Thursday, March 9, 2017

Mark Zokle on Clearly Defined Alternatives

Mark Zokle
Sometimes, a salesperson notices that the first option the customer wants to consider isn’t quite right. This is when, according to trainer Mark Zokle, it is a perfect time to implement an Alternative Closing strategy. In the following Q&A, Zokle explains what this means and how you can use it in practice every day.

Q: How many alternatives should I offer my customer?

Mark Zokle: Ideally, you want to limit visible choices by no more than two or three. For instance, if you are selling farm equipment, point out your bestselling tractors and skip over low-end models. If they ask why you’ve moved toward the more expensive items, explain to them briefly that those you skipped over are ones that you would not trust yourself, or that they wind up costing just as much when you add additional options that are standard in the better versions.

Q: Why should I limit their choices?

Mark Zokle: People become overwhelmed easily, especially when making a large purchase decision. When the options are reduced, they can focus more on which best suits their specific needs. You will reduce research time and make the purchase more convenient overall.

Q: Are there any subtle verbal or physical cues I can use without specifically acknowledging one product’s superiority over another?

Mark Zokle: Absolutely. People subconsciously pick up on verbal cues, such as actually touching or nodding toward the item you think best fits their situation. As you progress toward the most suitable product or service, you can add a bit of reflection and intonation in your voice to stress that a particular product is your top choice.

Q: How is the Alternative Close similar to the Assumptive Close?

Mark Zokle: Both closing methods are based on the assumption that the buyer is ready and has already decided to go through with the purchase. The primary difference between the Assumptive Close and the Alternative Close is that the latter leaves it open ended as to which product the customer is ready to write a check for.