In August I outlined the introduction script to the prospect at the front door. As a canvasser approaches a home they take inventory of the house; assessing what is needed, based on what can be seen and/or what’s been learned from other homeowners in the neighborhood.
In last month’s newsletter I walked you through the ‘transition question’ to use after the introduction when the prospect presents the, “No, I’m not interested” resistance… (Transition question) “No problem, let me ask you a question, have you ever had an estimate before?”
The transition question is designed to set the stage for exposing the prospect’s need. There are only two answers to this question, “no” (they haven’t had an estimate before), or “yes” (they have had an estimate). This month I’ll address the NO RESPONSE. For example purposes only, I’ll assume we’re canvassing for replacement window leads. The technique works well with any type of product or service. Simply replace ‘windows’ in the example with your specific product or service.
After the prospect responds no to, “have you ever had an estimate”, without hesitation ask, “The only reason I ask is because we’ve talked with your neighbors and they said they’ve had problems with their windows.”
The NO RESPONSE Scripted
Here’s how the whole thing comes together, then I’ll break down the methodology behind the technique.
Prospect: “No, I’m not interested.”
Canvasser: “No problem, let me ask you a question, have you ever had an estimate before?”
Canvasser: “The only reason I ask is because we’ve talked with your neighbors and they said they’ve had problems with their windows. They complained about how their windows are hard to open and close, they’re impossible to clean, they create a lot of drafts and condensation, not to mention the high energy bills they’ve been experiencing. That’s why we’re out talking with people today, we’re offering affordable solutions to those problems, so, with that said, are you available in the afternoon or evenings?”
As you canvass the neighborhood you find out what all the homes need. As your canvasser approaches each door they identify the homeowner’s specific needs. Typically it will be the same as his or her neighbors because the houses were built around the same time, and generally with the same materials.
The Psychology Behind It
When the prospect opens the door and sees your canvasser (a stranger who appears to be a sales person), their automatic defense mechanism kicks in and they take the stance, “you can’t sell me, I don’t want to buy anything.” The prospect may agree they need to replace their windows, but the canvasser cannot point this out or it will only fortify the prospect’s defenses. Your canvasser’s goal is to decrease their resistance.
Here’s How The Rebuttal Breaks Down
By suggesting that “…we’ve talked with your neighbors (Someone with whom the prospect trusts more than the person standing before them) and they said they’ve had problems with their windows.”, it comes across more tolerably. This statement unconsciously suggests two things and establishes one very powerful point:
What it suggests:
- The homeowner isn’t the only one experiencing trouble with their windows
- Maybe their neighbors are looking upon them and their house unfavorably. (This plays to the “Keeping Up With The Jones” syndrome)
What it establishes:
The hardest objection to overcome is, “No, I don’t need my windows replaced!” By suggesting you’ve talked with their neighbors, you are, in essence, drawing a line in the sand and saying, “You can’t smoke me off you’re porch. We both know you need your windows replaced.” The statement says it though in a way that doesn’t get the canvasser thrown off the porch or reinforce the prospect’s defenses.
“They complained about how their windows are hard to open and close, they’re impossible to clean, they create a lot of drafts and condensation, not to mention the high energy bills they’ve been experiencing.”
The language is very important here. Using the word “complained” establishes there’s pain involved and it draws the prospect in. Talking about the neighbor’s windows does not directly point out that their windows have these problems, though the prospect will likely identify with one or more of the problems. It’s important to identify as many specific problems as possible, as they pertain to the particular product your canvassing for. The canvasser is trying to stir an emotional hot button; that one or more painful ‘thing’ the prospect identifies experiencing with the particular product. Once connected to that experience they will be more receptive to exploring solutions to the problem, which leads to the next phase of the technique.
“That’s why we’re out talking with people today (The reason why the canvasser intruded on their time and is knocking on their door), we’re offering affordable solutions to those problems, (Suggesting there’s a money-saving solution to their painful problem), with that said (tying it back to the specific pain or pains they identified with), are you available in the afternoon or evenings?”
“…are you available in the afternoon or evenings?” is an assumptive close. By asking if they’re available in the afternoon or evening, Tuesday or Wednesday, at 6:30pm or 8:00pm forces them to make a choice between the options rather than saying “No, I don’t want an appointment.” The canvasser must always assume they are going to get the appointment.
Having your canvassers learn this simple technique, word for word, will help them convert more no’s into appointments; and ultimately appointments into sales.