All posts by The Sales Evangelist

Brian Harrington, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1224: How To Craft A Rock Solid Sales Pitch To Potential Investors

Brian Harrington, The Sales EvangelistA sales pitch is part of the selling process but not all salespeople know how to craft a rock-solid sales pitch to potential investors.  First, everyone is a salesperson. Regardless of what you do, everyone sells to someone.

Brian Harrington started in the infomercial business. He worked for his father who was one of the principal pioneers of the infomercial industry. His experience taught him the craft of selling products on TV. 

In those early years, Brian saw how easy it was to sell through television advertising but he eventually saw how investments could be lost as fast as money was made.  They made some changes and instead of sticking exclusively with Infomercials, they followed customers to where they were making their purchases. That decision led them to the digital world and social media. 

Brian and his team started to sell products through Google and other online opportunities such as Facebook. Since then, they’ve branched out to several other platforms. They sell directly to consumers with a diverse selection of products including health and fitness, beauty, home products, and more but continue to also sell through traditional brick and mortar retail stores. 

Brian’s company sells products with a focus on three core worlds: 

  • Product
  • Education, providing ongoing training to entrepreneurs and sales professionals
  • Investing/ Advising/Consulting where they help startup businesses grow and provide value. 

Mistakes you’re making when pitching to investors

It’s easy to make mistakes when pitching. especially if you have no idea how to craft a rock-solid sales pitch to potential investors. The first mistake people make is not being prepared.  If you show up to a meeting and don’t know enough about their business, competition, industry, to answer a potential investor’s basic questions, you can tank a meeting in the first few minutes. It can make you look incompetent in an area you claim a level of expertise. Investors do not want to get involved with people who seem to lack core knowledge. 

Simple changes can make the pitch so much better.  Brian says it can be broken down into 3 easy steps: The Tease, The Please, and The Seize. 

The Tease, The Please, and The Seize 

The Tease:  Get the investor’s attention right away. The first impression matters and you have a small window to capture a potential investor’s interest. Cater the pitch to the person you’re pitching to and keep the company’s culture in mind.  BE PREPARED. Your goal is to capture their attention and interest in the first 10 seconds.  

You also want to be mindful of how your actions and words may be received by your audience.  If you’re working with international investors, do the research about how to conduct yourself during the meeting in order not to make a faux pas. 

The Please: On the one hand, you want to be sure you’re prepared to answer any questions your potential investor might ask. On the other hand, you also want to withhold enough information so they continue to ask questions and dialogue continues.  Take a breath when you’re talking and allow those questions to happen. These unanswered questions will keep them excited and interested in hearing more. There’s a balance between the information you want to offer and the information you want to hold onto until the pitch closes.

 The Seize: Once you’ve had a great launch to your pitch and generated excitement, your job is to keep up the energy. You do this by making sure every pitch has a call to action. Think of ways to make your pitch intriguing enough for the investor to enjoy your presentation, see the value in your product, and have the desire to work with you in a new venture.  You want them to have confidence in you and the products or services you represent.

It’s important to take the time to do the research in potential investors.  Make sure you know they’re looking to invest in your industry or type of product before you ever get in front of them.  Find out what kinds of pitches they’re drawn to. For Brian, the best pitches are the ones that come from people who command attention and hold the attention of the room throughout the presentation. 

Have the right amount of confidence 

Confidence is key for any salesperson. That confidence, however, has to balance with the facts that are being offered.  A good investor is going to research the data you are using to support your claims so stick with the truth. Don’t makeup stories to make yourself look good.  It can compromise your integrity and an investor needs to be able to trust you. 

You also want to be careful about being annoying.  Again, you don’t have a lot of time to make a great first impression.  You don’t want to come off as too cocky or flashy. The best course of action is to substantiate your claims and have a real plan you can confidently and competently execute. 

The truth is, not all pitches will be successful. There are risks in every opportunity but oftentimes, the rewards are bigger than the risks. You can lower the risks by offering realistic projections that show you’ve systematically mapped out how you’re going to make a profit. 

Crafting a Great Sales Pitch

As a salesperson, it’s your job to craft a rock-solid sales pitch to potential investors. The right pitch doesn’t sound too  “salesy.” During a pitch, be careful of talking too much. It could seem like you’re trying too hard and can be perceived as a lack of confidence in your presentation. 

