There’s not a salesperson alive who hasn’t heard "Let me think it over" a million times. If everyone who said they were going to “think about it” actually did, the world would grind to a halt.
I like Benjamin Franklin’s quote: “Why put off ‘til tomorrow, that which can be done today?” Good question, Ben, and one that needs to be on our minds when we’re faced with all these "thinkers."
Another way to look at it is: “If the offer and presentation feels right, why not start saving money and enjoying better comfort tomorrow?”
The “I want to think it over” objection is just one way prospects put off the eventual decision that they’ll eventually come to, both logically and rationally. However, they don’t like feeling as if they’re being swept away and/or controlled by emotion. Waiting gives prospects the time to go back and justify the decision they already made.
As a salesperson, you have to make it okay for the customer to make their decision emotionally. This means reinforcing your presentation with logic and rationale. Make your prospects feel safe and secure in their emotional decision so that they won’t feel the need to raise this defense.
What to Say
Here are some options when a customer tells you they want to think it over:
1. “What exactly do you want to think over?”
2. “Let’s think this over out loud. Sometimes two heads are better than one. Is it the financing you’re concerned about, or is it something about the installation you’d like to think over?”
3. “Let’s think about it now while it's fresh in your mind. What are some of the items you need to know more about?
4. “Mr. Prospect, I appreciate you wanting to think it over. But we’ve just seen exactly how this product benefits you and your family, right? And we’ve seen how it can save you money. Since this system benefits you and your family, while also saving you money, when would be the best time to start enjoying those benefits?”
5. “As busy as you are, you probably have other things to think about that are more important. I imagine this is a relatively small decision for a person like yourself. Why not make the decision right now and free your mind for other things? Okay?”
6. “Fine. I'll wait outside (in the rain) and you can come out when you have made up your mind.” (Said in a humorous manner.)
7. “Obviously, you must have a reason for saying that. Would you mind if I ask what it is?”
8. “I understand that you want more time to think. I would be interested in your thoughts about the reasons for and against buying now.”
9. “Thinking this over could mean that you’ll have to wait two weeks or more before you can start enjoying the benefits of your new system and begin saving money. We can condense these two weeks to two minutes if you will accept my proposal now. Can we go ahead?”
10. “Why invest more time thinking this over? You’ve told me that you have already invested dozens of hours in thinking about this. Plus you’ve had the time to get several proposals, which is a cost of your time too. Haven’t you thought about it enough?”
11. “I know what you are saying, but I sense you’d like to get this unfinished business over with. I also feel that there are some points that you really like. What is it that’s holding you back?”
12. “Don’t think about it too long! Your time is valuable, so don’t spend $500 of your time thinking about a decision this small. Can’t we go ahead today?”
13. “You want to think about it? Great! We close in about three hours, and I can call you back by then. Okay?”
14. “Well, causing you to think about it is my fault. I feel I must not have fully explained the benefits of this new system to you. If I had, you wouldn’t have to think it over and I apologize for that. Now, is there something I didn’t make clear to you?”
It’s possible that you’ll hear another variation on this like, “We never buy on the first night” or similar. You must reduce this intangible to a specific objection.
“I can appreciate that. I hope you’re not just saying that to get rid of me! (Pause for laugh, we hope.) But I’ll assume you’ll give this very close consideration?” (Wait for response.) “Just to clarify my thinking, what is the particular item that you want to think over?” (Wait for response.)
In our next installment. We look at ways to handle the “We need to get other bids” response.
Adams Hudson is president of Hudson, Ink, a creative marketing firm for contractors. Readers can get a free marketing newsletter and a free 16-page report called “Get More Leads in Less Time” by faxing their letterhead with the request to 334/262-1115 or emailing to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call Hudson, Ink at 800/489-9099 for help or visit www.hudsonink.com for other free marketing articles and reports.