Having trained and coached many Agents and Team Members on their prospecting language, I can tell you that there’s a simple difference between those who nail their prospecting language and those who are simply average at it.
So what is the difference between these two types of people?
One. Simple Word.
Sure, it’s true that it just comes naturally for some people. The guys who can get by on pure talent alone are the exception to the rule.
Most people – most of US – need to practice over and over and over again. We have to get our language down.
Repetition is the mother of all learning. And despite what you may think: mastering prospecting language is simple. It’s just not easy.
A sports analogy for you…
In the game of golf, professionals like Tiger Woods spend thousands of hours practicing three-foot putts. It looks so easy when you see it on TV. We automatically think all sports pros are “naturals,” but they aren’t. Their professional skill takes work to get down.
It’s mastering these fundamental aspects of the game that distinguishes the elite from the average and the amateur.
Don’t Say That
There’s a saying that the Navy Seals use that I love: They say we don’t rise to the occasion, we fall to the level of our training.
In our insurance prospecting world, this means that even once you feel you have your language down, you have to keep practicing because you need to be able to deliver when the pressure is on in real life.
What if you had to deliver your language in front of an audience?
What if I came in and woke you up in the middle of the night and put you on the spot to do it?
Your goal is to become so good at it that you would nail it in these situations.
When you reach that level, doing it in front of customers is easy.
I encourage you to get rid of what I refer to as “the fillers.”
The best insurance producers use a language that is concise and compelling. One of the fastest ways for this to fall apart is when filler language is injected into your speech.
The obvious examples are “um” and “ah.” They make it seem like we don’t know what we’re talking about.
However, other common language issues hinder us. One of them is the word “just.”
“Just” is a common adverb, especially in speaking. So common we don’t know how much we use it!
To illustrate this, pretend we’re going through our agenda with our customer or prospect, and it includes time in the end to ask for referrals.
The Producer who has not mastered their prospecting language might say:
“We’ll have a little time at the end to just talk about introductions that you might be willing to give me, okay?”
That statement might seem so innocent that it may even sound okay to you.
But using the word “just” is a major turn-off. You don’t ever want to just do anything. The word “just” has a negative connotation. It implies you’re minimizing, or even apologizing for, what you’re requesting. And that is the very opposite impression we want to make here.
Another phrase in that statement that doesn’t deliver well is “little bit of time you’re willing to give me.”
This statement is not assertive and comes off as unsure or even self-defeated. Like, why would anyone want to spend time talking to you at all?
Your tone and demeanor should not seem like you’re asking for a favor. Instead, be empowered. You are allowing your customers to help their loved ones adequately protect themselves.
K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Sweetheart)
Interestingly, we speak too much when we don’t have our prospecting language down pat. An example of this might be asking questions like, “What’s the best way to get in touch with Mr. Prospect?” or “Does he prefer email or text or a phone call?”
As insurance educators, it’s our job to lead the customer or the prospect. We tell them the process and the next steps. They will trust us when we show up with pride and confidence.
You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your prospecting language. We offer scripts and tips to strengthen customer relationships and pressure-free pivots for you to try.
The practice is up to you.
Practice out loud to yourself.
In the shower. In the car. To your baby. To your dog. On a jog (or walk).
Record yourself on your phone and play it back. Then correct and perfect.
Stop by our Live Insurance Practice Sessions to hear other Producers work through the same conversations.
Practice with a peer, your Agent, and other Team Members when you’ve got it down on your own. Work with anyone who will hold you accountable.
Ask that accountability partner to grade your conversation. And grade yourself: how closely did you come to the version you’re shooting for?
Finally, commit to practicing throughout your entire career. Remember the sports pros from the beginning of this article? They never stop practicing. That is what makes them pros.
Always be looking to elevate your skills. A growth mindset combined with the proper training and a commitment to professional development will transform into realized success.