While listening to an audio tape learning program the other day, I learned a very important lesson about courage and persistence in asking closing questions. How you think about closing has a significant impact on how easy it will be for you to feel comfortable and confident in asking a closing question each and every time the opportunity arises.
For quite some time, I have been telling center directors about author Carole Hyatt’s suggestion that it takes eight “no’s” to get to a “yes”. That means if you’ve had four “no’s”, you are well on your way to the prospect who will say “yes!” in response to your closing question. Hard as it can seem to continue asking, you must ASK or you are not closing. The people who ask continually have significantly higher sales conversions than those who merely recommend, but do not ask, and then hope the prospect will volunteer to buy.
One of the most common reasons directors do not ASK for the center visit, ASK for the enrollment, and ASK for permission to follow up is the fear of rejection. Another is the feeling of wasting your time and effort (and other resources) to get nothing in return. But think about it this way:
Let’s say you have had five prospects look at your preschool program for which you charge $150 a week. Every enrollment in this program is worth approximately $7,794 a year in revenue, depending upon how you calculate a month’s tuition. You have asked every single one of these prospects when they would like to start (or some other closing question). They all said “No,” for one reason or another. Then the sixth prospect to look at your center seems really interested and eligible, so you ask a closing question, and the prospect says, “Yes, I want to enroll!” You have secured the enrollment, but it took six times of asking to get there!
If you divide the $7,794 by the six times you had to ask prospects a closing question, it comes out to just shy of $1,300 for each time a prospect said, “No.” It’s almost as if the prospects one by one said to you, “No, I do not want to enroll, but here is $1,300 for your efforts and for asking me to enroll.”
If you can think of each negative response as a future enrollment in your center, you will feel much more willing to ask, knowing that each negative response is just money in your pocket as you’re on your way to the one who will enroll! Thinking about closing in this way can help you overcome the fear of rejection and can make it much more fun to ASK for the visit, enrollment and follow up permission. Do it, privately tally what each “no” was worth, and watch your enrollment increase!
Good luck and happy marketing!