My wife is a Realtor and real estate investor and renovator. I happen to be working for her one day when she relayed a story from earlier that morning. A contractor coming to give her a quote for a kitchen counter-top decided to insult her in every possible way – from asking to speak with her husband to telling her that she does not want beveled laminate edges. He also explained that he could not give a firm price and explained how busy he was so that he needed plenty of notice after he mailed her the estimate. Not to mention that he showed up in a van that was the least professional vehicle she had seen and with his young children in the car. I am NOT saying you need a new truck to be a good contractor, but if you plan on showing someone how you will care for their home is indicated by your appearance and presentation, put some effort into it. And how do you indicate interest in a client with your preteens honking the horn trying to hurry you up?
I learned long ago that selling to women was different than selling to men. So much of what I had been taught about sales early in my career was about the process, and that process was methodical and fact-filled. It was percentages and signals – nodding meant “yes, I’ll buy”, not “yes, I hear you” – HUGE difference there. Emotions and trust were not as much of an issue. A person could buy off of me because I proved all the facts of what I was demonstrating – now I must show them I not only know why my offering is the best, but that I can be trusted to help them with their decision. Don’t get me wrong – I love selling to women, it is different and I thoroughly embrace that.
My children can attest to one thing, the key word I wanted them to take away from my parenting was the word “respect”. If I do not respect a prospective client, their emotions, their needs, their space – I will never make a sale. I need them to understand that I have empathy to their situation and are listening to what they want. I also need to be able to walk away from a sale if the best interest of that client to go with another supplier. I am NOT so desperate for sales that I would risk my reputation for a few dollars.
Back to my wife – “Trish on shopping” this time; she can make shopping an experience, not a mission. When she shops for a new outfit, she might visit five stores, even if she found a dress she liked in the first store. She wants to be sure. When I shop for a new shirt, I buy the first one I see that meets my need. So who is doing it right, we both are – and respecting each other’s processes is the key.
VETO power – women have this power in 95% of decisions made – I can cite sources but in my experience, it is closer to 100%. Enough said on this, seriously guys – did you NOT know this?
SO what TO DO? Learn where they’re coming from and where they want to go. Help them articulate their financial goals and dreams and validate their feelings and concerns. Continue to ask questions until you have a clear picture of what they need. Play back what you’ve heard to ensure you understand. They may talk about many things that seem unrelated, but to them they are. When women think and feel they’ve been heard and understood, they will be ready to trust. If they trust, they are more likely to move toward a purchase.
And don’t EVEN think you can fake it – they are way too smart for that.
Want respect when you have insurance questions – call us at PA at 814-774-4080 and in OH at 440-964-2222 or visit us at http://www.springfamilyinsuranceganecy.com