Customer objections can be discouraging for anyone. But they actually show that the customer is interested in your bookkeeping services! Discover how you can accept and overcome objections.
Cindy Stradling is a resilience coach and an accomplished speaker and author. She’s been running her own training, development, and coaching business for 14 years now. On top of that, she’s got 25 years of sales experience next to her name!
And yet, Cindy doesn’t consider herself a natural in sales. In fact, she remembers starting out and being so nervous about picking up the phone. She’d worry that she was bothering people by calling them! Until she realized something…
If she’s calling to offer her services, which can help the person on the other line get to where they want to be, then why would the call be a bother? So, she transformed her fearful inner dialogue into one that says, “Boy, it’s their lucky day because I’m calling them today!” This mindset shift helped Cindy gain more confidence when picking up the phone to do a sales call.
But that wasn’t the only thing that helped. According to Cindy, a huge part of preparing for sales calls is preparing to hear objections.
Be Thankful for Objections
If you offer someone a solution to their problem involving bookkeeping and the first thing they do is to object to what you’re proposing, how would you feel?
From Cindy’s perspective, you should actually feel thankful! Why?
When someone’s telling a story and you don’t care much about what they’re saying, think about what you do.
Do you ask questions and prod for more details? Or do you just sit there, nodding your head, waiting for the story to be over?
Well, it’s the same for customers!
People who don’t engage in conversation with you are very unlikely to engage in business with you. Whereas those who ask questions, pose objections, and press you for more information about your bookkeeping services are actively interested in what you’re saying.
And that’s why you should be thankful for objections.
The Two Most Common Objections
But being thankful for objections is just the first step.
The most important thing is, of course, to overcome them. And to do that, you have to be familiar with the most common objections you’ll likely encounter when selling your bookkeeping services.
For Cindy, the biggest customer objections are usually anchored in two things: time and money.
Objection #1: “I just don’t have the time.”
The fact is that even just a small change in your customer’s business process requires a lot of time to implement.
Here’s an example.
Engaging your bookkeeping services would mean the customer would need to take the time to:
- Orient you about the financial situation and history of their business
- Turn over all relevant records and books of account to you
- Realign their finances to factor in the fees for your services
So, you see why someone who’s already grinding 40-hour work weeks might not be too keen on signing up for your services.
Objection #2: “We don’t have that kind of money.”
Another common objection is money, or the lack thereof.
This is a subject that’s all too familiar for anyone in sales, including those trying to sell their bookkeeping services.
When a customer raises this objection, most people would feel pressured to slash their prices or offer a discount to fit into the client’s budget.
But here’s the thing…
No matter how low you go, the amount you’re charging would still be way too expensive for a client who doesn’t get the value of what you’re offering.
And that brings us to what should be your main objective: Overcoming the objections.
Overcome Objections and Close the Sale
Remember how Cindy gained the confidence she needed to get on the phone and make those sales calls?
She had to remind herself that getting a call from her is a blessing, not a bother. That’s because she’s bringing value to the life or business of the person on the other end of the line.
So, when you talk to a customer and you encounter either of the two objections discussed above, you have to do the same thing:
Remind yourself of the value of your bookkeeping services.
Don’t be tempted to bring the conversation to an end just because the customer raised an objection or two.
Here’s what you do instead.
Step #1: Find Out What the Objection is Really About
Sometimes, customers wouldn’t actually say they don’t have the time or the money to engage your bookkeeping services.
They’d say things like…
We just hired a bunch of new people…
We’re taking on this big project right now that requires all hands on deck…
I’m just not sure this is what the company needs right now.
When that happens, you have the responsibility to listen to what they’re actually saying when they say these things.
Here’s a clue: all of these are still connected to the common objections mentioned above.
Step #2: Park the Objection
Once you’ve determined the customer’s main objection, tell them you understand and that you’ll circle back to it later.
Recognizing the objection instead of completely brushing it aside would make the customer feel heard and would likely push them to continue with the conversation.
Step #3: Talk About Your Value Proposition
Once you’ve parked the objection, demonstrate the value of your bookkeeping services.
As a bookkeeper, what can you bring to the table that would make the customer’s life easier?
Can you completely eliminate the time they’re spending poring over their records and accounts?
Can you give them peace of mind by ensuring their payments are all made on time?
Can you free up time for them to spend with their families instead of working longer hours during tax season?
If you are able to demonstrate the value of your bookkeeping services, chances are that you won’t even have to circle back to the objection you parked.
It’s all because you were able to convince the client that your bookkeeping services are worth the investment, both in time and money.
Study How to Overcome These Two Objections and Use Our Tools
The steps we’ve outlined here, with the help of Cindy’s story, is a tried-and-tested method of getting favorable results after a sales call. This framework can help you get over your fear of objections and will make you more confident in picking up the phone.
And if you'd like to learn more about mastering your sales process, go ahead and: