How to resist a sales pitch

Sales people who work on commission face the same difficulties as waiters these days. Budgets are tighter yet his or her total income depends upon making you spend more money than you intended. Just as a waiter will try to up-sell you by suggesting an entree or more expensive wine, a car-dealership salesperson will try to talk you into buying a new car while your waiting for your car to be repaired by their mechanic.

Resisting such high-pressure sales is a combination of knowing what you want before leaving home and knowing how to identify and counteract high-pressure sales methods. Here are 10 steps to guide you through this maze.

1. Don’t Make Yourself a Target: Reject junk mail and sales calls, ask to be taken off lists and place your phone number on the national Do Not Call List. Never allow an unsolicited salesperson into your home and know what you want before you set foot in a store or showroom.

2. Consider Your Options: Make purchasing decisions before you talk to a salesperson. Do you want to purchase a used item, repair a broken item, borrow, rent or buy an entirely new item.

3. Establish a $200 Rule: If you’re married, agree not to spend more than $200 (or whatever figure is appropriate to your income) on any one item without discussing it first. If you’re single, consider talking to a friend who will play devil’s advocate. Give yourself at least one night to cool down and consider if you really need to make the purchase.

4. Decide on a Price: Establish how much you’re willing to spend before shopping. You may end up deciding you don’t want to spend anything or want to go for a higher-ticket price to avoid replacing an item in the near future. Consult your budget, bank balance and the quality of product you desire to find a happy medium that is right for you. Remember, however, a higher price doesn’t always indicate quality.

5. Do Your Homework: Several minutes of research can save you a lot of money and hassle. Consumers Report is your one-stop shop for just about anything. Your library should have recent editions of the magazine or you can pay a membership fee to use the searchable Consumer Report website. Other product-related websites, such as Amazon, allow consumers to purchase reviews of products sold through that site.

If you’re buying a car, NPR radio’s Car Guys offer a bevy of useful information and user reviews at CarTalk.com. The Internet also allows for easy price comparisons before you step into a brick-and-mortar store. You may find an online price is cheaper, but remember to figure in applicable fees, taxes and shipping costs.

6. How Will You Use the Item?: If you never cook, that fancy eight-burner gas range is little more than a very expensive kitchen nick-nack. Consider how you’ll use a product and how you’ve used similar products in the past. Are you still using the product and do you like it? If the product comes with many extras, do you really need all of them? Is it worth paying $20 extra for a space heater with a timer if you’ll rarely use the timer? Look at all angles of a purchase, such as whether that new couch, piano or other large item will fit through your door. Most importantly, will this item be durable and can it be repaired.

7. Is it a Need or a Want?: You need food, you don’t need new video games, despite what GameStop will try to tell you. Consider whether the product will improve or damage your quality of life. Is it a toy or a necessity? Sales pitches are calculated to turn a want into a need, where none existed before.

8. Understand Sales Tactics: If you’re shopping with a spouse or partner, watch out for sales reps who will try and play you off each other. Keep in mind you don’t owe a person anything just because they’ve spent a lot of time with you. Sales reps live by the credo, “Always Be Closing,” so don’t allow yourself to be lulled into complacency. Even small chit chat is directed towards closing a sale.

9. Refuse to Buy on Deadline: Know when a salesperson is using high-pressure tactics and walk away, particularly sales that include a deadline. This includes everything from a first-time-only offer on a club membership to Labor Day sales at a furniture store. If the TVs price will double tomorrow or the couch is suddenly the last one in stock, be on your guard. Deadlines are designed to force you into a sale before you’ve had time to think.

10. Stop the Chatter: Maintain control of the sales relationship by cutting off conversations when they veer off-topic or go on longer than you’d prefer. High-pressure sales people want to keep you on the line or in front of them as long as possible while continuing to angle for a sale. If you’re not interested, you don’t have to discuss your reasons. If the sales person still tries to overcome your objections, say a firm “No. Thank you!” and walk away or hang-up.

