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8 Thoughts On How To Ask Better Questions

How To Ask Better Questions

Welcome and good morning to Mike Ferry TV the week of February the 20th and this is how to ask better questions:

We have two people. If you were watching the show to thank, first of course is Dan Mumm and second is John Sullivan. Two agents that work in the same office, are best of friends, compete at the highest level and they both maintain the position of either number one or number two in a company of over 100 agents. And both these men are long-term Mike Ferry clients. So I want to say thanks to both of them and thanks to you for watching. We’re going to do more of those in the future with the agents doing the program.


I want to spend some time today on a topic that probably is even more important today than it was a year ago. And that is the topic of learning to how to ask better questions. Whether it be in the prequalifying process, in the lead follow-up process on a Listing Presentation, showing property, handling objections, negotiating and closing or just understanding that the truest way to get a lot of engagement and a lot of response from anybody you’re chatting with is to ask a lot of questions. And the key to asking questions is to look at the words who, what, where, when, why and how. They’re referred to as open-ended phrases that become attached to a question to create conversation. And I know a lot of agents in Real Estate are trained to talk, and talk, and talk, and talk, and talk. And I understand it because there’s a lot to say about either yourself and your career and your success or a lot to say about the company you work for and the uniqueness of that company. But the real question that I like to present to good agents like yourself, if you’re talking all the time, how do you know if they’re listening? And if you think about this, in watching Mike Ferry TV, which hopefully a lot of you do on a regular basis. A good portion of the time when I’m speaking, I’m asking you questions. And if I’m asking you questions, it causes you to think, doesn’t it? And if I’m causing you to think, don’t I have a better chance of getting you to take some type of action, either strong action in favor or maybe saying that is not the style I want to use. But the more questions I ask, the more involved you become.


So I wrote down eight different thoughts regarding asking questions, and I would suggest you make a note of them and or watch Mike Ferry TV several times this week because you really have to decide what type of salesperson you’re going to become. Because selling is asking questions, not telling. Telling are what people do that aren’t concerned or aren’t interested in the response of the party they’re talking to. Selling is where you get people involved, engaged. They take action, they respond, they start a conversation. In return, they’re answering what you’re asking, which gives you the feedback to keep going. So if you think about it for just a minute, you can say to a seller at a door front, my name is Mike with blank. Do you want to sell your home? And of course, the answer in most cases is “No.” You know that, don’t you? However, if you say “When do you plan on moving?”, you’ve increased the chances of getting some type of response. And the response in most cases is “Never.” And you can then, of course, continue. “And where did you folks move from?, How did you happen to pick this marea?, etc.”


So here’s number one. If you ask a lot of questions, you learn what the seller or buyer is trying to accomplish. Well, obviously, you will say to me, “If it’s a seller, they want to sell their home.” Yes. Does that mean that you want that listing? Not necessarily. But if I ask enough questions in the prequalifying process, I can find out the motivation of the buyer or the seller. I can then direct my results towards that motivation that they have and increase the chances of them making a decision to work with me. So by asking questions, I learn what the buyer and or seller prospect wants to accomplish, what their desires are, and what they’re trying to do.


But I wrote second asking questions shows that prospect that you truly are interested in what they’re saying. That you’re truly interested in helping them accomplish the goal they’ve set. A buyer is looking for a three bedroom, two and half bath. You know, 1800 to 2000 square foot home at $375,000 with the 6000 square foot lot in a particular area. Well, the more questions that I ask them about that particular home and how they decided that area and what is it that attracted them to that neighborhood, the more interest that they think I have in them, which is of course, what I have in them, which is a lot of interest.


Number three, I wrote down asking questions, evokes thoughts, then turns into emotion, which then turns into some type of action. You walk into a house with a buyer and the first thing you say to that buyer is, “Would you like to look through on your own or would you like me to walk you through the house?” “Well, can we walk through by ourselves, Mike?” And I said, “No problem. I’ll meet you back here by the front door.” So they walk through the house and which is what people do and they “ooh” and “ahh”. Or they come back quickly and say, “This is not the right house for us.” But if they say, “This home seems pretty appropriate.”, I can ask a series of questions. “Well, here we are in the living room Mr. Mrs. Smith. Would you have this living room redesigned in terms of carpet and colors and paints and wallpapers? Or would you just leave it like it is?” “Well, we would probably do A, B and C.” Good. “Would use a professional decorator or would you folks design it yourself?” “Oh, we probably have somebody paint the interior and we’d go to a carpet store and pick out a new carpet.” Good. “And what type of color combination are you thinking you’re going to use?” So all I’m doing is moving them into an emotional state, which leads them to taking action by the questions that I ask.


I wrote to a number four. It’s a quick way to change a person’s perspective. Well, not every home that is for sale that you’re going to show a buyer is designed for a buyer to buy. And we both know that they’re going to change a lot of things very commonly in that house. So in essence, the questions lead them to a little different perspective. “Here we are in the family room. Would you make it a family room to be enjoyed by the children and yourself for TV viewing or would it be a family room just designed for conversation, a place for the kids to do their homework?” “Gee, I never thought of that.” Well, see, the question leads them to a different perspective.


I wrote down number five Great questions separate you from the competition. If you’ve been to one of my seminars, I did a Listing Presentation on stage a few years ago and in 20 minutes I asked about 115 questions of the couple that were working as a potential seller. And what was kind of fun about it is they had designed on their own about nine objections they wanted to give me. And each objection that they brought up, I would ask them two or three questions. And finally, after a couple of these situations, they finally said we might as well sign the contract because it looks like Mike is prepared to get the home sold. Well, watch. That does separate us from the competition. Asking questions.


I wrote down number six. Asking questions keeps you on script. I’ve got a script. And number six says, “I’ve seen questions, keeps you on script.” Obviously, you don’t want to spend the next hour in Mike Ferry TV. You have things to do. This keeps me on script, keeps me within the time frame I’m trying to accomplish. You win, I win and your customers win.


Number seven Asking questions engages the prospect to what they want to do. Or in essence, it moves them forward. And isn’t the sales process really taking a prospect and moving them forward? Of course it is. And you do that through questions, not conversation.


And then I wrote down last. Asking questions allows an agent to remain in control because the truth is a buyer or a seller wants somebody who is an authority who can gain their respect through understanding what they’re trying to accomplish and then leading them to that particular goal, which sees they’re getting their home sold or buying a home. So you remain in control. So what I want you to think about is if I was to listen to you, make a presentation for a listing, or I watched you show property to a buyer and I took a pen and a piece of paper, and every time you asked a question, I put a checkmark during that 20, 30, 45, 50 minutes, you’re with that prospect. How many checkmarks would be on the paper? And if it was being recorded, would it be a conversation or a sales presentation? It’s something you have to decide. Thanks for watching. Talk to you soon.


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