Turn that around by keeping these key elements in mind when crafting a great sales pitch:

  • Come prepared
  • Be confident
  • Know your business
  • Show a level of traction and validation 
  • When presenting, take a deep breath and refrain from repeating the same things over and over again. 

“How To Craft A Rock Solid Sales Pitch To Potential Investors” episode resources

Connect with Brian Harrington by emailing him at brian@kevingharrington.tv. For more sales information and questions, you can also catch up with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

The Accidental Seller Series

TSE 1223: The Accidental Seller Series 8-“Norma Bell”

The Accidental Seller SeriesThis is the last episode for the Accidental Seller Series. Because it’s the last, it needed a very special guest, Norma Davis Bell, Donald, The Sales Evangelist’s mom. Check out our previous Accidental Seller Series episodes. 

Norma Bell wanted to become a policewoman growing up because of the idea of protecting and helping people. As she grew older, however, her path took her in another direction.

After Norma decided she wasn’t going to train to be a policewoman, she discovered she had the skill to make dresses.  Norma’s older sister, Ivy, wanted to support her and connected her with a friend with the idea that Norma could be her apprentice.  As it turned out, however, the friend wanted an assistant more than she wanted to teach so the opportunity was short-lived. Ivy, who owned a small store and bar at the time, new Norma was great with people and invited her to work with her.

Ivy had a great head for business, was able to network well, could make things happen and managed the administrative details of their work.  What she was lacking, however, was the customer service skills. Her little sister, Norma, had a natural gift when it came to working with customers, entertaining people with jokes, and bringing joy to their places of business. This was especially evident when Norma worked in the store. As a cashier, even if she had the longest line, people would stand in line longer, just to wait for her. She knew the names of each of her customers and Norma made each of them feel special.  With the sisters working together, the businesses thrived.   

Working as a salesperson in the shop

Norma felt good while working in the shop because it gave her the opportunity to earn money. She felt happy knowing she brought in more customers to the store and to the bar. She talked and laughed with them and she became their reason for coming back. People gravitated towards the shop and the bar because of Norma’s outgoing personality. 

Seeing all the success, Norma’s husband eventually convinced her to quit working with Ivy to start her own business. She hadn’t wanted to leave but did so with her husband’s encouragement. 

Running and managing the store on her own was a challenge because all the pressure was on Norma. She no longer had Ivy handling the administrative aspects of the job and the money was leaving as quickly as it was coming in. 

Norma decided to close it down when the money ran out. She went to live back with Ivy.

After some time, the family moved to the United States and Norma went into customer service. She struggled for almost 4 years before things began to smooth out for her family. Despite the hardships, Norma decided to take on the challenges and opportunities the United States had to offer in order to give her kids a better life. Today, Norma enjoys the fruits of her labor through the success of her grown children, like Donald.  Even when he was young, she had dreams of Donald becoming a radio announcer. Today, she gets to be interviewed by her son! It’s a joy for Norma to listen to Donald, The Sales Evangelist, as he makes a global impact through his podcast.

Norma’s best advice:  Keep on going. Keep on praying.

“The Accidental Seller Series 8  – “Norma Bell” episode resources 

You can connect with Norma and her life story on Facebook. 

You can also catch up with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Veronica Romney, Personal Brand

TSE 1222: How Can My Personal Brand Set Me Apart From My Competition 2020?

Veronica Romney, Personal BrandThe year is almost over. As a salesperson, how can you set your personal brand apart from your competition in 2020? 

Veronica Romney is solely focused on educating and facilitating individuals in their marketing and branding efforts. Veronica and her team are helping clients to stand out from their competition. They make it their goal to ensure you position yourself correctly so you can jump into the narrative and story that your prospective customer has as opposed to trying to force the customer into yours. 

You Don’t have to be the Best of the Best 

Set your personal brand apart from your competition even when you’re not the best in the business. Many businesses and sales reps are under the assumption that in order to distinguish their personal brand, they have to be the best of the best. The prevailing thought is that the only way to be seen as special is to look bigger and be better than everyone else in the same industry. This mindset can be exhausting for both business owners and sales professionals and can lead to burnout as they fight for consumer attention. Customers are bombarded with attention-seeking ads, streaming services, and other campaigns.  Companies and salespeople do a disservice to them by adding additional distractions that just focus on how great they are.

