Brilliant post by Clint Miller on how NOT to get the job.
Sadly, I know some stagers are still using "We are the lowest price in town" or "we'll meet or beat the other stagers' prices". Whenever a service provider or sales person tells me that, my first thought is "they must be desperate" and my second thought is "why should I pay their current price since they're obviously willing to go lower?".
Seems to me that regardless of how often Brokers or Sales Managers say not to do it, there are certain phrases that continually pop up during the course of a presentation/phone call/appointment that simply take a client's confidence and blow it clean out of the water...Sometimes even to the point of losing your listing to another agent...losing that big sale...or even driving away a potential repeat customer.
Having said that, I ran across a blog a long time ago that listed the top 10 things that sales people should never say. So, I thought I would take that list and go through it line by line and show you exactly what the client thinks when they hear it come out of your mouth.
So...here it goes...
"I was just in the area and thought I would stop by..."
SERIOUSLY???? You mean to tell me that the ‘professional' I just hired to assist me with (insert issue here) has absolutely nothing in the world better to do than to just cruise by my house and ‘drop by' unannounced?? Why did I hire this idgit in the first place?? Why are they here?...and how fast can I get rid of them??
"Have you got a minute?"
NO! In fact, I don't have a minute...or 10...or the 30 that you may plan on taking. I'm busy...in fact, I can think of 100 things I would rather do with my minute than sit here and discuss this with you right now. (I think it would be far better for you to actually engage the customer in some meaningful conversation than to just simply give them a way out. Yes or no questions are simply a way for them to cut you off and bail...thus, slitting your own wrists. Skip this question and just start your pitch. If they are really and truly too busy to talk to you, they will let you know.)
I don't care if you try to do it or not. What I want to know is...CAN you do it. If you can, great...do it! If you can't...tell me. Don't zoop my head up with a bunch of hopefulness knowing you may not be able to get this done. I would much rather hear you tell me that you need time in order to determine if this is possible then to give me a sense of false hope.
"I'm really not sure."
You don't know the answer?? Isn't this your job? Shouldn't you be prepared enough to be able to answer all of my questions when I ask them? And, if you are not prepared, why am I not important enough to not be worth preparing for?? (Again, I think this would be far better answered by asking for time to determine the correct answer...If you don't know the answer...be honest about it. But, do it in a way that makes them feel like they are worth taking the time to get it right.)
"It's not my fault..."
Whether you like it or not, it is your fault. And, the reason it is your fault is because YOU are my only contact with this company that YOU represent. Therefore, the entire situation is YOUR fault. In fact, everything that goes wrong with this deal is YOUR fault. Even if it isn't directly your fault...its YOUR issue to fix. Why? Because YOU are the person I speak with with regards to this deal. That makes it YOUR problem. (To deal with this, I recommend a sincere apology and an immediate re-direction in your course of action to remedy this problem for your client right away. And, tell me what you are going to do to fix it. That way, I gain trust you again.)
"What do I have to do to get you started today?"
OMG! SLIMY SALESPERSON! RUN AWAY! (Any rapport that you have attempted to develop with me at this point has just flown right out the window. You would have been far better off asking me if I had any other issues or concerns that were stopping me from moving forward. At least that way, you appear to care about ME rather than the money you will make off of me. If I have more, address those. If not, then tell me what the next step is that we need to do to move forward.)
"We are the lowest price in town."
Really. Is this really how you want to try to compete for my business? Don't you have anything of any merit better than this?? (It doesn't take much effort to come up with a better presentation than price. So, apply yourself and go another direction. Aside from that, if your clients does in deed find a cheaper price for your service - and there is always some snake-oil salesperson willing to do something for less money - then you are a liar...and any trust you have built up to this point is shot.)
"Always" and "Never"
There is an exception to every rule. But, I surely hope you don't prove this correct for me...because I won't trust you as far as I could throw you afterward. (Unless you have it in an iron-clad contract that can be upheld in court, avoid using absolute statements like this. All they are going to do is paint you into a corner if you are caught by the ‘Always-n-Never Snafu'.)
"What you need is...."
What I NEED??? Who are you to tell me what I NEED?? What I need is to know what my options (both good and bad) are and you to back the hell off and let me decide what I want to do...and then help me once I make that choice. I am the decision maker here. I will choose my option based on the facts that you presented. But, by no means are you qualified to tell me what I NEED. In fact, YOU need to respect that or I will find someone that does.
The mere fact that you feel the need to say this makes me want to run away screaming. At this point, I'm starting to wonder why in the world I have listened to you this long in the first place. I also will probably not trust you in the long run. And, I'm simply going to assume that anyone that works with you or looks like you is suspect. (Trust is like love. It is built over time and the only way one can gain it is to earn it.)
I hope this lists helps those of you that took the time to read it. I'm certain that you all have things you hear in daily conversations that make your gears grind...and I would love to discuss those with you as well. So, please feel free to comment on this list...or add to it.