Prospecting – The Lifeblood of Selling



A.             People want to trust the person they buy from.

B.             New customers are frequently gained through referrals which are earned by displaying integrity, truthfulness, and character to the current customer.


A.             Sales Process - a sequence of actions taken by the salesperson which leads toward the customer taking a desired action and ends with follow-up to ensure purchase satisfaction.

B.             10 steps in the selling process:

1.     Prospecting

2.     Pre-approach

3.     Approach

4.     Presentation

5.     Trial Close

6.     Objections

7.     Meet Objections

8.     Trial Close

9.     Close

10.  Follow-up


A.             Prospecting.

B.             Obtaining an appointment.

C.             Preapproach planning.


A.             Prospect - a qualified person or business that has the potential to buy your product or service.

B.             Prospecting - identifies potential customers.

1.     Increases sales.

2.     Replaces customers that will be lost over time.

C.             “Lead” - a person or business who might be a prospect.

D.             Questions to ask to determine if an individual is a qualified prospect:

1.     Does the prospect have the money to buy?

2.     Does the prospect have the authority to buy?

3.     Does the prospect have the desire to buy?


A.             All leads and prospects are filtered out as they are subjected to the three mad questions.


A.             Customers are coming in and going out of the salesperson’s sales base.

B.             The cost of acquiring a new customer is higher than keeping a present one, which is why service follow-up is so important.



A.             Many salespeople prefer to contact prospects having similar characteristics to themselves.

B.             Evaluation of possible alteration of prospecting methods.


A.             E-prospecting on the Web

1.     Individuals

a.     Free sites:

b. offers information for a fee.

2.     Organizations

a.     The company’s Web address.

b.     Other sites:,,

c.     Search engines.

B.             Cold Canvas method - relies solely on the volume of cold calls made.

C.             Endless Chain-Customer Referral - after every sale or contact, the salesman asks the customer for a list of several friends who might be interested in the product.

D.             Orphaned Customers - salespeople often leave their employers to take other jobs and their customers are left as new prospects for other employees.

E.             Sales Lead Clubs - an organization or group of salespeople in related but noncompetitive fields that meet twice a month to share leads and prospecting tips.

F.              Get Lists of Prospects - make a list of what your ideal prospect looks like, and take the information and apply it.

G.             Become an Expert: Get Published - by convincing an editor that you’re an expert in your field, you become one and prospects will come to you when they are ready to buy.

H.             Public Exhibitions and Demonstrations - frequently take place at trade shows and other types of special interest gatherings.

I.               Center of Influence - involves finding and cultivating people in a community or territory who are willing to cooperate in helping to find prospects.

J.              Direct Mail - an effective way to contact individuals and businesses.

K.             Telephone and Telemarketing - allows for person-to-person contact and interaction between the lead and the caller.

L.             Observation - a way a salesperson often can find prospects by constantly watching what is happening in the sales area.

