CAREER DEVELOPMENT / DEC. 09, 2014
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How to Succeed Through Asking

The secret to success in business is asking the right question at the right time and in the right way. Many people fail because of not asking for advice, feedback or assistance. Here is how you can enhance the profitability of your business through simply asking.

1. Ask for information

Many people try to sell their products and services without making an effort to understand their prospect’s requirements, problems and preferences. The best way of understanding your client is by asking investigative questions and receiving feedback. This will enable you to find a solution which meets their unique needs. Some of the questions you could ask include ‘What are your goals for the future?’ ‘What major challenges are you facing currently?’ Most prospects will be ready to answer these questions, thus giving you an opportunity to offer a mutually beneficial solution.

2. Ask for business  

The call to action is one of the most important aspects of making a sale. However, many people make the mistake of failing to ask for the client’s business after making a presentation. If you don’t ask for the sale, the prospect might be left confused not knowing what to do next. Therefore, once you have asked your clients exploratory questions and introduced your product or service, complete your presentation by asking the client directly for their business.  

3. Ask for written recommendations

Testimonials from satisfied clients can be very effective in attracting even more business. Take time to approach some of your clients and ask them to write an endorsement. Make sure the recommendations highlight the value of your service or product in measurable terms. You could feature such testimonials on your website, as well as your promotion and marketing materials. When making a presentation to future prospects, be sure to make a reference to these endorsements.

4. Ask for quality referrals

One of the most economical and effective ways of getting new business is through referrals from your current customers. If your customers are happy with your services or products, they would be more than willing to refer their colleagues, friends and family. Identify all your loyal customers and ask them to give names of people who could benefit from what you have to offer. You could also get referrals from prospects during the initial meeting.

5. Ask for additional business

One of the best sources of business is repeat customers. Therefore, don’t be shy about asking your customers for more business, especially when they give positive feedback about something they have bought. Get in touch with them periodically and keep them updated on similar or related products or services which you have to offer. You can enhance their loyalty by offering special discounts or freebies for future purchases.

6. Ask to renegotiate

At one time or another in a business relationship, it would be appropriate to renegotiate terms. This could be payment terms, benefits, fees or any other contractual terms. However, you need to ensure that the negotiation ends in a mutually beneficial solution. It would be advisable to take time to study materials which will help you polish your negotiation skills.

Conclusion

Customers and prospects can be a rich source of ideas that could help improve your products and services. Therefore, be sure to ask for feedback on a regular basis.

Image source:AskMen

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