Veronica teaches her clients to focus on something more critical:  You don’t have to be your customer’s hero. It’s more important to be their guide in helping them get to where they want to go. 

Tony Robbins, for example, is a huge brand. He is a big name and a big individual with a big personality. Everything about Tony Robbins is larger-than-life and at the end of his documentary, Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru,  he was asked what he hoped people would better understand about him through the documentary. His answer is critical to his branding and should be a great takeaway for people who work with consumers.

He said that it’s not really about people caring about the person, Tony Robbins. The Tony Robbins brand lets customers know that it’s the means to an end and it’s a company that will get them to where they want to go. Tony is aware that he isn’t the show and he isn’t the product.  It’s more about how they are transformed through him and what he teaches. People respond to the things that cause change, keeps them hungry, make them feel fulfilled and feel alive.  

His organization does that.

The Positioning Technique

CarMax uses this method of selling cars. You can use this tool to set your personal brand apart from your competition. The industry is overly saturated and the competition is stiff. There’s no point in fighting against the current. Instead, CarMax guides its customers where they want to go.  Whether the customer is purchasing a car, trading in or selling a car, CarMax has made it a simple three-step process. They have removed the barriers of haggling and negotiation from the interaction with their salespeople and by doing so, have made it easier for the customer to do business.

This positioning technique relieves salespeople from having to be the product or prove they’re the best. Instead, they can concentrate on being a guide, mentor or coach for their customers to avoid burnout. 

People need a guide when purchasing decisions need to be made. For example, someone buying a weight loss program or supplement isn’t just buying a product but the transformation that product offers. As a salesperson responsible for packaging products and services to the consumer, the goal isn’t to make the product the hero of the sales pitch. The goal is to offer transformation by helping customers understand how the product can get them to their destination.

Position Yourself as a Guide, Not the Hero. 

Consumers today are focused on their self-interests. Consumers want their problems solved quickly and as salespeople, guiding them through their ambitions is key. 

Develop your voice

It’s tempting to want to be a chameleon who can be everything to everyone but it’s also impossible. Yes, it’s important to mirror the person you are talking to in order to help build a connection but your voice must be unique to you and your brand. 

Let’s take Warren Buffet as an example. He is a billionaire, investor, and businessman. Warren Buffet is famous for writing an annual letter to his shareholders to talk about his market forecasts and investments for the upcoming year. 

MSNBC and Forbes have turned these letters into books. He has been able to deliver consistently, over decades, to successfully build a personal brand that people can trust and feel confident about. 

Warren did this by writing letters to just a single person, Doris. Writing to just one person makes the letters have a unique and intimate tone.

Speaking to one person creates consistency in your voice and people relate to that when you connect with them. 

Find Your Own Doris

Doris is Warren’s sister. He has an emotional connection to her and that’s the kind of affection and connection that you need to have with the people you choose to connect with. Finding your voice can be difficult, especially if you are new to sales, so find a favorite customer, someone that can really benefit from what you have to offer, and pretend you are speaking to that person every single time, no matter who your customer is. Eventually, you will be able to develop your natural tone consistently. 

It’s the same thing in politics. Politicians who are consistent and speak the same way, regardless of audience or circumstance draw people. 

There can be a disconnect when businesses have one person writing for their blogs, another person their press release, and yet another working their ads. Each person is going to have a different voice in their writing instead of having a company voice.  It’s important that there is consistency in a company voice throughout. 

Consider Asking Your Customers these Four Critical Questions

Veronica suggests four critical questions you can use to set your personal brand apart from your competition and help find your voice as a salesperson and help you understand your customers more intimately. They help to develop a relationship when you have an opportunity to survey a new client. The answers to these questions are a great vehicle to learn how to be the best guide you can be:

  • What are you trying to accomplish this year?

It’s important to set a time parameter on the things your customer wants to achieve. For example, you can ask about a quarter goal or a yearly goal. Setting a time frame gives you an endgame and will serve as a guide to where the customer hopes to go.

  • What do you think it would take to double your business results or your happiness this year?

Your goal is to enter their story and not to force them into yours. They have already been thinking about what they need to accomplish their goals but these questions allow you to go into the story they have already created in their own mind. What if their solutions are wrong for them? You have to know what they’re thinking to guide them to the right answer. 

  • What frustrates you the most about your business and life right now?