M.            Networking - making and using contacts.


A.             Three criteria in developing the best prospecting method:

1.     Customize a prospective method to fit your firm’s needs.

2.     Concentrate on high potential customers first.

3.     Always call back prospects who didn’t buy.

B.             Referrals are used in most prospecting methods:

1.     Cold Canvassing

2.     Endless Chain-Customer Referrals

3.     Orphaned Customers

4.     Sales Lead Clubs

5.     Public Exhibitions and Demonstrations

6.     Center of Influence

7.     Telephone

8.     Networking

C.        The Prospect Pool

1.     Group of names gathered from various sources.

2.     Four main sources are:

a.     Leads

b.     Referrals

c.     Orphans

d.     Your customers


A.             Provides guidelines for when a salesperson should ask for referrals.

B.             The parallel referral sale - sells the product plus sells the prospect on providing referrals.

C.             The secret is to ask correctly.  Clients frequently object to giving referrals because they:

1.     Are afraid of upsetting friends and relatives.

2.     Don’t want friends to think they’re being talked about.

3.     May believe in the product but not in the salesperson.

4.     Fear the salesperson may not be around years down the road.

5.     Don’t feel they can benefit from giving the salesperson referrals.

D.             The pre-approach - mention personal contact.

E.             The presentation - builds rapport, explains agenda.

F.              Product delivery - identifies the precise moment that the product has value for the customer.

G.             Service and follow-up - ongoing opportunities to maintain contact with your customer.

H.             Don’t mistreat the referral.

1.     Treat the referral professionally.

2.     Always follow through on what you have told the referral.


A.             About 40 percent of salespeople suffer reluctance at some point.

B.             Call reluctance - not wanting to contact a prospect or customer.

1.     Comes disguised as a salesperson’s natural tendencies.

2.     Countermeasures are numerous and depend on the type of reluctance a salesperson has.


A.             Getting an appointment is not always easy.

1.     Be creative.

2.     Persistence pays off.

B.             The benefits of appointment making.

1.     Ensures an audience with the buyer.

2.     Adds to a salesperson’s professional image.

3.     Considered a gesture of respect to a prospect.

C.             Telephone appointment.

1.     Plan or write out what you will say.

2.     Clearly identify yourself and your company.

3.     Get to the point quickly.

4.     Present only enough information to stimulate interest.

5.     Be persistent.

6.     Ask for an interview.

7.     Phrase your appointment request as a question.

D.             Make the appointment personally.

1.     Believe in yourself - speak and carry yourself as though you expect to get in.

2.     Develop friends in the prospect’s firm.

3.     Call at the right time on the right person.

4.     Do not waste time waiting.




Planning the Sales Call is a Must!



A.             Sales Call Purpose - to make a contribution to the welfare of a person or organization.

B.             Plan to achieve your purpose - plan each day and do the best you can to carry out your plan.

C.             Plan - a method of achieving an end.

D.             Success - setting a goal and accomplishing it.

E.             To be successful doesn't necessarily mean to make a sale.  It just means to serve the customer in the best way possible.


A.             There are many aspects of planning a sales call.  Effective strategic problem solvers have the skills and knowledge to be able to:

1.     Uncover and understand the customer’s strategic needs by gaining an in-depth knowledge of the customer’s organization.

2.     Develop solutions that demonstrate a creative approach to addressing the customer’s strategic needs in the most efficient and effective manner possible.

3.     Arrive at a mutually beneficial agreement.

B.             Strategic Needs – the salesperson who understands the full range of the customer’s needs is in a much better position to provide a product solution that helps the customer progress more efficiently and effectively toward achieving his or her organization’s strategic goal.

C.             Creative Solutions.

1.     A customized version of a product and/or service that efficiently addresses the customer’s specific strategic needs.

2.     A mix of goods and services — including competitors’ products and services — that offers the best possible solution in light of the customer’s strategic needs.

D.             Mutually beneficial agreements - Salespeople and customers must work together to develop a common understanding of the issues and challenges at hand to achieve a mutually beneficial agreement.

E.             The customer relationship model.

1.     Customers have strategic needs salespeople must meet through creative solutions.

2.     Both come to mutual beneficial agreements.

3.     This leads to a long-term relationship between the customer and the salesperson.

4.     This achieves performance goals.

F.              Reasons for planning the sales call:

1.     Builds self-confidence.

2.     Develops an atmosphere of goodwill.

3.     Creates professionalism.

4.     Increases sales.

5.     Uncovers customer needs.

G.             Elements of sales call planning:

1.     Determining the sales call objective.

2.     Developing or reviewing the customer profile.

3.     Developing a customer benefit plan.

4.     Developing the individual sales presentation based on the sales call objective, customer profile, and customer benefit plan.

H.             Always have a sales call objective.

1.     The pre-call objective.

2.     Focus and flexibility.

3.     Making the goal specific.

4.     Moving toward your objective.

5.     Set an objective for every call - SMART.

6.     Customer profiles provide insight.  It should tell you:

a.     Who makes buying decisions?

b.     What is the buyer’s background?

c.     What are the desired business terms and needs of the account?

d.     What competitors do business with the account?

e.     What is the history of the account?

