You can accomplish this by asking, listening, and linking.
Asking – The best way to determine the patient’s needs is to ask questions that require more than a “yes” or “no” answer. We call these open-ended questions. Open-ended questions begin with who, what, when, where, how or tell me.
Some examples include:
- Tell me what you like or dislike about your current glasses?
- What are you using to protect your eyes from the harmful UV rays?
- How often are you on your computer or an electronic device?
You may notice that we never begin an open-ended question with “why.” Patients become offended when asked why. For the same results, try using the phrase “tell me.”
Listening – After you have asked your open-ended questions, you must listen to your patient’s response. Listening involves not only hearing your patient’s words, but also understanding the message and the importance of your patient’s response. Listening is the key to maintaining and developing relationship, identifying needs and making sales.
You must let you patient know, with eye contact and positive body language, that you are listening.
You must fully understand your patient’s situation as well as the feelings, needs, and desires behind their words. Do not cut your patients off while speaking. Be positive that you have given them a chance to complete his or her response.
Link – The final step in identifying the patient’s needs is to link what your patient needs to the product you carry. This is the opportunity to combine the information you gathered by asking open-ended questions with the product knowledge you have acquired. By asking open-ended questions and listening to their response, you can link your patients to the desired product.
Linking your products to your patient’s needs is truly where the rubber meets the road … and the sale is made. Happy servicing!!