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Listen When You Sell RVs … The How’s & Why’s …

Posted by Chris Mapson on Oct 18, 2012

The old cliché about the fast-talking salesman is firmly embedded in every customer’s consciousness.  That’s why some shoppers arrive at your RV dealership a little leary, cautious, evasive or even … “fixin’ for a fight.”

But, you might find selling RVs can be a little less stressful if you just drop your own preconceived notions about customers and rather, begin to listen – and truly hear – what your customers are saying.

Here’s 1 of the Greatest Sales Tips of All Time:

People make purchases for 1 of 2 reasons …

  1. To avoid pain
  2. To increase pleasure

And, because the RV lifestyle is so alluring, so attractive to so many, it’s easy to assume that it’s ONLY the “pleasure principle” that applies to all of your RV transactions.

But have you asked?

Are you listening?  Or, are you doing most of the talking?  (Just asking …)

When you actively listen to your customer, you learn.

Active listening goes beyond hearing words – it also takes into account …

  • Facial expression
  • Tone of voice and
  • Body language

The largest part of communication is non-verbal, so, when you use your active listening skills, you can “read between the lines” which helps you better understand where your customers are really coming from.

Are They Seeking More Fun & Excitement Out of Life?

A genuine smile, eye contact and a lift in the voice could suggest your customers are eager to take to the open road.

Listen for phrases like, “Can’t wait to visit my grandchildren,” “What a dream come true.”

Or … Listen to Locate Their Pain?

Is it pain from retirement, divorce, or the death of a loved one?  Look for downcast facial expressions, halting speech and verbal cues like “now that I have no one to answer to…” or “I really need something to do with my days” to discern if some kind of personal stressor may have brought them to your dealership in search of a solution.

And, this is important …

Use the information you glean through active listening and face-to-face contact – with a tremendous amount of care, of course – to assist you in closing the deal. While people under stress certainly do not want any kind of a hard sell, folks can get pretty excited when they purchase an RV and it helps if they can see, feel and hear that you validate their eagerness to hit the open road.

And when objections crop up, as they will in sales, here’s …

How Your Active Listening Skills Can Help You Avoid the Pain of a Walk-Away …

  • Listen, actually listen to your customer
  • Repeat what you thought you heard back to the customer
  • Explore a bit – play with the reasoning – there might be an “objection behind the objection,” something hidden
  • Answer the objection – but DO NOT come across canned
  • Check back in with the customer – “Did I answer your concern?”
  • If yes, then redirect the conversation – flow – roll back into your mojo and remember, do more listening that talking!

And, in the end, most customers – if you let ’em get a word in edgewise – really do have a lot of “stuff” they want to get off their chests.

What success have you enjoyed in selling RVs as a result of using active listening skills?

Author: Chris Mapson

PG Chris Mapson | RVT.com | RV Sales Maximization Specialist. Chris is RVT's Lead Generation, Lead Management and CRM professional. He works closely with RV dealers and manufacturers across N. America. Chris helps "optimize" RV ad listings and implements out-of-the-box Lead Generation initiatives that increase dealers' RV sales. Blog: RVAdvertiser.com. Private consultations: Visit RVT.com/Sessions.

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