Regardless of your industry, competition is a given with most sales professions and it’s important to make the most of every appointment you have with a prospect. When I sold life and health insurance products, I didn’t always sell the product that I wanted. I frequently sold the product that was going to get me in front of the most prospects i.e. my best “foot-in-the-door” product where I could cross-sell other products. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you every question to ask a prospect to identify all your cross-selling opportunities. However, I can share some examples, help you understand how to think and tell you it is all about preparedness.
For this example, I’ll use health insurance as my “foot-in-the-door” product, list some questions to ask (outside of standard boiler plate questions) and follow with the benefit or other products that can be sold after the initial product inquiry is closed.
QUESTION: Feel free to ask me as many questions as you’d like. I’m here to help you understand insurance… understand what you have or don’t have, identify any gaps if any and give you some options.
SELL: Creates trust, likability and sincerity while giving the prospect free reign to ask as many questions thus possibly creating more opportunities for you to cross-sell and help your prospect.
QUESTION: So when was the last time you evaluated all your insurance for life events like buying a house, change in health, change in job, marriage, kids or has it been more than a few years?
SELL: Used to emphasize the need for a complete review which will give them peace of mind after you’ve helped them.
QUESTION: Maybe you don’t need insurance, can I ask you some questions about insurance you may already have or don’t have? This question will excite them as it might save them money and they should tell you everything you need. Be sure to ask about all types of insurance either through work or personal policies.
SELL: Any type of insurance, consolidate policies (if appropriate) or save them money by providing more than one company/option as a resource.
QUESTION: Do you have any children that would need coverage or is the policy just for you and your spouse?
SELL: For the children, health insurance, riders on other products, cash-building ULs and also to emphasize the importance of other products to take care of the spouse and kids if god forbid death or disability occur.
QUESTION: So if god forbid you were in a bad accident, had a major health problem, disability or untimely death, do you have any lump sum of money in a CD, 401K or any account that could be used to help offset medical bills, final burial expenses or monthly household bills?
SELL: Annuities, cash-building life insurance or other financial products for that sum of money.
QUESTION: Have you recently had a job change where your insurance benefits or 401K might have been impacted?
SELL: Any type of insurance, consolidate policies (if appropriate)or save them money by providing more than one company/option as a resource or annuities, cash-building life insurance or other financial products for that sum of money.
These are just a few questions that I would ask and as you can see some of them dive into creating rapport or necessity with a prospect rather than cross-selling. However, it’s important to note that the order of which you ask these questions is equally important. (Written by Cory Prado)You’re leading the prospect to a conclusion (that you may already know), but want them to feel as though they’ve made the decision on their own thus creating more “buy-in” from the prospect. Also, be sure to constantly evolve your fact-finding questionnaire. If you come up with a question during a meeting or a “postmortem” after wards… write it down before you forget. With time, experience and many a brain-storming session you’ll create a cross-selling questionnaire that reads like a treasure map to your competition’s missed opportunities.
Lastly and most importantly, do not confuse your prospect by trying to educate and sell more than one product at a time. If you pitch products other than their original inquiry you could very easily come off as pushy and self-serving and lose their business as well as any future referrals i.e. work on one product at a time tactfully. If you’ve done your job as the consummate professional and educated your prospect, earned their trust and created likeability (because people buy from people they like) then cross-selling should be seamless and natural in the eyes of your prospect after you’ve satisfied their original product inquiry.
Just remember to prepare for your meeting by reviewing everything you know about the prospect. Try to ask questions that you already know the answer to and be prepared for every possible response. I always tell agents to act like a private detective and observe your prospects surroundings for ways to build likeability and rapport. You’d be amazed what opportunities to help your prospects will present themselves if you just prepare, observe and listen.
BY: Cory Prado