Good cold calling sales questions get you critical info

by on February 2, 2010 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: Selling Essentials Info Center

Cold Calling Sales Questions that get them to open up

You know good questions are the key to increasing your cold calling sales. But how do you get a prospect to open up? When prospects barely know you, they’re more reserved and unlikely to reveal any “warts and blemishes” (needs, wants and worries).

To get around this hesitancy, use a scenario question. It addresses a problem or concern without putting the prospect on the spot.

Two examples of scenario questions in cold calling sales:

“Ms. Bixby, research with our clients shows that cash flow is an issue now, particularly with the fluctuating price of oil. Let me ask you, what has been your experience with cash flow over the last year or so?”

“Scott, we are getting a lot of feedback from IT directors about misuse of licensing agreements. What has been your experience with this so far?”

Misery loves company
You want the prospect to think, “Gosh, if others are experiencing the same thing it’s okay for me to open up.”

An alternative is the versatile “explain” question. It allows the prospect to elaborate, pontificate, and articulate.

Suppose you’re probing for needs. You can say, “Ms. Barton, explain to me the challenges you’re experiencing in penetrating the Canadian market.”

Or, if your prospect says “We’re not all that happy with our flux capacitors.” Try, “Wendi, could you explain to me why you’re not happy?” This is a buying signal. Exploit it.

And if the prospect says, “Well, I’d have to go to committee with that proposal.” Respond with, “I understand completely. Joel, can you explain to me how the committee operates and how they go about evaluating a proposal?”

Based on material from Jim Domanski at

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