7.     Customer benefit plan: What it’s all about?

a.     Step 1 - select the features, advantages, and benefits of your product to present to your prospect.

b.     Step 2 - develop your “marketing plan.”

c.     Step 3 - develop your “business proposition,” including your price, percent markup, forecasted profit per square foot of shelf space, return-on-investment, and payment plan.

d.     Step 4 - develop a “suggested purchase order.”

8.     The sales presentation is where it all comes together - Seven steps of a sales presentation:

a.     Approach.

b.     Presentation.

c.     Trial close.

d.     Methods to overcome objections.

e.     Ways to overcome objections.

f.      Additional trial closes.

g.     Close of the sales presentation.


A.             Attention.

B.             Interest.

C.             Desire.

D.             Conviction.

E.             Purchase or action.

IV.           OVERVIEW OF THE SALES PROCESS - See the end of the chapter for the selling process and examples of a prospect’s mental thoughts and questions.



Carefully Select Which Sales Presentation Method to Use



A.             No matter who a salesperson meets with, their purpose is the same - to help the person or organization.

B.             By taking the time to carefully select the best presentation for the group the salesperson is meeting with, he or she will be better able to meet their needs, thus, serving them better.


A.             Salesperson to buyer.

B.             Salesperson to buyer group.

C.             Sales team to buyer.

D.             Conference selling.

E.             Seminar selling.


A.             Memorized sales presentation.

1.     Based on one of two assumptions.

a.     The prospect’s needs may be stimulated by direct exposure to the product through the sales presentation.

b.     The prospect’s needs have already been stimulated because the prospect has made the effort to seek out the product.

2.     National Cash Register Co. (NCR).

a.     Pioneered the use of canned sales presentations.

b.     An analysis of sales approaches in the 1920’s revealed salespeople said basically the same thing.

c.     They proceeded to prepare a series of standardized sales presentations.

3.     Advantages:

a.     It ensures that all of the company’s salespeople will give the same information in a well-planned presentation.

b.     It both aids and lends confidence to the inexperienced salesperson.

c.     It is effective when selling time is short, as in door-to-door or telephone selling.

d.     It is effective when the product is a non-technical one.

4.     Disadvantages:

a.     It presents features, advantages, and benefits that may not be important to the buyer.

b.     It allows for little prospect participation.

c.     It is impractical to use when selling products that require prospect input and discussion.

d.     It proceeds quickly through the sales presentation to the close and may appear to the prospect as high-pressure selling.

B.             The formula presentation.

1.     Often referred to as the persuasive selling presentation.

2.     The salesperson follows a less structured, general outline in making a presentation, allowing more flexibility and less direction.

3.     Attention, interest, desire, and action procedure (AIDA).

4.     The Smithkline Beecham products example: “The 10-step productive retail sales call”:

a.     Plan the call.

b.     Review plans.

c.     Greet personnel.

d.     Check conditions in store.

e.     Approach.

f.      Presentation.

g.     Close.

h.     Merchandising.

i.      Records and reports.

j.      Analyze the call.

5.     Advantages:

a.     It ensures that all information is presented in a logical manner.

b.     It allows for a reasonable amount of buyer-seller interaction.

c.     It allows for smooth handling of anticipated questions and objections.

C.             The need-satisfaction presentation.

1.     It's an interactive sales presentation.

2.     The need-satisfaction format.

a.     Need development phase - salesperson allows and encourages the prospect to discuss his needs.

b.     Need awareness phase - salesman takes control of the conversation by restating the prospect’s needs to clarify the situation.

c.     Need fulfillment phase - the salesperson shows how his product will satisfy mutually agreed-upon needs.

D.             The problem-solution presentation.

1.     This presentation usually consists of six steps:

a.     Convince the prospect to allow the salesperson to conduct an analysis of the prospect’s needs.

b.     Make the analysis.

c.     Buyer and seller mutually agree upon the problems and determine that the buyer wants to solve these problems.

d.     Prepare a sales presentation based on the analysis and the proposal.

e.     Make the sales presentation.

