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Sales Training - What to say when you've lost a sale.

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I haven’t won every sale.  Neither will you.  I was once in a very heated competition.  After a huge effort on my part the prospect awarded the deal to my competitor.  When they first sent me the email letting me know they selected someone else, I was furious.  I wanted to pick up the phone tell them they were crazy, and worse; stupid.  In my heart of hearts I believed we had a better solution for them.

You’re obviously going to do your best and try to win each deal, but some are just going to get away from you.  Once the deal was finally irretrievable I wrote my prospect the following email:

Hello Beth,

Thank you for the note. 
I want you to know I have appreciated getting to know you and your team.
I certainly wish you the best with your new project.  If I can be of service in the future don’t hesitate to contact me.


Louie Bernstein

Did I get the business after this email?  Nope.  But what I did was leave the door open.  I didn’t act like a sore loser, which nobody likes.  Let’s say, for example, the implementation goes bad with my competitor’s product.  Or, it turned out their product wasn’t what they had promised.  Do you think my prospect would have called me back if I had acted like a spoiled brat?  No way.  So keep your cool and be a professional.

And yes; not for this particular sale, but this type of email has gotten me business after the initial sale was lost.  Copy both the email and the attitude. 

Sales Homework
– Your homework for this lesson is to keep this email handy and work so you never have to use it.

Sales Managers – Go for the win every single time.  But coach your sales reps to accept defeat gracefully and like a professional.  Never burn your bridges.      Read more...


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