Whatever the answer is, your product and services have to offer the solution. You are in the business of taking away the pain and obstacles that prevent your customers from getting to where they want to go. Every client will have different pain points so you can’t make assumptions about what frustrates them about their business or life.

  • What have you tried to do to improve the situation you’re in?

Your customer’s answers will give you insight into what they’re open to trying. Knowing that you’re offering something they’ve never tried before may feel revolutionary to them. You need to understand what people are comfortable doing. 

The answers to these questions will allow you to see your client’s aspirations and what they think they need to double their business. Their answers will give you an idea of what frustrates them the most and what their pain points are. The questions tell you the mechanism and the behavior they’re already accustomed to. It’s why these 4 questions are critical in distinguishing yourself from the competition. 

Stay focused on your client and maintain the goal of making them the hero of their own story. You’re there to offer the transformation.

“How Can My Personal Brand Set Me Apart From My Competition 2020” episode resources

Catch up with Veronica via her personal website, veronicaromney.com. She is also on various social media such as Twitter

You can also catch up with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Felipe Lodi, LinkedIn Sales

TSE 1221: How To Create A LinkedIn Profile That Consistently Brings New Business To Your Pipeline

Felipe Lodi, LinkedIn SalesHow do you use your LinkedIn profile? Many salespeople create a LinkedIn profile to bring in new business. 

Felipe Lodi is a returning guest and he’s back to teach salespeople how they can create a LinkedIn profile to bring in new business. Felipe is based in Ireland and he is helping other expatriates like himself to establish themselves in Europe. By teaching them the social skills needed and building their LinkedIn accounts, he’s helping them market their abilities and attract opportunities. He launched his book, Advanced LinkedIn, last year and now, he holds hundreds of workshops within the public and private sectors throughout  Ireland. 

Common Mistakes Salespeople Make on LinkedIn 

There are many common mistakes made on LinkedIn. Once you know what they are, they can be avoided. The most common mistake is the failure to use their headlines creatively.  The headline is 120 characters long and can be found underneath your profile picture. Most people just list their titles with a brief job description. Doing this is a waste of characters. The tagline stay visible and can be used to make a value proposition. As an alternative to your title, create a sentence that shares your why, how you do what you do, and what you sell. 

Another common mistake is that people don’t utilize their Summary or About Me sections effectively.  These areas give you a whopping 5,000 characters to really make a statement.

Common content: 

  • Creating bullet points
  • Providing your contact number and email address

A better alternative: 

  • Reasons why you’re doing what you’re doing 
  • Tell people why you are the right person for them 

Your profile is where you talk about yourself. When you go outside your profile and start engaging with people and creating content for others, talk about your prospects and how you’re going to solve their problems. 

Creating your LinkedIn profile

It’s not necessary to spend money on LinkedIn to make money. Use LinkedIn because of its organic reach instead. 

There are three ways to enhance your account:

Optimize Your Profile

Profile Optimization is to better ensure people will get to the information about you you want them to see, make sure your LinkedIn profile is visually appealing.

If you are looking for a job, don’t open a LinkedIn account to just looking for employment, but seek ways for you to find opportunities.

If you are in sales, start believing that LinkedIn is your sales platform. It’s the best place to reach out to C level executives because you have direct access. There are no gatekeepers on LinkedIn and salespeople can use this accessibility to their advantage.

It’s important to make your profile visually appealing. People will judge images before they read any information. It’s important to have an avatar and profile picture that looks professional. When Felipe changed his profile picture to an image of him holding a mic, the invitations for speaking engagements began to grow. People believed he had the ability to speak because of the image of him already doing the job. Use your photo to tell people what you do without them ever having to go to your profile. 

The people who invited Felipe to speak were the people who already had him on their radar because they already had a relationship through engaging on LinkedIn. Every little detail counts – the picture, the tagline, and the summary need to support the story you want to tell and what you want potential clients to know.

Start Creating Content

LinkedIn’s algorithm doesn’t downgrade content that looks like an advertisement, unlike Facebook and Instagram. You can take advantage of the organic reach by posting free ads.  In doing so, you reach people with whom you’re connected without paying any additional fees. LinkedIn’s ad platform is still fairly young compared to Facebook. For example, LinkedIn doesn’t have a feature to target a specific demographic but it can still be used to publish compelling content to attract business. 