2.     This presentation is a flexible, customized approach involving an in-depth study of a prospect’s needs.

E.             The group presentation.

1.     Give a proper introduction.

a.     State your name

b.     State your company.

c.     Explain in a clear, concise sentence the premise of your proposal.

2.     Establish credibility - Give a brief history of your company.

3.     Provide an account list - Have copies of an account list available for everyone in attendance.

4.     State your competitive advantages - Right up front, you should succinctly tell the group where your company stands relative to the competition.

5.     Give quality assurances and qualifications.

a.     Get the group on your side by stating guarantees in the beginning.

b.     Show pride in your product.

c.     Give your company’s qualifications and credentials.

6.     Cater to the group’s behavioral style.

a.     A group exhibits an overall or dominant style.

b.     The group has a decision-making mode that characterizes one of the four behavioral styles.

F.              Negotiating so that everyone wins.

1.     Negotiating styles:

a.     Cooperative.

b.     Competitive.

c.     Attitudinal.

d.     Organizational.

e.     Personal modes.

2.     Phases of negotiation:

a.     Planning - know how your company compares to the competition.

b.     Meeting - you start to build the relationship by proving you are someone who is credible, trustworthy, and hopefully the type of person your prospect likes to do business with.

c.     Studying - look at the big picture and for benefits you can provide.

d.     Proposing - tie in features and advantages to benefits, and emphasize unique benefits.

G.             Which is the best presentation method?

1.     Stimulus-response method - used where time is short and the product is simple.

2.     Formula setting - used in repeat purchases or when you know the prospect’s needs.

3.     Need-satisfaction - used when information needs to be gathered from the prospect first.

4.     Problem-solving - useful in selling expensive or technical products, usually requires several calls and a formal business proposal.


A.             Videos, CD ROM’s, satellite conferencing, and computer hardware and software increasingly are being used in sales presentations.



A.             Top performing salespeople use the parallel dimensions of selling to plan, create and execute their presentation.

B.             Discuss first column. (THESE ARE TOO DETAIL TO OUTLINE)

C.             Discuss second column.

D.             Discuss third column

E.             Discuss fourth column


A.    Your Sales Presentation

1.     The approach

2.     Three presentation parts

a.     Show and tell

3.     Welcome objections

4.     AIDCA

5.     Closing

6.     Does not buy


Chapter 10

Begin Your Presentation Strategically



A.           First seek to understand, then to be understood.

B.           Care shown at the beginning of the conversation allows you to proceed with your presentation, often resulting in a sale.

II.             What is The Approach?

A.           For the salesperson, the approach refers to the time from when the buyer is first seen to when the salesperson begins to discuss the product.

B.           The approach is the third step in the selling process, but it’s the first step in the sales presentation.

III.           The Right to Approach

A.           Justify your right to sell your product to the prospect by showing him how your product will benefit him (and his company).

B.           You may earn the right to his attention in a number of ways:

1.     By exhibiting specific product or business knowledge.

2.     By expressing a sincere desire to solve a buyer’s problem or satisfy a need.

3.     By stating or implying that your product will save money or increase the firm’s profit margin.

4.     By displaying a service attitude.

IV.           The Approach - Opening the Sales Presentation

A.           Your attitude during the approach.  Cope with stress by:

1.     Using creative imagery.

2.     Asking yourself questions.

B.           The first impression you give is critical to success.

1.     Appearance.

2.     Attitude.

C.           Approach techniques and objectives

1.     Approach techniques are grouped into three categories:

a.     Statement.

b.     Demonstration.

c.     Question.

2.     Three objectives of the statement or demonstration approach techniques are:

a.     To capture the attention of the prospect.

b.     To stimulate the prospect’s interest.

c.     To provide a transition into the sales presentation.

D.           Small talk warms ‘em up.  In most sales calls the approach consists of two parts:

1.     The “small talk” or rapport building phase.

2.     Planned, formal selling technique used as a lead-in to the upcoming discussion of the product.

E.           The situational approach.

1.     The situation you face determines which approach technique you use to begin your sales presentation.

2.     Some common situational variables are:

a.     The type of product you are selling.

b.     Whether or not this is a repeat-call on the same person.

c.     Your degree of knowledge about the customer’s needs.

d.     The time you have for making the sales presentation.

e.     Whether the customer is aware of a problem.

