James: James Schramko here with Will Wang from GrowthLabz.com. Hey, Will!
Will: Hey, James!
James: Will, we got a question that I think will be of quite general interest. And this is dealing with price objections in the sales process. I think a lot of people haven’t got too much experience with selling and they see the sales process as difficult. And then I think automatically tend to put lower prices on their products or services, then they might feel that it’s worth just because they’re trying to sort of protect themselves from getting that price push-back which inevitably will probably come anyway.
So I’m really curious to know, what sort of techniques or information do you have for people to help them cool down, you know, the challenges they’re having around price objection?
Will: Yeah, that’s a great question. And I think for me, price is kind of one side of the coin and the other side is value. Because if you can get your leads or your customers to understand the value that you’re providing, if the value stacks up, the price isn’t so much of an issue.
Now I understand that during the sales process, obviously, if you haven’t stated the value correctly or if the clients can’t quite see the value yet, then pricing is going to be a big objection. And the way that we kind of handle that is, it might be a bad analogy, but it’s kind of from something that I’m very passionate about which is Brazilian jiu-jitsu and martial arts. And it’s a martial art where you’re essentially trying to strangle each other or take each other’s limbs on the floor.
And the problem is a lot of the questions that we get, they’re kind of similar to business in that once someone’s got their arm around your neck, the question is, how do I defend against that kind of choke? But the answer is, by the time they’ve got that you’re almost too late. There’s almost no options. And sometimes in sales that can be kind of similar, as well. Because if you haven’t seen the value throughout the entire conversation, if you haven’t built the value into the sales process, if you haven’t expressed it correctly, by the time you get the price objection, it might actually be too late in that sale to turn it around. There’s going to be a lot more work to get out of that position than if you actually started the right way from the very beginning and stopped getting into that objection in the first place.
James: Right. That’s a good idea. You know, I’ve got so much to say on this particular topic because I spent a long time directly selling. When I was selling Mercedes-Benz, people would often ask for discounts and they would have price objections. But our trainers used to remind us, we weren’t selling a price. We were selling a motor vehicle experience. If it was truly about price, then they would be across the road in the bicycle shop for transportation. So they had to see some difference between a bicycle and a Mercedes-Benz.
So it was up to us to build in that value. In fact, we’re using a technique that’s now become popular and that’s storytelling. We were talking about the history of Mercedes-Benz and the invention of the combustion engine vehicle, how it became named Mercedes after the daughter of the importer, Emil Jellinek in the USA. And we’d talk about innovation and R&D into safety. And anything that was particularly interesting to the client out of the six different segments we could zero in on. We had an acronym for it. But we would focus on value building.
Exactly right, it’s like a scale. If you can create more value than the price that they’re paying, then they will move forward. So it’s really a matter of knowing your customer, understanding what will improve their situation and focusing on that and recognizing that it’s not about money.
I can tell you also from my experience, from buying things a lot, one of the number one reasons people have price objections is because they made it an issue for the client in the very first place. How many salespeople we’re dealing with stick price in your face or talk about discount before you even ask? They’re making it the issue. They should remove it from the issue.
So if you have an online sales process, try and create that value as Will said and put the price when it’s at the appropriate point in the conversation. And never have to apologize for the price. A discount, I was taught, is a financial apology. So think about that. If you’re giving money off the regular price, you’re sort of saying sorry, because it’s not really worth that. I think that might help you with your equation.
And remember, we’re always just trying to help someone be better off. So anything you can do to show them how much better off they’ll be, the better. Tell me about some of the tactics you use in your marketing, Will, to build value. Because we can say it easily, but how do you actually do it?
Will: Yeah, I kind of like to simplify things. And for any person to ever buy a product or service, I kind of view it as three things that they might potentially buy. It’s either they’re going to get money, they’re going to get more time or they’re going to get more sex. So it’s kind of human nature, bring it back to this core element.
So the way that we look at it is well, can my product help them get a return on investment or get more for what you’re paying? Or can I save them so much time that the price doesn’t even become an issue or can I help them become so attractive that they get their wildest dreams and their wildest desires? So we kind of talk about emotion a lot in the sales process and even in B2B. So we talk about, what if this actually worked, right? How much would your business grow? What employees can you hire? What does that mean for your time? Do you get to spend more time not working in the business but hanging out with your family or doing the things that you love?
So we kind of always take it back to human emotion and trying to understand what the people we’re talking to actually want in their life because it’s a guarantee no one actually wants more leads, because leads are more work. What they do want is more freedom in their business and more profit.
James: That is really good. You know, I’m thinking of my dentist. Dentists don’t want a discount Facebook campaign. They might want people in their chair, but like you said, and that’s such a clear definition and I’ve never heard it said that way. That’s work. I know what my dentist wanted, my old dentist, before I fired him. He wanted more golf days.
But you know what he would do to build value? He used to pull out little photo books and he’d show all these crowns and dentures and things. Like, if he had his way, he would replace every single tooth in my head with a perfect crown. He’d fly people in from overseas and do like Hollywood crowns, like hundred-thousand-dollar tooth jobs. He had big goals, he would talk about his commercial building developments, and his golf trips around the world. And I’m like, I don’t like this dentist so much anymore. But, you know, he would try and build value with that, with proof.
So other things that can build value are case studies, proof, charts, comparisons, before and afters, showing the result, any kind of demonstration or even getting a result before you ask for money. That really solves the price objection completely. You’ve already delivered a result. And now they’re going to pay you afterward.
That’s kind of like the test drive when you buy a motor vehicle. You’re hooking into that result of feeling amazing, driving that brand new silver Mercedes-Benz. Now, it’s just a matter of paying for it, which is the easy part right?
Will: Exactly. And also I like to add that just guarantees, as well. Guarantees work really, really well. If you know that you’ve got something of value that people want, guarantee it. Because most of the time, you’re going to have to have some kind of guarantee anyway, but people don’t use it in their marketing.
For example, in Australia, we’ve got consumer law that protects consumers. You sell them something that doesn’t work and they come back to you, you have to issue a refund. So why not put that upfront and use it to build trust and make pricing a non-objection because they know what value they’re going to get as a minimum.
James: Right, classic risk-reversal strategy.
Will, always a pleasure to chat. If you like Will’s stuff, check it out at GrowthLabz.com. Catch up with you in a future episode.
Will: Awesome! Thanks, James.
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