Disqualifying to handle objections

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kcliffy's picture
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Joined: 2010-05-09

Okay so I have been in the industry for almost 12 months now. I have learnt a lot and I’m surprised I still have a job to get to this stage. I thought I was good in sales before I started and the amount of knowledge I have gained since starting has been astronomical. I have spent money on books, DVDs, anything and everything as well as my firm constantly training us in sales/product knowledge. However, I have come to an interesting realisation with objections. In fact, what I have found is counter intuitive to what all of the FP’s script book suggests. A lot of objection books focus on talking the customer into the corner. This is what I have found and I would value your opinion… When answer objections, instead of fighting them simply disqualify the client. For example: Client: I have a child and I'm a nurse that does shift work so I don't think I will have the time. Me: That's fine sorting out your financials is not for everyone. We really only want to take on board clients who can commit the time and be involved in the decision making process. Might be an idea to consider it when you have more time. Client: No If I commit to it, than I will be able to make the time. When do you want meet up to talk more about it? OR Client: I have things that I’m involved in right now and committed to so I’m not interested at the moment. Me: The time is not always right for everyone. I don’t want to bombard you with too much information, I only want to take on clients who can be 100% committed to the process. Obviously you can’t so I don’t so I wouldn’t even put you in a position where your hands are tied. To set up a bit of a timeline when would you like to touch base with you next to see if you want to take the next step? Client: Oh well, we can meet up and I’m more than happy to see what you have to offer. At the slightest point of resistance, I cut the client off and say that im not interested in this business. Over the last couple of weeks I have been consistently getting people who are keen. But you always get your one or two which aren’t interested. Have and of you guys realised this?   

gethardgetraw's picture
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Joined: 2009-10-22

Absolutely. The moment I started DISqualifying prospects on cold calls was the moment my cold calls started to pay off. Rather than taking on 25 new prospects after a day of calling, I generally take down 5-6. These 5-6 prospects, however, have already told me a) the amount of money they're willing to invest, b) the products they're interested in, and c) exactly when in the next 2 weeks I should call. It's much better than having 25 prospects logged simply because they've told you they wouldn't mind you sending them your business card and following up if you find something "good." I also enjoy disqualifying in more of a sinister way. I think it's hilarious that we're the ones proactively calling and then we don't even want their business. It's a funny business.

IndieMan's picture
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Joined: 2009-11-10

Sometimes, you have to "change up" your approach.  Disqualifying is an excellent tool.  I always try to think about Nick Murray and the "rooms on the Ark" analogy..........:)It is personal preference.  Kind of like when I used to call with muni bonds.  I just assumed everyone had $250,000 to invest in them.  A lot of them said they didn't, so I would follow up and say: "Well, I guess we can start with $150,000 today.  WHEN is the OTHER $100,000 going to be liquid"?  Pretty tough for them to lie, you'll know right away.   

Gaddock's picture
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Joined: 2007-02-23

It's called the 'take away' from where I come from. If you act like you need the ticket you wont get it. if you act like you could care less they want it bad. Human nature.The account I've been opening a pretty large these days. HNW folks are even more sensitive to this.I've simply been saying, IF I can hedge your account against loss will you open an account with me? If they say no I pretty much roll my eyes and giggle .. OK then when you're tired of getting the stuffing kicked out of you call me. 

Nova02's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-28

Here's a question from someone who periodically cold calls, but hasn't found it to be tremendously successful.  My problems are the following: - Most lists you work from have a lot of disconnected lines, fax beeping, or simply unanswered due to the caller ID coming up with my firm's name.  - For those I actually get on the phone (maybe 1-3 in a 100), rarely do I even get someone who's partially interested in even talking to me.  Maybe it's my approach (process-centric, planning oriented, "second opinion," etc., rather than product pushing, which I absolutely REFUSE to do).  I'm curious how those of you who have had success cold call via "disqualifying" have found enough people to even employ that tactic with.  Personally my experience has been that when I actually get someone who will actually pick up their phone and talk, you're basically doing everything in your power to get a meeting rather than disqualify.

