In my continuing blog series on how to handle the stalls, objections, and real-world situations in sales caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, below you’ll find some suggested email responses to situations you may be running into.
Couple of things to remember about this challenging time:
- Don’t pressure people right now. The challenges your prospects are going through are the same ones you are. If now isn’t a good time for them, respect that! Be concerned about how they are doing and ask them how they are getting along.
- Respect the time frames they are giving you—and then schedule a call “just to check in” at the time they suggest.
- Gently remind them this situation is temporary, and point to the progress countries like China, South Korea and Japan are making in reducing the spread of the virus.
- Suggest, again gently, that you will reach out again in the upcoming weeks…
Here are some emails you may be getting, and some suggested wording for your responses to them:
Email from Prospect #1:
“I have no updates on your proposal because our offices are closed, and we are all working remotely. Frankly, this isn’t a top priority for us right now…”
“Thanks for getting back to me during these rough times! I hope you and your family are staying safe…
“I’ll check back in with you in a couple of weeks just to see how you’re getting along.
“Until then, be well!”
Email from Prospect #2:
“Sorry about my lack of response, but it’s been crazy here!
“For the time being, we’ve decided to focus on our current market and aren’t going to be looking into different markets right now.
“While I really liked what you had to offer, our board has made the decision to wait on anything new until the coronavirus plays itself out.
“I will keep in touch as things change…”
“Thanks for keeping in touch with me. Yes, this is an unfolding and unfamiliar situation, so I completely understand your company’s decision to concentrate on the local market for the time being.
“Things will change, as you know—for example, China has already been able to stop the spread of this (as has South Korea), and I feel this will continue (hope so!).
“Let’s touch base in a couple of weeks just to compare notes. How does next Tuesday, April 7th sound to you?”
Email from Prospect #3:
“I have received your emails…
“We have looked into your company before—and other vendors like yours—and we just haven’t seen your type of solution working for us.
“In addition, we are in full crisis mode here, as you can imagine, so we aren’t considering anything new like this for now.
“Hope you understand.”
NOTE: The Red Flag that they have “looked into your company before” and “we just haven’t seen your type of solution working for us…”is something you need to weigh heavily in deciding whether or not this is a true fit for your company or service…
My response would be:
“Thanks for your email and I completely understand that these are crisis times. I hope you are coping well.
“I will check in with you next month just to assess how your company’s situation is progressing in general, and how you are doing personally.
“Meantime hang in there and wash your hands. (insert smile emoji if you like.)”
Email from Prospect #4:
“This is a terrible time for people in our market to make any kind of buying decision as they have to travel to work with us. So, we aren’t interested at this time…”
“Thanks for your email and I hope you and your family are doing Okay.
“Interestingly, our market research shows us that people are going online these days even more than usual. I guess they have a lot of time on their hands at home. (insert smile emoji if you like.)
“Anyway, hopefully this situation will pass as governments get a handle of testing and quarantining their populations—much like China, South Korea, and Japan have done. The spread there has slowed considerably.
“As things begin getting back to normal, I’d love to reconnect with you to assess your plans for the third and fourth quarter. Would next month be a good time to reconnect?
“Let me know and be well…”
The thing to remember with all these emails is that you are acknowledging the situations they are dealing with (we all are dealing with), and yet you are also suggesting timeframes to get back in touch with them. In doing so, you remain in control of the sales situation.
As always, adapt these responses to your product, service, and company, and make sure to be empathetic yet do use the core selling skills that help you further the communication and the sale.
And stay safe out there!
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