The second part of Felipe’s methodology is to create a LinkedIn profile to bring in new business through the content you’re offering. Your content is your vehicle to attract more people to your profile.  If offers an opportunity to inject your products and services in a way that is appealing. For example, create educational content and allow people to have access at no charge. Include some components that talk about the items or services you offer. 

How to build your content:

  • In the first paragraph, talk about what you do. 
  • In the second paragraph, tell them a story about how you’ve helped someone in the past.

Content on LinkedIn needs to be there at all times. Utilize automation to repurpose your content for different time zones. Automating your content gives you more time to do the third part which is engagement.

Consider the Cost of Engagement

The last method you can use on how to use the LinkedIn profile to bring in new business is the cost of engagement which includes the time you invest in the activity on your profile, especially with the people who want to connect with you.  The more you engage, the more attractive your profile becomes. The relationships you nurture in the present can turn into future selling opportunities. You can show potential buyers how committed you are in your profile presentation and content creation. Don’t let two weeks go by without checking in. You want to let people know you’re accessible and you’re ready to answer their questions. Position yourself as an authority within your niche.

You may not see a lot of results such as likes from your posts but that’s fine. Even when you don’t see the number of likes, it doesn’t mean that it’s not working. LinkedIn only chases the number of views that matters. Your post might have zero likes but gets 230 that means, 230 people have stopped for at least three seconds to check your content. 

Even when people didn’t like or share your post, they have come to associate your face, your compelling tagline, and the type of content that you are pushing. 

LinkedIn also breaks down the number of views of your post such as the names of the companies that viewed your post. 

As a salesperson,  you can follow up with the people who have seen your post to start the conversation. They may have not liked but they keep seeing your posts and make the association with your content. There is something there that you can explore. Don’t be stuck in content creation, make sure to have time to create engagement. Try not to be anxious about the spellings and other menial things, put more importance on how you can repurpose your content. 

“How To Create A LinkedIn Profiles That Consistent Bring New Business In Your Pipeline” episode resources

Catch up with Felipe Lodi via his LinkedIn account. You can also check on his book, Advanced LinkedIn

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Debby Montgomery Johnson, Accidental Seller

TSE 1220: The Accidental Seller Series 7  – “Debby Montgomery Johnson”

Debby Montgomery Johnson, Accidental SellerHere’s another episode from the Accidental Seller Series where we interview successful salespeople who didn’t start their careers with the intention of going into sales. 

Debby Montgomery Johnson is the president of Benfotiamine.net. Most of Debby’s family members are in the medical field and growing up, she wanted to be an anesthesiologist. It was during middle school when she worked at a hospital, she thought being an anesthesiologist was cool. When she got into high school, she discovered medicine wasn’t for her. Her interest was in languages so she studied French, Spanish, and a little bit of German. Once in college, she majored in Political Science and got her bachelor’s degree. 

Debby had planned to go on to law school but after she got out of college, she enrolled in paralegal school and worked for a firm specializing in corporate and family law after graduation.  Unfortunately, she was let go from that job. 

Getting into sales

Being released from her paralegal job became the catalyst for her going into the Air Force where she served for eight years, even in Germany.

Debby was working with the Pentagon as an imagery analyst and during that time, their work entailed analyzing photos from the Cold War. Till then, Debby had never really looked at the sales industry as a career. When Debby thought of sales,  thoughts of a car salesman or vacuum cleaner salesman came to mind. She didn’t really want to be a salesperson. 

Debby left the Air Force when she had her third baby and started working as a bank manager. There were sales involved in her job but what she really wanted to do was assist people and help them with their finances. Debby left the job when her husband died so she could take over their company. Debby had no experience in running a company that was based on internet sales. 

As she became more involved, she realized the company made more money in a month than she made in a whole year. This convinced her to jump into the business full-time. Thus her becoming a part of our Accidental Seller series episode. 

Fears about sales 

Most salespeople in our accidental seller series have fears. For Debby, her biggest fear was the fact that the company wasn’t familiar with the details. It was built to help people suffering from diabetes with neuropathy. Her late husband, Lou, had the same disease.  The company offered products that worked for him and he shared a personal testimony about how each product worked for him. It was hard for Debby to really embrace the company as hers and to believe in herself when she didn’t know how the products helped their clients. She didn’t have the confidence in herself that she could actually sell. 

Debby was able to get past that fear by bringing her father into the company. 

