In the last post, we reviewed three steps to resolving sales objections and in doing so, we brought the sales process closer to achieving a commitment. Those 3 steps were:
- Remind them of their need.
- Remind them that your offering addresses their need.
- Create a colorful description of them experiencing the benefits provided by your offering.
Now, here’s the kicker when resolving sales objections: The more specific the objection you’re facing, the better chance you have of resolving it!
Here’s what I mean.When you get an objection like “your price is too high,” your prospect can take that in any direction the wind blows. We’ve already shown that most of your prospects will use price, cost, budget, and value interchangeably.
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But when you get them to identify meaningful specifics, they are actually trying out your offering mentally in their environment and they can see where it doesn’t quite fit just yet. That’s a good thing! You can work to resolve a specific issue or challenge. But first, you have to help your prospect identify those specific issues and challenges, and get them to identify the importance of each one.
In Resolving Sales Objections, Specificity is Key
At this stage, we are rooting out specific things that your prospects are objecting to. And this is where many salespeople fail. For instance, let’s say you are selling software and you positioned everything perfectly, used your facts and benefits, nailed that visual and said, “So, what are your thoughts on these reports?”
Let’s say the prospect comes back and says, “You know, I’m still concerned about the pricing of this and the timing.” You have to be able to accept their position and identify the specifics of the objection. Don’t hide from it like a cast member of The Walking Dead running from a zombie horde. Cushion the response. Then, get your prospect to define, defend and explain it, as outlined here.
As their salesperson, you need to be good at creating a verbal cushion between their objection and your challenge. In the end, you have to be able to categorize that objection: Is it a put off? Is it genuine? Is it a misconception? Are they giving you something that is biased, or is it something that is half-baked? Categorizing the objection allows you to determine how and when to respond to that objection.
Here’s something else you want to remember. When it comes to resolving sales objections, the absolute lowest ground a salesperson can take is to be reactive and address it in the moment.
Resolve sales objections before they actually come up.
So what’s the highest ground? To address an objection before it actually ever comes up. The second highest ground for a salesperson to take is to bring up objections themselves. During your process, ask your prospect, “What are some of your concerns? What are some things you don’t like about what we presented here? What are some things you do like?”
Use Your Process to Acknowledge and Clarify when Resolving Sales Objections
When it comes to resolving sales objections, we need to resolve them whether they are voiced or not. We need to at least ask for them. And chances are good that we have dealt with the objection a little bit before it’s voiced, because most salespeople get the same objection in different incarnations. Believe it or not, there are only so many kinds of objections salespeople get. Here’s the key: Don’t agree or disagree with the objection. Acknowledge it. Then ask another question to clarify.
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move more deals through your sales process.
For instance, “Tell me a little bit more about it, give me an example.” Force it back on the buyer to define, defend and explain it. Then ask another question: “What else besides that is causing you to hesitate?” Chances are probably nothing. “Well, if we can address that would you at least be willing to move forward?” At this point you’ve maneuvered the buyer into a yes or no decision point. Or they might say: “No, I didn’t say that,” which would prompt: “Geez, sounds like there’s something else causing your hesitation.”
Use your questioning model to clarify the objections so you’re not playing whack-a-mole. There’s always a chance that you might not be able to resolve an objection. But after you know where they stand, you have to decide what kind of evidence or other assistance you need. Maybe you need to bargain a little bit, go deeper, or get more evidence.
Remember, the objective here is to move to the close stage and get the commitment.
Stop being a prisoner of hope and get a better handle on resolving objections. Download the playbook, Seven Steps to Resolving Sales Objections here and start making objections work for you today!