gethardgetraw's picture
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Joined: 2009-10-22

Nova - When you say you absolutely REFUSE to pitch product, imagine yourself as a HNW client with $10mm. Some rookie calls you up and starts talking about his process and how he'd like to give you his "second opinion." A) The rookie doesn't even have a process yet and B) "Second opinion?" This phrase is so weak and should be eliminated from this industry's vernacular. If a client's been with an FA for 10 years, through all the market cycles, and is pleased with their broker's service, they're not moving. Period. Save the "second opinions" for Geiko car quotes. Now imagine you're that same client with $10mm. Your FA hasn't called in a few months and you have $20k too much in your checking account. This rookie calls up with a tax-free bond for the school district where your kids go to school. It's paying 5.5% tax-free and it's at a reasonable price.  Which call has the better chance of getting the account?

gethardgetraw's picture
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Joined: 2009-10-22

Nice guys lose in this business.

gethardgetraw's picture
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Joined: 2009-10-22

One more thing -  You're not trying to "win" on every call. The purpose of making 200 cold calls each day is to find the 1-2 people who are in the latter part of my example above.

N.D.'s picture
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Joined: 2009-07-14

Also don't forget what Ice said and I am sure someone before him. "Mr. Prospect, I am looking for someone to replace my best idea with their FA's worst idea. I can show you in probably fifteen minutes next Thursday?"No product and no BS "Second Look"

inlandTX's picture
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Joined: 2008-08-25

Good stuff guys. This forum has always been HUGE in expanding my mind and my skills.@ Get - I've often wondered about these mega-call numbers. I assume "200 calls" is 200 dials, not 200 pick-ups? When I call, it seems so many are wrong # or no-answer that I bet 70%+ of my dials are meaningless time-wasters.Because of that, I can see that you'd better be really good at getting the appointment to capitalize on the few qualified prospects you'll get during a whole day of calls. In fact, after 20 months in the business, I now can't think of any skill more important for us rookies than learning just how to get the prospect in a chair in front of you.For you cold-calling pros, what do you guys think is a decent close ratio for a newer guy to aspire to?200 dials = ______ Live bodies = _______ Actual Conversations = _______ Appointments?

TenToesDown's picture
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Joined: 2010-03-23

inlandTX wrote:Good stuff guys. This forum has always been HUGE in expanding my mind and my skills.@ Get - I've often wondered about these mega-call numbers. I assume "200 calls" is 200 dials, not 200 pick-ups? When I call, it seems so many are wrong # or no-answer that I bet 70%+ of my dials are meaningless time-wasters.Because of that, I can see that you'd better be really good at getting the appointment to capitalize on the few qualified prospects you'll get during a whole day of calls. In fact, after 20 months in the business, I now can't think of any skill more important for us rookies than learning just how to get the prospect in a chair in front of you.For you cold-calling pros, what do you guys think is a decent close ratio for a newer guy to aspire to?200 dials = ______ Live bodies = _______ Actual Conversations = _______ Appointments? Think about it.  Does it really matter if 70% of your dials are no answer or wrong numbers?  If the 30% that remains is good, you will be a very RICH man in this business.  I would take 30% odds any day!  seriously though.  You need to qualify who you are dialing.  Residential dials take many more dials in general than business numbers to reach a contact in my experience.  On a bad day, ten business dials yields a contact and on a good day 7.5 dials yields a contact.  Contacts are the key.  A few nights a week I do residential dials for a special project I am working on and i usually get 2 to 3 cherries within an hour and a half of dialing.  I usually dial upwards of 70 dials per hour residential because no one answers the phone so dials go by pretty quickly.  I don't leave messages either.  You should take a look at Nick Murray's latest book, the game of numbers....good stuff in there, but the key takeaway is the "success is inevitable if you never stop prospecting".  Problem is that just like in every other endeavor in life, too many people throw in the towel too soon, because success is usually the result of hard work over a prolonged period of time whereas most people want overnight success from some kinda magic pill.  If only life did work that way!

