The Ultimate Closing Technique Revealed

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In today's episode, we dive into reducing tension when closing deals, creating urgency, and the best closing techniques.

We emphasized the importance of a solid discovery process in driving the business case and discussed how to use options to give buyers control.

Plus, we explored the different closing styles based on personalities and the keys to creating urgency by tying the timeline to the project.

Ultimately, we revealed the best closing technique [you must listen to find out what that is].

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Resources Referenced:

- Previous Episode on Crafting the Perfect Business Case

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Luigi Prestinenzi [00:00:00]:

In this episode, you're gonna learn how to reduce tension when closing deals, how to create urgency when closing, and the best closing technique. The how to sell is a podcast helping b to b sellers generate more leads and close more deals. Okay? That's the intro. Now we'll do the welcome back. Yep. Welcome back to another episode of the How to Sell podcast. I'm your host, Luigi Prestonenzi. And as always, thanks for joining us for what will be a very actionable episode.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:00:32]:

And if you're a first time listener, thank you very much for showing up. We hope you take away some actionable insights that'll help you create and close more deals. And as always, if you're a long time listener, thank you for showing up and supporting our community. And don't forget to hit subscribe on wherever you're listening or watching this podcast so that you can get new podcasts sent to you as soon as we go live. And I need to bring in the cohost of the show, Dave. Welcome to another episode.

David Fastuca [00:01:02]:

Thanks, Luigi. It's awesome, and I am pumped to be back on another episode.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:01:07]:

Well, everyone, Dave's pumped because his football team, Chelsea, actually won a game this week. Wrong.

David Fastuca [00:01:13]:

We're back. We're back. We're on the rise.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:01:15]:

On the rise. Can you just remind us? Because last week, we had a gap. What's the score last week?

David Fastuca [00:01:22]:

I I don't know. I've I've only got last game syndrome. You're only as good as your last game, and we're one three two to Brighton, so I'll take it.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:01:29]:

32 to Brighton. So you know you're doing great when you're 10th And you win against a club that spends, like I don't know. Just for for the sales world, the example, because we use Salesforce as an example last time. So this is why this is great.

David Fastuca [00:01:42]:

This is okay. I know where you're going, John.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:01:44]:

So it's like Chelsea's like Salesforce. Right? So they're the they're the they're the sales force with all the spend, the big team, training field, and they played a team that's like, Let's think. They're a series a start up that just raised $1,000,000, and they want But that just but that just show

David Fastuca [00:02:05]:

It just shows you that's not always the team or the company with the biggest budget and the biggest team that can win championships. Am I right?

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:02:13]:

You're right. And that that's a perfect segue, actually, into this week's episode. Because we got a we got a really tactical episode. I know that the last one we had is tactical as well, and And that's what we're aiming to do with this podcast. Right? We're aiming to really give some tactical, actionable, bite sized, learnings that our community can take away and implement immediately. And, you know, with with the the the last It's the last quarter for some, well, you know, it's it's the end end of the quarter for many or for everyone. Mhmm.

David Fastuca [00:02:44]:

And a

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:02:44]:

lot of trying to close deals. So we thought we'd chat about how to close deals, how to close more deals, and try to end the year in a high.

David Fastuca [00:02:52]:

It's a great topic. Yeah. Like, you see all these blog posts and articles talking about here the best closing techniques that that you should use. And so I'm really interested, Louis, on you know, you're a master of the game. You've been in in a in a long, long time. I'm not making you sound old. I got more gray hairs than you. I'll look at it.

David Fastuca [00:03:09]:

So It but your beat is a big gray. Talk us through you know, you've closed 100 of 1,000,000 of dollars of deals.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:03:16]:

Yeah. You

David Fastuca [00:03:16]:

know, what are the the go to tactic strategies that you refer to all the time when you're looking at this.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:03:23]:

Yeah. So look, you know, it's it's it's really interesting. When I first started my career, obviously, I bought books on this stuff. Listen to Brian Tracy. There was a lot of great copy or content that I found around, you know, how to close deals and you'd see the option close, which should give people an option, which, you know, it's it's still an effective, technique today. You give people a couple of options. And then also read about, You know, closing techniques like the decoy effect, which was, you know, you really want them to choose from 1 of the 2 options, but you'll provide a a third option that's, not as good. You know, it's an inferior option.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:03:59]:

And they usually push that aside and make a decision on the 2. Right? There's the Benjamin Franklin close. We all heard of that one where you put the pen and I mean, there's all these techniques, but and You know what? Did I use some of them earlier in my career? Yes. I did. However, as I started to work on bigger deals, I realized those type of tactics were not tactics that were gonna yield a result for me, especially when you're dealing with complex b to b sales.

David Fastuca [00:04:26]:

Right? How do they make you feel? Look, did you feel a bit icky After making, like, a false, urgency type thing or

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:04:35]:

Yeah. Look. It's interesting. And and you know what? When I reflect on, did I close Deals using, you know, the, you know, an event, like a date. Right? Mhmm. A compelling event to say, hey, you know, Our resources are gonna be allocated if we don't, or, you know, this offer ends and all that sort of stuff. Right? I think did I use them to close? Yes. I did.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:04:58]:

Were they effective? Yes. They were. But, you know, as I started to really understand the ethics sitting behind what a true professional does. I started to realize that, you know what? If my resources weren't gonna be allocated to another project and we had an abundance of resources And I'm using that as a tactic. In the event what if they found out? Like, what if they actually spoke to these resources and they said, no. I've got nothing on. Right? It would just create distrust and I wouldn't be able to get any upsell. And it's just for me, that was not the right right thing to do.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:05:30]:

You know, so this as I started really understanding because I didn't understand. I didn't understand, you know, I was a salesperson at one stage in my career, I wasn't a professional. But then as I started to really build out my own sort of charter, what are the things that I wanna be known for when dealing with my clients. I really I really learned that, you know what? It's important to be transparent and to be truthful in the sales process. Yeah. More than anything. Right? So, now do we do I use closing techniques now like option close? Yes. Because options are a valid it's a valid process.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:06:06]:

It it's a great way to get somebody to make a decision. And you're putting them. You're making it about them. And this is the first thing I wanna talk about. So how do you reduce tension when closing? Right? That's one of the key things we want. Just we want our listeners and what our audience to take away. The first way to reduce tension while closing is you've gotta do a good discovery. Right? Now so everybody's like, what do you mean you're doing the discovery? That's just, you know, basic 101.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:06:28]:

But a lot of the time, When you actually try to close, you're trying to get them to a point of decision, but if you haven't done a decent discovery and you haven't built up the ROI, the business case, and reverse engineered the the date. So this is why it's important when you're doing your initial Due due diligence, right, with the prospect and with the buying committee, it's important to understand the when period. Like, when does this initiative have to be put in place? And we spoke about this on our last on our last episode. But if you don't know the when, then you can't actually engineer the pathway to get there. Right? So you've gotta have this gotta be like a project plan. These are the steps we need to take to achieve these outcomes. Now you reduce tension by ensuring that everybody's on the same page, by making sure you've got a really strong business case. Right? Yep.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:07:18]:

And you've you've gone through that process first. So by the time you get to that point of closing the deal, what you're doing, and this is what will help create urgency, is you're using their dates. You're using their priorities as the reason for bringing this to a close. Yeah?

David Fastuca [00:07:37]:

That's a great point. And on the business case, we're gonna link into this episode the master the business case masterclass Episode we did a few weeks back in case you need to revisit that. But can you also talk about the option closing, so I understand that. Right? Like, how how does that work And apply it to, like, a SaaS company or a service based business.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:07:58]:

Because, you know, when you're going through the discovery process, and what you're doing is you're trying to get an understanding of what are the option, like, what are the things that they wanna achieve. And once you've got clarity of what what they wanna achieve, you're able to say, okay. Let Let me put a couple of options for you based on what you've shared. Now options could be budgetary options. So you could say, hey. Based on what you've shared, there's 2 ways in which we could tackle this problem. And these two ways, you know, have an a a different cost associated to it or a different investment summary. This is the other thing.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:08:27]:

