One of the most frustrating and common aspects of any sales process is objection.
It happens all the time; you’re selling a great product – something new or powerful that can cause positive change – and then you hear it. The but. “You’re right, but my boss will never go for it.”
Or, “I love this product, but I don’t have the money for it.” And even worse, “I can see the value here, but we aren’t ready for that yet.” After all the preparation, getting an objection can feel like you’ve run into a brick wall.
… But, it shouldn’t be that way. Yes, objections can be frustrating, but you can leverage them as an opportunity to influence qualified prospects into making a purchase with your sales expertise. You can even use objections to weed out weaker sales prospects that don’t fit with your products or services.
The four major B2B objections you’ll hear when trying to make a sale all revolve around BANT: Budget, Authority, Need, and Timeliness. To take an inbound marketing approach to common B2B marketing objections, you will need to know what the main objections are and ways you can address them.
The key to closing any sale or getting rid of a weak sales prospect is in knowing how to recognize BANT objections, and having a process in place to handle them.
The Budget Objection
It’s not tough to identify this objection – it’s all about the money. Your prospect might bluntly say they don’t have the money for your product, or maybe they’ll give you a modest line like “There isn’t room in our budget to buy this product.” They might even ask for a discount.
Most of the time, concerns about your product or service cost goes deeper than the sticker price. Figuring out their true reasons for hesitation are up to you. Are they unhappy with the price because they don’t see the value in your product for that price, or is it just sticker shock? You need to determine what the real objection is before you can know what language to use with the prospect to properly address their needs.
Tip: If a prospect asks for a discount, don’t feel compelled to offer it right away. Find out what sort of discount they’re seeking first. Don’t promise a $500 discount if the prospect is willing and able to pay with only $50 off a product or service.
The Authority Objection
When there are many decision-makers within a company, you’ll hear this objection a lot. “I’ll need to discuss this with my boss/CEO/coworker/designer/mother” typically leads to the boss/CEO/coworker/designer/mother saying “No.”
So, how do you deal with this objection? First things first: confirm that the objection makes sense. You might think this is a small, unnecessary step, but validating any concerns your prospect has will actually help you create a stronger connection with them. Also, it leads you to the next step of finding out what needs or fears about your product caused the decision-maker to say no.
There are two things you can do once you discover the real problem:
- Address the boss/CEO/coworker/designer/mother’s objections before you even speak with them.
- Depending on the success of the above tactic, you can potentially set up a call with the decision-maker to thoughtfully address their objections and reaffirm that you are a resource for your prospect and their decision-maker.
If you can accomplish this, you’ll be that much closer to making the sale. And if the prospect isn’t connecting with your attempts, it might be a sign that they aren’t a great fit for your products or services.
This post is part one in a two-part series on BANT objections. You can read Part 2 here.