I get asked all the time, “How do you know what your customer really wants?”
I assume I get asked this because I’m always saying that you need to know who your customer is and what they want. I always know what my customer is looking for before I get into any sales presentation or intro enrollment, otherwise I’m wasting my breath and my customer’s time.
So, back to the question, “How do you know what your customer really wants?”
This is a big deal especially when you are selling something as diverse and complex as Taekwon-Do. There’s a long list of reasons why an adult would want to train with you. There’s another long list of why children would want to train with you that looks nothing like the adult list. There’s also another long list of reasons why parents what their children to train with you that look nothing like the first two. And don’t forget the long list of what it is you do that most new students have no idea about.
With these hundreds, if not thousands of reasons why someone would want to train at your school, how do you know which ones to focus on? What do you put in your advertising? What do you talk about in your enrollment appointments? How do you know that what you are saying applies to the person you are talking to?
The answer is YOU DON’T KNOW.
Even if you have a clearly defined target market, which will help to clear up what to put in your advertising, the reasons you list for them to enroll are all assumptions. They’re very broad, educated and intelligent assumptions, but assumptions none the less.
Once you are in a conversation with a new student, it is your job to find out exactly what it is your new students is looking for in a Taekwon-Do program. So how do you do this?
The good news is that you don’t have to be psychic or become a mind reader to be an effective sales person. It’s actually very simple. YOU ASK THEM.
I actually ask them 3 times from first contact to the moment I ask them to enroll.
This is really easy and when done correctly, it comes across as you being interested in them and what they want, as opposed to coming across as if you’re just interested in making a sale. In reality, you are interested in both, the new prospect only cares about how much you care about them.
The first time I ask is over the phone. The question is actually built into our phone script. After I find out who they are, how I can help them, who they’re calling for (themselves or their child) I ask them, “What are looking to accomplish with a Taekwon-Do Program for yourself/your child?”
The great thing is, THEY TELL ME! I just need to make sure that I write it down so I can reference it later on during our appointment that we’re going to set at the end of the call.
The second time they are asked is during their intro appointment. When they first walked into the school they filled out a guest form that I use during the intro. At the bottom of the guest form are four boxes that categorize and list many reasons for why someone would want to learn Taekwon-Do. I have them put boxes in order from 1-4 with one being the most important to them.
The final time they are asked is also during the intro appointment after the list the boxes. I ask them, “What else would you like to see yourself/your child accomplish with our Taekwon-Do program.? And what else? And one more thing?”
This line of questioning is critical. You must let the new prospect take their time in answering these. You are looking for three reasons that are unique to them. Usually the first one or two reasons they give will be vague and general. After the first question or two, as the new students or parents think a little deeper you find the REAL reasons why they want to enroll.
With this information you can now tailor the rest of your enrollment process to be personally customized for that particular new prospect.
When the prospect or their parents see you fulfilling on what they said they wanted during the intro process, they’ll see you as the one and only place where they can get what they are looking for.
And you know this only because YOU ASKED!
About the Author:
Senior Instructor – Karstadt Taekwon-Do
Mr. Karstadt is the founder of 1 TKD Consulting and owns the longest running ITF Taekwon-Do school in Arizona, Karstadt Taekwon-Do in Phoenix, AZ with his father Master David Karstadt. He has been training since 1984, earned his Black Belt at the age of 8 and is currently an internationally renown intstructor teaching the culture, discipline, leadership and business skills of Taekwon-Do in classes and seminars to Instructors around the world. He has been a member of eight U.S. Taekwon-Do Teams and has traveled to 14 different countries competing in Taekwon-Do. He has won numerous medals at the World Championships and in international competition, most notably winning the 2004 World Championships in South Korea with two gold medals and the Men’s Team All Around Trophy. Mr. Karstadt currently resides in uptown Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and three children. Mr. Karstadt can be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com