales Presentation
1. Build Rapport
It is imperative that you develop a relationship with your buyers and build rapport. Remember, people do business with those they know, like, and trust! All too often I see Sales Associate jump right into the ‘salesy’ presentation before their prospects even walk in the door! A few tips to help you build rapport:
- Use the FORD concept. FORD stands for Family, Occupation, Recreation, and Dreams. These are the types of questions you should be asking your prospects upfront. Not only will it allow you to build rapport, it will also provide you with important information to craft and personalize your presentation.
- Use your prospect’s name. I can’t tell you the number of video shops where the sales associates do not use the prospect’s name at all! This is not acceptable! You should try to use their names a minimum of 5 times during the presentation. If you have a hard time remembering names….write them down!
- How much time do you have to spend with me? Always ask this question at the beginning of your presentation. This will allow you to set the agenda and introduce the close. For example, your prospect tells you they have 1 hour to meet with you. You then say: ‘Great. If it is OK with you here is what I would like to cover in our hour together. After we have completed that, we will return to my office and I will go over the steps for moving forward with the purchase of your new home.”
2. What’s Important to You?
This is the most important question you will ask your prospects. Remember, in new home sales you must ‘sell’ the prospect on 4 areas: the home, the home site, the community, and the builder. However, it is impossible to successfully sell these things if you do not know what is important to the prospect. So, be sure to find out what is important to them in their new home, the home site, the community and the builder.
3. Builder’s Story
Your builder is your brand, and not all builders are alike. Become a master in telling your builder’s story. What is the builder’s USP (Unique Selling Proposition)? If you are not comfortable jumping right into the builder story, you can start by asking your prospects if they have ever built a new home before. If they say YES, ask them what they liked or disliked about that experience. This will uncover their hot buttons, and allow you to craft your builder’s story specifically to their needs. If they say NO, then you can move forward by explaining the process and sharing with them the attributes that set you apart from the competition.
4. Overcome Objections
Objections are inevitable in sales. However, the key is being able to successfully overcome them so they do not blow up in your face and cost you the sale. Most sales associates are trained to immediately try to ‘fix’ the problem without really doing the work to overcome it. There is a 4 step process that we teach sales associates to use when faced with objections.
- Empathy. Let them know you hear what they are saying. For example, ‘Thank you for sharing that with me. I hear what you are saying.’
- Clarity. Dig deeper to discover the root of the objection. For example, if they say that they don’t like the kitchen, you need to find out specifically what it is they don’t like. Ask them to tell you more about it, or to specifically explain what it is they do not like.
- Offer Solutions. Now that you have clarity about the objection, you can offer solutions. Remember, not ALL objections will have a solution.
- Confirm. The last step is the most important. You must confirm with your prospects that the solution you have provided has eliminated the objection. If it has not, then you may need to show them another home that better fits their needs.
5. Follow Up
As you can see by the Benchmark Report graphic, only 51% of all the sales associates who were video shopped in 2020 actually bothered to follow up with the prospect. If you don’t follow up, someone else will. Most people do not purchase a home on their initial visit. It is up to you to continually follow up with information or resources that will make it easy for them to say yes! Make sure your follow up is interesting. There is nothing worse than the canned ‘thank you so much for stopping by’ follow up. Make your follow up personal and customized to your prospects. This is where your FORD questions come in handy. If the prospect mentioned to you that their daughter Susan liked gymnastics, perhaps your follow up could include information about the new YMCA that is opening up near the community.
If you can incorporate these five skills into your sales presentation, you will see positive results and an increase in sales. The top producing sales associates that we work with swear by these techniques. They understand that selling is all about building relationships, working together to provide solutions, and customizing each presentation to meet the specific needs of that buyer.
Has Your Team Mastered These Skills?
Want to know if you have mastered the 5 critical sales presentation skills? Melinda Brody & Company is giving away a free video mystery shop, including a one-on-one coaching session with Leah Turner for one reader of this article, randomly selected from all entries. In addition, 10 lucky readers will receive a copy of Melinda’s book, They Said What?!?! Behind the Scenes of 25,000 Undercover Video Mystery Shops. Enter now for your chance to win!
Melinda Brody & Company specializes in the evaluation and training of New Home Sales Associates. In a typical year, we video mystery shop sales associates from over 50 national and regional new home builders. Using the mystery shopping results, we publish a detailed annual Benchmark Report for our new home building clients that shows each company where it ranks nationwide among other home builders in several key areas of the new home sales process including: Approach & Introduction, Builder’s Story, Model demonstration, Home site demonstration, Closing and Follow-Up.