3.     The Golden Rule: Avoid the temptation to over-hype your product.  This will only create problems down the road.

F.            Openings with statements.

1.     Introductory approach - needed when meeting a prospect for the first time.

2.     Complimentary approach - stimulates interest and goodwill.

3.     Referral approach - the use of someone’s name that your prospect respects.

4.     Premium approach - giving the prospect a sample of your product for free.

G.           Demonstration opening.

1.     Product approach - the salesman silently hands the prospect his product and waits for the prospect to start the conversation.

2.     Showmanship approach - doing something unusual to capture the prospect’s attention (example: dropping a new "unbreakable" china platter to demonstrate durability).

H.           Opening with questions.

1.     Customer-benefit approach - asking the prospect a question that implies that the product will benefit him.

2.     Curiosity approach - make the prospect curious about your product.

3.     Opinion approach - ask the prospect for his opinion on your products.

4.     Shock approach - the use of a question phrased to make the prospect think seriously about a subject related to your product.

5.     Multiple questions approach (SPIN) - ask questions to determine:

a.     Step 1 - the prospect’s general situation as it relates to your product.

b.     Step 2 - specific problems, dissatisfactions, or difficulties perceived by the prospect relative to your situation question.

c.     Step 3 - the implication of the prospect’s problems, or how a problem affects various related operational aspects of a home, life, or business.

d.     Step 4 - if the prospect has an important, explicit need.

e.     The product is not mentioned in the SPIN approach.

V.             TECHNOLOGY IN THE APPROACH - Technology incorporated in the approach can be a powerful attention getter.

VI.           IS THE APPROACH IMPORTANT - Many approach techniques are available; it is very important to choose the right one.


A.           Asking questions is an excellent technique for:

1.     Obtaining information from the prospect.

2.     Developing two-way communication.

3.     Increasing prospect participation.

B.           The direct question requires a short answer - usually “yes” or “no.”

C.           The nondirective question begins with who, what, where, when, how or why.  Examples:

1.     The situation question.

2.     The implication question.

D.           The rephrasing question allows the salesperson to better clarify what the prospect means.

E.           The redirect question.

F.            Three rules for using questions:

1.     Use only those questions to which you can anticipate the answer (those that won’t put you between a rock and a hard place).

2.     Wait for an answer to your question.

3.     Just listen.


A.           Quickly hand or show him the product.

B.           Ask him a question.

IX.           BE FLEXIBLE IN YOUR APPROACH - Be prepared to make changes in your approach and the overall presentation.


Chapter 11

Elements of a Great Sales Presentation



A.             Truthfully showing and telling about your product shows you are a person with integrity and character.

B.             Should there be even a hint of exaggeration (lying), the buyer may not buy.

II.             The Purpose of the Presentation

A.             Main goal - to sell your product to your customer.

B.             Purpose

1.     Provide knowledge via the features, advantages, and benefits of your product, marketing plan, and business proposal.

2.     Allow buyer to develop positive personal attitudes toward your product.

3.     Attitudes result in desire (or need).

4.     Convert a need into a want and then into the belief that your product can fulfill a certain need.

5.     Convince the buyer that not only is your product the best, but also that you are the best source to buy from.

6.     When this occurs, he is in the conviction stage.

III.           Three Essential Steps Within the Presentation - remember your FAB’s!

A.             Fully discuss the features, advantages, and benefits of your product.

B.             Present your marketing plan.

C.             Explain your business proposition (value/cost comparison).

IV.           The Sales Presentation Mix

A.             Persuasive Communication

1.     Factors that help you be a better communicator:

a.     Using questions.

b.     Being empathetic.

c.     Keeping the message simple.

d.     Creating mutual trust.

e.     Listening.

f.      Having a positive attitude and enthusiasm.

g.     Being believable.

h.     The SELL Sequence and trial close.

