Sales Question: "I frequently get to the close only to hear the prospect say “I want to think about it” - I’ve tried numerous rebuttals but nothing seems to really work. Any suggestions?"
SalesBuzz Answer: The best way to handle the “I want to think about it” objection is to make sure you follow a sales process that eliminates any possible reason why a prospect would say that to begin with. When a prospect says, “I want to think about it” they either aren’t sold on needing a solution, or they aren’t sold on YOUR solution. Those are the only two possible reasons why you would hear the “I want to think about it” blow-off.
Sales people who hear this objection are often using what I call a “boiler room” sales process. They are “pushing rather than attracting”. What I mean by that is this: 1. They get the prospect on the phone; 2. Ask if “they are the person who makes the decisions on XYZ” 3. Fire off a few self-serving probing questions (to see if they are a match) 4. Followed by a data dump presentation and a close.
To which they often hear “I want to think about it.” The solution isn’t “handle the objection,” it’s fix what’s causing the objection in the first place. Two key areas (not the only areas, but two key areas) causing this objection are:
Misused Probing Questions Replace asking self-serving probing questions with what I call “engagement questions”. Probing questions tell you, the sales person, if this prospect has a problem you can help solve. Engagement questions allow you AND the prospect to recognize and see that a problem exists. That’s a HUGE difference. And here’s the payoff - It’s human nature to want a solution once we recognize a problem. So if you establish what I call “Problem Recognition” up front, that alone will eliminate a majority of prospects from saying “I want to think about it”. In fact, it will turn “I want to think about it” into “I want to know more!”
Solution Confirmation Now there are several other key steps in the sales process that you must cover once you’ve gotten “problem recognition” but once you do finally get to and execute the presentation phase, it would be wise to confirm that your prospect likes your solution BEFORE asking for the order. When you are speaking with the right person, who recognizes a problem, wants a solution, and likes your solution, the old “I want to think about it” stall will become a distant memory.
Will the real decision maker please stand upBy Jeffrey Gitomer
The prospect tells you, “I only need one more approval and the order is yours.” For joy, for joy -- the order is mine! --- Eh, eh, eh -- don’t celebrate too soon. The one last person needed to approve, is the real decision maker. The boss. The guy you were supposed to be talking to in the first place. The one person who can say “no,” and there’s no possibility of reversing it. Rut-row.
Throw some water on yourself, pal. This sale hangs by a thread -- and what are you doing about it? Going home and bragging “it’s in the bag,” or saying over and over -- “I hope I get it, I hope I get it?” Neither will work. Here’s what to do: The words “I only need one more approval and the order is yours” must trigger your response to the prospect -- “Great, when do we all meet?”
Get the prospect to agree to let you attend the final decision meeting.
If you’re not present when the last decision is made -- odds are you will lose the final battle of the sales war without being able to fire one bullet.
Try this: (In a non-salesy, friendly way), say to the prospect, “I’m an expert at what I do, and, Mr. Jones, you’re an expert at what you do. Surely as you discuss our service, questions about productivity and profitability will arise. I’m sure you agree that the right information needs to be presented so that the most intelligent decision can be made, true? (get commitment)
And questions might arise about our service. I’d like to be there to answer questions about my expertise so you can make a decision that’s in the best interest of your business.” (If this fails, try adding on the phrase -- “Pleeeeaaase, I’ll be your best friend.”)
If the prospect (customer) agrees to the meeting, he or she considers you a resource, a partner. They trust you. If they don’t agree to let you in the meeting -- they just consider you a salesperson.
