Sweating over how many deals you haven’t closed this month? Break through cold calling objections with these proven strategies.
You’re a few months into making sales calls, and the jitters have finally worn off (no more sweaty palms, woo!) You’ve made some progress and closed a few deals. But your success largely depends on the quality of the lead, right?
We all love qualified leads. Once you get the hang of things, it’s like shooting fish in a barrel. The gettin’ is always good.
Then enters the dreaded cold call. No one has ever called on this person before. He’s shown little interest in your product or services. Suddenly the Great Wall of Cold Calling Objections appears before you (cue the funeral bagpipes and close the curtain, quick!)
How are you supposed to break down that wall and drum up interest with a cold lead? Follow the three P’s of overcoming cold calling objections: practice, preparation, and persistence.
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A quick disclaimer about calling on freeze-pop temperature leads
Let’s start by recognizing that most cold calls are practice shots. No one—and that means no one—closes the majority (or even a significant minority) of these leads. It’s important that you understand this upfront. Why? Because it’ll allow you to relax.
Cold calling is a numbers game. Hit your quota, give your best effort, and don’t allow yourself to get discouraged. Cold calling is one of the toughest things in the world, so pat yourself on the back.
Once you make that first sale, you’ll find that your phone sales skills have sharpened to a fine point.
Remember: preparation, practice, persistence.
3 Common objections and how to get past them
1. How to overcome the “I don’t know you” objection
Why do they call them “cold calls”? Well, that’s because the person on the other end isn’t expecting to hear from you. In fact, they probably don’t know anything about you, your company, or it’s products. So the first words out of your mouth are crucial.
And even if you nail the introduction, it’s still possible that the prospect is suspicious, closed off, or annoyed. He doesn’t like calls from strangers, especially ones that are selling something.
The first thing to do is lessen the stakes. Assume that your prospect is stressed, busy, and doesn’t have much time. Make it easy for them to give you thirty seconds.
“I justed wanted to have a quick chat with you about a service we’d think would greatly benefit your business. Can I ask you a few questions? I promise it won’t take more than a minute.”
Then provide proof of your company’s solid reputation or a statistic that will impress your listener.
“We’ve just rolled out a brand new software for (X type of business owners) that will (solve X problem for you). Inc. magazine just voted our company top-rated in customer service for 2017, and we’ve helped over 3,000 business owners (achieve X goals).”
2. How to overcome “money problems” objections
“Yeah, that’s too expensive for me right now, but thanks anyway!”
“I don’t have the money to spend on this.”
“We don’t have room for this purchase in our budget.”
Money shortage is the go-to objection for most prospects. Sometimes it’s a real concern; most times, it’s just a quick way to end the conversation (the real issue is something else entirely).
A few things to include in your toolbox:
- Come with a discounted offer if they decide to purchase over the phone or move forward in the process.
- Break down the costs into smaller portions and make relatable comparisons. For instance, “At twenty dollars per month, you’ll receive (x features and benefits) that will help (solve x problem). That’s less than what I spend on coffee in a week.”
- Provide a case study, statistic, or referral that ups the “proven value” of your product (take their mind off of money and sell the value instead).
3. How to overcome “satisfied customer” objections
There’s a scene in Mad Men where Don Draper pitches the head of a multi-national brand to start working with his ad agency. Right off the bat, the man says, “Thanks for the offer, but we’re happy with our current agency.”
Enter the satisfied customer. He’s “happy” just the way things are, and doesn’t want to change. It’s one of the oldest cold calling objections in the book. Your job is to plant the question, “Why couldn’t things be even better for you?”
Ask them close-ended questions that force a “yes” answer in your favor. For instance, “If our product could deliver equal benefits to the one you’re currently using, but at half the price, would you be interested?”
Open up the conversation to discuss new options that will make your customer’s life even easier.
The three P’s will stomp out cold calling objections and bring results
Mastering rebuttals and responses are key to phone sales success. The three cold calling objections we just went over will serve you well, but only if you use the three Ps consistently.
Prepare. Organize and mark up your sales scripts, takes notes on calls, record your conversations and see where you can improve next time.
Practice. Treat every call like a numbers game. Don’t get hung up on failures or take it personally. Give it your best shot and move on.
Persistence. Stick to a quota every day or week. No matter what, make sure you hit that number, even if no sales come of it. Persistence overcomes any obstacle with time and effort.
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