Ever encounter a prospect who seems to have a negative perspective on everything?
I’ll be the first to admit that I find it extremely challenging to conduct a sales conversation with individuals like this. However, I have learned that it is not an impossible task to close a sale with someone who possesses this personality style.
First, you need to recognize that a pessimist does not view themselves as being a negative person. They are just cautious.
They simply view things differently than other people.
They very rarely rush into a buying decision.
And they seldom express emotion or personal feelings.
But this doesn’t mean you should classify them as a difficult prospect or customer.
It just means that you need to approach the sales process from a different perspective.
Here are few strategies that can help you improve your results when selling to these decision makers..
A pessimist will think far ahead and consider ALL the implications of their decision. This means that you need to be more prepared. As a seller, you need to consider the negative aspects of your product or solution. You need to think of what could go wrong and address these concerns upfront.
You also need to anticipate the potential problems. Once again, this calls for you to think ahead and determine what could go wrong.
A pessimist will ask lots of questions, many of which will revolve around problems or “what if” scenarios. It is important that you remain objective and focused. Don’t allow your emotions to get in the way. For many sellers (myself included) this is very difficult because they view the questions as a direct challenge.
Don’t take these questions as personal affront. Instead, respond objectively and offer clear solutions. Take your time and do not race through your rebuttal.
A pessimist will usually explore the buying decision in detail which means you need to provide ample detail during your presentation. Resist the temptation to try and close the sale quickly; this will only cause the other person to slow down and resist your approach.
Pessimists seldom act without precedent which means you need to be ready with testimonials, proof, and guarantees. It is important for you to reduce or, if possible, remove the risk factor of the decision.
Don’t embellish the result your solution might achieve or toss out assurances without thinking.
The best way to sell to a pessimist is to take a methodical, logical approach.
They want to make sure that the decision they make will be the right one so structure your proposal or presentation to address this concern.
It takes thought, effort, patience and discipline.
However, when you use the right approach you can achieve great results which will lead to a healthy increase in your sales.
I help sales team improve their face-to-face meetings and conversations so they can win more deals and earn more money. Please feel free to contact me if you’re planning a sales meeting, conference or event.