Objection Category: Need Exists

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6. Objection: I can’t use anymore ______.

When does it usually occur? Initial contact.
Probable Cause: Prospect does not believe a need exists.
Objective: Establish a need.

Prevention Strategies:

  1. The overall game plan is helping the customer prepare for the future when they will need more (of whatever). For example, imagine a chart tracking consumption increasing and available inventory steadily decreasing. At some point in time, the inventory line will go below the usage line and the company will need to replenish its supply. Some companies try to replenish inventory in a way that it will keep pace with demand while other companies use oversupply situations with their suppliers to buy inventory at steeply discounted prices. Understand your prospective customer’s business model.
  2. During your research of the industry and talking with your customers, you can determine standard consumption rates and standard inventory levels. This will help you with timing and planning issues with prospective customers.
  3. Be sensitive to industry conditions to head off oversupply issues leading to returns or steep price discounts.
  4. One top sales professional I know sells fasteners. Many of his customers allow him into their inventory rooms to make sure they keep a previously agreed inventory count available based on current and projected rates of consumption. Get invited in to review inventory needs. Share your industry expertise with your buyers. Build your relationships so the buyers come to rely on your expertise.


Preemption Strategies:

  1. If you suspect they may be overstocked, you can preempt this objection by asking directly about their consumption rate, then emphasize and go into a future planning mode based on their business model.
  2. Sometimes you’ll pick up a pattern with certain competitors where they have a deliberate strategy of keeping their customers just on the high side of inventory requirements. One way to deal with this is to talk with the customer about the cost of money losses (tied up in inventory), inventory insurance costs, taxes on finished products on the shelf, warehousing costs, and other financial hits and risks they’re taking by getting pulled into buying high levels of inventory. If you can offer “just in time” deliveries, then you have a good chance of getting in the door without the objection coming up. Become your prospective customer’s consultant and ear to the ground information source.


Response Strategies:

  1. “Well, I can tell the timing isn’t right now. What is your consumption rate so we can set our next conversation at a more appropriate time? What slowed the consumption rate from the planned rate? Okay, so I’ll make a note to include a restocking paragraph to make sure you don’t get stuck with inventory you can’t use. Thank you and I’ve scheduled to call you on the ___ to set our meeting. What part of the day is the best time to reach you?”
  2. “That’s a good point and I’m glad you brought that up. Ordinarily, keeping inventory matched with consumption is a good plan, however, some of my customers are also taking this opportunity to buy select overstocked inventory at steep discounts. I think it might make sense to see which items might work for you with this type of strategy, especially if we can get some clear indications of when consumption will pick up.”
  3. “So that’s a great reason for us to talk about “just in time” inventory strategies now before things start moving again. I think we can help you free up dollars you’ve got tied up in your inventory. Makes sense to do this now, doesn’t it? When would be a good time for us to get together for a quick orientation and planning session?”

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