In sales, we always harp on about using ‘open ended’ questions when speaking to customers, which is of course very important at the right stage of the process. I would suggest though that if you really want to make a customer open up to you, and stop and think about what they really, really want, using a couple of ‘High Gain questions’.

High Gain questions tend to uncover the customer’s ‘real’ needs and objectives and can help move the conversation away from the dreaded budget. It shows you are interested in them and their business – and are listening. It will, therefore, help you to present better and relevant solutions and make it easier for them to buy from you.

Here are 7 that can be used, some of which I have used myself when managing teams handling phone enquiries within the conference and events industry, but they can easily be amended and used within other industries and other stages of the sales process:

1) Paint me a picture of what your perfect event looks like?
2) How do you want your delegates to feel at the end of the event?
3) What are the three most important things about your event?
4) What do you want to achieve from your event?
5) What do you want other people to say after they have attended?
6) Explain to me the main qualities that you look for in a venue?
7) Suppose money is no object, what sort of venue would you choose?

You can also TED at the beginning of questions to make them a little more ‘thought-provoking’. “Tell me…, “Explain to me… and Describe to me…

So I have a question for you:

What High Gain questions have you used or have worked well for you with customers? Please feel free to leave me a comment below and share your experience!