Step 3 of the seven-step sales process is the S.O.B. step. S.O.B. stands for Sit On Bike. It is a very important step – not just for obvious reasons, such as the customer gets to feel the thunder underneath of them, but it is also about being in control.
For the most part customers will not say, “No, please don’t greet me.” Nor will they stop you from being friendly and building a good relationship. But they might say, “No, that’s ok; I don’t want to sit on it. I’m afraid I might buy it.”
Taking sales one step at a time is the key. Salespeople need to trust that no does not mean no. If a customer said no to the comment from a salesperson of, “Here go ahead and have a seat on it and see how she fits.” Then it is time to guide the customer so we can follow the steps.
The best way I know of changing the customers mind is to slap the seat and say something like, “No, go ahead. Have a seat and check it out, it’s OK.”
Many times, all the customer needs is reassurance that it is OK to straddle the bike of their dreams. If I had built a fun enough relationship with a customer, I used to take the mirrors and turn them a bit so the customer could see his or her reflection. I would then say, “That’s what everyone else will be seeing.” Normally we would both chuckle.
The point is that the salesperson that hears no when they first ask a customer to sit on the bike but gets them to sit on it with a simple style, will also be a good salesperson at the write-up and closing stages. They really do have a lot in common. If you think about it, it is the birth of the sale and the birth of the salesmanship.
If a salesperson is having difficulty at Step 3, how much more trouble are they having with the next steps? For the most part, issues stem from a lack of confidence in themselves. They are still afraid to be in control. They need to role-play with the manager on how simple it is to get a customer to sit on a bike that they have been dreaming about for a long time.
Role-playing by the manager is the best way I know of to teach salespeople who have a desire to learn. They must have “Gotta-Wanna” or they won’t learn. With “Gotta-Wanna” and a good coach, how could they not figure it out?
Coaching is an on-going process in all sports, and your business is all about sports. There is an owner, a general manager, a coach and the team. If everyone does his or her best, it will be a winning season. Play to win and coach your team to do the same. Always remember, it is about rock and roll. The more your team rocks, the more bikes you will roll, so rock on!
Steve Lemco is the youngest brother of the late Ed Lemco and has been doing sales training and hiring for motorcycle dealers since 1983. Steve has trained in every state in the U.S., as well as England, France, Australia and New Zealand. Steve incorporates motivational boards and games along with his training and hiring because he believes the best way to get the job done is to make it fun.