Responding to a "not interested" email

Mark Fershteyn's Sell Some More Blog

“I got hustle though, ambition flow inside my DNA”

- Kendrick Lamar

You’ve spent hours preparing for that sales call. You researched their entire company, including which school the CEO graduated from, and even stared at their award page. You almost sent the perfect follow up email, but re-edited it three times to make sure.

You just received an email - and it said they’re not interested. Trust me, I know that feeling.

We know that you don’t have a deal until the contract is signed and the invoice is paid. Luckily, you still have a shot at winning the deal back.

One of the most common mistakes that sales reps commit every day is giving up too early. They take their first rejection, shrug it off, and move on with their day. But if you want to be the best, you should only give up after you’ve heard at least 3 (THREE!) rejections. You worked too hard to give up so quickly.

So, how do you respond to that email and change their mind? I’m glad you asked!

First off, you need to figure out their True Objection (I should trademark this). The True Objection is the real reason they’re not interested, instead of what they’re actually telling you. If a prospect says “we’re really swamped” or “the marketing department wants to hold off for now”, those are reasons, but they aren’t the True Objections.

Why do prospects do this? Because it’s much easier to blame the holidays than saying your product isn’t interesting. You’ll really have to think deeper to effectively counter these excuses.

Start by putting yourself in their shoes and simply ask yourself “why?”. Once you figure out an answer try asking yourself “why?” 2 more times. This should help you get the True Objection.

Let’s run through an example:

“Bill said they’re holding off for now”


“He probably didn’t see the urgency for his business”


“Because I focused on showing product features instead of focusing on the benefits for his business”


“I forgot he really only cares about what’s in it for him, and

not the new features we just rolled out”

The most common objections my clients struggle with is always price related, like “this product is too expensive”. Guess what? It’s total bullshit. Cost is only an issue in the absence of value!

Businesses only care about increasing their revenue and growing their brand. If a product costs them $100 but returns $1,000 of value - they should probably buy it. The same is true for a product that costs them $10,000 - but you need to convince them!

If you’re hearing excuses about pricing then you didn’t properly demonstrate value. It’s that simple.

So now that you’ve figured out their True Objection we can start crafting that email, right? WRONG! You shouldn’t respond with an email - you should CALL THEM!

There are a lot of ways you benefit from calling instead of emailing:

  • Speaking to them can help you figure out their True Objection

  • It’s much easier to overcome their True Objection on the phone

  • You’ll sound better, more likeable, and more relatable

  • And most importantly - it’s actually harder for prospects to deny you over the phone!

However, before you pick up the phone and make that call you should roleplay the conversation with a coworker (or manager, it’s kind of their job). Yes, I know this can be awkward as hell - but you want that awesome commission check right?

Roleplaying doesn’t have to be a big deal - just quickly prep your partner on the deal, the buyer’s persona, and their objections. If done properly, a roleplay can unearth issues or objections you didn’t even think about. Plus you’ll be able to practice with no consequences. Do this a couple of times until you feel really confident, and then you’re ready to make that call.

Remember - focus on the benefits, and what’s in it for them! People don’t give a shit about your product, except for how it can help them.

(Scumbag Salesman Tip: if you think a prospect is dodging your calls, find a coworker’s cell phone with a different area code and give it a shot)

Hopefully at this point you’ve been able to have a great phone call and re-engaged their interest. Congrats, you just took an extra step that 90% of your peers aren’t willing to do!

So to quickly recap:

  1. Figure out your prospect’s True Objection (why they’re actually not interested, instead of the reason they gave you).

  2. Quickly roleplay with a coworker until you feel confident in countering their True Objection.

  3. Call them instead of emailing!

  4. Don’t give up until you’ve received at least 3 rejections.

Unfortunately, sometimes you can’t win them all. But that’s alright. Creating an amazing sales career is all about small, incremental, day-to-day improvements. I guarantee that by taking the extra steps I’ve outlined above you will save (and win) countless deals and make a drastic difference in your career performance.

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-Mark F.

#closing #advice #sales #coldcalling