Dealing Successfully With Gatekeepers

Every month, I get emails from my readers asking me how to deal with gatekeepers. They tell me the most frustrating part of prospecting is actually getting through to the decision maker. They get interrogating questions like:

“Will he know what this call is about?”

And

“Is she expecting your call?”

And

“Have you spoken to him before?”

These and other objections frustrate sales reps to the point of them developing some serious call reluctance. I’m sure you know what I mean…

Don’t you wish that you, and your team, had a proven approach that actually works?

There is, and here are the basics of it:

  1. First of all, be super polite to the receptionist as she gets sales calls every day! Believe me, a receptionist knows a sales rep almost the moment they open their mouth. And one of the surest “tells” is that most sales reps are demanding and borderline rude. So the first thing to do is to be polite. Use “please” and “thank you” a lot, and treat the receptionist like a person – not an obstacle to be overcome.
  2. Don’t pitch the gatekeeper! This is fundamental error number one, and too many sales reps are still making it. To start with, the receptionist doesn’t care what you are selling or how good it is. Instead, her/his job is to get you to the right person. Recognize that and get good at it.
  3. Give an instructional statement. Receptionists take a lot of direction and are most comfortable when they don’t have to make decisions about calls. Instead, they are there to route them. Learn how, and you’ll get a lot further.
  4. Be prepared for push back with a good script. Because you already know what’s coming, why not be prepared to deal with it successfully? Having a proven script for this part of your call (every part, actually!) is the make or break of being successful with it.

So here is the script you need that incorporates all of the above. Don’t take my word for it, rather, use it and see for yourself how much more successful you’ll be:

“Hi may I speak with {first name of prospect} please?

Receptionist: “May I tell him/her who is calling?”

“Yes please. Please tell him/her that ________ ________ is holding please.”

If you use this just as it is (using “please” three times), you will be put through an astounding 60%+ of the time without any additional screening!

Don’t believe me? Good. Try it for yourself and see.

And for the other 40% of the time when you are asked, “What’s this call regarding?” or, “Have you spoken to him/her before?” or even if you don’t have the prospect’s name, you can find these and other answers in my new book, Power Phone Scripts.

See it here.

Stop struggling and start closing more sales!

How to Handle the Objection, “We’re all set”

Let’s face it — prospecting by phone is hard.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve done your social media homework on LinkedIn and found a distant cousin in Utah, if you’re making, fill in the blank here (“unexpected calls”, “prospecting calls”, “discovery calls”, “cold calls”, etc.), you’re going to get resistance.

And if you want to be successful at overcoming it, then you’d better be prepared with solid, scripted responses to things like: “We’re not interested,” and “Just email me something,” and “We’re already taken care of,” etc.

I guarantee your job (and life) will go a lot better if you do.

In my new book, “Power Phone Scripts,” I list over 500 word-for-word responses to these and many other objections, stalls, and resistance statements you get day in and day out.

To give you a sample, here are 5 of 10 ways I list in the book on how to handle the “We’re all set for right now” objection. Variations of this include:

“We are O.K. with our present system”

OR

“We’ve already got a company that handles that”

OR

“We’re fine for right now”

So here’s how you handle the “We’re all set” blow off or/and any of its variations:

“We’re all set”

Response One:

“That’s great, and I’d just like to see if we could get on your vendor list for the next time you’re in the market.  Let me ask you…”

Now get into your qualifying questions…

Response Two:

“Most companies I speak with are ‘all set’ and that’s why I’m reaching out to you now – I want to give you an option for the next time you’re in need of this.  Let me ask you…”

Back to qualifying…

Response Three:

“No problem.  Let me ask you: the next time you’re in need of this, what’s number one on your wish list?”

Response Four:

“I understand – I didn’t expect to catch you in the market right now.  Instead, let me get an idea of your perfect profile, and then I’ll send you some information you can keep on file next time you need this…”

Now re-engage by asking a qualifying question.

Response Five:

“Got it.  Let me ask you: the next time you are in need of this, are you the right person to speak to about it?”

If yes, then qualify them for that next time – especially asking about timeframe, budget, etc.

As you can see, if you have any one of the proven responses at your disposal when prospecting, you’ll be much more effective at getting the next level with your prospect – instead of getting turned down.

And wouldn’t you want that?

If you liked what you just read and think responses like these would help you, or your team, get further with decision makers, then get over 500 more proven responses by ordering my new book: Power Phone Scripts.

