Objections, Objections, Objections!
One of the hardest parts of cold calling is undoubtedly the objections.
Knowing that someone doesn’t really want to talk to you can throw you off your game.
The truth though, is that objections are not rejections. There is a difference between ‘never call me again’, and ‘I can’t talk right now”.
Why do we love objections?
We see them as an opportunity to ask questions and dig a little deeper to open up the conversation.
Have a list of common objections and ways to respond and a list of notes you can refer to during the call. So, you can stay level-headed and continue the conversation.
Tone is key
You should analyse the tone of prospects as soon as they answer the phone.
Human communication is so much more the just verbal, and you can learn a lot about how interested your prospect is simply from the tone of their voice.
If they answer the phone with upbeat energy you should reply with an equally upbeat reply.
Calls that start in this manner will likely be easier to manage. Generally, you’ll have less resistance when moving on to your pitch.
They say you should speak with a smile on your face. The idea is that prospects can tell that you’re smiling even over the phone. They can hear it in the way you speak, which can help the conversations go in the right direction.
Not all calls will start off this way, unfortunately. Sometimes you’ll be able to tell that the person on the other end of your call isn’t instantly happy you phoned.
You shouldn’t try to match any negative energy. It’s unlikely you’ll get far that way.
A good idea is to keep things as positive as you can.
Can you send me an email?
There’re a few ways to respond to this particular question as there are many reasons why this question was asked:
They don’t like phone calls
They’re busy at that particular moment
It’s a brush-off
Try and work out the reason behind this so you can respond appropriately.
Having a scheduled time to speak is beneficial because, you’re more likely to get your prospects’ full focus, especially if it’s simply a timing issue that is in their way.
The last one is a little more controversial and won’t work for every prospect but it may work for certain prospects when the conversation is more light-hearted.
Some prospects may say “Our process is working well; we don’t want to change anything.”
You may feel as though this is a closed door. If a company is happy with the way it’s going at the moment and doesn’t wish to change.
You can continue to ask questions and ask for more information. With a bit of luck, you’ll uncover certain areas to work with.
Get your prospects talking about the solution they have in place.
Then you can share the ways that your product or service could solve those pains.
How much does it cost?
Some prospects don’t want to carry on with the process without knowing what the cost is going to be. This doesn’t mean they are necessarily interested.
Depending on the industry or the product or service you may not know the prices and prices may change based on the number of people in the company, the sectors chosen or a whole variety of other factors.
If a call starts with ‘I don’t have time’, work out if they’re genuinely pushed for time, or if they’re simply brushing you off because they’d rather not spend their time talking to you.
Remember, people have a hard time trusting salespeople, so they’re going to try to keep you at arm's length. Setting the expectation right from the beginning or they’ll drop off the call. If the call isn’t on the same day make sure the prospect remembers to expect your call maybe drop them an email reminder.
If you don’t get a chance to ask for another time to speak during your conversation, then try to follow up shortly after the call with an email or LinkedIn request.
An important thing to remember here is that when someone is busy, they haven’t rejected you. They haven’t had a chance to hear your pitch so don’t rule them out.
‘We only do inbound so a tool like this wouldn’t work for us, we don’t need it. We don’t do outbound’
Even if this doesn’t fit your industry, you can apply this same logic. If a prospect raises this objection, ask them more questions about their current set. You’ll soon discover if there are features to your product or service that do fit their requirements.
The timing isn’t right.
Maybe your prospect has already got a budget for the quarter in mind.
Maybe there are still in a contract for a few months.
This isn’t happening for the time being.
However, there could be a future opportunity.
Try to find out more about their company. Things like:
What do they do?
What systems do they have in place?
How might their environment change in the coming months?
This way, you can gauge how long to leave it before trying to contact them again in the future, and when you do, you have new information to guide you in the next conversation.
I’m the wrong person to speak to
So maybe your list was a little off and your research came up with the wrong decision-maker within the company.
However, don’t worry, this is your opportunity to get the correct contact details to the correct person.
If you’ve spent any time in outbound sales, you’ve probably had someone who’s obviously having a bad day on the other end of the line.
This might mean it’s not in the right time to talk to you, or willing to make any decisions quite yet. They may even hang up the phone.
Offer to call back in 2 to 3 days. Then you can always acknowledge the previous attempt to call.
If you hadn’t realised, objections are great. Objections are much better than silence.
If a prospect gives you reasons why they don’t want to try it, try to give them reasons why they should.
Prospects are going to be sceptical; they may feel that their current way works fine, so why bother changing? Also, people are busy so they might be up to their eyeballs with other work and don’t have time to waste.
It’s your job to show them it’s worth taking the time to talk to you. Offer them value. Show them how your solution can fit their needs. Relieve their pain.