11. Is the Salesperson on Commission?: Commissioned salespeople are more likely to push high-end products to increase their profit per sale. That’s fine if you genuinely need that product, but you may end up paying more for the sales pitch than the item you purchased. Whether you’re working with an appliance salesperson or a financial adviser, a commission means the advice you receive is likely to be biased in the adviser’s favor. not yours.

12. Ask questions: Don’t just nod along to a sales rep’s rap. Challenge their pitch with intelligent questions about how the product or service works. Be on your guard if the salesperson avoids answering your questions.

13. Be Polite But Firm: It can be difficult to maintain your cool or not feel cowed when someone is giving you a hard pitch. In the end, moderation is your best bet. Tell the sales rep — in no uncertain terms — how you feel about the product. Sales reps who recognize you know your mind will either drop the issue or walk away.

14. Remember Your Goals: If you’re saving up to buy a house, pay for college or retire early, you really don’t want to spend your money on unnecessary debts. It’s not your responsibility to make sure a salesperson can put their kid through college. Consider if the purchase is more important than your eventual goal and how it will impact that goal.

How to resist a sales pitch

Do you feel overwhelmed when giving a sales presentation? Do you find it challenging to keep the attention of your prospect? As simple as the idea of talking about a product you know very well may sound, there’s really more to it than just talking about a few benefits and features. If benefits and features is the typical approach you take with your pitches, it could be costing you more clients than it gains.

So how can you make sure you’re providing and developing a solid, effective and well-received pitch? Well, here are a few things that you definitely want to avoid:

No Reference to Clients Needs

All the advice in the world won’t save you if you don’t put your client first. I’ve gone into boardrooms and watched people butcher presentations by not delivering a message that connected with their audience. It’s important to know whom you’re talking to and ensure that the message you deliver is targeted specifically towards their needs and problems.

When you’re talking about your products value; ask a prospect questions about how they think this could be used in their business. Ideally, you want to have a good understanding of their business needs and wants before the pitch but sometimes that’s not the case.

When you don’t have prior information on a prospect, ask them about their issues. You would be surprised by how powerful the usage of questions and engagement can be in a pitch. It allows you get into your prospects world and truly identify what their issues are.

Lack of Preparation

Preparing for presentations is far from easy. In fact, it should be the most time consuming aspect of the presentation and pitching process. The more time you invest into developing and rehearsing your presentation; the more confident and comfortable you’ll feel when you make your pitch.

One thing that I’ve noticed after chatting with a handful of professionals about their own tactics is that preparation tactics differ for everyone. Some people need to write out their presentation in full as a script while others simply need jot notes.

I like to start with key talking points and then take those talking points and build a script. This way, I know the most important points for each slide and can improvise on the fly depending on the prospects reactions and questions to the presentation.

Information overload

Minimize the amount of stats, facts and analytical information in your presentation. Instead of trying to get into the nuts and bolts of your product or service, focus on delivering a message that has a good blend of both logic and emotion. This combination will allow you to better connect with your audience and deliver a message that is easy to understand.

An easy way to ensure that you’re not going into information overload is to inject storytelling into your presentation. Storytelling and sales go together like peas in a pod. People have a difficult time remembering facts and stats while have an easy time remembering and sharing stories. Focus on creating a compelling story and sharing it to deliver the value of your offering.

Conclusion

It’s ok if you have made one or two of these mistakes when delivering a pitch or presentation in the past. As long as you can learn from your mistakes and avoid making the same ones over again, you’ll be fine. My hope is that this blog post will help you to deliver captivating sales presentations in the future.

Are there any other big mistakes you should avoid when delivering a sales presentation?

Preparing for a sales-related job interview means you need to be able to answer challenging questions in a way that demonstrates your qualifications as a salesperson. “Sell me this pen” is one of those questions—the prompt frequently comes up in interviews for a variety of sales positions, from entry-level retail associates to the wolves on Wall Street. Interviewers ask this question to analyze your sales skills and techniques under pressure.

