Sell Me This Pen…

Have you ever been on a sales job interview and the interviewer said, “Can you sell me this pen?” While the task itself may seem very simple for most prospective salespeople, the question can be hard to answer with any type of success. And, sometimes your answer can determine if you are hired or not. The following dialogue can be applied to any product you may be selling—shoes, advertising, insurance, computers, even car sales.

“So, can you sell me this pen?”

“Okay, no problem. Welcome to our pen company! My name is Darin George- and you are? Tom? Great, nice to meet you.”

“Is this the first time you have been to our pen company Tom?”

“Did you know that we are one of the largest pen companies in the world?”

“We have been in business since 1968 and produce our pens in New York City.”

“So what features are you looking for in your new pen or pens?”

“Any color preference, blue or black ink?”

“What style of pen are you looking for?”

“Who will be the main user of this pen?”

“Is the pen going to be used for business or personal use?”

“Is there anyone else involved in the purchase?”

“Great. I’d like to show you our newest pen. It sells for $10.00 and has been designed with many special features…” (You would do a product presentation now.)

“Please test the pen on this paper.” (You would do a product demonstration now.)

“How do you like the feel and flow of the pen?”

“So, have we selected the right pen for you?”

“Do you have any other questions regarding the pen or our company?”

“Great. If there was anything preventing from getting this pen right now, what would it be?”

Scenario #1: No customer negotiations

“Great I’ll wrap it up. Will that be cash or credit, Tom?”

Scenario #2: Customer wants to negotiate

“So Tom you want a discount? Well we don’t do that here, but I’ll see what I can do for you.”

“Okay, what I’m going to do now is pull out a worksheet and go over the details on the pen you want. As I told you before this pen sells for a price of $10.00.”

“Like I said earlier we don’t negotiate our prices, but what if I could sell it to you for $9.95?”

“No? What price were you thinking?”

“You want to pay $9.00? Maybe we’re not looking at the right pen. I can show you some of our less expensive ones.”

“No? You want this one? Well how did you come up with the number of $9.00?”

“I cannot do it for that price. I am trying to be flexible with you, what if I could do it for about $9.90?”

“You’ll pay $9.50? Okay, I can see you are being a bit flexible too. I’ll go and talk with my manger and see if we could do it for $9.85.”

“No? You want me to tell her $9.70? Okay give me one minute, I’ll be right back.”

“Great, my manager has approved the sale at $9.75. Okay? Done. I’ll wrap it up. Will that be cash or credit, Tom?”

We’ve all heard people say “sales is sales.” Well, as you can see, to some degree this is true. So the next time you are told “sell me this pen,” do it right and you will hear the welcome words, “You’re hired.”

Darin George is a sales training instructor at Automotive Sales College Inc. He can be reached at 888-681-7355, via email at dgeorge@dealermark.com or via the Internet at www.visitasc.com.

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