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How to Use a Pen to Sell On the Telephone

With cell phones, call forwarding, and the death of the land-line in the home, most often we have no idea where our prospects might be when we’re calling them about our sports ticket opportunities.  They could be in the car, the supermarket, out on a date, or anywhere else you could imagine.

Wherever your prospect happens to be, chances are they’re near a piece of paper and a writing instrument of some kind. It’s your chance to engage them in your conversation – IF you’re good enough with using information that can lead to a sale.

While you have someone engaged on the phone, try this: ask them if they’re near a pen and paper, and ask them to write down a few things you’re going to dictate to them.  This subconsciously gets them to begin thinking creatively and positively in your direction, because they’re writing down something about you, keeping an informal “record” of your conversation, and they have a pen in their hand… which is a close cousin to signing a deal.  (Many people also think better when they have a pen in hand and are writing!)

Here’s how this might flow in an actual sales conversation:

“Do you happen to have a pen and a piece of paper in front of you?  Why don’t you grab it for a moment, because I’d like to share some numbers with you.”

“What would be an average amount of money you might spend to go out to eat with your family?  OK… write that down.”

“OK… how about a movie?  What would that cost for your family to go to a movie together?  Write that down too.”

“Is there anything else you often do together with the family?  Attend Little League games, go bowling, anything like that?  Often, that also involves going out to eat, too, doesn’t it?  OK… put that down too, and what it might cost you on average each time you go.”

“OK… so how many times would you say you might do those things over the course of, say, six months?  Put that down next to each one… now let’s add that up, and see what we come up with.” (Get a number from them)

“Very good.  So, let’s take that big number, and put it alongside the amount we’re talking about here for these tickets… which is $_____.  Understand, now, that some of that big number will be absorbed into the season tickets, now that you’ll be spending time there instead of these other places… so what we’re really doing is replacing or re-distributing the way you and your family spend your recreation dollars rather than increasing them.”

“When you look at it in black and white, the extra expense really doesn’t seem to be that much, does it?”

This is just one scenario.  Business-to-business prospects can also enter into “pen-and-paper” conversations about things like:

  • Their top 3 clients, and how much revenue they bring to the bottom line (compared to the investment your tickets would be in keeping that revenue coming in)
  • How much their current sales contest prizes are costing
  • The number of salespeople they have, and how often each of them gets a chance to spend quality time with their clients
  • Their current employee incentive programs, and how much is budgeted vs. their turnover rate, etc.

Email me with PEN AND PAPER in the subject line, and I’ll share a few other potential scenarios with you.

You can turn any telephone presentation into a multi-media sales opportunity by turning your client on to the high-tech world of pen and paper as a means of engaging them more fully.  Try it and see!

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