The Art of Selling – Overcoming Objections

I was in sales for almost 30 years. I ran my own advertising agency and then worked as a sales consultant for the Yellow Pages. I met with an average of 300 businesses every year and made a ton of sales pitches. I can guarantee you one thing for sure. As a sales person, you will run into objections. That’s just part of the sales world and something that separates the men from the mice. It’s how you handle them that will help determine your success. One veteran salesman I worked with once told me he saw the word “no” as “know.” If the client said “no” he really wanted to “know” more so he started restating or providing more information. This may not work in all instances, but it tells you the mind of the working sales person.

When I first started with the Yellow Pages, we were given a list of the 100 most popular objections and some typical possible answers. We were supposed to memorize this list which was somewhat impractical. We were told to keep it with us. I couldn’t imagine that the customer that had just told me it was too expensive would wait for me to scan the list to find the appropriate response.

“Hold on Mr. Smith, I think that’s objection number 57. Could you hold on a sec? I have the answer right here somewhere.” That could be a problem.

So I did my best to recall the most common ones that I would encounter and you will have the same ones in your sales lifetime. Here are the main objections:

It’s too expensive. It doesn’t suit our needs. We are going out of that business.
We already have a good source. We are gong a different direction. I’m retiring next year.
I can I trust you to do what you say? You competitor prices are lower. We only buy from minority-owned businesses. We don’t like long-term contracts. My account says to cut back. We’re in a recession. We’ve already spend our budget for the year.

As you can see, many or most revolve around the price concern. In my 25 years with the Yellow Pages, that was always number one. So, how did I deal with that? I never told them it would cost them anything. I explained it was an investment and how the ROI worked. The return on investment. I told them that if they gave us one dollar and received back five, that was not a spending plan, but rather an investing program. I tried to get them to see how all their other costs like their building, insurance, and utilities weren’t making them any money, but an ad in the directory would bring in customers and therefore, profits.

Overcoming objections is as simple as changing the perspective. If they told me that direct mail was cheaper, I would tell them that our product covered a larger base and reached more potential customers for far less per 1000. Arm yourself with most of the major objections you know you will encounter before the sale. That way, you can be at ease with the confidence that you will swat aside objections like so many bothersome flies.

There is an excessive amount of traffic coming from your Region.

5 Common Mistakes To Avoid The First Time You Hire An Advertising Agency

Most successful businesses today realize the importance of properly marketing their products and services to the right customer base. In today’s global markets, and with businesses finding increasing competition, companies realize that specializing and maximizing the exposure to their niche markets is the way to truly thrive in such a competitive climate. Having the expertise and executing competent and effective marketing campaigns is a job all in itself. For this reason, many outsource this important job to qualified advertising companies. How should you go about choosing the best agency for your company? Here are 5 common mistakes to avoid the first time you hire an advertising agency.

1. Having undefined objectives

In order for an advertising agency to met or exceed the objectives put before them, they must first be clearly defined. Goals must be thoroughly described; the expected outcomes must be able to be measured and agreed upon before hand. This first step is crucial to setting the tone for the overall campaign. A breakdown in communication at this point results in a directionless campaign that may not gain momentum.

2. Not having a timeline for a scope of work agreement

As with any goals, not only must the objectives be clearly defined and measurable, but the timeline must be agreed upon. In order for strategies to be effective they should have a timeline. An agreed upon schedule helps with the execution of the various strategies and phases of any successful marketing campaign. Without a timeline the potential for synergy from various strategies combining and augmenting each other may not occur.

3. Failing to agree on upfront pricing

The pricing should be agreed upon upfront for the most part. While it may be possible to have tentative pricing dependent on certain outcomes and whether or not different phases of a campaign are introduced, most of the pricing should be agreed upon up front. Much like the planning of the objectives and the timeline, the pricing should match the planning and there should not be surprises during of after an ad campaign.

4. A schedule that lacks detail

While it may be OK to have some of the details in a schedule to be left vague or open- ended, a good advertising company will make sure to set specific metrics and benchmarks that should be met over the course of the overall marketing strategy. Without the specificity in these goals, it becomes difficult to know if the advertising campaign is succeeding, meeting its objectives clearly, and unfolding according to plan.

