Qualify your Prospects

Qualify your Prospects

Identifying people as prospects (prospecting) is a very important aspect of selling. You qualify your prospects by asking three questions. I call these the 3 ‘As’ of qualifying:

  1. Do they have a need for your product? (ASK)
  2. Do they have the ability to pay for your product? (AFFORD)
  3. Do they have the authority to purchase your product? (AUTHORITY)

Download the Qualifying Cheat Sheet now and start discovering how to qualify your prospects.

Always keep these three questions in mind and keep refining your prospect list to help you avoid wasting time calling on people who are unlikely to do business with you.

To help you accurately qualify your prospects, and make sure you’re speaking to the right people, you need to create a list of qualifying questions. For example, in the case of a recruitment professional, a good qualifying question might be, “When do you need to have that position filled?” The important word in that question is “need”. If the person answers that there’s no urgent need to fill that position now, they might just be curious about your rates and are probably not a serious prospect. Send them your marketing material but don’t waste your time on them.

Ask Specific Questions

A hotel sales professional could qualify prospects by asking when they are planning to have their event. Are they planning on having it within the next month, quarter, year or more? Answers to specific questions like these give you a very good indication of how qualified a prospect is. (ASK)

You also want to qualify prospects by determining whether or not they can afford your product or service. In the case of a commercial real estate professional, it might be useful to let prospects know that listings in a certain location typically range between x and y amount and then ask them if they can afford that amount right now. If they can’t afford that amount right now, then they clearly cannot afford your services and are not in a position to move forward. (AFFORD)

It’s also useful to ask prospects the following question: “Who else needs to be included in this decision?” You want to be sure that you’re speaking with the right person – that is, someone who actually has the authority to make the buying decision. In the case of an InfoComm sales professional, for example, you could ask: “Who else should be involved in this meeting?” The answer to this question will clearly indicate who the real decision maker is and will ensure that you’re not wasting your time speaking to the wrong person. (AUTHORITY)

Asking these types of qualifying questions during your initial contact (and regularly throughout the sales process) with prospects will help you determine right away whether or not someone is in fact a qualified prospect. To increase sales, you must increase the quantity and quality of prospects. And you can shorten the sales cycle by properly qualifying prospects.

Action

Download the Qualifying Cheat Sheet now and start discovering how to qualify your prospects.

Learn how to qualify your prospects and reach true economic buyers, right here in this video.

In this video:
00:28 What is a “qualified” prospect?
00:43 Identifying serious prospects
01:10 What you must do right now

Hi everyone, it’s Tom Abbott here, founder of Soco Sales Training, sales trainer, coach, keynote speaker and author of ‘The SOHO Solution: 21 Selling Strategies For Growing Your Small Business’ with a tip on how you can increase sales and grow your business.

Identifying people as prospects is a very important aspect of personal selling.

What is a “Qualified” Prospect?
You qualify your prospects by asking three questions:

Do they have a need for your product?
Do they have the ability to pay for your product?
Do they have the authority to purchase your products?

Identifying Serious Prospects
For example, if you’re a web designer, a good qualifying question might be, “When are you planning on re-designing your website (next week, next month, next quarter, etc.)?” The important word in that question is planning. If the person answers that they are not planning on re-designing their website, they might just be curious and are probably not a serious prospect.

What You Must Do Right Now
Your task today is to create a list of at least three qualifying questions. Prospects’ answers to these questions will help ensure that you’re talking to the people most likely to do business with you.

Author Profile

Tom Abbott
Tom Abbott is the author of 'The SOHO Solution' and 'Social Selling' and the creator of the online sales training platform SOCO Academy. Sales leaders engage Tom for his proven solutions to building high performance sales teams that exceed targets and for motivational keynotes that energise their audiences.

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