2.     Logical reasoning based on:

a.     Major premise

b.     Minor premise

c.     Conclusion

3.     Persuasion through suggestion - Types of suggestions:

a.     Suggestive propositions - suggest the prospect should act now.

b.     Prestige suggestions - name the famous or respected people or companies that use your product.

c.     Autosuggestions - attempt to have the buyer sell himself by imagining himself using the product.

d.     Direct suggestions - suggest that the prospect buy your product.

e.     Indirect suggestions - make it seem as if the purchase of your product is the buyer’s idea.

f.      Counter-suggestions - get the buyer to express why he needs the product and will probably also compel him to defend his purchase decision.

4.     Make the presentation fun – have the right mental attitude.

5.     Personalize your relationship – “Show ‘em that you love ‘em.”

6.     Build trust – be honest and do what you say you will do.

7.     Use body language - Send green signals.

8.     Control the presentation – direct the conversation.

9.     Be a diplomat.

10.  Use Paul Harvey dialogue – incorporate his excellent speech methods.

11.  Simile, metaphor, and analogy.

a.     Simile - a comparison statement using the words “like” or “as.”

b.     Metaphor - implied comparison that uses a contrasting word or phrase to evoke a vivid image.

c.     Analogy - compares two different situations which have something in common.

d.     Parable - a brief story used to illustrate a point.

e.     Storytelling - top salespeople can weave similes, metaphors, analogies, and parables throughout their presentations.

B.             Participation is essential to success - Four ways to induce participation:

1.     Questions.

2.     Product use.

3.     Visuals.

4.     Demonstrations.

C.             Proof statements build believability.

1.     Past sales help predict the future.

2.     The guarantee.

3.     Testimonials.

4.     Company proof statements.

5.     Independent research results - For a proof statement referring to an independent research result to be effective, it should contain:

a.     A restatement of the benefit before proving it.

b.     The proof source and relevant facts or figures about the product.

c.     Expansion of the benefits.

D.             The visual presentation - show and tell - Visuals:

1.     Increase retention.

2.     Reinforce messages.

3.     Reduce misunderstanding.

4.     Create a unique and lasting impression.

5.     Show your buyer that you are a professional.


VI.           DRAMATIZATION IMPROVES YOUR CHANCES - Dramatics - presenting the product in a striking manner.


A.             Sales demonstration checklist:

1.     Is the demonstration needed or appropriate?

2.     Have I developed a specific demonstration objective?

3.     Have I properly planned and organized the demonstration?

4.     Have I rehearsed to the point that the demonstration flows smoothly and appears to be natural?

5.     What is the probability that the demonstration will go as planned?

6.     What is the probability that the demonstration will backfire?

7.     Does my demonstration present my product in an ethical and professional manner?

B.             Get participation in your demonstration.

1.     Let the prospect do something simple.

2.     Let the prospect work an important feature.

3.     Let the prospect do what he would frequently do.

4.     Ask the prospect questions throughout the demonstration.

C.             Reasons for using visual aids, dramatics, and demonstrations.

1.     Captures attention and interest.

2.     Creates two-way communication.

3.     Involves the prospect through participation.

4.     Offers a more complete, clearer explanation of products.

5.     Increases a salesperson’s persuasive powers by obtaining positive commitments on a product’s single feature, advantage, or benefit.

D.             Guidelines for using visual aids, dramatics, and demonstrations:

1.     Rehearse them!

2.     Customize them to fit each individual customer.

3.     Make them simple, clear, and straightforward.

4.     Control the demonstration.

5.     Make the demonstration true to life.

6.     Encourage prospect participation.

7.     Incorporate trial closes after showing or demonstrating a major feature, advantage, or benefit in order to determine if it is believed or important to the prospect.

