Overcoming corporate objection to your coaching or consulting offer
Easy-peasy, lemon-meringue squeezy…
Oh the JOY! You’ve made a contact at your ideal corporate client, they need exactly what you offer and they are soooo interested.
In your head you hear a little imaginary “cha-ching” as think about their payment hitting your bank account…
But then – THUD – something else hits you: OBJECTIONS. All of them…
- We don’t have budget…
- It’s not a good time…
- I need to get my boss on board…
Argh! It pulls the socks right of your feet!
I totally get it – if you’re passionate about your work, you don’t want to “sell” – you want to make a difference, grow people, make an impact with your work!
Let me ask you -what’ya gonna do? Put down that phone, stop sending that email – turn away and look elsewhere?
Let me share some non-ick-provoking ways to deal with this stuff that works – read on
Here’s a checklist to dealing with those objections:
Are you listening? It’s tempting to jump in with a reply when you hear your prospect raises objections. But DON’T. Instead, make sure you pay real good attention to what they are saying. It’s too easy to jump to a conclusion, assume that you know what they’re saying (despite what your kids say, you’re not a mind reader…)
EXAMPLE: They might say: “It’s not in our budget” and you might interpret it as “we don’t have money” – but actually there might be other budget items that could be used to cover the spend.
Have you taken the time to understand the objection – really understand it? Ask more questions to delve into what’s really going on, because often prospects don’t tell you the real reason for their objections.
EXAMPLE: when they’re saying “we don’t have time” what they mean may be “it looks like a lot of extra work, we don’t know how to fit that in” – if that’s the case, you could break the offer down into easy small steps.
Have you prepared a “TOP 20” list of the most common objections? If you have done #1 and #2, you’ll have noticed that there are common lines in the objections that clients have and the real reasons that underly them. Brainstorm the top 20 reasons why clients object and work out short and cupcake sweet answers. Even though you’d not use them as scripts, having this in your pocket, it’ll help you deal with the objections they throw at you.
EXAMPLE: you’ll hear objections about no budget, no time, not the right people and not the right resources all the time – regardless of what you offer or the industry your prospect is in.
PRO-TIP: customise the TOP 20 objection list to different markets. Even though on one level, the issues corporate face are the same across, each industry and organisation likes to think of themselves as special, different and unique. So make an effort to sort your objections and answers into groups by market, and add objections you get from only certain areas.
Are you trying to resolve their objection in real-time? The better you can address their concerns right away, the more likely they are to continue the conversation. This is where the document form #3 comes into its own… but also read on #5.
Are you flying by the seat of your pants? Making up things on the spot, either about your offer, your results or other things is likely to get you in trouble; prospects can sense this and it will create distrust that – in all likelihood – will end the opportunity to work together. If you need more information, ask for it, or look it up.
Are your responses to objections clear and to the point? A long, waffling response where you go on and on and on… isn’t going to cut it.
It’ll either be seen as ‘selling’ without addressing their concerns or (maybe worse) as the answer of someone who doesn’t know what they’re talking about. Ouch!
Are you confirming that you’ve answered the objection? Don’t assume you have just because they accept what you say. Ask your prospect how they feel about what you’ve said if it has addressed their concerns. Too often, people will just nod but not really be satisfied by your first answer – give them the chance to ask more question, even to give more objection – it’ll help them to come to a decision quicker.
I know what you’re thinking: it only it was so easy… but seriously, give it a try and you’ll be so happily surprised, you’ll be sending me chocolates as thank you! (I like Swiss more than Belgian 😁)