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Quiz: Can You Land the Appointment?

During a cold call, you must make quick decisions based on your reading of the prospect's state of mind. Here's a quick test of your acumen in responding to a prospect's attitude.

SCENARIO: You got through to a prospect and just gave him your elevator pitch. You sounded great (at least to yourself) but the prospect says: "Well, that sounds sort of interesting, but I'm not sure."

Pick the response most likely to move the opportunity closer to an actual sales appointment:

  • #1: Click HERE. "What would your thoughts be on having an initial conversation with us about [something of value to the customer]? What is your availability over the next few weeks?"
  • #2: Click HERE. "If we really could do [something of value to the customer], what would your thoughts be on having an initial conversation with us to hear more?"
  • #3: Click HERE. "I would love to have an initial phone conversation with you about [something of value to the customer]. What is the best way to get on your calendar?"
  • #4: Click HERE. "How do I get on your calendar, please?"
BTW, this post is based on a conversation with sales trainer extraordinaire Barry Rhein.
Aha! Trying to page through the answers without playing the game? Naughty, naughty!!

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What! Still trying to find the answers. Well, keep clicking... they'll show up.

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Your response was #1: "What would your thoughts be on having an initial conversation with us about [something of value to the customer]? What is your availability over the next few weeks?"
Sorry. That's pretty good, but you could do better.

While that response might work, it's a little aggressive, since the prospect is expressing a certain amount of skepticism. Chance are, if you use this response, that you'll get a stall or a string of objections.

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Your response was #3: "I would love to have an initial phone conversation with you about [something of value to the customer]. What is the best way to get on your calendar?"
Sorry, but that's not the best move.

You're dealing with a prospect who's still not convinced. You're not recognizing that the customer is skeptical, and are just plowing ahead. Chance are, if you use this response, that you'll make the customer feel pressured... and possibly end the meeting.

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Your response was #4: "How do I get on your calendar, please?"
Sorry, but that's way too aggressive.

The prospect is not at all ready to be "closed" on the appointment. You've missed the cue that the customer is skeptical and just gone for the appointment. It's not going to work. If you don't believe me, try it next time you've got a skeptical prospect.

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Your response was #2: "If we really could do [something of value to the customer], what would your thoughts be on having an initial conversation with us to hear more?"
CONGRATULATIONS!
That's definitely the best response of the four provided.

Because the prospect is skeptical, you need to ask whether it's OK to ask for the appointment, rather than actually ask for the appointment. If you get a green light -- i.e. the prospect indicates a willingness to meet -- then (and only then) do you ask for the appointment.

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