Are your client and prospect conversations often turning into a form of verbal combat?
All too often salespeople get so wrapped up in being right that they completely forget to acknowledge their clients’ feelings and opinions.Demonstrating acknowledgement is a key step in continuing a conversation instead of jumping straight into an argument!
When you acknowledge your client’s opinion (even if it differs from your own) you demonstrate empathy to the way your buyer feels. This automatically puts them in a better, more relaxed state of mind because you’re showing your client that you understand their concerns and you’re willing to find a solution. You also show that you’re less concerned about beingright and more concerned about being fair.
Now – acknowledging your client does not mean that you give in to their every beck and call. In fact, it doesn’t even mean that you’re saying they’re opinion is correct. For example, if a client is complaining about your price, I’m hardly advocating that you immediately drop your fees to meet your client’s expectations. That’s not acknowledgement, that’s being pushed around!
Many salespeople “rebuttal” a point their customer makes by making one of the following statements:
- “That won’t work…”
- “You don’t understand…”
- “That’s not the way we do things…”
Notice how each of these statements are confrontational and close the door for an open dialogue.
Instead, acknowledge that you hear and understand them. Consider the following acknowledgements:
- “Thanks for sharing that with me.”
- “I appreciate you bringing that up.”
- “That’s a fair point.”
- “Let’s discuss this concern further…”
These acknowledgements open the door for further conversation and demonstrate that you’re listening to your clients.
When you’re in combat or arguing with a client, you are automatically pushing them away, regardless if you’re right. When you’re in conversation, the buyer is staying engaged with you.
Make sure you practice acknowledging others before making your own point known. Become comfortable with it, get good at it. You can consider trying it away from the office with friends & family, because like anything else, it takes practice!
Show the customer that they’re being listened to and that you want to keep talking to them. When you demonstrate this, your customers will want to continue talking to you and that means you’re moving closer towards a sale!
What’s one way you acknowledge your customers and clients during conversations?
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