Recognizing Buying Signals
In sales, whether it is new homes, senior living, or leasing, agents can get wholly absorbed into the process of their sales presentation, i.e. steps required from greeting to closing. As a result agents can easily miss buyer signals indicating interest in their product and community.
Proactive sales skills that include solid listening skills need to be combined with ‘the art of the sale’. The first component is technical and the second is the human connection. Both components are necessary for an effective sales presentation.
During the course of their sales presentations, agents need to allow for pauses to gauge how their prospective buyer reacts to information they provide or how they respond to your questions. Of equal importance, agents need to allow that prospect time to ask questions. After all, if someone is not interested in what you are selling, would they take the time to even inquire? When the prospect does ask a question, a simple “yes” or “no” reply is not recommended. Just like agents are taught to ask open ended questions to elicit information from their buyer, the agent response to a prospect’s question should be structured in much the same way. If you respond with a clarifying question, you can then discover more about the prospect’s frame of mind or possible hidden concerns.
If a prospect asks about availability, the logical response is to ask and determine their time frame for moving vs. simply providing a list of what and when. The prospect’s response can reveal essential information. For new homes, if the prospect indicates they have to sell their existing home first, then the agent should determine if that home is listed, for how long, with a broker, etc. For senior living, that same response can indicate their interest in committing but perhaps they need the proceeds from the sale of their home in order to move into your community. Learning as much about the prospects situation will then help the agent provide the right guidance to make moving into their community a reality whether immediate or a later date.
Other Buying Signals
Agents must learn to recognize buying signals from questions/statements posed by their prospects. There is no set time when these questions pop up. They can come in the beginning, the middle, or at the end of your presentation. Let’s review a sampling.
If the prospect:
- Expresses interest in a specific homesite/apartment. An agent needs to follow through to determine what piqued that interest: Location? Orientation? Floor plan? Yard size? View? Proximity to amenities?
- Asks about the required time frame to move into the home/apartment. The agent needs to determine if the time frame works for both the company and the buyer.
- Requests some information to be repeated. Either the agent did not initially present that information in a clear manner or the prospect needs to process it again. Additional clarifying questions can determine if that information is a possible hidden concern.
- Inquires about rates, price, deposit requirements, payment options. Hopefully the agent has determined the prospect’s price point to move the sale forward.
- Inquires about other residents: The like kind attraction factor always comes into play. Granted there are limits to what an agent can say but a generic response about who lives in the community can make that prospect feel at ease. Most people want to live around people similar to themselves.
- Compares your community with the competition. Buyers today have a wealth of information at their fingertips. Agents must be prepared to know their competition inside and out to sell the advantages and benefits of their community in a positive and unique manner.
Smarter Selling can only occur if you are prepared. So be prepared to listen and be prepared address your prospect’s questions and concerns with valid information specific to their inquiry.
Are you ready to confirm if your sales team is selling smart? Give us a call! LeBlanc & Associates is always prepared to listen to your questions and provide you with the information that will lead you to the road of successful sales.