Many sales people will tell you that one of the most common and frustrating objections they get from prospects, is “Let me think about it, I’ll be back to you”. It has enough optimism in it to suggest there may be some hope or opportunity, but not enough substance to make it useful. In the end “thinking is not the same as acting” and at the time you get this objection, what we need is action, anything less than that is second or third prize, not good enough for winners.
To manage this and deal with this objection, (and yes managing and dealing with objections are two different things), you have to adopt a number of different approaches, and act on parallel plains and modes.
First, get real, anything other than a yes, is a no, and deal with it as such. Doesn’t matter how sincere the delivery, if it is not “Yes”, it is no. If you accept that as your mantra, it will guide your interactions and actions with potential buyers, and inform you meeting objectives and execution.
Do you know what you want out of the meeting before going in? Without a definitive “Next Step Strategy”, it is hard to get commitment. You need a plan A, B, and C, this allows you to formulate a structure for the meeting, ask the right questions to help uncover the buyer’s objectives, opportunities and potential barriers. Understand how you can help minimize or remove the hurdles and accelerate their opportunities. In the process you deal with the buyer’s response, and respond accordingly explain and continue to execute the meeting in a “proper” way, and they say, “I need to think about it”. You either had the wrong plan, wrong execution, or wrong buyer.
Ask yourself whether you had engagement – no engagement most often leads to no commitment, no matter how good the plan. Even when you have the right plan, and get the above right, it comes down to executing the meeting right and creating engagement. While it is be true that it may take time to build a real relationship, and real trust, it starts with engagement. You can tell when a prospect is engaged in the meeting, this why you have a plan A, B and C, so you can explore in multiple ways. If after all that, they still need to think about it, is this really an opportunity NOW, or is it something that MAY happen later, after they had a chance to think, and you miss your quarter. It may be time to look for another prospect.
Do you have other prospects? That is the one of the hidden questions. If you have a funnel full of viable prospects, would one “I need to think about it”, be such a big deal? No, you would move on to the next one, one willing to act. Now if everyone wants to think about it, no matter how many prospects you meet with, then you need to look at the above points. But if you need four deals a month, and you close one of every four prospects, it is really simple. If you have 16 or more prospects a month, and you continue to close 4, and two or three say “I need to think about it”, would you be fussed? On the other hand, if you have eight prospects and three say they need to think, well, problem. Sometimes the easiest way to overcome the challenge is to build in choice by building your prospect base. Think about that.