In this course Tony Perzow lays out some of the most commonly used negotiating tactics and how to countermeasure them with authority and confidence.
Having a plan when going into a negotiation is the most important thing. Many of us go into negotiating overthinking everything that can go wrong, but good negotiators can push those worries aside and focus on shaping the conversation to get what’s best for them.
Tony also explains that negotiating involves taking risks and one of the biggest but most uncommon risks that a salesperson will take is saying “no.” Below he discusses how to use saying “no” to your advantage and to be an effective negotiator in the process.
One of the most popular tactics is called the Nibble. A nibble is a small and insignificant ask that isn’t a deal breaker and is usually brought up in the final stage of the deal closing.
Counter measures to nibbles:
-Saying “no, I’m sorry we never give that for free.”
-Saying “are you kidding?” which will catch them by surprise and not try to
-You can say “Yes, I’ll give you that, but since we are revising our agreement, i need to check with legal and it might take a few weeks” which will make them not want to deal with going through that process
-Say you need to speak with your boss first
The squeeze is when a buyer nurtures and woo’s the salesperson, making them believe you are going to strike the perfect deal, but at the last minute say they need to have a better price.
When this happens, its suggested that salespeople stick to their original pricing and instead say they are willing to negotiate but can’t come down to the price they are asking for.
You need to speak with confidence when discussing pricing, this can include not over explaining pricing and taking a silent pause after quoting your price.
Countermeasures to the squeeze:
– “The Clinger.” The clinger is when you turn the focus of the conversation right to the 1 winning topic, 1 main pain point that you are going to solve for them, and remind them of the value you are already bringing at the original price.
-Buy more time. If a buyer is trying to get a better price off of you, say “I understand that price is something we need to address, but before we do I want to make sure I understand your needs to make sure we can do everything we can to make this deal as valuable as possible for you.” By saying this, you open up the door to ask them more questions and take time to address last minute concerns and explain your value.
-Use the “if you” rule. Simply saying I will give you this if you give me this. A simple trade that makes the two parties even.
The Trial Balloon
The goal of the “trail balloon” is to say or do something to test the other party and get information about where they stand in the negotiation.
Try throwing a trial balloon at them like “can you help me understand what you’re looking to achieve with a 20% reduction in price.” Either they will give you a concrete answer that fully explains why the 20% reduction is warranted, or they will stumble over an explaination and show they are just playing a game with you, to which you can say “I’m sorry, the price is the price.”
The last tip and trick to counter measure someone’s negotiating tactic is to send a message that you are taking a few moments to genuinely calculate the price they are asking for to then come back and simple say “I’m sorry, I just can’t do that.” It makes your no a real and honest no because you showed them that you took the time to consider the offer.
Both new and experienced negotiators can benefit from trying out these tactics the next time someone tries to lower them on price. The key is sticking as close as possible to your original quote and don’t sacrifice anything without getting something in return.