Posted on: Friday, May 4th, 2012
I was recently in San Diego looking at houses with my son, Kevin, and his wife, Amanda. With the market turning in favor of sellers—and with a little nudge from yours truly—they’ve decided now would be a good time to look for something to buy. As much as I love looking at homes, the sales trainer and sales critic in me comes out. But rather than me ramble on about the experience, here’s what Kevin had to say:
“We pulled up to this one house with an immediately obvious… well, lets call it a ‘feature’. That feature was a close proximity to a freeway… a very close proximity. The house was nestled at the bottom of a hill, and just up at the top of the hill laid the 78 freeway. We could see the cars zipping past. It wouldn’t have been difficult to hit one with a 7-iron.
The sales agent, who I will call ‘Don’ (because I can’t remember his real name), came right up to us and started talking about the thing that obviously must be on our minds: the freeway. He pointed out the benefit of living so close to North San Diego’s main thoroughfare. He touted the advantage of knowing that nobody will be coming in and doing any more developing around my home. He even gave an amateur physics lesson to help us to understand that being below the freeway is far better than being above it because sound travels up. He said all these things.
But, what had we said?
We had said: NOT A SINGLE WORD! We hadn’t mentioned the freeway. We hadn’t even told him our names. Yet, his entire sales presentation had begun by refuting an objection he only assumed we had. And the truth is, I didn’t even care about the freeway! Neither did Amanda! Yeah, we noticed it, but it didn’t really bother us at all.
Don was projecting his own objection onto us. He assumed we would immediately be turned off by the freeway and thought that combating that negative opinion was of premier importance. In doing so, he sacrificed his chance to make a good first impression and build a healthy relationship with us.”
Don’t ever counter an objection the customer has not raised. Be disciplined in this. It’s too easy to project the things you don’t like about your community to the buyers.
Think about your community. Are there any items about your homes or neighborhood that you would consider a problem? Now ask yourself, do you ever find yourself guilty of projecting that problem to a customer who was otherwise undaunted by it? Tell us about your objection and how you avoiding projecting it in the comments section below. And remember, you can never refute an objection that they don’t have; you can only create one that they previously didn’t.