Posted: Fri 26th Nov 2021
Martin Knowles is an expert on all things sales, as well as a trusted Enterprise Nation adviser.
In this blog post, Martin dives into the topic of sales objections, and how to overcome them.
What is meant by sales objections
Sales objections might not be what they appear. A lack of commitment doesn’t necessarily mean “no”.
It might just mean: “I have another question you’ve not answered yet”.
Being enthused by objections instead of fearing them could be the difference between a successful sales pitch or a long, depressing drive home.
Types of sales objections
Prospective customers might say:
“Let me have a think about it and get back to you.”
“It’s more than I expected.”
“That sounds a bit complicated.”
“I need to present this to my boss.”
“I need to look at a couple of other quotes.”
How to respond to objections
This can be tricky. Resist the temptation to knock objections out of the park. Surely the customer has misunderstood!
Pause. Listen. Think.
Then respond…with a great question.
An objection tells you something went wrong with your pitch or presentation. Maybe you overlooked an important question or answer. Maybe you did too much telling and not enough asking.
Asking another question gives you the chance to understand what your customer is missing.
What’s In It For Me?
What’s In It For Me is something humans instinctively revert to. When you’re enthusiastic about meeting a new customer, you’ve already figured out what’s in it for you.
But have you really assessed what’s in it for them? Can you clearly and simply describe the value potential customers see in:
what you sell
what makes you different
how you’re better than the competition
why you’re good value (even when your price looks high)
how other clients have benefited
Building these themes through your conversations help answer customer questions before they become objections.
Price is the elephant in the room
If a potential customer isn’t saying yes yet, doesn’t that mean they’re not ready to spend what you’re asking?
It’s so tempting – and often human nature – to respond to objections by dropping price. Please don’t!
First, before every meeting, decide what you will and won’t offer as discount. Work it out when you have a cool head and before the buyer’s eyes are on you.
There’s no shame in ending a meeting expressing how nice it’s been to meet someone and leaving without a sale. That’s better than flinging around discount in the hope it secures a deal.
Second, do you know what the buyer’s budget is? A good negotiator won’t give you a precise figure, but with the right question you should be able to establish a range within which they expect a solution to land.
If they reject your quote before you’ve established their expectations, they might be rejecting you because you’re too cheap!
A buyer who wants a proven solution to a number of issues might be put off by a new supplier offering a price that’s too good to be true. So, a deep understanding of what’s motivating them can make all the difference.
It’s not about you
These few techniques should help you make progress in customer discussions. But above all, don’t take it personally. Rarely will a buyer reject an offer because you’re you.
Ask the right questions, listen and learn. And next time you’ll be wiser and a little bit smarter, ready to go again.
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