Language is really important. When you use price and cost, it they see it and they go price and cost versus investment summary. That's why I love to put and you've seen our proposals, Dave. Yeah. We put investment summary. Right? Because when you put investment summary, it changes their mindset over what they're about to do. Yeah? Because investment will give them a return. Yeah? So I often, you know, in taking into consideration where they're at, is put a couple of options.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:08:55]:

You might say, hey, this is option a. You say it's service based. We allocate x resources. This is the time line and this is the investment associated. We could allocate less resources, you know, but it might take a bit longer, but this is the investment summary that's associated. And what you're doing is you're giving them the power to make the decision. Mhmm. Now, they might say, well, actually, Luigi, this is great, but These are some nonnegotiables we actually have to have.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:09:21]:

And and you'd find that out in discovery process. Right? Because often, if they do push back and say, hey, You know, price is an issue, then you can actually ask them a question. If you're looking at price, you can say, well, based on what I've put in front of you, What are the things that you must have and what are the things that we could probably take off? Because if you just go straight to discount and say, hey, I'll discount this deal. Right? You're kind of devaluing your product. But if you say, hey, can completely understand, You know, you wanna invest a little bit less. Let's have a look at the option here, and what can we take out? Mhmm. Right? And if they say, well, we can't, these are these are nonnegotiables. But these are the things that we could probably, maybe, do a little bit differently.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:10:07]:

And, you know, I I I don't wanna turn this into an objection master class. Right? But again, options give people control. It gives them a sense of, yes, I'm controlling and I'm and I'm and I'm co creating. So if they've co created the business case, they've been part of the business case creation process. They've actually helped create the proposal. Yeah?

David Fastuca [00:10:27]:

Okay. That makes a lot of sense now. And I can you know, if we bring up ourselves, like, the way we give options rather than, you know, we hate discounts. Counts. We we'd never like to give that. We give them an option of they can either pay it upfront or they can pay it over a certain amount of months. And it gives the it gives them the control to manage their budget as well.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:10:44]:

And you've also gotta take into consideration, this is why closing is a there's a few more nuances than just options, like, depending on the social style. So So if you look at DISC, right, if they're a driver, they want options. Because they wanna have full control, like, it's their their personality profile. It's a observable behavior. They don't wanna be told what to do. They wanna make the decision. Right? But If you're dealing with a with a more of an influential buyer, like an influencer, it's more of an assumptive close. Right? It's more or you've built that relationship, you've got the agreement of the buying committee, and you you can just move to that point of assumption to say, you know, this is This is what we've you've suggested we should be doing next steps.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:11:28]:

So let's just move forward. Right? Yep. Again, if it's a c, if you're dealing with a CFO, you know, or somebody that's that's very conscientious, and very analytical, then you've gotta make sure you got a lot of detail there. And you're seeking permission before progressing. Yeah. This is a big thing. Like for c's, you know, task tension will rise when it gets to that point of decision. And they wanna make sure because they are very, very accurate.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:11:54]:

They don't want any mistakes. Mhmm. Right? So this is where You need to use your consultative selling skills and make sure you check to confirm they're comfortable before progressing. So asking questions and drawing out those concerns before progressing. Because if you don't, their task tension will kick in. If you try to push them forward to close, they'll feel like, you know what? You're only trying to meet your needs. So then what happens is the late stage tension kicks in. Sorry?

David Fastuca [00:12:25]:

I said they can feel that when you're pushed for the close.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:12:29]:

If you try to push too much, especially a conscientious buyer Mhmm. If you're trying to push them too much, They'll feel like, you know what? You're this is not about me now. Relationship tension kicks up kicks in, and trust is broken. Yep. Right? And then the deal will completely stall. So, you know, just to go back, how do you create tension, you know, how to reduce that tension? It just depending on the type of person that you're dealing with, you've gotta deal with them a little bit differently. You've got to adapt your style. Right? Some, it's more assumptive.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:13:02]:

Others, it's option based. Others, it's checking, asking questions and clarifying that they're okay before progressing. Right? And, you know, I've used this. I've said to CFOs. I've said, hey. Based on what I've shared, Do you have any concerns, or are you comfortable to move forward? I say I have some concerns. That's fine. That's great.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:13:23]:

Mhmm.