In this article, we discuss why interviewers ask questions like these, and how to improve your sales technique so you can sell any product to any individual. We also explain what to avoid in your response, tips on how to respond in a sales interview and two sample answers to help you craft your own pen sales pitch.

How to improve your “sell me this pen” techniques

The following section explains ways you can develop your sales techniques for selling a pen—or any other product—in a job interview:

  • Consider what the interviewer is trying to do. In asking you to “sell me this pen,” the interviewer is not trying to confuse you. Instead, they are trying to learn how well you gather, respond and deliver information about the pen, and how well you are able to conclude the pitch with a persuasive statement.

Research about your interviewer before the interview. Before the interview, do some research on the person you are interviewing with. What is their position? What does a search reveal about their job responsibilities? Both of these can be used when crafting a response to “sell me this pen.”

Practice with a friend. Perhaps the most beneficial way to improve your answer is to practice with a friend. Have them pose as the interviewer and ask you to sell them a pen. Get their advice on how to enhance your response and rehearse your answer more than once.

“Sell me this pen” techniques to avoid

There are certainly some answers to this question that are better than others. In the following section, we’ll review two approaches to avoid when answering “sell me this pen.”

  • Don’t decline to answer. This is not an optional activity. This is an important part of the interview for both you and the interviewer. Saying that you are not comfortable or don’t know how to answer might not help your job prospects with a particular company. Try to be optimistic and willing to give it a chance.

Don’t focus solely on the pen’s features. Although technical details such as its ink type and color are good for a salesperson to know, it’s only a small portion of the selling process. You need to focus more on how the pen can help someone and their specific needs.

Tips and tricks to “sell me this pen”

Here are a few helpful tips to craft a well-thought-out response to this interview question:

  • Be positive. An important part of answering “sell me this pen” is to be positive. An interviewer wants to see how you react to sudden changes. Try to maintain an enthusiastic attitude to demonstrate to the interviewer that you are calm under pressure.

Ask direct questions. Asking the interviewer questions about their experience with pens or how they use them in their daily lives can help you gain ideas on how to proceed with the sales pitch.

Relate the pen to a larger concept or idea. By relating the pen and its importance to a larger concept or life event, you are expanding upon its obvious benefits as a writing tool and demonstrating increased value to your audience.

Relate the pen to the interviewer’s specific needs. Once you have gotten the chance to ask the interviewer about their experience using pens, you can start directing the pitch toward their specific needs. Consider their job responsibilities or personal lives in how you craft your response.

Close by asking them to purchase the pen. An important part of a sales pitch can be trying to close the pitch with a new customer. Try to organically incorporate it into the end of your pitch with a positive statement that makes them want to say “yes.”

Examples

The following section will review two sample answers to “sell me this pen” using the method of direct questioning and personalization in their pitch.

Example 1

You: “If you don’t mind my asking, when was the last time you used a pen?”

Interviewer: “I used one about two hours ago.”

You: “And why were you using it?”

Interviewer: “Well, I had to take notes during a conference call.”

You: “Alright, now, can you tell me about a time when you were let down by a pen?”

Interviewer: “Last week I was writing notes with a pen that kept running out of ink. I had to go all the way back to my office to retrieve a new one.”

You: “That’s awful, you shouldn’t have to go through that.”

Interviewer: “Agreed.”

You: “You seem like a person with a lot of responsibilities on your hands. As the backbone of this company, you are always running around, in and out of meetings, am I correct?”

Interviewer: “Yes, that’s every day for me.”

You: “Well with your busy schedule, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether or not your pen is reliable. This pen here (holds up the pen) will not give out on you. It has a refillable ink compartment and each buyer will receive 10 free ink refills with their purchase. That’s enough ink to operate this pen for two years or more. And if you purchase one today, you’ll get a second pen for 50% off. So what do you say? Are you ready for your life to get easier?”

Example 2

You: “At first glance, this pen is exactly what it seems. A writing utensil at our disposal. But you see, this isn’t just a writing utensil, Mr. Barns. It is a way that we leave our mark. Tell me, what was the last event you used a pen for?”