When others need to “final approve” the deal, besides learning to know the buying process better, you must take these five action steps or the sale is in jeopardy… 1. Get the prospect’s personal approval. “Mr. Prospect, if it was just you, and you didn’t need to confer with anyone else, would you buy?” (The prospect will almost always say yes). Then ask, “Does this mean you’ll recommend our service to the others?” Get the prospect to endorse you and your service to the others, but don’t let him (or anyone) make your pitch for you. 2. Get on the prospect’s team. Begin to talk in terms of “we,” “us,” and “the team.” By getting on the prospect’s team, you can get the prospect on your side of the sale. 3. Arrange a meeting with all decider’s. Do it any (ethical) way you have to. 4. Know the prime decider in advance. “Tell me a little bit about the others.” (Write down every characteristic). Try to get the personality traits of the other deciders. 5. Make your entire presentation again. You only have to do this if you want to make the sale. Otherwise just leave it to the prospect. He thinks he can handle it on his own, and will try his best to convince you of that.
If you think you can get around these five steps, think again. (It’s obvious you’re looking for shortcuts or you would have known the buying process in the first place.)
If you make the mistake of letting your prospect become a salesperson on your behalf (goes to the boss or group instead of you), you will lose. Most every time.
Here’s 2.5 ounces of prevention (for next time): 1. Qualify the decision maker as the “only” by asking a seemingly innocent question at the beginning of your presentation -- “Is there anyone else you work with (confer with, bounce things off of) on decisions (situations) like this?” The object is to find out if anyone else is involved in the decision BEFORE you make your presentation. 2. Prevent the situation from occurring by saying in your initial presentation: “If you’re interested in our
, when we’re finished, would it be possible to meet the CEO and chat about it?” 2.5 The most powerful qualifying question you can ask is (AND IT MUST BE ASKED EXACTLY THIS WAY): “Bill, how will this decision be made?” Bill will give you an answer. AND YOU FOLLOW UP WITH THE QUESTION: “Then what?” And Bill will begin to give you the saga about how the decision is really made. You ask “then what?” four or five times and PRESTO!, you’ll have the name of the real decision maker.
The number of sales you make will be in direct proportion to the number of actual decision-makers you sit in front of. The problem with most salespeople (not you of course) is that they are sitting in front of someone who has to ask their mommy or daddy if they can buy it or not.
Five New Ways to Handle, “I’m too busy”By Mike Brooks
Of all the brush offs you get while prospecting, the good old standby: “I’m too busy to talk now,” is right up there with, “I’m not interested,” and “Just email me something.” The reason this is such a popular response with prospects is that most sales people don’t know how to handle it, and so are easily put off and happy to “call back later.” Of course, this is just what the prospect wants them to do, and, since they now have your caller ID#, they’ll know to let the call go to voicemail the next time they see it!
The key to handling this stall – as with all others – is to sidestep it first and earn the right to ask a few, quick qualifying questions to see if you’re really dealing with a qualified buyer or not. And that’s what the following rebuttals allow you to do.
As with any brush off, objection or stall, though, this one is easy to handle if you just take the time to learn some proven responses to it, and then use them with confidence when you get it. To help you deal with this brush off more effectively, I urge you to pick any of the responses below that best suits your style, product and service. Feel free to change them slightly so they are most comfortable for you to use, and then practice them each and every time you get this objection. Here they are:
“I’m too busy to talk right now”
"I completely understand, and I know what it’s like to be interrupted. Tell you what: Before I schedule a call back with you – let’s take just a moment now to make sure this is something that’s even worth it for me to call you back on.
Quick question: How open are you to considering a new vendor to handle your (product or service), if you found you could realistically save your already limited time and money?”
“Quick question: We supply/have a solution for/provide (your product or service), and the clients who schedule a 10 minute call with us are really happy they learned about it. I’m willing to call you back later today or even tomorrow morning, but first – what would you say your level of interest would be in making a move to a more efficient way of (doing what your product or service does)?”
"I’m with you, and let’s face it – we’re all too busy until we hear about something that can really benefit us. Let me tell you in a nutshell how this can help you, and then if you’d like to know more, we can schedule a time that’s better later – fair enough?”
[If yes, then briefly give a description and use a qualifying tie-down question.]
“Got it and I won’t keep you. Quick question: Are you the right person to speak with in regards to (your product or service)?”
“Great, then before I schedule a time to get back with you, let me just ask you two quick things:
Number one, if you found that you could increase (list a benefit or two), and reduce your (again, list a benefit or two), how open would you be to viewing a demo on it?”
