Overcome The “We Do Business With Someone Else” Objection

Use these four tips to get your foot in the door with clients who already work with a competitor.

Propose a Totally Unique Promotion: While a prospect may profess loyalty to a competitor, it doesn’t mean you’re out of the running. Distributor sales trainer David Blaise, co-founder of Blaise, Drake & Co., recommends countering this objection by offering to conceive and execute a fresh marketing initiative.

Blaise suggests saying: “If you have someone you’re already dealing with, I don’t want to interfere with that. I’m looking for loyal clients just like you. Tell me, if I were able to recommend a promotion that your current supplier has never recommended to you, would you consider placing just that portion of the business with me?”

If the prospect agrees, put your creativity cap on, come up with a killer promotion, and then service the heck out of the order. Do that and you have a firm foundation upon which to build future sales.

Uncover Pain Points & Cure Them: Danette Gossett, owner of Gossett Marketing (asi/212200), meets this objection head-on by directing the discussion to the relationship the buyer has with the competitor. Her goal is to discover areas where the client might be underserved.

Her questions include: “What do you like most about working with the competitor? Is there something that you’d prefer they do? Do they work as an extension of your marketing team, helping you stay on top of trends and keeping you on time and budget for regular programs?”

Soon, prospects are speaking at length. This lets Gossett identify opportunities for improvement. She then details how she and her team can enhance the prospect’s situation through creativity and service. “We show them we are more a partner than a vendor,” says Gossett.

Show Evidence of the Success You Generate: Whenever possible, share case studies and testimonials that illustrate how you’ve helped clients with similar businesses and needs as the prospect. “Make it easy for the prospective client to visualize that you’re able to offer creative ideas and better customer service,” says Nina Shatz, brand development director at HALO Branded Solutions (asi/356000).

Impress Prospects With Samples: Samples featuring the prospect’s branding serve as a fantastic tangible response to the “we already work with someone” objection. They evidence initiative, imagination and anticipatory service the prospect might not be receiving from a competitor who has grown complacent. Work with product vendor partners to create virtual samples on several newly released products you think will appeal to the buyer based on your research of his or her company. Also, consider creating a couple actual spec samples to show off.