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Kathleen Cutler

Here’s How to Have Conversations That Convert More Sales

It starts with setting the stage before they come in, then asking the right questions once they do.

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A FRIENDLY DISPOSITION, a touch of sales flair, and some good old-fashioned social etiquette are essential for effective sales conversations – but those qualities alone can’t answer the larger questions at hand, such as:

“What do I say?”

“How do I say it?”

“When do I say it and to whom?’

Making a sale is a multi-step process with countless opportunities to make authentic connections and build trust along the way. Whether you’re responding to an inquiry from a new lead or rekindling your relationship with a past client, there are a few simple strategies you can use to guide your conversations toward closing a sale.

Set the Stage for Sales Right from the Start

Reaching out when you have “nothing to promote” might feel counterintuitive, but when you wait until the holiday season or the launch of a new collection, your clients can practically see the dollar signs in your eyes.

Getting ahead of the game allows you to establish a relationship with them as their genuine friend, trusted advisor, and go-to jeweler that they are eager to buy from (and encourage their friends and family to do the same). Friending and following your past clients and close connections that have shown an interest in your work will give you the ability to “run into them” virtually and stay top of mind.

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Keep It Simple and Use a “Soft Sales” Technique

Not every conversation you have with a past client or lead will be (or even should be) a sales conversation. Brief but frequent touchpoints work best with busy affluent shoppers. Liking a photo of their new dog, congratulating them on a big promotion, or sharing a news article that brought them to mind are all great ways to build a connection with just a few clicks. Thank you notes, birthday cards, and even private events or luncheons together can build your relationships with your best clients in an elevated way.

Taking the pressure off of yourself to make a sale will make your conversations more enjoyable and more effective in the long run as every step in the sales journey builds off of the previous one.

End on a Question (and Don’t Be Afraid to Follow Up)

From building trust and intrigue to gathering crucial information that helps your client feel seen, heard, and understood, asking questions can be one of the most powerful moves you can make in a conversation with a client or new lead.

While there are rare occasions where a simple yes or no question might be appropriate, you’ll generally have a more effective conversation and sales process with open-ended questions. You’ll gain far more information by asking, “What can you tell me about your wife’s wardrobe and her favorite things to wear?” compared to “Does your wife prefer yellow or white gold?”

Be careful not to ask too many questions so as not to overwhelm the person on the other end. The ideal number is actually ONE. Most busy affluent collectors are responding to texts between meetings or reading an email during an Uber ride, so brevity is best!

Follow-ups are often necessary (and much appreciated!) both during the sales process and after. This simple three-step framework can be used again and again to maintain your closest connections and build momentum toward sales.

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Kathleen Cutler, profit expert for high-end jewelry brands, focuses on helping jewelers understand how to convince younger, affluent audiences to buy, combining modern tech with retro-style relationship building. Kathleen has a degree from GIA and has coached 100-plus jewelers. Reach her at [email protected]

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