You’ve carefully cultivated a major deal from the first cold call all the way through to the contract negotiations. With meticulous attention to detail, you’ve crossed each ‘t’ and dotted every ‘i’. Now, with the finish line in sight, your client has come down with an acute case of cold feet and has a few last-minute concerns that need to be addressed before the deal can proceed.
First things first: don’t panic. For seasoned sales pros, client objections are a normal part of the terrain. In fact, most leading sales gurus contend that you should assume that at least one or two objections will make an appearance as the sales cycle comes to a close. That way, you can develop a plan to anticipate and address possible objections from the get-go.
But while it’s handy to have a plan for handling your client’s objections in place, that doesn’t necessarily guarantee that the process of overcoming objections will be any easier. Use these tips submitted by top sales professionals to make sure you can quell your customer’s last-minute concerns and see the deal through to completion.
Ask questions. The objection that your client offers isn’t necessarily the whole story. Delve deeper by asking for clarification and elucidation until you get the full gist of the problem. Sometimes, the objection that the client offers is only one facet of a deeper concern.
Listen carefully. When your client offers up an objection, resist the urge to jump in or interrupt. Instead, let them make their case and hear them out. Keep an ear out for any hidden clues that might lend you insight as to how best to respond to the objection.
Respond forcefully but respectfully. After your client has had his or her say, it’s your turn to answer. Begin by thanking the client for their insightful question, and acknowledge their right to have any and all concerns addressed fully before moving forward. Reply with confidence, but try to avoid sounding impatient, annoyed, or overly aggressive.
Offer specific details. Whether your client’s objections are vague or detailed, try to reply with as many hard-and-fast facts and figures as you can muster. Case studies are a great tool to deploy when you’re overcoming objections. If you don’t know an answer, try not to be evasive—instead, promise that you’ll get back to them with details as soon as possible.
Keep it concise. One mistake that sales professionals often make is providing overly verbose or highly complicated responses to client’s pre-closing objections. Try to offer just as much information as the situation seems to require—no more, no less.
Have you ever had a deal go south as a result of a customer’s last-minute concerns? What’s your secret for overcoming objections? Clue us in to your favorite techniques in the comments.