Preempting is the best way to handle sales objections

Preempting is the best way to handle sales objections

preempting sales objections requires planningSales professionals always ask what the best way to handle sales objections is. The best salespeople don’t handle objections the way you think – they plan ahead. They handle their customers objections by preempting them before they come up. Normal sales objection handling is reactionary, while preempting objections is anticipatory.

Objection handling is a skill you should know, but try to use as little as possible.

This will sound counter-intuitive to many of you. Lots of sales trainers tell reps it’s good to get objections. They really just want reps to have good conversations, and not give up on sales calls.

There are better ways to have good conversations and win deals that don’t require going back and forth over customer concerns.

If you’ve done a good job anticipating and preempting, your prospects won’t express as many objections. Sometimes they won’t object at all.

Your goal with sales objection handling should be to preempt and then actually handle as few objections as possible.

If the customer has fewer concerns, they will be in more of a buying mindset. It’s hard to think about purchasing when you have 3+ concerns about a solution. Get rid of concerns ahead of time to put your prospect in a purchasing mindset.

If a customer expresses a sales objection out loud it becomes a problem

sales objections expressed out loud are a problemOnce an objection is expressed, it becomes harder to handle.

If a prospect has a conversation with you about an issue, that conversation will become a memory they have of your sales presentation. You don’t want prospects remembering the issues they had, only the benefits you can deliver.

When you handle an objection ahead of time you don’t deal with the same situation.

Their thoughts never materialized into a conversation with you. They won’t become the same type of memory.

Most salespeople handle the same sales objections over and over again

You probably get the same 3-5 objections on most of your calls. Everybody deals with ‘pricing’, and ‘I need to think about it’. You probably have a few additional sales objections that are unique to your product.

If prospects keep complaining about the same things, have the foresight to get rid of that issue for future buyers.

Don’t do the same thing and expect a different result – if you get recurring objections, work to make sure they reoccur less often!

Recurring objections are a measuring stick for how well-tuned your sales process is. If prospects constantly object about durability (for example), your process hasn’t done a good enough job explaining why that’s not an issue.

If you consistently handle the same sales objections, get out ahead of them

create a powerful sales objection handling strategyTired of objection handling ‘pricing’ and ‘I don’t want to buy now’? Get rid of them ahead of time.

I learned over the years that I was going to deal with those two objections no matter what product I sold. I figured out a way to get past them on most calls because I knew I wasn’t addressing those sales objections properly.

‘Pricing’ and ‘I want to think about it’ are the most common, but you probably get a few others on most calls. There is no product that everyone wants to buy immediately with no objections 100% of the time.

Figure out your niche objections and how to tackle them. You should already have a list of common objections, and objection handling strategies for each one. Re-purpose those fine-tuned strategies to be preemptive.

How to preempt sales objections

Preempting sales objections is something a lot of salespeople don’t grasp, despite how simple it is.

Handle the objection before the customer brings it up. You assume that it’s going to come up so you handle it ahead of time for every prospect you pitch.

Normally a prospect would complain about the price, and you would explain why the cost is justified. That’s the wrong way to attack the problem. You should explain why the cost is justified so the prospect doesn’t complain about the price.

Preempting sales objections is simple, but I’ll give an example to break it down further:

Normal objection handling for ‘it’s too expensive’

Prospect: “I’m don’t think SuperProduct™ is worth the cost”

Sales rep: “I understand your concern, it’s something we hear from a lot of companies we work with. They’ve realized our cost is higher than some of our competitors because we have a full suite of features they don’t offer. We’re able to offer bigger increases in efficiency and cost savings. On top of that, our product has a warranty of 3 years which is unheard of in the industry. These factors are why we’re more expensive. SuperProduct™ will deliver on your goal of reliability”

Salespeople usually pray they don’t get the same concern again after objection handling like I did above.

You have less options if the prospect objects to the same thing again.

You just gave your best justification for the cost and they weren’t convinced. If you become repetitive, you risk coming off as argumentative.

The nature of this process is probably why they weren’t convinced. People don’t like to be convinced!

They want to reach conclusions on their own without feeling manipulated by a salesperson. When prospects complain about something and we spit back a paragraph about how they’re wrong, it puts their guard up.

If we get out ahead of the objection, their guard is less likely to come up. They will rack their brain for an objection, but they won’t come up with anything.

Here’s how preempting the same objection looks:

Preempting the ‘it’s too expensive’ objection

Sales rep: “Before I show you the pricing, I want to explain how our pricing structure was created. We’re more expensive than some of our competitors because we have a full suite of features they don’t offer. We’re able to offer bigger increases in efficiency and cost savings. On top of that, our product has a warranty of 3 years which is unheard of in the industry. These factors are why we’re more expensive. SuperProduct™ will deliver on your goal of reliability… now let me show you the pricing”

Those paragraphs look almost identical because they are – I copy and pasted most of the rebuttal. In both cases you’re saying the exact same thing, but It’s the timing that matters.

In ‘normal objection handling’ the prospect may still complain about the price after you’ve rebutted. They might not be convinced by your quick spiel. Depending on how you delivered it they might even question your honesty!

In the second scenario, you’ve been informative. You made sure they knew the price was going to be high before you showed them. You’ve helped remove the ‘sticker shock’ of the cost.

The number they were thinking of in their head probably increased because you framed the price the way you want them to see it.

Prospects usually object to price because it’s a key part of the buying process.  We should anticipate that our prospect will have questions about the price, because it’s a rational thing to have questions about.

Design your sales scripts and demo guide to handle sales objections ahead of time

plan your preempted sales objections into your sales scripts

Scaling a sales processes is hard. It’s important to have as much structure as possible – this will make scaling and training easier.

Your process is not educating the customer as well as it could be if your reps always get the same objections. Common objections are impossible to avoid completely, but they can indicate potential weaknesses in sales scripts.

Design the demo process to anticipate and handle concerns preemptively. You rely less on training and the improvisation abilities of your reps if you can write preempted objections into your scripts.

Respond in the comments with the two sales objections you handle the most

let us know your common sales objectionsThe best way to teach you how to preempt objections is to show you how to do it.

Comment with the two objections you deal with most, and some details about the product you sell.

We’ll help you figure out a way to preempt the objections you commonly get. I’ll type out a quick paragraph to add to your scripts that will eliminate the objection for many of your prospects.

I look forward to hearing from you 🙂

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