Obtaining Information using Fishing & Shooting Questions

Obtaining Information using Fishing & Shooting Questions

The business that I have chosen to use for this exercise is a small guitar tuition business. To find out what my prospective clients want/need I have developed the following questions. Most people responding to this business would come via word of mouth from existing clients or from advertisements taken out in local newspapers. They would phone up to ask about learning to play the guitar and my questions would be asked for each new prospective caller. I would ask my clients face to face or via the phone rather than use a static set of written questions sent to them via mail or through email so my questions are centred around a specific “yes” or “no” initial question that would direct the flow of the remaining questions.

  • My first question would be a shooting question – “Can you play the guitar at all?”
  • After that I would ask them – “Would you like to learn to read music/Tab or would you just like to learn for fun?”
  • Next I need to ask a fishing question that will give me some sort of idea as to what genre/style of guitar they are most interested in – “what sort of music do you like and what would you like to learn?”
  • My next question would be to ascertain whether the client had their own guitar or whether they would need me to provide one at their lessons (until they purchased one) – “Do you own a guitar and if so, what sort of guitar is it?” (again, finding out what kind of guitar the client owns will give me more information about what they are interested in and if it is suitable for what they want to learn)
  • I would then ask the caller – “where did you hear about me?” which lets me know if my advertising is working or if word of mouth is my best bet
  • I would then narrow the questioning down to specific fishing questions – “is there anything in particular that you really want to learn i.e. a specific technique, a specific song, how to read Tab etc.
  • I would then give the caller a chance to ask me a few questions if they wish which would allow them to develop familiarity with me – “Is there anything that you would like to ask me about my teaching style or anything else regarding learning how to play the guitar?”
  • To isolate where a prospective client would fit into my existing timetable I would need to know whether they wanted lessons in the day time or in the evening so I would then ask this question – “when would be a good time for you to have a lesson and on what day?”
  • The next question to ask a prospective client would be – “Where do you live?” This is a fishing question that leads me to the next and last question
  • “Would you like me to come to your home or would you prefer coming to my studio?”


I used these questions for my past guitar teaching business to great avail. They gave me most of the information that I needed in a short space of time and allowed the client to direct their questions to me in a more organised way.



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