The biggest obstacle to gaining a new customer or closing a sale is the status quo. Most people (and that includes prospects) don’t like change. It’s really that simple. In order to get a prospect into your pipeline it’s imperative to offer that prospect a compelling reason to think about making a change.

Prospects can be so resistant to change that they are unwilling to even discuss other possibilities. That is why it can be so difficult to get in the door to set up that very first appointment.

Here is an email I recently received from an Opening Doors & Closing Sales reader who is in the insurance industry:

Wendy,

“I’m wondering if you can help me with my script. Our company offers a range of products, whole life, disability, long term care… so when I introduce myself that’s what I say:”

“‘Our company offers a range of products; whole life, disability, long term care… and I’d like to drop by for a quick 15 minute meeting…’”

“I always get cut off right there without having a chance to offer a time.”

It’s not surprising that this reader gets cut off. He’s making himself and the company he represents into a commodity by simply listing all of the “things” his company offers, “whole life, disability, long term care.” If a prospect already has that “thing” they have no need for another.

He would be so much better off identifying a problem that these offerings solve and leading with that. Does he work with business owners and help them attract quality employees because they can offer better benefits packages? Does he work with young married couples who are starting a family and want to ensure they can send their kids to college? Does he work with middle-aged individuals who want to ensure they have a happy and secure future?

Here’s the rule: Identify the problem that you solve and the population that you solve it for. Then, when speaking with a new prospect, lead with that. Prospects will stop interrupting and start listening.

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