5. Using a one-sided plan

The best marketing campaigns use solutions and strategies that combine different advertising angles. For example, it may be important to work on re-branding while advertising over new media and through social media outlets all at once. Combining different strategies at one time can create a synergy that leads to more effective campaigns. In most instances, one-sided plans don’t leave a lasting impact.

Avoid these 5 common mistakes and you may very well find that perfect advertising boost you need to take your business to the next level.

Basic Factors to Consider for Advertising Products and Services

Advertising is an effective tool of marketing used for promoting products and services to be sold to generate business revenue. Thus, it won’t be wrong to say that the ultimate purpose of advertising is to push the sale of products and services through different ways of promotion. In the absence of advertising, it is difficult for others to know about your products or services. Although you sell high quality products at reasonable prices, you won’t be able to reach adequate number of buyers or the target audience to earn profit.

Advertising not only promotes, but also establishes your brand amongst your target group. It positions your brand in such a way that your products or services become a replacement of the need they fulfill. The best instance of this is Cadbury ads appealing the audience in India to eat Cadbury chocolates, whenever they feel like eating sweets. Their ad copy – “Kuch Meetha Ho Jaye (means: Lets have some sweets)” with the characters eating chocolates indirectly asks people to replace Cadbury chocolate for traditional Indian Sweets. In short, ads help in building good reputation of the brand or company and gradually increase the sale of the products and services.

Therefore, advertising can be considered as an investment that could indirectly improve your brand value and generate good returns in terms of sale. However, it is to be noted that ads won’t directly add to your sales or create a customer base for your product or service. It simply helps your brand to create a space in the subconscious mind of your target audience, who might end up being your consumer/customer. This vital role of advertising makes it an essential marketing tool, which is widely used across the world by even the business giants like Microsoft, Apple, Tata, etc.

The whole idea of considering advertising as an investment makes it necessary for us to consider certain factors before advertising the products and services. The basic factors to be considered before advertising any product or service are as follow:

In order to create a successful advertising for your product or service, follow some basic advertising principles:

  1. Aim and Objectives of Advertising: Identifying the main objective behind advertising your products/services is the most essential of all the factors. This is because without a proper objective one can never achieve anything in any field. Also, it helps you to evaluate how well the aim and objectives would go with your company or brand image. It also makes the ad campaign or the progress of the ads measurable and realistic.
  2. Expecting immediate rise in sales: Expecting a sudden hike in sales after the advertisement of your products or services is like lying to your own self. Advertising is not a solution to your financial issues. However, it might gradually help you in pushing the sales of your products and services.
  3. Don’t make false promises: The advertising works, only if the product or service meets the expectations of the target audience. If they don’t live up to their promises, then the advertising is more likely to fail. It might create some buzz at initial level even if your product or service is of low quality, but it will eventually fail. So, it is important to make promises that your product or service can fulfill.
  4. Understanding your product: You must know the complete details of your product – be it materials or uses. This will enable you to know what your product can do to exist in the market. In your advertising, you could make use of its benefits or solutions as excuses for its sustainability in the market over the period of time.
  5. Target prospective customers’ needs: You advertise products or services mainly to persuade your prospective customers to opt them against your competitors’ or ordinary products. Therefore, it is important for you all to understand the needs of your prospective customer. This will help you convince them easily by portraying you product as a means to meet their needs.
  6. Ads must be informative and effective: Your ads must be able to educate your target group about the products’ USP and other benefits. Also, it should inform them about the products availability and why it should be used. Besides this, the ads must be effective enough to deliver the message to the audience in a creative, unique and convincing manner. It must grab their attention and leave an impact on the target audience. In simple terms, it must be effective enough to bring the customers to the product’s outlets or at least enquire about the product, if not buy.

These basic factors, if considered, can really help you create great ads that would make sense and grab the attention of your target audience. The resulted ads would be distinctive, yet recognizable and easy to relate with your product or service. These ads would not only have good recall value, but they would also have the ability to convince prospective customers to try your product.