Handling Sales Objections
Objections are those dreaded responses you usually do not want to hear from a prospect, but in truth, there is no reason to be afraid of them…
An objection does not necessarily mean “NO”.
Rather see objections as the buyer trying to tell you that though they are intrigued by what you are saying to them, they might just have a few concerns blocking them from moving forward with the sale or service offer.
In fact, are you not present because of your position to help your prospects in overcoming their challenges and concerns? As the problem solver in the relationship, it is up to you to dig deeper into what the actual objection is, the real reason behind it, and to find a beneficial solution for both parties. Objections are, in truth, very useful in this regard.
There are some typical objections all salespersons are familiar with, which may sound something like this: “It is too expensive”, “I can’t afford it at this time”, “I am just too busy right now”, “I will need to think about it” or “I will have to first run this by my partner or team”.
Let’s pretend for a moment that you are a yoga instructor, selling your services to a company that has had issues with their staff being too stressed, which has led to widespread low levels of motivation, productivity and job satisfaction. You will start off by focussing on the actual value your unique and highly specialized yoga techniques can provide to this specific company, given their current predicaments.
In this case, your main priority should revolve around being the solution to their greatest challenge, which is the high stress levels of their employees causing overall quality and productivity loss. In this regard you will want to demonstrate your value to solving these issues for them, by promoting the beneficial aspects your special yoga techniques can offer in completely eradicating the negative effects of stress and lack of motivation in their employees after only a few session with you.
Then you would want to add even more benefits beyond what they might expect, such as throwing in even more value by promoting how your unique yoga techniques has been found to not only improve these areas of concern, but to also have positive effects on overall energy levels, moods, and psychophysical wellbeing. This means that they will not only be more productive, but that they will even be generally more agreeable, more efficient in their work and possibly take fewer sick days off from work as well.
You can see now, that by selling your absolute indispensable value to your prospect in being the best solution possible to their challenges, most of the potential objections would have been overcome before they even had the chance to appear.
Though, immediately after you will need to make clear to them how much your services will cost. More often than not, the price will not be a hurdle that will necessarily stop them from moving forward in accepting your services, if you did a good job at promoting your extraordinary value to them in solving their problems that is.
Even if objections still come up after you have done everything right, do not be discouraged. See these as opportunities to find out even more about your prospect’s concerns and how you can help to overcome them.
Here are a few helpful tips in how you can use any objections that might come up to your advantage in building report and trust with your prospects.
After having asked questions regarding their challenges, listening to your prospect is the very first thing you should do when an objection comes up. Genuinely LISTEN. Not just with your ears, but with your eyes as well. Focus on their body language, expressions and tone of voice to get an idea of what they might be feeling at that moment. Don’t even be thinking about what you want to say next. Simply remain calm and patiently attentive, and allow them to fully lay out their objections in front of you. By listening you can also come to know how they usually go about making decisions in the company, and in this way also become the wiser in how you can present a solution to them.
This is one example how one can handle the objection of, “I will have to first run the offer by my partner before any final decisions can be made,” by offering to set up a meeting with all of them together before this objection even comes up. This will not only show that you were listening, but that you are willing to take initiative in getting the benefit of your service available to them. You may even ask them outright if it has not come up in conversation yet. For example: “So, Joe, help me understand how you usually go about making a decision like this?” Listen intently and work with the information given accordingly.
Understanding and Responding to Objections
You needed to have really listened well to the concerns of your prospect to be able to genuinely understand what will solve their problems for them. When an objection does present itself, you will need to understand the objection behind the objection, because the true objection may not even be the objection expressed. It’s about truly comprehending WHY certain things are blocking them from moving forward.
For example, if the prospect responds with “I just don’t have time to deal with this right now”, you might not have created the value of your service clearly enough, as they seem to not see the immediate benefit you can offer to them. They may, however, seem interested but express that they will only have time to deal with it in a few weeks or so. There is no need for this to turn into an argument. Simply remain calm and inquisitive, and you could possibly respond with something like: “Kate, I completely understand and appreciate you telling me that, though is it fair for me to say that what I’m hearing is that solving these issues with your employees are not what is important right now?”
They may respond by saying that it is in fact not a priority at the moment, which is fine because now you know and can move on asking more questions around that. On the other hand, they can also respond by saying that it is important to them but that they really are too busy to sort everything out at this time. This is also fine and will give you the opportunity to dig a bit deeper into what could possibly help them in solving this particular hurdle for them as well.
Test the Waters
Once you’ve come to understand the reason behind certain objections your prospect might have had, and you asked them more questions around it to help you understand how you can be of greater value to them in solving these concerns, you will want to go about testing a potential scenario that could offer an appropriate solution to their particular objection. If they tell you, for instance, that the price is too high for them, or that they have a certain budget that won’t allow for it, then try to come up with a different offer that could possibly be a solution for this specific concern. It may involve giving them credit, or possibly offering them less than the original offer.
Your response could go along these lines: “I completely understand, I may have felt the same way if I were you. Help me understand though, in terms of the challenges that we talked about, what would help you solve this problem?” “Instead of providing two sessions a week, we can do one session a week. Will this be a better fit to your budget, and still fulfil your needs?”
Obviously, every situation will be different and present unique challenges, but a good way to always respond to any objection is by empathically and calmly expressing that you understand completely that they may have this particular concern, but that you would like to understand more, so that you can help them solve whatever challenge might still be holding them back. This will not only build trust and report with your customer, but you will actually be in the position to truly help and bring undeniable value to the relationship.
Remember that objections are very common and are just one of the challenges that can come up in the process of a sale or proposal. Do not let it discourage you. Handle it with grace, empathy and pure intent, and perceive it as a chance to get to know your prospect even more deeply, hence you will be in an even greater position to solve their problems and concerns for them.
Just adjust the way you think about and respond to objections, and you will instantly be in a more empowering position to readily handle and solve them. I can promise that objections will start to become a lot less intimidating and frightening to you!
Until next time. Happy Sales!