David Fastuca [00:13:23]:

Do you

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:13:24]:

mind me asking? What are those concerns that you'd like me to address? I need you to address a, b, c. Great. You address a, b, c. When once they're addressed, you then try again.

David Fastuca [00:13:35]:

This sounds like, next week's episode is gonna be on ISK and profiling, because that's a great one.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:13:40]:

Yeah. But it's really important, Dave, because, you know, they will have you've got to treat them differently. Not you cannot, you know, this is where doctor Tony Alexandria's platinum rule kicks in. Treat others the way they wanna be treated. Don't treat others the way you wanna be treated. Right? Because in selling, it's not about us. Our prospect, our clients are the hero of the equation. Yeah? And so that's why we've got to adapt our style and make sure We are we are, giving each of the people that we're dealing with what they need.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:14:10]:

It's not about us. Right? And And and again, that's how you reduce the tension, because depending on the social style, you'll adapt your style to give them what they need, that'll reduce the attention. To create urgency, it's all about the project implementation date. It's not about our date. We are just there, and and I've said this in the last episode, are there to facilitate an outcome. We're there to facilitate a process for them to achieve an outcome. So we need to make sure we've got clarity over implementation dates. Right? Milestone dates.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:14:40]:

And by asking questions around if this doesn't progress today, what will be the impact to this x milestone? Right? Consider the impact of not meeting this milestone. So that's also an objection handling technique, right, or, you know, managing objections. So that you create urgency by connecting the time line to the project. Right? And the best closing technique, the absolute best Closing technique that we

David Fastuca [00:15:06]:

It is Lewis.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:15:06]:

Right, is running a very good discovery. And, you know, you might be going, oh my god. That's not a technique. But it absolutely is a technique and I'll tell you why. Because if your business case hasn't got Enough basis for the project. It hasn't got enough ROI. It hasn't got enough like, you have you're not clear about the desired outcome they're seeking to achieve. No matter what closing technique you use, You will not get the entire buying committee across the line.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:15:40]:

And this is the difference. And you know, the big shift that we've seen in the last 5 years in selling, Even smaller deals, 10 to 50 k, right, which in most cases, historically, there was only, you know, 1 person could sign that off with ease. There's more than 1 person involved in that decision making process. So even if you try those techniques Now, obviously, consumer sales is very different. Right? A lot of these techniques still work. You go to jewelry stores, they are still using the techniques. Right? The decoy effect is often used in jury, in juries in sales. We see it all the time.

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:16:17]:

Right? Consumer sales, this is the difference between consumer and and b to b sales. B to b, there's a lot more people involved. So those techniques, if the business case isn't strong enough, won't get traction and won't get progression. So if you want the best technique, go back to your business case. Have a look at the detail of the business case. Is there a strong enough ROI? Have you defined the risks associated with the opportunity? Have you mapped out the the account and defined who's on board, who might not be on board. Right? That is the best technique that you can use to close more deals.

David Fastuca [00:16:52]:

And if you're struggling to push the deal further, Then it's because you haven't done a great discovery call. Right?

Luigi Prestinenzi [00:16:58]:

Because the business case will drive progression.

David Fastuca [00:17:01]:

Willy, another great episode. For those that are listening, I'd love for you, and that's right. I'm talking to you, sign up, subscribe to this podcast wherever you're listening to, And also sign up to our newsletter. The link is in this podcast. And the reason why you wanna sign up to that is that with every week when we drop this episode, We outlined the nuggets that Luigi discovers here and shares with the audience. So you get that in a nice condensed written form Every week in your inbox with a link back to the podcast that you can reference whenever you need. So until next time, we'll see you next week on how to sell.