How to Handle: “We’re happy with who we’re using…”

First of all, I’d like to thank all of you for making my new book release a HUGE success on Amazon! Power Phone Scripts is the #1 New Release in the Retail Industry! If you haven’t had a chance to get your copy, then simply click on the book link at the bottom of this email.

Today’s article contains some scripts right from Power Phone Scripts that teach you how to deal with an objection you probably get often: “We’ve already got a supplier for that.” Variations are things like:

“I’m happy with who were using”

OR

“We’ve been doing business with our current supplier for a long time…”

AND

“My (brother/relative/friend) handles that…”

While all these objections or stalls may seem insurmountable, they aren’t! All you have to do is be prepared for them with a proven script and rebuttal. And you’ll find those below. Let’s start with:

Objection: “I’ve been doing business with my current supplier for a long time…”

Rebuttal:

“How long has that been?”

Layering question:

“And has it been that long since you’ve compared prices and services with another provider?”

OR

“You know, a lot has changed in that time; it sounds like this would be a good time to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only still getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help.

“Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

How to Handle, “My supplier is my friend/brother/long term relationship, etc.”

While this is, at first glance, a seemingly difficult objection to overcome – and sometimes, if it’s true, won’t be overcome right away – there are ways to position yourself to earn some of the business either now, or to be the preferred vendor they reach out to if they need to consider making a change.

The way to do this effectively is to be prepared with proven scripts. Let’s take it one at a time:

Objection: “My supplier is my friend.”

“I understand, I also do business with people I consider friends as well. Tell me, how long have you been doing business with him/her/them?”

Layering question:

“And who were you doing business with prior to them?”

Layer:

“And when was the last time you did a comparison with another provider?”

[If never or a long time]

“Well then, it’s a good idea to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only still getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help.

“Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

If they say no, then simply use the “Next in Line Script” below:

“O.K., no problem. One last question: Could I be the next in line person you reach out to in case you ever need to get another quote or service comparison?”

[If yes – take all their information and then]:

“Just out of curiosity, what would have to happen for you to even consider reaching out to someone else?”

Objection: “My supplier is my brother/relative.”

As above, your first job is to question and explore this objection.

Use:

“Hey that’s great. As you know, doing business with relatives can have its upside and downside, how’s your experience been?”

[If great]

“That’s good to hear. Just out of curiosity, how long have you been doing business with them?”

Layer:

“And who did you use before that?”

Layer:

“And what did you like about doing business with a non-relative that you miss now?”

[Regardless of what they say, Layer]:

“Well then, it’s a good idea to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help. Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

If they say no, then simply use the “Next in Line Script” above.

As you can see, handling objections become easy if you take the time to script out a best practice response to them.

If you’d like to get over 500 additional scripts, phrases and questions to help you overcome the resistance, stalls, and objections you get when selling over the phone (or in person!), then Click Here to order a hand signed copy of my new book: Power Phone Scripts!

(Note: this offer for signed copies is limited. If you would like a copy, then order today to ensure availability)

How to Overcome the Top Three Objections in Sales

There is a secret that every top selling professional knows and leverages. It’s what enables them to consistently out perform all other struggling sales reps in their company and in their industry. And here is what it is:

80% of the selling situations, the stalls, the resistance, the objections you get into today, you’ll get into tomorrow, next month, and next year. What top producers do is make a list of these repeatable selling situations, they then script out, memorize, and internalize the best practice way of handling them, and that’s why they succeed more of the time than their competition.

Think about it: If you made a list of the objections you get when prospecting, wouldn’t it contain things like:

“We’re not interested.”

“We already have a supplier for that.”

“Just email me something.”

How about for closing:

“I’m going to need to think about it.”

“The price is too high.”

“I’m going to have to talk to (someone else).”

You can probably add a few more, but very soon your list would end. You’d have your top 80%.

Now ask yourself: How much more effective would you be if you could ace each one of those objections or blow offs? How much more confident would you be?

Here’s the good news: I’ve just published a new book – Power Phone Scripts – that has over 500 word-for-word scripts, questions, phrases, and conversation starters that will give you the best practice responses used by the top selling professionals in all industries. And you can get it here

In Power Phone Scripts, there are 10 new ways to handle the “I need to think about it” objection alone! Here is one from the book:

“I need to think about it”

“_________, obviously there is something that either doesn’t make sense to you, or you need to check on something, I’m not sure which.  But procrastinating on this won’t help make this decision easier for you.  Let me ask you: What proof do I need to give you right now that this will work for you, to help you make that decision?”

