Hear What the Prospect is Really Saying
By Tony Cole
- Prospects will say what they have to say to protect their interests.
- The statement that the prospect makes is never the real statement.
- Get beyond their words and find out what they’re really trying to tell you.
- Defuse the tension by adding a little humor.
- Counter objections with unexpected responses.
Play The Sales Brew:
By Tony Cole, President, Anthony Cole Training Group
I remember listening to David Sandler on his cassette tapes say that “all prospects lie all the time.” Over the years, I’ve come to realize that I don’t believe that prospects are hurtful, hateful or malicious people. It’s just that they have their own interests and objectives in mind when they are talking to a salesperson. To that end, they will say what they have to say to protect their interest and objectives. The important lesson here is to make sure you understand what the prospect is really saying.
Now, let’s talk about some cue cards that have a tendency to push us away or create problems for us when we are attempting to schedule appointments with somebody new.
- Not interested
- Bad timing
- Already have
- Just completed
- Don’t believe in
- Your competition
- Your price is high
Regardless of how you get the name, whether it be networking or cold calling, internet lead or strong referral from someone in the process, you may hear words that you see on this page. Remember that the statement that the prospect makes is never the real statement. I’m confident that you have clients today that at one time told you they were very happy, not interested or too busy. What you need to learn to do is get beyond those words and find out what they’re really trying to tell you.
So, let’s practice a little bit here and get a feel for what this sounds like. Let’s take some cue cards that have a tendency to push us away or create problems for us when we’re attempting to schedule appointments with somebody new. Regardless of how you get the name – again, a new call, cold call, internet lead, strong referral – you have to deal with what they say. So, someone says to you, “Well, Tony, the timing is really bad.” You might respond with something like this. Add a little humor. “You know, my timing has only been right three times in my life – Ashley, Anthony and Alex – so I would have been shocked if my timing in calling you today was exactly right. May I ask you a couple questions before I go?
You see, when you set that up, it releases the tension on the phone or releases the tension of the moment, it might cause someone to chuckle a little bit, and then you get into your questions. But you’ve defused the objection of “your timing is bad”.
If someone were to say to you, “Well, Tony, you did a nice job but the competition beat your price.” Or “Your price is high” Now, understand – here is an instructional note now, ok? – this shouldn’t happen at the presentation. Prior to presenting, you should have agreed to the terms of investing money, time and resources or effort. But, if it DID come up, you might say something like this –so I’ll role play this scenario again – “Well, Tony, I really like the work that you did but you gotta understand that the competition beat your price.” “Ok, Joe, I’m sorry to hear that. When you gave them the business, I bet they were happy?” They’re not expecting that response. They certainly didn’t give them the business. But what they’re trying to do is create a scenario where you might fold and now begin to sharpen your pencil. The pressure’s now on you. It’s shouldn’t be there. It should be on them. So that’s why you ask the question, “So, when you gave them the business, I bet they were happy?”