No – a word that salespeople really don’t like to hear. No is definite, absolute, obstructive and really doesn’t help you to meet your sales figures but sometimes, and you may be surprised by this, “no” may not be the worst answer a prospect can give.
“But Dan” I hear you say (very sophisticated blogging platform is wordpress as it gives me the ability to listen in to all of my readers), “how can No ever be a good thing to hear?” Well, let me explain – oh and can you stop slurping your coffee so loudly, it’s very off putting.
Imagine a situation – and this won’t be too hard to imagine if you’ve worked in sales or marketing for, say more than a week or so – you’ve spoken to a prospect, done all of your exploratory questioning, matched your benefits to their needs, possibly even arranged a meeting where you’ve covered everything in great detail, built some rapport, got back to the office, sent across your proposal and then made a quick follow up call to talk through the proposal.
Prospect takes the call, all seems positive although they’re unable to make a decision at this stage as they need to run it past the other partner in the business so you agree to speak later in the week. So, you call them back, reception informs you that they’re in a meeting, you leave a message letting them know you’ve called as agreed then, as soon as the message is left, send an email to remind them that you’ve called.
A day passes, no call from the prospect so, you call again, leave another message, send another email. Still nothing. A week passes as you feel they might need a bit of breathing space, more voicemail, more emails. Nothing. You begin to wonder what you did wrong. Was there something you didn’t cover in the meeting? Was there an aspect of the proposal that didn’t make sense? Was it you? The truth of the matter is, that you’ll never truly no – Until they say “NO”
The second you’re told that they’re not interested is the moment you can start to analyse the objection and get to the root cause of the issue. “No” is an opportunity to put things right, to answer any questions they might have, to make adjustments and improvements to your proposal or the moment where you can both make a sensible decision and move on.
So, if you’re on the other side of the sales process – if you’re the person with the buying power that, for some reason can’t bring yourself to make a final decision and save that poor, overworked salesperson (this may not apply in all cases) from wasting their valuable time, please do us and you a favour and Just Say No!
Inspired Business Development
Unit K9 Cradley Enterprise Centre
T:01384 566 078