Her father answers the phone and talks to clients. Being a retired dentist, he has a medical background that helps build rapport. Debby’s father also understands the chemistry side as well as the medical side of their company. 

Debby’s first sale made her ecstatic. It was fun and it released her from the fear of talking to clients. She was getting to interact with them as a person, not just a client. She made it her goal to build relationships, not just transactions. 

Selling is helping

Debby has a great mindset as a salesperson. She talks to clients and only sells products that will help their specific needs. She keeps a positive outlook throughout but understands people are different and every product may not work for every person. With this understanding,  she tries to create opportunities for clients to try a product so they can see if it works for them. Instead of just trying to complete a transaction, Debby is making interactions more personal. She thinks of her clients like family and she’s willing to go through great lengths for her family. 

Even with all their success, there are trying times throughout Debby’s sales experience as well. An example is when she’s calling potential clients and there is an apprehension the client will say no. Cold calls are dreadful for Debby. 

One challenging client was a doctor.  Debby’s company had stopped selling the product the doctor wanted so Debby called her and left a message. When she finished the message, she started complaining about the client to her son. It was right after that she heard on her phone, “If you are satisfied with the message, please hit send.”

Needless to say, she got a phone call from the client telling her how unprofessional she had been. 

Should I quit?

It would be easier to quit than run a business but Debby has become very close to her clients and sees them as part of her family. She feels responsible for the products they take and she just can’t turn her back on that. With the mindset that clients come first at all times, she keeps on pushing on with sales. 

Her husband’s death has been life-changing for her but it’s the reason why she went into sales. She has since expanded her career path and is now an advocate for relationship survivors. Debby has also started a nonprofit organization called The Woman Behind the Smile. 

For Debby, it’s important to just jump into it when she finds something she likes. She knows if you fail, it only means you’re one step closer to your goal. 

“The Accidental Seller Series” episode resources

Catch up with Debby Montgomery Johnson by going to benfocomplete.com or through her email addresses,  orders@benfotiamine.net or debby@thewomanbehindthesmile.com

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Devin Reed, Closing Revenue

TSE 1219: 5 Counter-intuitive Mistakes Preventing You From Closing Revenue

Devin Reed, Closing RevenueThere are times salespeople don’t make the best decisions that would lead to closing deals. These mistakes can cause a fall. Let’s take a look at the 5 counterintuitive mistakes preventing you from closing revenue

Devin Reed is a content strategy manager at Gong. He handles all the content marketing strategy courses and responsible for presentations. He also goes to roadshows, such as Sales Live Miami. 

At this roadshow, Devin talked about  5 Counterintuitive Mistakes Preventing You From Closing Revenue. It’s about the five things salespeople think are good practices, and are trained to believe are good habits when in fact, they’re doing the opposite. These five mistakes hurt their deals and sales conversations. What Devin is sharing is backed up by data. 

Devin works for a company that has millions of sales conversations. They’ve looked and analyzed these conversations to see patterns that help them get an idea of the things salespeople talk about the most. Here are the 5 counterintuitive mistakes preventing you from closing revenue. 

  • Using the ROI to seal the deal
  • Focusing on quantity when it comes to discovery questions
  • Answering objections quickly and thoroughly
  • Using  large enterprise clients
  • Using cold call opening line

Don’t use ROI to seal the deal

People make the mistake of using the ROI to close. Finding a way to bring ROI into the conversation is one of the basic strategies taught to beginning sales reps.  This strategy is proving to be counterintuitive. 

ROI isn’t bad in itself, but it becomes an ineffective tool when it is used for persuasion. Presenting your ROI to the client doesn’t work because the information doesn’t go to the right part of their brain. 

The human brain has two parts – the emotional and rational. More often than not, the right part processes information later than the emotional part. If you want to get the attention of your prospects, you need to tap into the emotional side of their brains first. You do this by giving them a before and after story.

“Hey, I was in a podcast and not to brag or anything but that podcast did so well. They were doing this and that. I came on and I did this thing and two weeks later, they saw an X increase in their ROI.” This is an example of a “before and after”, then diving into the ROI. 

When you are able to provide the identifiers with the before and after stories, the emotional pull comes in. Make it a goal to tap into their curiosity instead of just desperately presenting the numbers. A good salesperson always to starts with emotion and understands people need to feel before they will give you their ear and show interest. After you’ve piqued their interest, then you can get to the boss to present the ROI. You show them what you can do for them is not only a great idea but also makes fiscal sense. 

