Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Can You Satisfy My Concerns?

When sales employees have a choice between working with an existing charter customer, or working with a prospective new customer, most employees will choose the existing customer. That's because they seldom push back, raise concerns, offer objections, and generally make employees uneasy.

But where's the fun in that? Anyone can generate a quote or book a trip from a happy, satisfied, repeat customer. It's pleasant and rewarding to work with such folks, but it's not challenging. And you won't drive home with that glow of satisfaction having overcome objections and gained a new customer!

The most exciting step in the sales process is inquiring about concerns, drawing them out of the prospect, and then converting the concerns into benefits from flying with you.

"Inquiring about concerns," you say. "Do you mean you actually want us to ask if the customer has objections? Why on earth would we do that? We've been crossing our fingers hoping we could get right from our presentation to booking their first trip!"

Unless and until the prospect raises concerns or objections, it's unlikely you will get the sale. That's because of a very well-established fact. Customers make the buying decision emotionally, then justify their decision rationally.

Objections and concerns are almost exclusively about what "they" will say to the emotional decision. "What will my boss, or the CFO, accounts payable, the Board, my colleagues down the hall, our employees, and maybe even our customers say when they find out I'm chartering a plane"?  That's what your prospects are thinking when they raise objections and concerns.

Your prospects already have said to themselves, "I want it, I need it, I've got to have it." Prospects need you to arm them with facts so "they" will agree that the prospect has made a sound business decision.

If you read my posts, you know I like to quote Jay Abraham. He would tell you that when customers object, they are silently begging to be lead. I've always liked that phrase and the image in conjures. Objections are simply a prospect's way of saying, "I really want to fly with you. Now give me some excellent business reasons to do so."

In the AirPSG Learning Library, we have the six most common objections to using air charter for the first time. The materials explain precisely how to handle each objection. For your company, you should sit down with your sales team and list  your most common objections. Try to pull that list together soon, because in next week's post, I'll give you a formula and template for handling common objections.

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