Sell Well - Grow Well
5 powerful ideas to handle objections successfully
Jigar Parekh, Head - Prudent Empower, Prudent CAS, Ahmedabad


In part one of this two part article (Click here),Jigar discussed about what objections are, why positive mindset is the main ingredient to successful objection handling and how one can plan the process in advance to stay positive during objection handling. He also talked about how a true guerrilla advisor will prepare the list of probable objections in advance and plan the strategies to handle them by preparing a good combination of dialogues, stories coupled with the sales enablers.In this article, Jigar describes 5 important tips that you can use to handle objections successfully.

1) Do not interrupt

This sounds too simple advice to you but it's the single biggest and most useful advice while handling the objection. As I have mentioned earlier also that at any given point in time, there will be 4 to 5 main objections for particular product or asset class, we hear the same objection again and again from the different clients and as a result of that we normally understand client's objection even when he has not finished talking. In such situation, UNKNOWINGLY, sometimes we interrupt in between and start talking what we have to say about that objection.

This really creates a very negative impact into the subconscious mind of the client. Remember, nobody on the earth likes to be interrupted while talking. Though you might have already got the idea about what his real objection is based on your experience and gut feeling, it is still better to let the client completed the talking. Stopping the client in between may create the impression that you don't care for what client has to say and it might hurt client's respect or ego.

Listening to the client completely and openly will make the client to feel good. Client will feel that you care about him/her and his/her concerns. True guerrilla advisor listens to the client's objection completely, then takes 2 seconds pause (in case client may want to add something), smiles a little bit and then starts talking.

2) Reconfirm the Objection

Even if the objection is understood very well, guerrilla advisor reconfirms by asking the question like "As I have understood from what you have just said is that your main concern regarding this product/asset class is......" then stating the summery of the objection given by the client. By doing so it creates high probability that the client will listen with open mind to what advisor has to say.

When client hears his/her own objection from the advisor it creates a good amount of mental comfort into the client's mind. Client gets the feeling that advisor truly understands how he/she feels and what his/her main concern is. This helps in reducing the psychological resistance before handling the real objection with facts and figures.

3) Give a compliment on the objection

Give a compliment to client on each objection. It would make them to feel important and wanted. When you agree with their concern and give compliment they will feel that you respect them and you are not trying to fight with them.

Everyone likes the appreciation so does the client. Giving the compliment on the question/objection/concern will make them to trust you more as they will see you as their well wisher. Many a times rather than giving compliments I have seen many IFAs totally discredit the objection openly saying the wrong words like "Let me show you how your question or whatever you are concerned about is wrong." (because we have lots of data to prove client wrong). By doing so you are again creating a metal block in client's mind.

No one likes to hear that he/she is wrong. It awakens the most powerful emotion into client's mind namely ego. Awakening client's ego is injurious to the successful closing.

Even if you want to disagree with what client has to say, say it in such a manner to avoid any ego issue. Whenever I have to disagree with what client have to say I say something like this, "Your concern seems to be very valid and logical, but I see it a little differently. Let me share my point of view on what you are concerned about….." and then I start giving him my opinion by sharing whatever data and facts I want to share.

4) Be objection centric

Once you know the real objection then stick to it. Main objection or the concern of the client is like the hot button, which you if keep on pressing will increase the chance of closing the sales.

You may have many more good things to talk about the product or the asset class that you are pitching.But when you know the real objection of the client, then just put all your focus and energy to handle than objection only. Use the data and fact which are relevant to that objection. Sometimes you might feel that the objection which client is giving is not relevant and there are many more things about the product which are more important to talk about, but you need to control your thoughts and actions into the manner that they are focused in solving the client's main objection.

I have seen many IFAs who rather than solving or handling the objection given by clients, start giving the other benefits of the product which they think are more important. For example, when client says, "Equity is very risky, I want safety first." Majority IFAs start talking about the past performance of the equity funds showing them the various charts. Remember here main concern of client is safety and not the return. So you need to talk about how the equity could be safe investment in longer run rather than talking about the past returns and other data. You should talk about the risk in terms of not beating the inflation and power of equity to beat that risk of inflation by showing the various real life examples. I discuss with client in detail about my point of view of safety which is to beat the inflation (consumer inflation as well as life time inflation).

Being an IFA you will have a lot of good data, knowledge and charts about the product to share with your client, it doesn't mean that you should share everything with everyone. Just try to understand the main concern and use the relevant data and information. Do not overload client with the information and data not related to his main objection.

5) Don't try to win the argument

There are certain set of clients whom I categorize as a show off clients. These are the kind of clients who tries to show off their knowledge by talking some financial jargons which they might have read somewhere and don't know much more in depth about it. These sets of clients try to showcase themselves as a very knowledgeable even if they have a very limited knowledge. I am not saying that every client talking about the jargons are show off clients but you will get the idea when show off client is in front of you.

In such situation we get normal urge to counter him by showing off even harder by talking more jargons than client. Specifically when we know we know much more about what this client is showing off, we also start showing off by taking about alpha, beta, gamma etc. And unconsciously sometimes discussion gets into the direction to conclude who's got the better knowledge? Specifically when client talks some jargon with some data where we know that there is some error in his understanding, we overreact and try to prove him wrong.

Remember, the client who is trying to show off is the one who might be highly egoistic and trying to prove him wrong might not be the good option. So never get into the argument with such client, because in quest of winning the argument with the client you may win the argument but in that case you will lose the sale.

Rather than arguing with such client I would prefer to boost his ego by saying, "Wow sir/madam, you seems to know a lot about finance and investing and……" and then rather than being defensive I be agreeable to him and try to put my point of view and every time I put my point of view I normally ask such client what's his/her point of view about my views? They would love to be asked their point of view and most probably when you ask them their point of view on your view and data, there are chances that they themselves will explain you why your data makes a lot of sense.

Happy Selling.....

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