Another reason why presenting the ROI often doesn’t work is because it’s naively done. Junior sales reps usually speak to CFOs who have years of experience. Their newness in the industry and lack of confidence make their calculations look phony. CFOs don’t find the numbers trustworthy. 

Focusing on quantity when it comes to discovery questions

Most salespeople have a discovery playbook with 15 to 30 questions. New sales reps believe it’s necessary to ask them all because they have the mindset the more questions mean more information and eventually, the more chances of closing the deal. While asking questions isn’t a bad thing per se,  on the other hand, it gives buyers discovery fatigue. It feels more like an interrogation than a valuable business conversation. 

Based on the data, 11 – 14 targeted questions is the sweet spot for the number of questions a salesperson should ask. The article by Chris Orlob entitled Why You Can’t Sell to C-suite Executives shares how salespeople only have four questions to ask C-suite executives. 

Tips when asking targeted questions: 

  • Use open-ended questions Using open-ended questions allows you to get more information. Ask one question that prompts a stream of answers. 
  • Get someone to think instead of reciting information  Ask questions that will make them think about their answer. For example, “How is that tech stack preventing you from closing revenue?” This question causes them to take a moment before giving an answer. 
  • Ask connected questions  Don’t just throw out random questions. Ask them in a way that paints a bigger picture. 

Answering objections quickly and thoroughly 

Answering directly shows how ready salespeople are to handle objections but the downside to that is the risk of actually answering the wrong objections. Instead, pause and wait. The benefits go both ways. For the salesperson, pausing creates room to time to think and for the prospect, the pause makes them feel heard. 

By the middle of the discussion, the prospect has already decided if they want to actually meet with the salesperson.  It’s the salesperson’s responsibility to make sure the conversation is good throughout the meeting so prospects see the value and have a good time. The prospect of enjoying the conversation is the most important goal. 

Using the enterprise logo when selling

Data shows that salespeople using social proof has actually a lesser success rate. Salespeople may think dropping names of big companies they’ve worked with is compelling information but prospects don’t share the same perspective. Instead of building trust with the prospect, what it does is alienate them.

The right approach is to use tribal identifiers. This means building a tribe based on shared characteristics. The best salespeople will have three to six tribal identifiers to make the connection more appealing and compelling. For small startup businesses with fewer clients, salespeople can make a hyper-specific process. This would mean not focusing on the same geography, for example, but instead, targeting companies with the same struggles and goals. 

Salespeople need to show their clients they are more than just someone on LinkedIn. They need to invest time upfront if they want to be heard. #SalesFacts

Cold call opening line

Many believe if you want to catch your prospect’s attention, give them an opportunity to first say no. The assumption is that using an opening line that allows them an opportunity to say no gives the prospect the power they want to feel in the conversation. Philosophically, you want them to feel comfortable in letting their guard down. 

This strategy doesn’t work. Data says there’s a 6.6X increase when, instead of trying to get them to say no, you ask instead, “How have you been doing?”

The potential client answers in the same vein and it causes a pattern interrupt. Your opening line isn’t something that the receiver is expecting. 

An opening question like, “Hey, this is Devin. Did I catch you at a good time?” is a telltale sign that it’s a cold call and immediately the guard goes up. From that point on, it’s an uphill battle.  

Always remember the before and after story because that’s how trust is built. People may not remember you but they will remember your story. You don’t have to be a great salesperson to share a story, you just have to share stories of value. 

“5 Counterintuitive Mistakes Preventing You From Closing Revenue” episode resources

Catch Devin’s podcast, Reveal the Revenue Intelligence, where they interview industry leaders who understand how they use their revenue intelligence to win the market. They have a pretty impressive line-up of key interviews. Connect with Devin Reed in his LinkedIn profile

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

 

Anton Van Rhyn, Cold Email, Email Prospecting

TSE 1218: How To Write A Cold Email Your Prospect Will Open And Reply To

Anton Van Rhyn, Cold Email, Email ProspectingThe cold email has been part of the sales process for a very long time but how do you actually write a cold email that your prospect will open and reply to?