Here’s another excerpt from the Power Phone Scripts that gives you a proven response to “The price is too high.” (Note: You get 5 new responses to this objection if it’s B2B, and 6 responses if it’s B2C – 11 total!):

“The price is too high,” (B to C):

“I understand and let me ask you: if price were not an issue on this – in other words, if this were more in alignment with what you could pay – is this something you would move forward with today?”

And here is a script from the book that gives you a response to “I need to talk to….”. (Note: You get 6 new responses to this objection in Power Phone Scripts):

“I need to talk to…”

“I understand _________.  Tell you what I’d be happy to do:  I know you are behind this, right?”

[Must get buy-in here first]

“Well, it’s not fair to ask you to do my job, so if it’s all right with you, I’ll be happy to reach out to (decision maker) directly and answer any questions they might have – would that be O.K.?”

[If NO]

“No problem.  Just out of curiosity, do you think they will go with this?”

[If NO or Don’t Know]:

“What would it take for them to say yes?”

Imagine how much more successful and confident you would be if you had these proven responses ready when you got one of these stalls or objections?

And now ask yourself how much more successful you’ll be when you have over 500 more!

If you like what you’re hearing, then I’ve got good news for you: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Phrases, Questions, and word-for-word scripts to Open and Close More Sales is now available!

BONUS: Plus, when you buy today, you’ll get hundreds of dollars in bonuses from some of the top selling professionals in the industry today like: Jeffrey Gitomer, Jeb Blount, Wendy Weiss, Tom Hopkins, Mark Hunter and many more!

See the offer here

Make Power Phone Scripts, your #1 Summer Read – and then get ready to make more money in the third and fourth quarter than you ever had!

And if you’re a sales leader, then invest in a copy for each member of your team! It’s the sure way to show them you care about their career – and your company’s success!

Order bulk copies here

Pre-Order Power Phone Scripts Today!

Great news! My brand new book, published by Wiley & Sons: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-for-Word Questions, Phrases, and Conversations to Open and Close More Sales, is now available for pre-order!

Get Yours Today: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million

Power Phone Scripts is packed with so many new and fresh scripts and approaches you and your team will not only close more sales after reading and applying these proven techniques, you’ll also be more motivated and confident as well!

Here are just five examples of cold call rebuttals (there are five more in the book PLUS examples from the other calls (call-in and existing accounts)!

For cold calling or prospecting calls:

I’m not interested—Response #1:
“Quick question: Does that mean you’re not interested at this moment, but in a few months, things could change, and I should keep in touch?”

I’m not interested—Response #2:
“Who else at your company do you think might have a need for something like this?”

I’m not interested—Response #3:
“I’m with you—quick question though: are you the right contact for this, or is there another department (or person) I should check with?”

I’m not interested—Response #4:
“When should I check back with you?” [If given a date]

“Great. So I can be more prepared for that, quick question: are you the right contact for this?” (Then add other qualifying questions)

I’m not interested—Response #5:
“If you were to be interested, what is the typical (volume, amount, frequency, etc.) that you normally order/use/need?” [If they tell you]

“And who do you normally get that from?”

BAM! How much more successful would you and your team be if they finally had access to techniques that are fresh and actually work?

Now, imagine having over 500 more responses to help overcome other objections, get past gatekeepers, build rapport with decision makers, handle presentations and demos better, leave better voice mails, etc.?

Get Copies for your Entire Team & Get a Discount: Shop Here for multiple copy discounts and give your team the edge it needs to succeed!

Power Phone Scripts is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books-A-Million

Get your summer reading NOW by Pre-Ordering today!

Getting Behind the Stall Objection

Last week I was speaking with a new prospect who had called in to inquire about one of my inside sales training programs. I went over her needs, matched up my training to fit those needs, gave her pricing options and then began closing on possible dates for the training.

And that’s when I got the old stall, “Well, let me run this by my boss, and I still have to hear back from some other vendors, etc..” Sound familiar?

Now all stalls are bad, but what was even worse was that a few days later she stopped returning my calls and didn’t respond to my emails. Now I can take a hint, and I knew that she probably wasn’t going to be a deal. I’m sure you can relate, and so I want to give you an effective technique that will allow you to:

1) Open up the dialogue again.
2) Find out why your prospect isn’t going with you.
3) Get them to tell you what you might be able to do to save the sale.

It’s called the “I love to learn” technique and here’s what you do:

First, you’re going to have to be persistent and keep calling your prospect until you get them on the phone. Don’t leave any more voice mails. And once you do get them to pick up the phone, say the following:

“Hi __________, I’m glad I reached you – how have you been?”