VIII.       TECHNOLOGY CAN HELP! - Provide visually attractive information in a dramatic manner.

IX.           THE SALES PRESENTATION GOAL MODEL - Six elements of the presentation mix to consider:

A.             What is your objective?

B.             Who is your audience?

C.             How will you structure your presentation?

D.             How will you create impact?

E.             How will you design and display visual aids?

F.              How will you stage your presentation?



A.             How to handle interruptions:

1.     If there is a phone call, offer to leave the room.

2.     Wait until the prospect’s attention is completely back to you.

3.     Restate the selling points that were of interest to the prospect.

4.     Invite participation.

5.     Make sure interest has been regained, and then proceed.

B.             Should you discuss competition?

1.     Do not refer to competition.

2.     Acknowledge competition and drop it.

3.     Make a detailed comparison.

C.             Be professional.

D.             Know where the presentation will take place.

E.             Diagnose the prospect to determine your sales presentation.



Welcome Your Prospect’s Objections



A.             If a customer has a valid objection, and the customer does not need your product, leave.

B.             If the customer is incorrect, politely show them how your product will help them, and do it to help them not just to make the sale.


A.             Learn to accept objections as a challenge which, when handled correctly, will benefit you and your prospect.

B.             If you fear objections, you will fumble your response, often causing you to fail.


A.             Sales objection - a prospect's opposition or resistance to the request of the salesperson.

B.             The prospect who presents objections is often more easily sold on your product.

IV.           WHEN DO PROSPECTS OBJECT? - At any time during your sales call - from introduction to close.


A.             Inexperienced salespeople finish their presentation and wait for the prospect’s response.

B.             Experienced salespeople use a trial close.

C.             How to move to the real close:

1.     If the prospect reacts positively - move to the close.

2.     Answer objections and ask another trial close to determine if the objections have been met, and then move to the final close.

3.     Be prepared to determine if there are other objections.

4.     If an objection has not been overcome, then move back to your presentation.


A.             Plan for objections.

B.             Anticipate and forestall.

1.     Anticipate objections.

2.     Forestalling an objection involves the salesperson discussing an objection before it is brought up by the prospect.

C.             Handle objections as they arise.  Postponement of objections may result in:

1.     The prospect not listening.

2.     The prospect feeling that you are hiding something.

3.     The appearance that you also feel it’s a problem.

4.     The appearance that you’re not able to answer because you do not know the answer.

5.     The appearance that you are not interested in the prospect’s opinion.

D.             Be positive!

1.     Use positive body language and smile.

2.     Do not take objections personally.

E.             Listen - hear them out.

F.              Understand objections.

1.     Request more information.

2.     A condition.

a.     Sometimes prospects may raise an objection that turns into a condition of the sale.

b.     Negotiation can overcome a condition.

3.     Major or minor objections.

a.   Minor objection- quickly address it and return to selling.

b.   Do not turn a minor objection into a major discussion item.

4.     Practical or psychological objections.

a.     Practical (overt).

b.     Psychological (hidden).

G.             Meet the objection.


A.             The hidden objection - a prospect who asks trivial, unimportant questions or conceals his feelings beneath a veil of silence

1.     The salesperson must ask questions and carefully listen in order to smoke out the prospect’s real objection.

2.     Smoke out hidden objections - ask questions, observe the prospect, you may have to “read between the lines”; the prospect may not consciously know what the real objections are; finally, as a last resort, you may simply ask the prospect what their objections are.

B.             The stalling objection - when the prospect says, “I’ll think it over,” or “I’ll be ready to buy on your next visit,” you must determine if the statement is truth or if it is a smokescreen designed to get rid of you.

1.     One of the toughest stalls to overcome arises when selling a new consumer product.

2.     Another stall occurs when the buyer says he has to get approval from someone else. Since the buyer’s attitude toward your product will influence the firm’s buying decision, you must make it a positive one.

3.     Let the buyer know that you are on his side and help him with his objections. If he doe not respond, give him a multiple choice question to display an attitude of genuine caring.

4.     Do not get demanding, defensive, or hostile.

5.     Your goal is to help your prospect realistically examine reasons for and against buying now.

6.     The main idea is not to be satisfied with a false objection or stall. Bring out any or all of your main selling benefits now and keep on selling.

C.             The no-need objection - the prospect says, “… but I’m not interested now,” and he stays as he presently is.

