I am very concerned when I hear capable sales people tell me that they set out to be a consolation prize when they engage with a potential buyer. Worse, I feel downright scared when I hear sales experts encourage sales people to set out and settle for being a consolation prize, rather than encouraging them to win.
Here is the problem, when speaking with potential prospects who tell you “we are all set”, or “thanks we are happy with our current provider”. Too many reps and experts settle for second prize, in fact, they present themselves as nothing more than that, second prize. And in a game where there is only one winner, and second prize is reserved for the first place loser, second prize is hardly something to aspire for, especially if you want to drive revenue for your company, employer.
Here is how it goes, when sellers hear the word above, they respond with something like, “well that’s great, maybe I can send you some info, and be a second choice”; in fact here is a direct quote:
“I simply offer myself as a secondary source, and offer to keep in contact should the need arise that they might be able to use my services.”
Seriously? Sounds a lot like “well, I guess I can wait on the sidelines till something out of my control happens which may offer me a chance at bat”.
When will that future moment in time come, this quarter, next quarter, the quarter after you are fired? The job of the sales person is to work with the buyer to understand how they can benefit from your offering now. Now so they can gain advantage on their competitors; now so you can make quota.
Making this a bigger challenge or opportunity is the fact that some 70% of prospects you will contact will describe themselves in one of the ways above, “all set”. Meaning, that if you master overcoming this common objection effectively, you will measurably increase you sales, and sales success.
As with most things in sales, overcoming this common objection is not easy, but it is doable, doable often enough to help you succeed. To do that you have to master a couple of things. First before even making the call, you have to understand:
Why people buy – This is not some vague concepts but specific drivers for people taking action. Most common are Financial, Productivity Gains, Time Gains, Risk Management, and Personal Interest.
Why they buy products like yours – Now you need to focus this on your specific buyer. Based on their role, sector and other inputs, you will be able to pinpoint the above. You will need to, based on past experience (yours or the collective experience of your company), frame your response in what specific Challenges they face. By knowing this you’ll be able to move the dialogue beyond the surface level, connecting with the buyer allowing him/her to engage based on factors they are living with every day.
Why they buy from you and your company specifically – With that in place, you can highlight the advantage you bring, and confirm that with a specific example of the impact you have delivered to others in their role. We have a work sheet to help you do this, just contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or (855) 25-SALES.
Armed with that, you use any number of common techniques to deliver the message; you can use Feel, Felt, Found, or Renbor’s own Acknowledge, Involve, Credibility, Action Item, again contact us for specifics.
The other thing you need, or else it will not work, is attitude. If your attitude going into the call is that you do in fact have a better mouse trap that will help your customers win more, then that is where you will go. If you go in hoping to be a consolation prize, waiting for elements beyond your control to deliver success, that too is where you’ll end up. Second place in the race, first place for…
What’s in Your Pipeline