Salespeople, Here’s How You Respond to the Old “Now’s Not a Good Time”

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Salespeople face multiple objections every day. Sucks, doesn’t it? Well stop crying about it and man up because it’s all a part of the job. (Please note: objections can be made easier if your next sales call reminder comes in the form of a funny Spiro recommendation.)

Here are two common objections you’ll hear and how you can deal with them:

“Now’s Not a Good Time”

This is the objection I encounter most and it’s usually a simple issue of prioritization. The company is interested in what you’re offering, but it’s just not at the top of their list. So what do you do?

You find a way to make them understand how your product compliments their priorities.

First, you have to know what their priorities ARE. If you’re doing your homework, you’ll come prepared with a way to rephrase your value proposition in a way that make them think, hey, I need that!

Here’s a real world example: My team and I were trying to score a big deal with United Healthcare for our software service. Every year UHC figures out their strategic plans, main initiatives, and what they can budget into their capital spending (where products like mine would fit in).

Download this cheatsheet of the six questions successful salespeople ask themselves everyday.

They thought our software was interesting, but not in their top-things-they-needed-to-get-done-that-year list. Boom. Wall. But we got over it. First, we had to hook them with the emotional appeal of how cool and exciting our product was, then we had to reel them in with the intellectual appeal of it being strategically relevant.

We emphasized how our product could be good for the careers of the people in the IT department (direct appeal tactic) who would be working with our software. They were onboard, but their pitch to the higher ups failed. So we opted to attack head-on and show them that working with us was still very strategic.

We suggested a collaborative brainstorm to see how we fit into their strategic framework. One of their biggest priorities was minimizing the number of people who signed up for their healthcare and then switched out. When we told them that our software was able to detect people beforehand who might be tempted to not resubscribe in advance, they were sold.

Our initial proposal was a tech sale that failed, but once we rejiggered our value proposition to align with their priorities, we were golden!

“We Can’t Say Exactly Why, But We’re Not Interested”

Have you ever felt like you’re not getting the whole story? Or been turned down without a real good reason?

It’s important to read between the lines. You may discover that what’s killing your deal is just bullshit internal politics.

Real life example: We were selling a deal with a division of Kraft foods and had great relationship with the CIO who was the main purchaser of the middleware software we were selling.

He felt the need to have agreement among his teams before making a final decision so we presented our product to each leader individually. Everything seemed to be going well – they all seemed to love our product. Then, out of left field, the CIO told us the teams were not in agreement. Someone threw a wrench in the gears.

We got a false positive because we had been talking to everyone individually, when people are more likely to skew positive. We obviously hadn’t convinced everyone so we pushed the CIO to get one group meeting together to voice their concerns.

What came out on that group video conference was shocking – two members of the team were having an affair, broke up, and just weren’t on speaking terms. THAT was what was gumming up our deal.

The point here is that salespeople need to make sure that their internal communication is on the same level as their communication with the company rep, otherwise you’ll end up with political situation you have no control over like the one above. Set up individual meetings before group meetings and make sure everyone is in alignment. It will be easier to make your case.

We know rejection stories are a dime a dozen for sales guys. We want to hear the good, the bad and the ugly. Share you tale of woe or triumph below!


 

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About the Author

Adam Honig

Adam is the co-founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a natural sales leader with a mission to help salespeople make more money using artificial intelligence -- or any sort of intelligence for that matter. Adam has been a founder of four companies which resulted in two triumphant IPOs and two legendary mergers. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the 'No Jerks' hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.

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