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Overcoming objections? You're doing it wrong.

Challenging, time-consuming, arguments. These are just a few of the words a group of talented salespeople we worked with this week used to describe objections. Pleasant, right? They are not alone! Humans are non-confrontational by nature and objections can feel very confrontational, and personal. If you would describe objections in a similar way, here’s our advice.

Re-frame your perspective

Objections that are short of hanging up, slamming the door, or not answering your email, are a good thing. They mean that the prospect is interested enough to bother giving you some feedback and share their perspective. It opens the door for conversation. Use it!

Seek them out

The worst place for an objection to stay is in your prospect’s head. Seek them out at all stages in your process. In Sales EQ, Jeb Blount suggests asking at the beginning of a meeting right after you walk through the agenda, “Is there anything else you’d like to cover?”. This gives them a chance to bring up their issue – but don’t derail your meeting by answering then. Add it to the agenda to cover as needed.

You can also ask for their feedback as you discuss solutions, your proposal, implementation plans, etc. Try “what do you think about x?” “are there obstacles that would stop you from moving forward?”, “you seem worried about y, what are your thoughts?”

Track & prepare for your most common ones

You likely have a few objections you hear often. Pay attention to what these are and prepare for how you will respond, or how to address these concerns proactively as appropriate. This does not mean raising objections on behalf of your client that they haven’t thought of themselves. Rather, think about how to address the real issue behind them. For example, if price is always an objection, you likely need some work on your value prop.

Practice an effective approach

If leveraged effectively, objections are a great way to keep dialogue going and get a series of small yeses from your prospect. Try our 4-step framework that allows you to REAP the benefits of the objection and keep moving forward!

  • Recognize: Give your prospect a chance to talk, then repeat/reflect as appropriate.

  • Explore: Dig into the underlying reasons for the objection. Experts say that it takes at least 4-5 layers of questions to really uncover the pain or nature of the objection. Take your time and keep exploring until you truly understand.

  • Address: Offer a response to their concern. Because you listened to the buyer and explored their rationale rather than giving a knee-jerk response, they're usually willing to hear you out.

  • Progress: Confirm that you addressed their concern and keep moving forward!

How are you at managing objections? Any other tips that have helped you succeed?

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