Research shows that the salesperson who presents last is guaranteed the sale 94 percent of the time. That said, the mark of a good salesperson is not ‘wheeling and dealing’ but rather mastering how to secure this profitable position.
All too often, we hear heartbreaking stories from people who took their best shot, had an agreement to do business, did all the paperwork to put together the package, only to have the incumbent come back and revise their offer once they saw what the prospect had agreed to.
Does this sound familiar? Although you may have left the meeting on cloud nine based on how well the presentation or meeting went, you must remember, you were not the last.
While they may have loved your ideas and even committing to your pricing, “committed,” the person after you stole the thunder.
What went wrong? You were in no position to respond because you weren’t there.
By going last, they were able to discuss what you proposed and counter that proposal.
In sales, you want your prospect to perceive you as:
- The most unique.
- Holding the most value.
- Meeting more of their requirements than the competitors.
You can embody all of these. By presenting last, you can have the upper hand.
Get a verbal agreement from your prospect right off the bat that you will be the last to present. Tip the scales in your favor.
Think about what a favorable position this puts you in:
- Share your appealing solution to easing their pain.
- Take ownership of the competitor’s solution by adding your own twist.
- Remove the opportunity for a competitor to respond to your solution.
You have solved all their problems single-handedly. The best part is that the competition can do nothing at this point.
And given the law of recency, this positive impression you have just made on the prospect will be lasting.
How do you do that? BEFORE you share your idea, you simply ask, “I would like to be the last to make you an offer. Is there any reason I couldn’t be the last to talk with you?”
If they tell you that their nephew Eddie who can’t hold a job is going to present last, what they’re really telling you is there is no way you could do this deal and they’re just asking for unpaid consulting because Eddie would never figure it out… but he can match a price.
If that’s the case, save yourself the time and say, “Sounds like this deal is Eddie’s.” and let them react to that. You will either get the deal in advance, if you admit there is no hope for a deal, or it will save you the hassle of pretending like there could be a deal.
Be assured that presenting last can raise incomes while reducing work hours. And if something changes that forces you to give up your seat as last, don’t present. It will save you in the end.