Guest post by Ruth Fuersten[Editor’s note: Ruth and I worked together on Direct Sales Jump Start a few years ago. She taught me this technique, and I now teach it in Direct Sales 101. She’s an incredibly savvy coach and once had a party that was almost $6000 in total sales. She really knows her stuff!]
As a direct sales party plan coach, author and speaker, I’m often asked how to get bookings over the phone without having to beg family, friends, and former hostesses to have another party. When we first started our business we called family and friends and asked them to help us get started by hosting a party. The issue now, because we have already started our business is how do we ask for another booking without sounding like we are begging people to book?
First off, you have got to be collecting information from the guests at your parties. This is crucial. Why? Because the more you know about people the more business you can do with them. Use either a Wish List or a Door Prize Slip, and have an area on the door prize list for them to write down products they would be interested in if they ever go on SPECIAL.
Do not use the word SALE on your door prize slip or your wish list. Always use the word special.
Now to use that information to get bookings over the phone is not all that difficult. When your company offers a product for free as a booking bonus you can go through your wish lists or door prize slips and see who has written down that product as something they would like if it ever goes on special.
If your company does not offer booking specials or hostess specials, then you can decide how much are you willing to give away to get a booking. If you’re willing to give away, say $15 wholesale, to get a booking, then how much does that turn into for the retail price of a product? If your take is 40% that means you can give away a $25 product and the cost to you will be $15. So starting there, go through your lists and find products that cost around $25 and start calling people, offering them the product they want as a special for booking.
That phone call would go like this:
“Hi Sally, this is Ruth from XYZ Company. We met at Mary’s when she had her XYZ party. Sally I noticed at Mary’s you had indicated on your door prize slip (or wish list) that you wanted to know when Product A goes on special. Do you have a couple of minutes for me to tell you about the special we have on that product?”
“Sally, I don’t know if you’d be interested or not, but I didn’t want this special to end and you not be aware of it. XYZ Company is offering that product for (month), absolutely free, just for booking a party. Of course you’ll also be able to take advantage of our generous hostess program. Sally is that something you would be interested in taking advantage of?”
Did you notice how you are not saying I have a special? You are not saying I have a special because as soon as you do you sound like you are out of bookings and you are desperate. No matter if it is your special or a special from the company you are always presenting the special to people as being from the company. Are you lying? No! You’re not. YOU are XYZ Company to your customers. Therefore, the special is from XYZ Company.
Do you notice how you are not begging anyone to have a party for you? Basically what you are saying to the person is – “you told me you wanted to know when this product goes on special. It’s on special. Are you interested in taking advantage of this special?”
When you get to your closing line, “Are you interested in taking advantage of this special?” you are going to get one of three responses. She might say – no, not interested. She may tell you she doesn’t like to have selling parties. Then ask her if she would like you to call her if that item ever goes on sale. If she answers yes to that, mark her slip “sale person – doesn’t do parties.” A second response is she may ask you questions about what she needs to do to have a party. Simply answer her questions and again ask for the booking. Or she may say, yes, she’d love to have a party.
The issue often is, how do we ask for the booking? We get all done with our offer but how do we ask for the booking? That’s why I like the statement, “Is this something you’d like to take advantage of?” It’s asking for the booking and it’s getting them to a yes, no or maybe quickly and easily. If I want to call a number of people I want to get through the no’s so I can get on to the yes’s as fast as I can. This is a quick and easy way to get bookings over the phone without feeling like you’re begging family, friends and former hostesses to book again.
Ruth Fuersten is the author of HOW TO BOOK, SELL, AND RECRUIT YOUR WAY TO SUCCESS and a co-author of Direct Selling POWER.