What’s the best way to handle objections?

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What’s the best way to handle objections?

The best way is to eliminate them before they occur. That means providing enough information to prospective clients on your website, in your presentations, and in your client meetings, so that all of their issues and concerns are addressed and there is nothing left to object to.

Give them the facts. Share the stories. Provide FAQ’s that deal with all of the objections you commonly hear.

If money is a common objection, make sure you build the value of what they get, show them how not hiring you could be even more costly, and explain the payment options you have available. Deal with this issue in advance and you will get far fewer objections.

You won’t completely eliminate objections, however. What then?

It depends.

Sometimes, the best way to handle objections is to repeat them back to the prospective client. People often say things they don’t really mean or haven’t thought through. When they hear their own words repeated back to them, it causes them to re-evaluate. As they respond, they often answer their own objection.

Your conversation might go like this:

CLIENT: “I want to think about it”
YOU: “You want to think about it?”
CLIENT: “Yeah, I need a day or two”
YOU: “A day or two?”
CLIENT: “Well, maybe not that long. I need to see if this is something I want to do.”
YOU: “Something you want to do?”
CLIENT: “Well, I know I need to do this but it’s kinda expensive [the true objection reveals itself]. . .”
YOU: “Expensive?”
CLIENT: “Yeah, it’s a lot of money to me. But like I say, I know I need to do this and I guess I can put it on a credit card, so let’s get this going. . .”.

Sometimes, the best way to handle objections is to respond directly. When the client tells you they want to think about it and you know the real objection is probably something else, like money, you might say, “I understand completely. It is a big decision and it is a lot of money. But you have to consider what might happen if you ignore this problem. As we discussed. . .” and go over the issues and possible outcomes again.

If you’re not sure what the real objection is, ask them. “What exactly do you want to think about? Is it the need? Is it the cost?”

Handling objections this way is sometimes referred to as “Feel, Felt, Found.” It is a way to validate the client’s position before you respond to and overcome their objection. So if they object to the expense, you might say, “I understand how you FEEL. A lot of my clients tell me they FELT the same way when they were in your position. But once we got started, they FOUND that it was money well spent and they were glad they got it taken care of.”

Sometimes, the best way to handle objections is to ignore them. You’ve handed the client a retainer agreement and pen and he tells says he wants to think about it. Instead of saying, “Sure, just let me know,” and having him walk out, you say, “I can get started this afternoon and have everything done for you by next Tuesday. You will finally be able to move forward with your life and you told me that’s what you want to do. Today is the 15th; make sure you write the date here” and point to the blank for the date.

Clients typically have the same four or five objections, not hundreds. Think about the last few prospective clients who didn’t retain you. What did they say? How did you respond? How might you have handled it differently?

Come up with two or three ways to handle each common objection and the next time they arise, you’ll be ready.

Want to make the phone ring? Here’s my step-by-step system.

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Comments

  1. Great advice David. Powerful ways to take what might first appear to be an objection and keep the dialog moving forward. Thanks!