Interviewer: “To sign a Christmas card.”

You: “That’s a very kind gesture. With our modern technologies, typing seems to be taking over and with it, handwritten sentiments are dying off. If you don’t mind my asking, who was the Christmas card for?”

Interviewer: “Not at all, it was for my daughter and my grandchildren.”

You: “Think for a moment about what it would mean to send them a typed Christmas card. I mean in my opinion, all the sentiment would be gone by using a computer program to type out ‘Merry Christmas from Grandpa Barns.’ Handwriting is something unique to each individual, and by taking the time to write out your Christmas wishes, you are giving them a small piece of you that they can cherish forever.

Interviewer: “I still have a birthday card that my grandmother gave me when I was 10. She’s since passed, but I can tell you one thing: She comes alive again whenever I see her handwritten birthday message.”

You: “It’s as though the life and energy of the writer is translated through the ink of the pen and entombed on the page forever. You see, that’s why I need to sell you this pen, Mr. Barns—so it can help capture your energy and likeness, that your grandchildren can admire every time they open a card from you. Let’s make this happen.”

Jobs in sales

If you’re interested in a career in sales where you may encounter this interview question, there are many job options available to you. Here are 10 potential careers in sales:

How to resist a sales pitch

The way consumers make purchasing decisions is constantly changing, so it’s important to continually reevaluate your sales strategy with your staff. Selling any type of product or service can be a fine line to walk–you have to find that perfect balance between being persuasive but not arrogant or annoying.

This takes careful planning, but fortunately with a solid strategy in place you can make sure your company is staying consistent and closing more deals.

You have to remember that when trying to make a sale, the customer needs to come first. Below are some of the most effective strategies to help close your sales faster:

1. Identify the decision maker.

No matter what industry you are in, knowing the decision maker is crucial to a quick close. Many times the decision makers will send someone else into the fire to learn all of the information they can about your company. If this is the case, be sure to put yourself into the head of the decision maker so that you can customize your sales pitch to that person’s interests, even if they aren’t there.

Of course, your best-case scenario is that you sit down with the decision maker. Do whatever you can to setup a meeting with that person.

2. Be real.

A client can sense if you are being genuine during the sales process. In other words, it’s important to convey to the client that you care about their business and not just the deal. Coming off too calculated can turn people off; however, remember that there is nothing wrong with being prepared. It’s okay to appear like you’re ready for every question that comes your way, just simply don’t act like you don’t care about the customer’s best interests.

3. Create a sense of urgency.

Attach a deadline to the deal to help give the client an incentive to commit. Whether it’s a discount or something free, make them feel like they have the upper hand. This does not mean rush the customer; it simply means try to give them a little extra reason why your product or service is the right choice, and the right choice right now.

4. Overcome objections.

Preparing the sales presentation to address and overcome potential objections can speed up any deal. If something catches you off-guard, you might need to take some time to think up a solution. In a past Inc. article published here, sales expert Tom Searcy calls this having a “landmine map.” By having an outline of anticipated problems and a thoughtful analysis of the risks, you can reduce the resistance.

I highly recommend sitting down with your entire sales team and having each person come up with objections they might anticipate. Give them your sales pitch and see if there are any objections you and your team may have missed.

5. Know your competition.

Competing for business is tough. Knowing the areas that you are more competitive than your competition can lead to that quick close. Again, this is all about preparation. Do your research and make sure that you make note of something that you are doing that your competition is not. This is oftentimes the biggest selling point, so you don’t want to ignore it.

6. Watch what you say!

Don’t put your foot in your mouth. Keep it to the point and focus on your areas of expertise. You want to be real and personable, but you have to remain professional.

Even When You Don’t Like the Sales Part

Wed., June 10 at 4pm ET / 1pm PT

Registration is $45

Limited Spots Available – 1 spot remains

Is your sales pitch getting you a no?

Stop Selling Your Services

Is your sales pitch getting you a no?

