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Does a “No” End the Sales Call?

Jerry has been trying to get a local supermarket chain to carry his company’s frozen food products. Jerry recently had a conversation with Anita, the buyer; part of it went like this:

Jerry: Anita, if you can start with our line of frozen snacks, I can offer an introductory deal with no risk, and you can test how well our products will sell for you.

Anita: Jerry, that sounds good. But right now, we’re not looking for new products. We don’t have room. Even our current brands are fighting for shelf space. So, in this climate, I have to say no.

What Does “No” Mean?

Jerry has a decision to make at this point. What does no mean? Here are three possibilities:

  1. The buyer is not playing games. She says she has no space. Jerry shouldn’t be obnoxious and keep selling.
  2. No never means no. If Jerry had the hottest new frozen food item on the market and it was the buzz of the industry, wouldn’t Anita find space?
  3. No may mean no for everyone else, but Jerry’s goal should be to get Anita to see why she should say yes to him.

If Jerry has a Q4 selling approach, what should be his attitude toward a prospect who says no?

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