Let’s use an example to “drive” this mistake home.
If I asked you what attributes you look for when shopping for an automobile, you would give me your personal buying criteria. These are your feelings based on your particular wants and needs when shopping for an automobile. If I asked someone else what it is they look for when they shop for a car, chances are they would give me an entirely new set of “requirements.”
You may say style, while others might find themselves drawn to acceleration and over all speed. Another might be looking for gas economy, while a third might mention the overall price of the vehicle. A fourth might be interested in the audio effects and the base in the onboard sound system. (Don’t laugh. I once sold a car entirely based on the speakers strategically positioned behind the rear seats.)
I think you see where I am going. What you think from this day forward does not necessarily matter when it comes to satisfying a prospective client. What your prospects think is the only thing that does matter. Therefore, you must get into the habit of asking them what is on their mind.
Once you get this information, you will be in for lots of new business.
I will leave you with a little strategy that I believe is true, more often than not. When you ask a prospect what they prefer in a vacation, listen intently to their response. Then ask, “In addition to xyz, what do you look for when booking a vacation?”
The response they come back with from this follow up question is more likely to be closer to the real need, want, or desire. (1) What do you look for? (2) What else? Pay very close attention to the “what else?”
Mike Marchev freely shares his experiences, strategies and observations with travel professionals in an effort to keep them on top of their game. For a complimentary copy of his 12-Word Marketing Plan send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mike’s daily column is made possible by AmaWaterways.