Inside Sales Best Practices

Dissecting Sales Objections: What a Brushoff Really Means

Christopher Tuttle

Steve Richard, Sales Objections Expert
Steve Richard

Sales objections are like your crazy uncle who makes inappropriate comments at the Thanksgiving dinner table. Even if they make you uncomfortable, you can’t run away from them.

“We’re happy with what we have.”

“You’ve got the wrong guy.”

“I don’t have time for this crap.”

The truth is that most sales objections don’t reveal your prospects’ real concerns.

Steve Richard, co-founder of Vorsight, dissects sales objections to figure out what your crazy-busy prospects really mean. He covered the most common objections and how to handle them in his presentation at the Inside Sales Virtual Summit.

Here’s a quick summary of his session.

Why is it so hard to set an appointment these days?

Your prospects are busy. They are not objecting to you because they don’t like you. They are not objecting to you because they don’t find value in your products and services. They probably don’t even know what your products and services are when you first call them.

They are simply objecting because they are busy, and they have a lot of stuff going on.

So, if you are calling into target account lists or lists of leads, you are going to run into objections at the top of the funnel.

Top of the funnel sales objections

What do objections at the top of the funnel actually mean? The answer is one of three things.

1. I am not listening,

2. I am confused.

3. I don’t see the value.

Your prospects might say they’re too busy, they can’t afford your solution or the timing is bad. But what they really mean is that they’re not listening, they’re confused or they don’t see the value in what you have to offer.

How to overcome objections with verbal judo*

Richard trotted out an objection-handling technique he calls verbal judo. Judo is a martial art where you use your opponents’ force, weight and momentum against them. You can apply this same principle to your sales calls.

Here are the steps of verbal judo:

1. Active listening. This is much easier said than done. It only takes a minute to tell you to listen. But it takes a lifetime to master this skill. No matter what the objection is, listen. You will gather important information that will help you handle the objection.

2. Empathize and repeat what they said. Even if your prospects tell you Martians are invading their offices, you must empathize and repeat what they said, so they know you heard them.

3. Use client voice. Client voice is phrasing your statements and questions from the perspective of their peers, your clients and your prospects rather than from you, the salesperson.

Connect with Steve Richard on Google+.

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*This is a Vorsight coined term.