Objections are inevitable in the world of B2B sales, but that doesn’t mean that a deal is over when a prospect hits you with one. With the right objection handling strategy, you can help prospects address their objections in a non-confrontational way.
The key is to learn to ask the right questions that uncover the reasoning behind the objections. Objections often revolve around concerns about price or the product, or comparisons between your offering and those of your competitors. Handling these objections can be an important opportunity to educate your prospects.
One of the most successful methods for objection handling is the LAER Bonding Process, developed by Carew International. LAER stands for Listen, Acknowledge, Explore, and Respond. This process can be used to handle objections in sales and build stronger relationships with prospects.
Listen and Acknowledge
When a prospect raises an objection, the simple act of listening shows that you are interested in what your prospect has to say, and that you’re not just there to bulldoze through the conversation.
After listening, acknowledge the objection they have raised. This can be as simple as a nod, or a reiteration of their objection statement. Acknowledging their objections can help to diffuse any tension and create a calmer environment.
Explore and Respond
The next step is to explore what the underlying concerns are for your prospects. Spend enough time in this step to make sure you’ve understood their problem correctly.
For example, if a prospect says they are currently in a contract with your competitor, this could mean a few things. Are they truly satisfied with the results they’re getting from their current solution? Are they concerned about the cost of switching, not just monetarily, but the time and labor that will be required? Do they have a good relationship with your competitor and enjoy the attention they receive?
If you don’t spend time actively exploring what the subtext is in the objections raised, you won’t be able to effectively respond to it.
Once you have a full understanding of the objection, you can now present your response. This could be a recommendation, an alternative solution, or a logical next step to address the objection and close the objection.
Examples of Common Objections
Now that you know the basics of objection handling, let’s take a look at some of the common sales objections and how you can respond to them.
Price objections are the most common. Even prospects that are inclined to buy your product or service will present a price objection when in conversation with a salesperson. For example, if a prospect states that your product or service is too expensive, you can focus on the features of your product and how it would help your prospect address the pain point they shared with you.
Another common objection you may hear is that the prospect doesn’t have the money to buy your product or service. In this case, you can focus on the value that your product or service provides and how it could benefit them in the long run.
By proactively asking questions to identify objections and using the LAER Bonding Process, you can be sure to have open and honest communication with your prospects and move past any objections they raise.
Listening to their concerns and acknowledging them, following up with a sincere deep dive into their concerns, and responding with solutions, suggestions, and education:
- Helps prospects address their objections in a non-confrontational way
- Builds a more trusting relationship between buyer and seller, and
- Moves them closer to closing the deal.