By Leigh Ann Hubbard

Overcoming objections is one of the most talked-about challenges in sales. There are all kinds of tips and tricks: Always be closing, don’t be desperate, keep a mindset of abundance — the list goes on. (How many has your sales team tried?)

Prospects today are savvy. They see through the game. So, Wendy O’Donovan Phillips says, change the game.

Instead of being laser-focused on objections, focus on need — and dig down deep to find it.

As CEO of Big Buzz, a marketing agency with senior living expertise (and a Foresight partner), Wendy trains sales and marketing professionals nationwide. And one of her sessions is available for streaming right now — for free. Click here to watch.

While the first half of this hour-long session covers how to identify the best types of marketing for your community, the second half covers the secret to overcoming objections. Wendy details an eight-step “diagnostic” process to identify what your prospect needs — and how motivated they are to move.

How to “Diagnose” the Need

You’re not doing medical evaluations here, of course. Instead, “diagnose” means ask questions to get to the root issues.

“The real issue for the majority of families is not, ‘I’m concerned my mom is not going to be engaged in activities,’ but somehow we end up talking about that,” Wendy says in the training session. “The real issue is not even, ‘Mom needs memory care.’ It’s almost always something like, ‘I feel so guilty that I can’t do for Mom what she needs for me to do and what she did for me.’ When you can reach that core, then you’re making a true connection.”

The conversation becomes about finding solutions to lessen the guilty feelings — which involves developing a positive vision for Mom’s future.

In the training, Wendy walks her audience through the eight steps of this diagnostic process, from the top of the sales funnel all the way to the bottom. She goes into detail about each step. Here’s an overview of the first four:

  1. Prepare for the call, with the right end in mind — finding the real issue.
  2. Connect on a personal level. Ask about family and hobbies to better understand your prospect. Keep detailed notes.
  3. Discover the root issues through active listening — including paying attention to body language and inflections. After the person details their concerns, ask, “Why is this important to you?” Do this a couple of times. You’ll get deeper and deeper answers.
  4. Diagnose. By the end of this step, ask, “Does it make sense to continue this conversation and design a possible solution together?” This will help you focus on people who are ready for a move.

The final steps are to design the solution, discuss the agreement, agree through a simple contract, and gain referrals.

More Tips and Strategies

The sales portion of this training session alone usually takes two half-day sessions, so this is an overview. Still, it is jam-packed with tips and strategies for how to get the most leads and move-ins. One of the best parts: Wendy points out that you don’t have to do everything. In fact, focusing on the most promising platforms and prospects will yield better results than running yourself ragged.

Click here to experience the training session.

For more educational insights from Big Buzz, check out their podcast, Marketing Mysteries Solved!, now available on Spotify and Amazon Music.

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