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WATCH: Two Questions To Ask That Will Close Deals Faster

Too many sales professionals are too eager to talk products with potential customers, said sales consultant and coach Chris Bennett during a session at XChange2018.

The right questions could make all the difference in your next sales meeting. Just ask MSP Todd Gates, CEO and owner of HCS Technical Services in San Marcos, Texas.

“We can go in and solve a crisis, but to actually get the conversation going -- we don’t have anything like that,” said Gates.

[Related: Schneider Electric Launches 'Invaluable' SaaS Platform To Boost Channel Sales]

Gates was among the dozens of solution providers who attended a sales session at XChange 2018 that dug into how focused questions can make all the difference in boosting sales and improving margins.

“We have to hit the reset button, take a step backwards and reconnect with the concept of focusing on what’s driving our customers’ business and what are their challenges,” said sales consultant and coach Chris Bennett, who hosted the session.

Too many sales professionals are too eager to talk products, said Bennett. Instead, a “challenge question” and a “consequence question” can change the mind-set of a prospect and close deals faster. The first kind, the challenge question, includes buzzwords like issue, worry, concern, problem, etc. It pushes solution providers to think about their solutions and formulate questions that fit the typical problems their prospects would have.

“So, look for problems your solution fixes and we use the challenge question to fish for those problems,” said Bennett.

Meanwhile, the consequence question extracts the cost from the prospect of living with the No. 1 problem that was noted in the challenge question. When the cost of the prospect’s problem is huge, Bennett said prospects can find a budget where there is none.

A Gartner study in July that surveyed over 500 technology buyers underlines the importance of effective questioning. The study showed that 78 percent of buyers found their last technology purchase, from initial idea to contract signing, took longer than they expected.

For more of Bennett’s advice, watch CRNtv’s video included in this article.

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