They will likely try to brush you off here, so you say:

“That’s perfectly OK. I’ve been in sales long enough to know when we might not be a match for a company. Just a quick question, though. You know, I love to learn, and I’m always trying to improve, what specifically about our (offer, quote, product or service) didn’t seem right for you at this time?”

Now be quiet and listen.

If you do this right, your prospect will tell you what was wrong with your proposal, and this will give you a chance to adjust or adapt it to fit their needs. Will it always work? Of course not, but if there is still a chance to get a sale, this technique will show you how.

If they aren’t going to be a deal this time, then you can ask any of the following questions to set up future business:

“What might you need to see from us next time you’re in the market again?”

AND

“Do you mind if I kept in touch with you every so often?”

AND

“How about someone in another department?”

Last resort:

“Do you know of anyone else in your industry this might be a fit for?”

This worked with my prospect, and I was able to set her team up for remote training. Try it for yourself and begin finding out what’s really behind the stall and what you can do to overcome it.

The Key To Building Value

You hear it all the time — if your price is higher than your competition you’re told to “build value.” You’re instructed to stress the quality, the warranty, the features, etc. But your prospects have heard all that before, haven’t they? Want a better way?

You also hear all the time that prospects will buy from people they like, know and trust. I would add that your enthusiasm for and belief in your product or service plays a big role in getting your prospects to choose you over your competition.

Knowing this, I’ve often used the following script to not only build value in my product or service, but also to build value in myself. Below you’ll find a script you can use – but, as always, I recommend you personalize it so you feel comfortable saying it:

If your prospects says, “I can get cheaper,” or “The ‘other’ company has something similar or for less money,” or anything like that, say:

“You know _________ I’m aware of all the other options for this (product or service) and quite frankly if I thought any of them were better for my clients, I’d be working there and selling them.

“When I got into this industry I did my own research, and I looked for the best company that not only offered the best (product or service) but also delivered the best customer service and follow-up. I chose (your company) because they give my clients the best overall value and the best customer experience, and that means they continue to do business with me and refer new business to me as well.

“If there was a better product or company for you to be doing business with, I’d be there and we’d be talking about that. But there isn’t.

“Bottom line — if you want the best overall value, results and experience with this (your product or service) then do what I do did – choose (your company) – believe me, you’ll be glad you did.

“Now, do you want to start with the X size order or would the Y size order be better?”

This technique builds value in the most important part of any sales transaction — you and your belief in your product or service. Use it each time you need to build real value, and watch as prospects follow your lead.

Remember, while prospects have a choice of products and companies, they can only get you when they purchase from your company.

Preview of My New Book: Power Phone Scripts

Great news everyone: Wiley, a publishing house out of New York City, has picked up the domestic and international rights to my new book: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-for-Word Questions, Phrases, and Conversations to Open and Close More Sales!!

The release date is July 11th, 2017. When you get back to the office after the July 4th holiday, be on the lookout for it. I consider this my best sales book ever!

Power Phone Scripts is packed with everything I’ve learned in over 30 years in the inside sales industry, and anyone who reads it will have everything they need to be a top producer in their industry.

Here is a sneak preview of a couple of scripted approaches to handle the “I’ve already got a relationship with someone for that” objection:

Existing relationship close—#1:

“I totally know how that is, and I’m not here to come between you and that relationship. But hey, everything changes, as you know, and if something should change between how you are doing things now, it’s always good to have done your research in advance so you are not scrambling later…

“Why don’t we at least get together briefly, and I will give you some solid options in case you ever need them …” (Set the appointment)

Existing relationship close—#2:

“I understand and you know , every now and then initiatives change. Sometimes you might need a lower price, or more variety of product, or who knows. The point is that it’s always good to know what your options are.

“How about this: it doesn’t cost anything to at least compare what else is out there these days, and who knows, if things change with you at least you will know who to call to ask questions. Let’s do this …”

As always, adjust these two scripts to fit your personality, your product or service. And then practice with them until you deliver them perfectly!

And mark your calendars and be on the lookout for my new book on July 11th: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-for-Word Questions, Phrases, and Conversations to Open and Close More Sales!!

How to Handle: I looked it over and not interested

Don’t you hate it when you get back to your prospect, you’re ready to give a great pitch, you need the sale, and…and….they tell you they looked it over and they’re not interested!

Wait a minute! You want to scream. Just give me a chance….

Believe it or not, there is a way to deal with this. And it’s the same way to deal with every other recurring sales situations you get: Be prepared with a solid script – or two or three.

