Have You Thought Of Allowing A 'Maybe'?


I’m a salesman. I hate fence-sitters. Loathe the undecideds. Maybes are for the weak.

Or are they?

This is what greeted me when I popped in a changing room to try on a few collared t-shirts recently. Being as I was at Bicester’s Outlet Village, I was partly seeking refuge from the overwhelming hordes of Eastern tourists lapping up the unusually stifling Summer sunshine and so-called designer bargains.

I was taken with the options presented on the hooks; Yes, No, Maybe.

I instantly reflected that far too many a sales campaign suffers from pushing only binary outcomes; Yes or No.

It’s a neat trick and perfectly acceptable to occasionally allow a middle ground of indecision to survive. For a while at least. So long as you focus on knowing what would make the Maybe shift one way or ‘tother.

I’m reminded of the classic gentle traffic light angle.

A lovely little routine for the end of meeting summary is to evoke their three colours.

Simpy running through the issues you feel are out there and ask the prospect to assign red, amber or green to each one; no, maybe, or yes.

It works disarmingly well.

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