1.     This is widely used because it gets rid of the salesperson.

2.     It is tricky because it also includes a hidden objection or a stall.

D.             The money objection - encompasses several forms of economic excuses and is simple for the buyer to say.

1.     Respond by saying that it is risky to discuss the product’s price until it can be compared to the product’s benefits. Once you convey the benefits, price becomes a secondary factor which usually can be dealt with successfully.

2.     Quote the price and go right on selling.

3.     The price/value formula:

a.     Used to determine if a prospect is or is not convinced that the price is too high.

b.     Price/value = cost.

(1)  Cost - comparison of what is received to the money paid.

(2)  Value - what the prospect sees the product doing for them.

(3)  Price - set at headquarters; not subject to change.

E.             The product objection.

1.     Not everyone likes the best selling product.

2.     Your reaction must be positive; you can use a guarantee, a testimonial, independent research results, or a demonstration.

F.              The source objection.

1.     Some prospects may say that they are happy with their current supplier.

2.     You should try to find out what exactly bothers the prospect and call on him routinely over a long period of time.


A.             The dodge does not deny, answer or ignore.

B.             Don’t be afraid to pass up an objection.

C.             Rephrase an objection as a question.  It is easier to answer a question than to overcome an objection.

1.     Acknowledge the prospect’s viewpoint.

2.     Rephrase objections.

3.     Obtain agreement.

4.     “Feel-felt-found”:

a.     “I understand how you feel…”

b.     “Bill at XYZ store felt the same way…”

c.     “but he found after reviewing our products …”

D.             Postponing objections is sometimes necessary.

1.     If you judge that the objection will be handled to your prospect’s satisfaction by your customary method, and that your prospect is truly willing to wait until that later time in your presentation, you may politely forestall.

2.     Tactfully used, forestalling can leave you in control of the presentation.

E.             Send it back with the boomerang method.

1.     Be ready at any time to turn an objection into a reason to buy. Convince the prospect that his objection is in fact a benefit.

2.     Requires good timing and quick thinking by the salesperson.

F.              Ask questions to smoke out objections.

1.     Q1: “There must be some good reason why you’re hesitating to go ahead now. Do you mind if I ask what it is?”

2.     Q2: “In addition to that, is there any other reason for not going ahead?”

3.     Q3: “Just supposing, Mr. Buyer, you could … then you’d want to go ahead?” If “yes” go forward to discuss this, if “no” go to next question.

4.     Q4: “Then there must be some other reason. May I ask what it is?” When he tells you, respond with another question 2. If you receive a negative response then go to question 5

5.     Q5: “What would it take to convince you?”

6.     This series of questions keeps the conversation going and gets the real objections out in the open, which helps increase your sales.

G.             Use direct denial tactfully.

1.     Incomplete or incorrect objections should be acknowledged from the prospect’s viewpoint, and then answered with complete and correct facts.

2.     Tact is critical.

3.     Do not say, “You’re wrong.”  It closes the prospect’s mind. Instead try, “You know, you’re right to be concerned about this. Let me explain.”

H.             The indirect denial works.

1.     It initially appears as agreement with the customer’s objection, but moves into denial of the fundamental issue.

2.     Done in a natural, conversational way, the salesperson will not offend the prospect.

I.               Compensation or counterbalance method.

1.     Sometimes a prospect’s objection is valid and must be overcome, which calls for the compensation method.

2.     Present advantages to counterbalance the objection.

J.              Let a third party answer - Answer it by referring to a third party and using his experience as your “proof or testimony.” If the source is reliable or reputable, this can be especially successful with the expert or skeptical prospect.

IX.           TECHNOLOGY CAN EFFECTIVELY HELP RESPOND TO OBJECTIONS - Providing buyers the necessary information to make a decision can frequently overcome objections.


A.             First, Use a trial close to determine if you have overcome the objection. Next, close the sale or move back into your presentation.

B.             Move back into your presentation.

C.             Move to close your sale if finished with your presentation.

D.             If you cannot overcome the objection:

1.     Admit it, and show how your product’s benefits outweigh this disadvantage.

2.     You should always ask for the order.


A.             You are there to help the customer, not force a product on them.

B.             Follow the Golden Rule.  Address objections in an attempt to serve them.