Every so often, prospects will want to speak with someone who is using your products or services just to make sure they are making the right decision. And every so often prospects will use this as a smokescreen objection to stall you and put off making a decision. Let’s face it – either way it’s hard to get people on the phone, so just giving them a name and number usually just delays – or kills – the sale.

The best way to deal with this smokescreen/objection is to confirm that you have a real prospect on the line, and then offer to do the reference check with them. This will often smoke out the real objection (if they aren’t willing to call your reference with you), and it will help you get the deal with a prospect who actually is real.

Use any of the following word for word scripts to deal with and overcome the “I need references” objection:

Response #1:

“I’m happy you’re bringing that up because it tells me that you understand the value here, that you want to move ahead with it and that you just want to make sure we can do what we’ve been talking about, right?

I mean, if you speak with a few clients who are as happy with our service as I’ve been telling you they are, then you’re prepared to come on board with me, right?”

[Only if YES]
“Great! Then I’ll go ahead and do a conference call right now with a few clients and you can ask them all you want and then we can go ahead and set up delivery. Can you hold on for a few seconds?”

Response #2:

“I’d be happy to let you speak with a few of my clients, but as I’m sure you can appreciate, they are just as busy as you are. If you tried to reach them by yourself, I’m afraid you’d likely play phone tag for weeks. I have direct access to them so I can get right through to them and get you the answers you need.

Now, I’ll go ahead and conference some of them in right now, but before I take their valuable time, if you like what you hear, what size order are you thinking of placing today?”

Response #3:

“No problem, _________. I’ll be happy to put you in touch with them right now. Let me ask you, when you begin using us as well, if you’re happy with our services, could I count on you to be a reference for me too?

Terrific! Then let’s do this: Let’s go ahead and get all the paperwork done on this end; I’ll arrange for delivery for you and then we’ll take few minutes to check in with some of our clients. Now, how big of an order are you starting with today?”

As you can see, real prospects with work with you on this, while those who aren’t will just give you more objections, stalls and put offs. Either way, you’ll know where you stand!

About the author

Mike Brooks

Mike Brooks is the founder of Mr. Inside Sales, a North Carolina based inside…

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