by Jeff Shore
This is the final blog post on a series about overcoming objections. You can access the entire series here.
So you’ve done everything you can, but you just couldn’t overcome that one gnarly objection. Alas, your customer purchased somewhere else.
What do you do now? How do you recover? We are winners, right? Losing sucks!
But it doesn’t have to be a total loss. Here’s how to recover and even benefit from lost sales.
1. Stay Positive – Don’t Stress Over the Uncontrollable
So you had an objection that could not be overcome. Your price was just unaffordable to your prospect’s strict budget. Or you didn’t have a specific feature that the customer just had to have. Or the timing wouldn’t work.
Here is my advice to you. Don’t lose sleep over not making a sale to someone who couldn’t buy. When you think about it, there is a word for people who cannot purchase what you were selling. The word is non-buyer.
We spent a lot of mental energy stressing out over things that we could not control. If you were absolutely certain that you took the conversation as far as it could go, and that there was no way for this customer to buy your product, let it go. In fact, congratulate yourself on a job well done.
Our task is not to sell to everyone who comes through the door. Move on and stay positive, reflecting on a job well-done.
2. Learn the Lessons
It is never a waste of time when you practice your sales presentation. Repetition of the right behaviors makes you better in the long-haul.
What often gets missed, however, are the lessons that you could learned had you stopped to really ponder that last conversation. Our desire is to turn the page and move on, but there was an invaluable opportunity to learn from that presentation. Too often those opportunities get missed.
Take some time and ask yourself the questions:
- Did I take this conversation as far as it could go?
- What could I have done to extend the conversation?
- How will this last sales presentation help me be better in my next sales presentation?
Think like a football player who watches the game film the day after the game was played. The purpose is not to beat himself up. The purpose is to evaluate his performance and try to determine how to get better for the next game.
3. Go for the Referral
Finally, you may have lost that last deal, but there might still be a sale to make. Call and ask for a referral.
Your customer will appreciate that you hold no hard feelings even though they purchased from a competitor. They will respect the fact that you are still kind and polite and respectful even when you’re not getting paid. This attitude sets the stage.
Simply talk to your customer and say something like:
“I really enjoyed working with you and I’m disappointed that we couldn’t get you exactly what you needed. That said, I understand how these things go. If you know of anyone who might be interested in our product, I would really appreciate it if you would pass my name along.”
The referral you get from the customer who didn’t purchase is often the sweetest of all.
Yes, we want every sale we can get, but that’s just not the reality in which we live. Celebrate your successes, learn from the ones that got away, and be prepared to bounce back so you can change someone else’s world.