Controlling the sales dialogue begins and ends with the guest and their needs. Closing with Class means that we finish the dialogue the same way that we started it—with warmth, clarity, and accuracy. This is Step Ten, the last and final step to Ten Steps to Controlling the Sales Dialogue. The entire White Paper is now posted on www.OperationPineapple.com and can be downloaded as a pdf as well.
The Sales Dialogue begins with the Seller introducing themselves and asking the guest for their name. In this final step--Closing with Class—the Seller uses the guest’s name one more time to reaffirm that the guest is going to have a great time. “Marty, I know you’re going to love spending time with our Lemurs. It’s such a wonderful experience!” The Seller’s body language matches their words as they continue to smile, make eye contact, and engage with the guest.
Closing with Class means that guests have a clear understanding of what they are purchasing before they pay for it. Earlier in the dialogue, the Seller highlight’s the product’s features and benefits. Closing with Class requires the Seller to explain the product’s “fine print”. These are the details such as the report time for the guided tour they signed up for, the foot-ware requirement for the zip lines, and the attractions that are not included in the front-of-the-line pass. Each of the things that guests need to know in order to have an enjoyable experience must be clearly stated before the guest leaves the ticket counter.
Ticket Sellers are a lot like bank tellers. If your bank teller short-changes you or fails to provide all the information that you needed to know, it doesn’t matter how friendly they have been. Accuracy matters and transactional errors can be fatal to guest service. Ticket Sellers must take the time to process each ticketing transaction with absolutely zero errors. This includes everything from making correct change and processing credit cards correctly to providing receipts and collecting proper zip code information.
One last tip—I have found that it is always best to hold off on providing guests with their admission tickets until everything else has been completed within the transaction. By withholding the guest’s tickets until the end, the Seller can double-check everything they have done to that point before providing the guest with their tickets. Too many times, I have observed what happens when Ticket Sellers fail to return a guest’s credit card or photo ID before giving the guest their tickets. The guest walks away, enters the park, and then, hours later, discovers that their credit card is missing—it’s bad guest service and it can be completely avoided.
By withholding the guest’s tickets until the end, the Seller can perform one final accuracy check before the guest leaves the ticket counter. Did the guest sign their credit card receipt? Did the Seller return the guest’s credit card and photo ID? Did the Seller provide correct change? Did the Seller collect the guest’s voucher as a form of payment? (I have personally terminated Sellers who did not retain a Ticket Voucher--which are generally treated like cash--and cost the company a great deal of lost revenue.) By teaching your Sellers to pause before providing tickets and first conducting a final accuracy check, a tremendous amount of trouble can be avoided.