The knee-jerk reaction when you’re hit with an objection is to quickly and deftly handle it. Many of us take pride in our ability to explain why an objection isn’t valid. Unfortunately, regardless of how logical your explanation is, you will get nowhere without stepping back and doing the following steps first.
Agree with the prospect as to the validity of the objection. Assure him that it is a good objection or question. This is called “disarming”. Don’t – I repeat – don’t disagree with him which is the natural reaction for most people. Humans by nature are very stubborn and don’t like to be told they’re wrong. If you jump at him and immediately tell him he’s wrong, it very likely is going to turn into a battle of who’s right & who’s wrong. Ego, emotion & self-esteem will enter into the equation. On the other hand, if you agree that his point is a good one, he will be much more likely to remain calm and open minded enough to listen to your explanation.
Confirm & isolate the objection. This is called “sharp angling”. Make sure that it is the only objection, and make sure that the prospect knows that it is his only objection. If there are other objections, get them out of the way so that you can deal with each one separately.
Obtain a commitment from the prospect. I.e. “If it were not for (the objection) you would want to go ahead?” “You’re comfortable with the rest of the recommendations?” Without the commitment, you may just be gaining another objection. Then you’ll become involved in a game called, “Can I make up more objections than you can overcome”. Salespeople almost always lose this game. Why? They don’t shut up!
Drill down on the objection. In other words, ask gentle probes such as, “what causes you to feel that our price is not competitive?” or “could you help me understand by expanding on your concern about x?” Truly empathize. Put yourself in their shoes to attempt to understand why they think such-and-such is the case. Often, it will be that the prospect simply doesn’t understand the issue fully and your job will be to help them understand in a helpful, non-confrontational manner.
Next time you’re hit with an objection, stay calm, follow these steps and you’ll move onto a sale more often.