The secret to getting past this objection/resistance statement is to not only be prepared for it, but more importantly, to be prepared to overcome it two or three times. Sometimes it takes that kind of perseverance to get into your pitch and get the sale.

So here are three proven scripts you can use the next time your prospect tells you “I looked it over and I’m not interested…

Response #1:

“I understand, and that’s perfectly OK. At first a lot of people I speak with don’t fully understand all the ins and outs of this and that’s why I’m here. Before you make a decision though, let’s do this. I’ll take just a few minutes to explain how this might help you, and if, after you understand it, you still think it’s not for you, we’ll part friends. Do you have that information handy?”

Response #2:

“I didn’t expect you to be interested; heck, our marketing department hasn’t yet figured out a way to get our prospects to call us back – and that’s why they hired me!

But seriously, this (product/service/investment) has some great features that aren’t readily available in the (demo/material/information) I sent you, and it’ll only take a couple of minutes to find out if they would be a fit or benefit for you.

Tell you what, do yourself a favor and spend a few minutes with me to find out how and if this would be right for you. Grab the information/quote/brochure and let me cover a few things – do you have it handy?

Response #3:

“I understand, and believe me, I get that a lot. In fact some of my best clients said that at the beginning as well. But I’m sure you’d agree that any decision you make, whether it’s a yes or a no – and I can take either one – is best made once you understand all the facts, isn’t that right?

Well ________ I’m here to help you learn those, so do yourself a favor and grab that information, and let’s briefly go over it. If at the end it’s not for you we’ll part friends. Do you have it handy?”

Now, take some time and reword them slightly to fit your personality, your product or service. Then get in the habit of using them over and over again. What you’ll find is that more and more prospects will actually let you pitch them, and some of those will buy!

If you found this article helpful, then you’ll love my Completely Updated and Revised eBook, “The Complete Book of Phone Scripts.” Now over 200 powerful and effective scripts to help you easily get past the gatekeeper, set appointments, overcome objections and close more money!

Visit: http://mrinsidesales.com/completescripts.htm and find out why Jeffrey Gitomer, Brian Tracy, Tom Hopkins and many others recommend Mike’s ebook of Phone Scripts!

 

Sales Advice from Pablo Picasso

I read a great quote from Picasso (yes, the famous painter) the other day, and it really resonated with my sales philosophy. Here it is:

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”

You’re probably wondering what that has to do with sales, and it’s simple: Most sales rep’s instincts are to adlib when they get an objection or when they get into a sales situation that isn’t going their way.

The problem with this is they haven’t first learned the rules of proper objection handling – like questioning an objection first, or isolating an objection, etc. – so instead they just wing it. And if you are doing this now, then you know how that turns out.

For years, I’ve been preaching, teaching, and training sales teams to put in the time and effort to learn the proper sales techniques first, and then after they understand and have mastered the fundamentals, then they can “adapt” them to each particular prospect or situation.

Here is a quick example:

A common objection in sales is the, “I have to show this to my (boss, manager, partner, etc.).” How does your sales team handle this?

The “rule” a pro follows is to isolate this objection to make sure it isn’t a smokescreen hiding other objections like, “It’s too much money,” or “I can get a better deal elsewhere,” etc.

Because pros know the rule above, they can then “break it like an artist,” by adapting their rebuttal to each prospect. This can include:

“I understand, just out of curiosity, what is your take on this now?”

OR

“I’m with you, let me ask you this, though: If your partner says ‘do whatever you think is best’, what would you tend to do?”

OR

“If your partner could go either way, which way are you leaning now?”

OR

“That’s fine and we talked about this earlier. But given what we’ve just gone over, what is your opinion on this?”

OR

“And if your partner asked you what you thought he should do, what would your answer be?”

This is the “art” of handling objections. Unfortunately, most sales reps and sales teams have never been taught the rules or fundamentals of proper selling, so they adlib, lose sales, and get discouraged. And your company misses its revenue numbers.

It’s also the reason my business grows each year.

The solution to this is to invest the time, money, and effort to learn and master core inside sales techniques.

One easy and fast way to do this is to check out a brand new video training course called, “Essential Cold Calling Skills for Confidence and Success,” I created for Viddler Online Sales Acadamy.

You can see it here.

This course is made up of five video modules (about 5 minutes each), and each module teaches an essential prospecting skill which builds on the one before it.

Each module also comes with specific, scripted sales materials you can download to help you, and your inside sales team, master the essential cold calling skills they need for success.

So if you are ready to master the rules so you can work like an artist and attain top sales performance, then start here.

Remember, each and every investment you make in your sales team, pays for itself each and every month.