Handling Sales Objections
Perhaps the most misunderstood aspect of sales is handling objections. Typically, client objections include:
- I don’t have time to meet with you.
- I don’t have the money to purchase your service or product.
- I’m not interested in your product or service.
- I don’t need your product or service.
Sure, you’ve heard all of these objections before, but how do you handle them? Do you just shrug your shoulders and move on? Or, do you take the time to educate that buyer on how your products lower operating costs or increase their sales? Every scenario is a little different, but knowing your products and their advantages over the competition is the key to making that next sale.
Why should I buy from you? Here’s why!
The Problem of Time Management
Time and again, the problem of too much work and too little time comes up in discussions with experienced reps. In sales and marketing, the old adage ‘Time is money’ is one of the golden rules. There’s only so much of it in a day; and if you don’t spend your time wisely, you’re not doing your job as well as you could.
Start managing your time by focusing on the core businesses within your territory. Start with the largest companies. They may be obvious choices, but that’s because that’s where the biggest sales are to be made.
Focus on your target demographic, at least initially. These are ‘ideal candidates’ – the businesses and individuals at whom your products are targeted. You can expand the demographic over time.
Always talk to the decision maker, if possible. The decision maker is the individual in the company who will make the final choice on whether to go with you and your company versus a competitor. While it isn’t always possible to talk directly with the procurement director or other decision maker, it should be your goal to start at the top and stay there when introducing yourself to a prospective client.
Finally, develop mid- and long-term schedules. If you plan your day over morning coffee, you’re not thinking long term. Instead, develop a weekly and monthly schedule. It will save drive time (wasted time), it will increase your productivity (results), and it will eliminate much of the stress caused by too much work and not enough time.
You receive a telephone call from a telemarketer and some disinterested college kid starts reading from his or her script. No enthusiasm, no variation from the text – you might as well be listening to a recording.
Preparation, whether for a cold call or an on-site presentation, is key. It’s essential to know what you’re going to say – the sequence of information you intend to deliver. But it’s just as important to prepare yourself to deviate from the script – to field a question or to pursue a different course based on the client’s response.
Preparation is a time saver, but it can also lock you up and tie you to a ‘one approach fits all’ mindset. The best preparation you can do is to learn your territory, learn the needs of your clients at the local level and know your product line inside and out. Then, when the odd question is thrown at you out of the blue, you’ll be able to move away from your script and handle the situation personally and professionally.
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