Monday, November 9, 2015

Science of Selling and Objections

You should always bear in mind we are selling a test of new products to buyers who desperately need to test new product. They need to find next hit item.  We may not prove to be that item, but test they must, and we make a test relatively risk free.

We hypothesize customers, and then we test the hypothesis.  As our offer, the hypothesis we are testing, meets customers, the customers will try to throw variables into your test, and render your test invalid.

Let’s review three possible objections:

1. The packaging is all wrong!  This is tricky... how so?  Is the bottle too tall for the shelf?  If so this is valid.  But is it reliable?  Is this true just of this customer, or do 100 customers also make this objection?  If so, then it is both valid and reliable, it is fact, science.  You’ll need to change your offer.  It may be valid for this one company, but if only for the one (or just a few) then it is not reliable, not science, and this business is not your customer.  Let them go.

2.  Your price is too high!  Now, this can not be valid, since your item is new.  In the measure it is new, then the buyer cannot possibly know if the price is right.  And here you will find the objection is reliable, since all buyers will tell you your price is too high.  So here, although, reliable, it is not valid, so you manage this case differently.  In this case you ask at what price you need to be to gain their order.  They name $X price.  At that point you acknowledge the price mentioned, and then begin to get agreement on need on all other points.  When the buyer has accepted all conditions, except for price, you return to the price and refuse to meet the price the buyer demanded.  You point out you cut the price for no one, tht otherwise the product is completely acceptable, and as noted, they buyer simply cannot know if the price works until he tests the price.  If the buyer refuses to buy, move on.  But do not cut price unless and until you verify the complaint is both valid and reliable, based on market test.  And even then, your response is to redesign, not cut price.

3. The flavor (speed, size, weight, color, material... whatever) if the wrong profile for our market! Here again, how would they know without testing that?  You job is to note the specific objection (too salty, not salty enough) and simply keep a running tally of the objections.  Never add salt at the next trade show, for if you do you failed to control the variables, and you lose all of your work to date, since you are no longer testing what you were testing.  Keep the offer the same until you achieve both valid and reliable facts upon which to make any changes.

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