Published on July 5th, 2018
Have you ever felt like your proposal really knocked it out of the park, only to have the prospect put you off?
It has happened to all of us at one time or another. (Probably more times than we’d care to admit.)
You put a ton of time, energy, and effort into a stellar proposal and then you’re hit with a lackluster response… Something like, “let me talk to my partner” or “let me see if we have the money” or my personal favorite, “send me more information.”
Are these responses put-offs or simply objections that can be flipped into something positive?
A really knock-it-out-of-the-park marketing agency proposal answers questions before they’re asked. Being transparent by sharing your exact process builds more trust.
Of course, questions will still be asked and objections will still be raised, but if your proposal answers 90% of the unasked questions, you’re so close!
That’s when the agency salesperson can come through on the extra 10% and bring it to the finish line.
I firmly believe there are no bad agency clients; only bad prospects or a bad process.
My N.B.A.T. strategy for qualifying your new agency prospects helps eliminate most of the tire-kickers and time-wasters. However, even with a buttoned-up qualification process, a bad prospect still sometimes squeezes through the cracks.
Tire-kickers vs Time-wasters
So, how do you know if your prospect has a true objection or is just wasting your time?
Honestly, there’s a small part of it that requires a finely-tuned BS meter :) However, there are some tactics you can apply to get to the bottom of things faster, easier, and turn more no’s and maybe’s into yes’s.
I’ll be covering some sales objection handling strategies in this series of articles for IMPACT.
So, let’s start with my personal favorite… “send me more information.”
When your prospect gives you this line, it means one of two things. Either:
- something is missing or
- you’re just getting nicely blown off.
It can be difficult to know which case you’re dealing with.
This is why n I tell my clients to always ask: WHAT, WHEN, and WHY.
These three simple questions will help you determine whether you need to help your prospect overcome a hang-up or whether they’re putting you off.
When you hear “send me more Information,” here’s what you should ask the prospect:
- “WHAT information would you like me to send you?”
This helps you determine what might be missing from your proposal and what else they need to know before they can say yes. Sometimes we’re just too close to the business and don’t realize we aren’t sharing as much as necessary in order to make an easy decision for the prospect.
- “WHEN would you like me to send the information?”
Maybe they are trying to meet a specific deadline or achieve a time-sensitive goal. You want to follow-up with the right information at the right time in order to increase your chances of working together.
- “WHY do you need this additional information?”
This will help you understand more of the specific goals the prospect is trying to achieve. It might also reveal if you’re speaking to the right decision-maker or not. Perhaps the person you’re working with will say they need more information to pass along to their boss or business partner. You need to get in front of the right person or people to answer questions accurately.
Now, if someone is just blowing you off they won't have good answers to these questions.
They’ll respond generically or fumble through their answers.
On the other hand, a good prospect, who is genuinely interested in working with your agency, will have a very specific piece of information they’re requesting, as well as a timeline and reason.
That's how you’ll see if they're the real deal and whether they're worth your time... But it doesn’t stop there!
Next, assuming this is still a legitimate prospect, you’ll obviously agree to send the information, but make sure to set up the next meeting right then and there.
Get commitment upfront. That's how you're going to close more business and stop wasting time on the wrong prospects.
Stay tuned for part 2 in my agency sales objection series next month!