Do you believe you need a sales pitch to sell your services or do you resist the sales part?

Like you, my clients often find the sales part uncomfortable.

Here’s the problem: The traditional sales process is transactional, emphasizing the close. It’s not relational.

A better way exists. It’s one where your clients naturally want to know more. You don’t have to sell them.

Getting people interested but never asking for a client to sign up.

You spend a lot of time making friends with your clients or explaining about your services in a friendly way. Then it’s time for the dreaded “SALE.”

During this workshop you will learn:

1. How to enroll new clients without feeling salesy.

Let’s bring an end to the dreaded sales conversation. It’s ineffective and draining. Discover the #1 element which transforms the conversation so you never feel salesy again.

2. Get clear and confident with what to say and how to say it.

Winging it isn’t a strategy. Ask the specific questions which naturally lead to a client asking “How does this work?”

3. 5 steps to handle objections with confidence.

Your response to the dreaded “NO” matters more than you realize. It’s a critical part of the conversation. This singular shift is a game-changer.

Never be afraid of the dreaded “SALE” again.

My clients resist sales pitches. I often hear, “If I wanted to be in sales, I would have taken a sales job.” I understand this point of view and it is true.

If you desire a successful business, you need to know how to enroll new clients with grace, a solid connection from start to finish and understand what’s behind the NO.

This tried and true enrolling strategy works on all medians – in-person, online, in print, and over the phone.

As director of sales for a global industrial company, I made certain B2B purchasing decisions for my company. In that process, I had the opportunity to work with salespeople from other industries and companies. It was actually fun to see what kind of B2B sales strategy and sales tactics another sales professional is using. However, sometimes the experience was pleasant. Other times, it made me want to reach through the phone and choke the life out of the person on the other end of the line.

Biggest mistakes made in B2B sales strategy

Through the last two decades of selling and watching other’s sell, I’ve found a few key fundamentals that make up a solid B2B sales strategy. Failing to follow these fundamental sales techniques will not just make you a horrible salesperson but literally make your prospect hate you. This article is about refining B2B sales strategies and helping salespeople understand how they communicate because wrong communication frustrates our customers.

These are the biggest things that give salespeople a bad name and drive them to fail in B2B sales strategies from the buyer’s perspective.

Trying to sell to the customers a solution they don’t want or need

In order to show you more clearly what kind of mistakes are made in a bad B2B sales strategy, I would like to tell you an incident that happened to me recently. The company I used to work for was in the process of creating its own cloud-based industrial automation infrastructure. As part of that cost expenditure, we needed to co-locate space from a massive data center. Without getting into all the technical jargon, this basically means we were renting space in a secure facility to operate our cloud servers. We have bought our own equipment and simply needed a place in the data center to place it.

The important thing is what the customer needs

A few days before, I am supposed to meet with the salesperson for a data center tour and discuss pricing. He started trying to sell me on using their servers and leasing their managed infrastructure. He’s brought this up several times before, and I’ve told him that we bought our own equipment each time. All we need from them is the space. In fact, he could have closed the sale by applying a straightforward B2B sales strategy.

Wasting the customer’s time; The worst B2B sales strategy ever!

The annoying part is that he gave me a ballpark quote that was about three times cheaper than the actual quote that I had to threaten him. He kept refusing to give me anything in writing until we sat down to hear their sales pitch. This was more than likely going to be a convincing session for us to use their managed infrastructure. Instead, he ended up wasting two weeks of my time. Talk about frustrating. You can guess who didn’t get the business because of his terrible B2B sales strategy.

Today’s economy has created a perpetual sale season.

Posted June 22, 2009

Today’s economy has created a perpetual sale season. At a time when many Americans are working hard to trim their spending, alluring discounts and now-or-never bargains have never been more ubiquitous. From shop windows to advertisements to email enticements, temptation is inescapable.

Sales are powerful motivators to spend, they’ve sabotaged some of the most resolute savers. Today’s consumers need extra armor. Here’s how to resist the spell of a sale and make smart shopping decisions – even in the face of a 70% off tag.