And two, if you decided this was worthy enough to seriously consider, who, besides yourself, would weigh in on making that decision?”
“Great, then let’s go ahead and schedule that. I’ve got two times tomorrow…”
"Wow, you do sound busy! No worries – I can either call you back in 20 minutes, or we can spend just two minutes now to see if this is a fit for you – if not, then I won’t have to bother you again. How does that sound?”
“Yes, you do sound busy. O.K., would you like me to call you back in an hour or later this afternoon?”
“O.K., no problem. Let me see….Well, I could call you back this afternoon or we could set up a brief 5 minute call tomorrow morning – which works best for you?”
“Hey, I know what it’s like to be busy – but the last thing I want to do is schedule a call back if you’re really not interested in what I’ve got. Let’s do this: I’ll ask you just a quick question or two and if there’s some interest on your end, then we’ll schedule some time later – fair enough?
“Great. _________, are you open to purchasing/investing/learning about a new way to handle your (your product) if you were convinced it would save you time/make your job easier/be better at...?”
“Quickly, what would your timeline be for (changing/investing/trying) a new service for your (what your product or service does) if you found you could dramatically increase/save, etc.?”
Once again, remember that your job is to earn the right to ask a few qualifying questions to see if your prospect is even worth putting on your call back list. And by using the scripts above, you’ll be able to do just that.
Sales Question: "What can I do to get my sales reps to sound more natural on the phone when making sales calls?
Here are three things I did to get my sales calls to sound more conversational:
1) Know the Road Map Just like you would have more confidence driving from point A to point B if you had a detailed road map showing you how to get where you want to go, you need the same thing for sales calls. Knowing exactly how to execute the sales process from your Opener, to Qualifying, to Presenting, and finally to Closing is a critical step for sounding more natural on the phone. Knowing what your destination is will also better prepare you for when a prospect gives you a detour to handle. Note: Some sales people would think that their destination is the “Close”, but if you go into a first time sales call with that mindset, you are sure to fail more often than you succeed. There are lots of little “destinations” you have to hit along the sales journey first in order to increase your likelihood of winning more sales.
2) The Best Friend Referral Mind-set Sometimes you have to “fake it till you make it”. Meaning, if you’re nervous before a sales call, so be it. Just don’t let the prospect know / sense that you are nervous. One of the ways I learned to get passed that unnatural “tone” while making sales calls was to pretend that the person I was calling was referred to me by my best friend. Having the mindset that the person I’m calling was a relative of a friend of mine who said they may be in need of some help allowed me to quickly find the right “tone” for the conversation, even if on the inside I was still a little apprehensive.
3) Iron Sharpens Iron Once you have your road map / sales process down (You know exactly what to say on voicemails, gatekeepers, or if you get the actual prospect on the phone), you have to role-play and practice with your peers. There simply is no faster way to get better other than role-playing with your co-workers. Just 5 minutes a day will help sales people fix improper tone.
Confirm Destination Import Requirements Before Packing
Anyone regularly handling personal effects knows that import regulations for used personal effects vary greatly from country to country. To gain duty free entry, there is normally a list of specific Customs forms, declarations, visa status, passport copies, packing list, and bill of lading required.
The origin packer must know or ask, and the destination agent must advise or confirm exactly what documentation requirements are necessary for import clearance of any given personal effects shipment. This should be done well in advance – preferably before packing, and ideally, before the survey – and certainly before the client/shipper leaves town, and absolutely before shipping.
If neither is doing this before shipping, then both parties have been negligent as a personal effects forwarder.
The origin agent who arrives for a client survey with destination requirements in hand will be seen by the client as more experienced, and more likely to win the job, compared to competitors who are not knowledgeable.
The destination agent who provides clear information with the quote to the origin agent will be seen as more experienced, and more likely to win the job, compared to competitors who are not knowledgeable.
This issue is essential in personal effects moves and should be one of the first things done in any new move.