Friday, August 27, 2010

Let's Talk Money

From an email I recieved last year from

Chris is a well known advertising consultant, but this applies to any selling situation:

How (and When) to Talk About Money
by Chris Lytle

I learned early in my career not to save the money discussion until the presentation stage of the sales process. In fact, if the customer doesn't bring up the money question in the first meeting, I do.

I started doing this when I was a young advertising salesperson. I would tell my prospects what our average weekly order was. That way they would know what it took to make an impact on our audience. Most of them appreciated the information.

I recently discovered another approach to bringing up the money issue. Mahan Khalsa suggests committing to memory your version of the following:

"I don't know how much this will cost you. Every client situation is unique. However, other companies in similar situations and trying to get the same results you've been talking about tend to invest between $X and $Y. Can you see yourself falling somewhere in that range?"

Khalsa believes Y should be about 25-50% more than X. A range of $100,000 to $150,000 is more believable than $100,000 and $2 million.

Not one prospect has ever dropped dead because you talked about money early. But a lot of salespeople have suffered tremendous disappointment because they didn't raise the money issue until it was time to make the proposal. When it comes to finding out that your prospect doesn't have the budget or isn't thinking as big as you are, remember this: Bad news early is good news.

Chris Lytle is President of Sparque Inc. and the bestselling author of The Accidental Salesperson. His current passion is partnering with sales managers to conduct sales meetings their people would attend even if they were optional. To learn more, visit his site.

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