I don’t know about you, but when I was first starting out in sales, I had the idea that really great salespeople just don’t get rejected all that often. How wrong I was! The truth is, the first rule of sales is that you are going to get some “no”s. Nobody has a 100% conversion rate — not even me 🙂
What many people don’t realise is that a sale only happens when you get the right message to the right person at the right time, and you’re simply not in control of all these things!
But even though you may know that cognitively, rejection can still hurt, not to mention rock your confidence. So how can you overcome rejection and keep improving your sales?
Consider every “no” as a learning opportunity
Because ultimately, that’s what it is. It’s not a personal rejection of you or a sign of your failure, it’s a chance to get better. This is not to say that you can’t feel disappointed after a “no”. But it does mean that after you’ve felt your feelings and got a little bit of distance from it, look back on the sale and analyse it to see what went well and what could have gone better, and use that information for next time.
Ask open questions
Just because someone doesn’t buy your thing doesn’t mean that you immediately have to shut the door on the relationship and never talk to them again. After you make it clear that you understand that it’s a no for now, you can ask them open questions to figure out the criteria they used to pick someone or something else, and what was missing from your offering that was important to them.
You may find that you’re able to turn a no into a yes, and at the very least you’ll be able to use that information to refine your offer and your pitch for next time.
Keep the lines of communication open
Sales is all about building relationships on your potential customers’ timeline, and sometimes that takes time. So leave things on friendly terms, with an open invitation to talk again if it doesn’t go as planned with the option they chose. This will not only open the door for sales later on, it will show your potential customer that you’re committed to a relationship with them, which makes a great impression.
Keep in touch!
Don’t let all that rapport-building and communication go to waste. Keep in touch via regular blogs, occasional emails, or mutually agreed-upon catch up dates. Just because it’s a no right now doesn’t mean it’s always going to be that way. People change, circumstances change, and that person who didn’t need your service a year ago might be perfect for it today. So keep in touch — you never know when that relationship might change.
Until next time,