Avoiding The Sales Death Knell Of No

Death Knell of Sales

The Death Knell of No in sales exists for all of us. It comes quick, like a bullet to the head. And is usually unexpected in its delivery.

“I just need to think about it.”

We all know this line is usually the death knell of a conversation. No matter what we’ve done well prior to this in the sales process, we are now completely at the mercy of the prospect. Every once in a great while they come back with a ‘yes’. Most often we never hear from them again. They aren’t being mean, they just liked you and don’t have the heart to tell you ‘no’.

Why have they decided ‘no’?

Because when we are not in front of the client, they either forget about us completely (best case) or rationalize all the reasons to not buy our product (worst case). That’s totally fair, too. We are not a needs-based product. We are an emotional purchase…no matter how good we are at finding why they would use us.

When we hear that deadly phrase, it’s time to turn it on its head. If we can’t have a say in the final decision, we can still at least influence it. Whenever I’d hear that phrase, my IMMEDIATE response would be, ‘What resource can I allocate to make this sale happen?’

Avoiding The Death Knell of Sales

The thing we forget, a lot, is that we are a professional sports team or college. We have TONS of resources at our disposal. Can you have your manager make a call to the prospect? How about a Director, VP, or even President? Can you delight the prospect by having someone on your player personnel staff make a call? How about tweeting a picture of you and the mascot to them in hopes of welcoming them to the family? Why not take a picture of their potential seats and email them a nice note? Why not print the picture and write a handwritten note? How about inviting them down to see the seats in your empty arena while giving them a tour? How about sending them a scarf of your team?

These are just a few ideas…every team has different resources. You should have a list of all the resources at your disposal. The worst you can hear is ‘no’ from the resource you asked…but you tried, that’s what’s important. If your first response to the phrase, ‘I just need to think about it,’ is ‘What can I do to prove to them I want to earn their business,’ you’ll earn more business.

Brett Zalaski

Brett Zalaski runs one of the most energetic sports sales training regimes in the history of sports. He's sold sports at the highest level, building revenue for NBA TMBO, the MLS National Sales Center, the Columbus Crew, Boston Blazers Lacrosse just to name a few. Zalaski will be getting after it, teaching his "Sales Training Starter Kit" at the Sports Sales Boot Camp in Pittsburgh on June 28, 2016.

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