Welcome to May and this months topics of Presenting and Demonstrating. So far this year we have discussed preparation, greeting and discovery. The primary purpose of these three areas is getting the Attention of our customers. The next step is to create Interest in our community, neighborhood and homes. Then we build Desire by creating value and urgency and finally take Action. The formula works like this:
The Critical Path to new home sales (in chronological order):
- Discovery/Needs Analysis- Interest
- Presentation- Interest
- Demonstration- Desire
- Select One- Desire
- Objections- Action
- Finance- Action
- Closing- Action
- Follow up- Action
- Due Diligence- Action
- Referrals- Action
After we have greeted the customer and done some discovery as to why they are visiting our model home, we need to peak their Interest through a brief but powerful Presentation.
Research shows we have less than 9 minutes to greet, qualify and present our product to prospective customers. Your presentation should always be 5 minutes or less. There are many ways to make your presentation depending on your particular situation. Those of you selling inside a model home may make bits and pieces of the presentation throughout the prospect’s visit. If you are lucky enough to have a model center in a garage, the majority of your presentation will be made the first few minutes the customer walks in the door.
The three components of your presentation are:
- Your Builder’s Story: Who is your builder, what have they done and why should the customer use them.
- Your Community Overview: Give a quick 5 point feature/benefit overview of your city.
- Your Neighborhood Overview: Give a quick 5 point feature/benefit overview of your neighborhood.
We are now entering the Desire stage where the prospect will begin to become emotionally attached to your neighborhood and home. The key to building emotional value in your home is identifying what features are important to your prospect (hot buttons) and pushing them repeatedly by demonstrating how the benefits of your home will satisfy these hot buttons.
The most common mistake in demonstrating our homes is what is called “feature dumping.” At one time in my sales career, I was the king of feature dumpers. I would literally “puke up” all my product knowledge to anyone that would listen and hope something would stick. More often than not my demonstration fell on closed ears and bored more prospects than anything else! Don’t make the same mistake I did.
Your four demonstration areas:
- The Community: Even though you gave a short presentation, make sure you go back and ask specific questions about their knowledge of the community. Some of you work in cities where the majority of your buyers already live there. Others, such as me, work in cities where 90% of the buyers don’t live in town. You need photos, maps and personal experience to best demonstrate your community.
- The Model(s): Depending on your product, you will have a 5-10 point written demonstration of your model(s). If you are selling inventory homes, try not to show the unfinished inventory home before you have given a thorough model demonstration.
- The Neighborhood: This is not done from inside your model looking at a plat map. It is best done on foot. If this isn’t possible, put the customers in your car and drive them around to specific demonstration points. If there are issues with doing that, such as kids and car seats, make them follow you to your demonstration points. When you arrive, get out of your car and point out what feature and benefit you want them to see.
- The Homesite/Inventory Home: Since you have them walking or in a car to see your neighborhood, what better a time to show them the one and only one (no more than two!) homes or home sites that fit their criteria. This is where urgency is created; a topic we will talk more about next time.
Let’s face it. Most of us are in sales because we are outgoing, energetic people who have a desire to serve others. All of these traits are wonderful to have but the true secret to superstar sales is doing one very unnatural act, asking great pre-planned questions!
I used to believe asking questions stopped with the discovery stage of the sales process. Never could I have been more wrong. The greatest salespeople use questions, no great questions, at each and every stage of the critical path to new home sales. The universal 80/20 rule here states, ask questions 20% of the time and listen to the answers the other 80%.
Our problem with this idea is that we love to talk and asking questions is not normal for us. I hate to burst any urban myths but the brutal truth about salespeople is that they are not born; they are made with education, practice and great pre-planned questions. Even some good salespeople miss this point and it keeps them from becoming great.
If you want to be the best you can be, decide right here and now what you are willing to give up to become the salesperson that you are capable of being. All of us have an alter ego salesperson on the other side of the door, you know, the salesperson we can become but haven’t met yet. Only a couple of you reading this will do what you have to do to meet this person. The question is, will it be you?