1. Count to 10. Actually, make that 1,200. 20 minutes is about the length of time it takes for your head to resume control once you’ve become emotionally worked up. If you’re in a situation where you feel pressure to buy (like at door-buster event, or when your heart’s pumping because you found a “treasure” in the sale bin) hang on to the item and cool down before you buy.

2. Beware the frenzy of the crowd. Street hawkers hire shills that pretend to be enthusiastic about their items because it works. Retailers sometimes deliberately limit production or distribution of a product in order to stimulate a sense of urgency and competition among consumers. And sometimes a captivating product simply inspires the masses – who inspire more masses, until everyone seems to want one whether they like the product or not. TMX Elmo anyone? When you find yourself in the grips of “crowd frenzy” envision a bright red, laughing image of Elmo and ask yourself, “if nobody else wanted this, would I?” No offense, Elmo.

3. Use cash. Though credit cards offer convenience and often bonus miles or cash back, if you want to get in touch with your budget – touch cash instead of plastic. Credit cards are emotional shields from the paying part of our purchases. They allow shoppers to be overly focused on what they’re getting and under focused on what they’re losing. After all, with credit cards nothing really leaves your wallet. Sale shoppers need to stay focused on the paying part of their transactions, not just the getting part – parting with cash usually does the trick.

4. Visualize the item not on sale – in two different ways.

First imagine you’re shopping and you see the item and it’s the full original price – would you stop and take a look? Would you want it and crave it as much as you do now? Consider that when it comes to apparel, cosmetics and grocery store items in particular, sales often draw your attention to items you’d never before considered buying. Coupons, gifts-with-purchase and jammed sales racks are alluring, however the focus is on the opportunity not on the cost. The key is to question why you never thought you needed the item before you noticed it was on sale. Maybe, it’s not the item that you want but the fun of getting more for your money.

Second, imagine you’re seeing the item at its current (sale) price but not on sale. In other words imagine that it started out at the sale price. Does it seem worth it? Remember your not buying a $50 item that’s “worth $100”, your buying a $50 item that nobody would pay $100 for, now you have to figure out if it’s worth $50 to you.

5. Don’t feel guilty. If you love to shop the sales give yourself a budget, stick with it and most of all – enjoy your purchase. People who feel guilty rob themselves of what’s alluring about a sale in the first place. They are consequently left unsatisfied and continue to crave. Like extreme dieting, this can often lead to blowing good intentions entirely. Caveat: don’t overuse this tip and be faithful to your budget. Research shows that once shoppers make a purchase, the next one’s easier.

Sale shopping is for many a great source of entertainment and getting something on sale sure beats paying full price – as long as it’s something you really want.

To find out more about how sales influence us psychologically take a peek at “Six Sneaky Ways that Sales Spur Spending.”

Kit Yarrow is a professor of psychology and marketing and Chair of the Psychology Department at Golden Gate University. She is also the university’s 2009 Outstanding Scholar. Kit is co-author of the forthcoming Gen BuY: How Tweens, Teens and Twenty-Somethings are Revolutionizing Retail.

How to resist a sales pitch

Everyone who works in sales will run into sales objections. From retail employees on the sales floor to sales executives, people at every level of the business need to learn how to overcome sales objections. Investing time to understand why these objections exist will not only help you gain the right perspective, it will allow you to see fresh perspectives in turning objections into opportunities.

Customers typically present sales objections for three main reasons. They may be skeptical of the product or service. Secondly it is also possible for customers and sales person to have misunderstandings and miscommunication. And finally customers may just be stalling. And part of overcoming objections is identifying the factors behind them. Let’s look at them more closely.

Reason no 1: Skepticism

It is not uncommon for customers or prospects to be skeptical to our sales pitch. And below are the 4 common reasons:

I.Lack of rapport with customer

The most common mistake made is to sell without first building rapport with the customer. This requires listening and showing genuine interest in the prospect. Many sales people make the mistake of listening to respond. They lack the sincerity to truly understand the customer’s situation and hence jump in too quickly too soon with a solution. As Abraham Maslow’s famous saying “to the man with only a hammer, every problem looks like a nail” hence premature selling will almost always end-up getting you objection from customers.