Nova02's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-28

gethardgetraw wrote:Nova - When you say you absolutely REFUSE to pitch product, imagine yourself as a HNW client with $10mm. Some rookie calls you up and starts talking about his process and how he'd like to give you his "second opinion." A) The rookie doesn't even have a process yet and B) "Second opinion?" This phrase is so weak and should be eliminated from this industry's vernacular. If a client's been with an FA for 10 years, through all the market cycles, and is pleased with their broker's service, they're not moving. Period. Save the "second opinions" for Geiko car quotes. Now imagine you're that same client with $10mm. Your FA hasn't called in a few months and you have $20k too much in your checking account. This rookie calls up with a tax-free bond for the school district where your kids go to school. It's paying 5.5% tax-free and it's at a reasonable price.  Which call has the better chance of getting the account?I hear you in many ways.  Personally, I run my practice more in a planning-oriented fashion and I try not to take on "transactional" relationships.  Those are good points on the "second opinion," as I'm sure many people are using it, however it's hard to think that the HNW clients I currently work with or those I'm trying to continue to bring on board to my practice would be enticed by a stock or bond idea when that FA has no clue about their situation.  It might work for certain people and I do come across prospects who tend to view their relationship with their advisor as a means of getting the next "hot idea."  I just don't want to build my practice that way, but it's a personal decision.  I guess I was just more curious how people are having success by NOT pitching product, and going about it more on a laid-back, "I realize the markets have been tough, and you might not be happy with your current advisor - let's get together and let me tell you more about my approach..." etc.Again I've been doing this for about 3 years with some moderate success - graduated from ML's POA program during 2008; I'm not claiming to have a better approach, but more interested in how it's worked in other ways for the folks here. Thanks for the info!

IndieMan's picture
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Joined: 2009-11-10

Quote:I hear you in many ways.  Personally, I run my practice more in a planning-oriented fashion and I try not to take on "transactional" relationships.  Those are good points on the "second opinion," as I'm sure many people are using it, however it's hard to think that the HNW clients I currently work with or those I'm trying to continue to bring on board to my practice would be enticed by a stock or bond idea when that FA has no clue about their situation.  It might work for certain people and I do come across prospects who tend to view their relationship with their advisor as a means of getting the next "hot idea."  I just don't want to build my practice that way, but it's a personal decision.  I guess I was just more curious how people are having success by NOT pitching product, and going about it more on a laid-back, "I realize the markets have been tough, and you might not be happy with your current advisor - let's get together and let me tell you more about my approach..." etc.Again I've been doing this for about 3 years with some moderate success - graduated from ML's POA program during 2008; I'm not claiming to have a better approach, but more interested in how it's worked in other ways for the folks here. Thanks for the info! I personally just dumb it down, and use the current market conditions to dictate what I say.  For instance, when the market fell off the map in 2008, the folks I called I just said:  "When was the last time your advisor called you"?  I usually got one of 4 answers, all of which I liked:1)What is this about?2)last week, day, month, etc.3)haven't heard from him in years........4)I don't have a financial advisor.So, it is a qualification call.  I just determined a few things with that one simple question:  whether they have an FA or not, if the FA relationship is good or not, whether they are getting good service or not........:) of course, you need a followup question to back up your first one, but its a start, and cold calling or prospect calling is all about numbers.  If the guy slams the phone down, you must cheerily mark him down as "not interested" and move on...:) 

