By Paul Reilly

Prospect: “It’s an apples-to-apples comparison. Your price is too high!”

Value-Added Salesperson: “Well, there are over 2500 varieties of apples. Which ones are you comparing?”

Mic Drop

Most price objections ARE NOT price objections. They are lack-of-differentiation objections.

When attempting to differentiate your alternative, here are seven things to remember…

1. It’s better to be more expensive. Better solutions are more expensive.

In the absence of any additional information, price is the greatest indicator of quality and performance. When your solution is better, it should be more expensive. Prospects expect to pay more for better solutions.

My wife asked me to pick up a “nice” bottle of wine. I don’t drink wine; I don’t know the best wines. So, I rely on one variable to tell me which wine is the best…Price. More expensive wines are better!

2. Higher prices are a differentiator (price = prestige).

People like to show off how much money they have. Look at your social media feeds.

When someone buys a Mercedes, they like letting people know they can buy a Mercedes. Don’t underestimate the role prestige plays in the buying decision. At some level, prospects want to pay for the best to show they can.

3. Positively compare your solution.

You don’t need to badmouth a cheap competitor. It’s tempting to bash the competitor (especially lousy, lying, cheap competitors). There’s a better way to approach differentiation.

Draw attention to your value-added strengths that highlight a competitor’s weakness. Once you establish your value-added strengths as the benchmark, prospects will compare other options to the expectation you set.

4. Demonstrate your differences – you set an expectation.

Don’t just sell your difference; sell differently. Create a different sales experience for the prospect. The process is simple. Identify the steps prospects go through when they make a buying decision. Next, create unique value at each step along the way.

The customer will experience something different rather than just hearing about your differences.

5. Being first matters.

Tell the prospect if you were the first to introduce a new idea, product, or service. Being first is often associated with being the best.

New Orleans is known for good times and great food, like beignets. A beignet is a delicious French pastry and New Orleans staple. My hotel was offering free beignets in the lobby. Yet, I walked a mile out of my way to visit Café Du Monde. They were the first to serve fresh hot beignets in New Orleans.

6. How it’s made matters.

Products are easily duplicated, but the process is not. Describing your process provides proof to substantiate your claims of quality and performance.

Your process justifies your price. Prospects want a fair exchange for what they sacrifice in time and money. At the heart of this desire is fairness. Detailing the process for creating your solution builds perceived fairness.

7. Social proof is powerful.

“If it’s good enough for the Kansas City Chiefs, it’s good enough for us.” My high school football coach said that when he showed us our summer weightlifting regiment. He got a copy of the same weight program the Chiefs use for their conditioning. The social proof was all we needed to buy into this program. Without the Chief’s imprimatur, it’s just another workout!

It’s never just apples to apples. The key is figuring out what makes your apples different, and how that difference is meaningful to the prospect.

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