What is the Ben Franklin Close?
The Ben Franklin Close, also known as the Balance sheet close is a technique used to help people who are challenged in making decisions to make wise and rational decisions. This Close is commonly used by sales people to convince clients to buy their product. It is true that a client who is having difficulties in making a decision may be scared about the prices or may be afraid of making a wrong decision.
Presenting the Technique
As a sales person, once you notice such a client, you should approach and assist him/her to make rational decision and overcome his/her fears using Ben Franklin Balance sheet. You will be surprised of the power of conviction in the close.
You can start over by greeting the client and then making one or two jokes to ease the tension if there is any. You can then ask him/her if he knows of the amazing Ben Franklin Close that works wonders or ask him/her if he/she has used it in any challenging situation that required making critical decisions. Whether they have used it before or not, proceed to the next question.
Next ask them have they every heard of Benjamin Franklin. I assume most people know who
If they have heard of Benjamin Franklin then that is great. It will save you a little time presenting the information to them. After finding out whether they know him or not and if needed explaining who he is ask the following question: “Would you agree he is a very smart man.” The customer will most likely say “Yes” or some answer affirming Benjamin Franklin must be smart to do all he had done.
Now you will say to your client or customer. “The way I see it you are ambivalent or need to process all that I have told you about . Would you like to know how Benjamin Franklin came to tough decision when he was doing all the great things he had done?”
Depending on their answer you would continue. If they say something to the affirmative, that they would like to know, you will then bring a paper and make a line to divide it into two equal parts using a ruler. On one side of the paper write a heading called Pros and on the other side write a heading called Cons
Putting it on Paper
You can then start listing all the positive side of the product or the service you want to offer to the client. It is very important that you should have done enough research about the specific product/service you want to offer. If you are selling or promoting a product you should have already done this. My advice is if you are trying to sell something you know nothing about, you have no right to be trying to convince others to buy it. The information should therefore be at your finger tips. This allows you to list all the positive elements about the product or about the service without missing any. It also gives you the confidence when writing and ensures that you do not stop to think while writing. This helps to convince the client that you are informed and knowledgeable about the product and therefore it is the truth and not your own imaginations.
After finishing listing all the positive side the product or service, you can then pass over the paper to the client and tell him/her to list all the negative part of the specific product or the specific service that is making him/her to have difficulties in making decision. During the time he/she will be writing, make sure that you remain silent and avoid making unnecessary distractions that may otherwise affect his process of listing. You should also give him/her enough time to ensure that he/she exhausts all the disadvantages of what you are offering him or her.
Analyze the Results
After completing listing the disadvantages, both of you can now take time to analyze the results. Check how many advantages of the product or service are listed, and then check the disadvantages of the same product or service that are listed. You can then put the facts on a weighing scale. If the advantages the product exceeds the disadvantages, then the client has no reason of refusing to buy the product, but if the disadvantages exceed the advantages, then the client has all the reasons to refuse buying your product.
The client will realize that the technique makes a lot of sense. Actually, the Ben Franklin Balance sheet is one of the fairest methods that can help one to make rational decisions without biasness. It supersedes all other product promotional methods used in convincing customers to buy products.
After putting the facts on the weighing scale, without uttering anything, you will be shocked on how the technique will play a big role in convincing and helping the customer make the decision very fast and easily. In most of the cases, the disadvantages are always a few, not even a quarter of the advantages. This means that the technique may help you to double or even triple your sells within a very short time.
You will also realize that this technique will be liked by most of the customers because it does not force anyone to buy anything before taking his/her time to critical think over it. Some customers may have already made a decision but they only need someone to assure them that it is the right decision, a task that Ben Franklin Close is best at. This is not a scheme and not a trick. This is a great way to process tough decisions. You are providing your customer or client with a way to make the decision.
Ben Franklin Close can also be used in many other situations that require making rational decisions. It does not have to be a direct sell of a product or your idea. As a matter of fact, you can use this same technique when you are trying to process a decision you have to make. Listing Pros and Cons is something I regularly do with my clients and patients. I have even taught my friends to use this technique. I explain to them how the process works and let them do the work.
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