Nova02's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-28

IndieMan wrote:Quote:I hear you in many ways.  Personally, I run my practice more in a planning-oriented fashion and I try not to take on "transactional" relationships.  Those are good points on the "second opinion," as I'm sure many people are using it, however it's hard to think that the HNW clients I currently work with or those I'm trying to continue to bring on board to my practice would be enticed by a stock or bond idea when that FA has no clue about their situation.  It might work for certain people and I do come across prospects who tend to view their relationship with their advisor as a means of getting the next "hot idea."  I just don't want to build my practice that way, but it's a personal decision.  I guess I was just more curious how people are having success by NOT pitching product, and going about it more on a laid-back, "I realize the markets have been tough, and you might not be happy with your current advisor - let's get together and let me tell you more about my approach..." etc.Again I've been doing this for about 3 years with some moderate success - graduated from ML's POA program during 2008; I'm not claiming to have a better approach, but more interested in how it's worked in other ways for the folks here. Thanks for the info! I personally just dumb it down, and use the current market conditions to dictate what I say.  For instance, when the market fell off the map in 2008, the folks I called I just said:  "When was the last time your advisor called you"?  I usually got one of 4 answers, all of which I liked:1)What is this about?2)last week, day, month, etc.3)haven't heard from him in years........4)I don't have a financial advisor.So, it is a qualification call.  I just determined a few things with that one simple question:  whether they have an FA or not, if the FA relationship is good or not, whether they are getting good service or not........:) of course, you need a followup question to back up your first one, but its a start, and cold calling or prospect calling is all about numbers.  If the guy slams the phone down, you must cheerily mark him down as "not interested" and move on...:) absolutely.  This was a great call to make in 2008 for sure, and one I used quite often.  What I might have failed at was leading this into the "do you want me to provide you with a second opinion" bit... 

IndieMan's picture
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Joined: 2009-11-10

Quote:I hear you in many ways.  Personally, I run my practice more in a planning-oriented fashion and I try not to take on "transactional" relationships.  Those are good points on the "second opinion," as I'm sure many people are using it, however it's hard to think that the HNW clients I currently work with or those I'm trying to continue to bring on board to my practice would be enticed by a stock or bond idea when that FA has no clue about their situation.  It might work for certain people and I do come across prospects who tend to view their relationship with their advisor as a means of getting the next "hot idea."  I just don't want to build my practice that way, but it's a personal decision.  I guess I was just more curious how people are having success by NOT pitching product, and going about it more on a laid-back, "I realize the markets have been tough, and you might not be happy with your current advisor - let's get together and let me tell you more about my approach..." etc.Again I've been doing this for about 3 years with some moderate success - graduated from ML's POA program during 2008; I'm not claiming to have a better approach, but more interested in how it's worked in other ways for the folks here.Almost ALL of us on here want MORE HNW folks.  However, HNW are people too, the only difference is how many zeroes in their accounts.  I think the "500 day war" that The Judge put on here a couple years ago is spot on.  Most HNW folks already have one or more brokers, and so how are YOU different?  There is NOTHING wrong with a product pitch.  I worked as an intern at a muni bond underwriter in Chicago.  In order to 'test me", they had me call doctors from some list that was screened for high tax bracket.  They gave me a script and told me to follow it.  This was the late 80's for time frame.  I was told to give them the specifics of the bond issue, that is was double tax exempt, and then, without pausing, ask if they were in for $100,000 or $200,000.  I got 3 guys out of 20 to say they were interested.........:)  It can work, and does work.As my old branch manager once said: "If you have a $50,000 account from a guy with $4 million that threw you a bone, you have $50,000 reasons to stay in touch".  One of his other advisors may stumble at some point and THEN you get the account you want.........:)  I personally just dumb it down, and use the current market conditions to dictate what I say.  For instance, when the market fell off the map in 2008, the folks I called I just said:  "When was the last time your advisor called you"?  I usually got one of 4 answers, all of which I liked:1)What is this about?2)last week, day, month, etc.3)haven't heard from him in years........4)I don't have a financial advisor.So, it is a qualification call.  I just determined a few things with that one simple question:  whether they have an FA or not, if the FA relationship is good or not, whether they are getting good service or not........:) of course, you need a followup question to back up your first one, but its a start, and cold calling or prospect calling is all about numbers.  If the guy slams the phone down, you must cheerily mark him down as "not interested" and move on...:) absolutely.  This was a great call to make in 2008 for sure, and one I used quite often.  What I might have failed at was leading this into the "do you want me to provide you with a second opinion" bit... 

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