How to resist a sales pitch

“To the man with only a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.”

II. Asking poor questions or giving poor answer

When speaking with prospects you need to ask questions that will uncover the needs of your prospects. You also need to answer the potential customers’ questions completely. Do not minimize their questions or do not assume that there is only one solution to your customer’s questions. Always check with them what they think about your recommendation and be open and get comfortable to explore other alternatives with your customers.

III. Poorly delivered sales presentations

Never rush a presentation and assume that your prospect have the same level of understanding with regards to your products or services. And try to explain the value of your product in a manner that is respectful and helpful for custHow to resist a sales pitchomers. This is especially true for sales people that are promoting products that are more technical in nature (such as industrial widgets, components or electronic component chips etc.) to non-technical savvy customers. Sometimes the sales person uses jargon that alienates the prospects or worst still dumb down information in a way that makes the customer feels intellectually inferior talking to them. When that happens, it is no wonder that the sales person faces objections. The best way never rush through a presentation, be brief and ask good to make sure that your customers are following your train of thought.

People do not trust promises that seem too good to be true. It is essential that prospects understand how your company will meet its promises. Also let them know important details of your follow-through activity so customers have a reasonable expectation of what happens next should they takes up your offer.

Reason no 2: Misunderstanding

How to resist a sales pitchEvery relationship experiences misunderstandings, and misunderstandings happen easily when you are meeting with prospects. Communication is essential if you want to prevent misunderstandings and engage the prospects. And the most effective way to prevent misunderstanding is to strive for a conversation that has the right balance between talking and listening. This is the type of conversation whereby both individuals feel understood and that both parties feel like they have made the right connection. And to have such conversations is by being fully present and engaged in the conversation.

To understand more about how to have such conversation I would recommend that you listen to Ted speaker Celeste Headlee in her talk titled “10 ways to have a better conversation.” It is a brilliant talk that highlights 10 practical ways for us to stay engaged in a conversation and I find this is even true for us who are in the sales profession. And these are her 10 ways:

  1. Don’t multitask
  2. Don’t pontificate
  3. Use open ended questions
  4. Go with the flow
  5. If you don’t know say that you don’t know
  6. Don’t equate your experience with theirs
  7. Try not to repeat yourself. It’s condescending and it’s really boring
  8. Stay out of the weeds….what they care about is you
  9. Listen
  10. Be brief

Reason no 3: Stalling

Occasionally, prospects turn to objections in order to avoid making a decision. There are different reasons why people stall when they are with sales representatives. It is important to understand why people stall in order to determine how you should proceed. Most of the time their reasons are:

  • Not authorized to deHow to resist a sales pitchcide: If the prospect is not authorized to make the final decision, meet with the person who is. So how would you know? Simply ask them if they need to talk to someone else to make the decision. That way you will know.
  • Other choice: People want to compare companies. Try to make sure that you are the final choice. How you do that is by asking prospect permission to follow-through. Get them to tell you when’s the best time to call them back or to meet-up with them again. If they refuse to give you a date or time, then you know that you are probably way behind the queue in their shopping list.
  • Not convinced: If a prospect is not convinced, ask what questions you can answer to help. Help them understand their problems better and what you could and could not do for them.
  • No time: Set a definite time to meet with a busy client.
  • No money: If a prospect cannot afford your product, try to fit in their budget. If not then you could suggest the best next alternative.

Sales representatives need to expect prospects to make objections. Rather than seeing objections as hindrances, they should be viewed as opportunities. I hope that by sharing the reasons why you face objection it could help you address objections early on and therefore will prevent any problems later on in the business relationship. All the best to you and happy selling!

Shane Lee is TRAINETasia’s principal consultant and trainer. TRAINETasia is a sales training and performance improvement company well established in the pharmaceutical industry.