Anton van Rhyn is the CEO and founder of the company Wavo,  a cold email platform that helps salespeople automate email outreach and follow-up. He also built Huron, a company for outbound prospecting and service. Anton has used both his software development experience and sales development experience to fine-tune the email automation platform. 

A cold email automation platform 

Anton built a cold email automation platform in order to assist sales representatives to relieve them of these more mundane tasks. The platform creates a sequence for the machine to follow. It can reach out to prospects and follow up in a way that looks like human effort. The tool is very efficient in that it focuses on making initial contacts while it frees up sales reps to focus on their demos and talking to people. 

Anton’s company has been utilizing email for three and a half years. Their previous experience came from being a prospecting service where they used emails to contact different verticals and industries. regardless of company size. 

Email makes it easy to prospect because most people today already use email. It is reminiscent of the cold calls used in the past. Cold calling was effective because most people were already sitting at their desks and ready to pick up a phone call. Today, very few people own office phones. Businesses have resorted to using emails to reach their clients. It’s become one of the most powerful channels to engage with prospects. 

Emails that don’t work 

Using a template in making cold emails is one of the reasons why this strategy often fails. In the U.S. alone, the phrase cold email template is searched for around 200,000 times a month in Google. Mail servers create a hashing algorithm to identify email content and using these algorithms, servers can quickly identify these emails as spam. 

The other reason why cold emails are failing is that some people in the email list aren’t interested and just flag your email as spam. 

When you’re using the cold email templates, it’s very easy for emails to go straight to spam. 

Over time, Anton’s company developed a framework in using cold email, calling it the 1-2 punch. It’s a series of emails to address a topic. After some time, another mail is sent to revisit the topic sent two emails ago. It’s important to give the recipient a break. 

Use a good subject

It’s important to use a good subject when creating a cold email so it seems you are really writing to someone. A subject line that looks like a headline from an ad stands out to people. Even when the email isn’t flagged as spam, or ends up in the Promotions Tab, the receiver will still likely not open it because nobody likes being sold to. An ad is off-putting.

Google and Gmail Suite are also getting smarter by the day. They check your inbox and look at how people engage with your emails. A sender who gets replies gets a higher score than sanders whose emails don’t get opened and responded to. 

As a salesperson who is using emails to reach their clients, find smart ways to get them to reply. One trick Anton suggests is to include a way for people to unsubscribe. For example, “Hey, if you don’t want to hear from me again, please reply to this email with your request to unsubscribe,” or some other variation.  

Anton’s clients have seen how using this trick improved their engagement rate. While there are some who reply unsubscribe, they also see positive responses coming back as well.

At the end of the day, your goal is to make your cold emails sound more human to get the other person to respond. 

When you write a cold email that your prospect will open, the three word-subject line works well. You can email your list with no more than a three-word subject line and talk about the value proposition. 

Talk about the quarter’s results or related subject clients may find interesting. 

A quick question subject line is the most overused subject there is but it has 40-60% open rates. This shows just how effective a short subject line is.

The body of the email

You can write a cold email that your prospect will open by building a series of two emails. The first email shouldn’t be longer than three sentences. Salespeople often make the mistake of putting everything in their mail. They try to explain every value proposition and all the information about what they’re selling. 

Explain the most important things in three lines: 

  • Who you are
  • Why you’re reaching out
  • The relevance of your product/services to your prospect 

Anton observed that trying to get the conversation started is what matters. It’s equally important to give the prospect of breathing room regardless if they respond or not. After two days, send them another email as a reminder. You can also add some social proof in your second email to tell them who you’ve worked with and how the partnership produced good results. Build on that sequence and wait another week to create an additional one-two punch email. 

If there is no reply then give it another week or two to give the prospect breathing room and time to forget. You can then start the process again. 

You can continue this sequence as long as you deem effective. 

Scheduling effectively 

Google has implemented many ways in detecting cold email these days as the use of cold email starts to proliferate. In the early days, using cold email was very effective when sent by batch before and after office hours. It let people do their jobs in the middle of the day and then emails were sent before they got into the office after they left. 

In the last months, this strategy hasn’t been performing very well. This is due to the spike of activities during the 6:00 AM – 9:00 AM and 5:00 AM-9:00 PM window. People tend to get busy in those times and end up not doing much during the day. 

Anton’s team is changing its approach and adapting to peoples’ activities. It’s counterintuitive to what they’ve done in the past but it’s proving to be effective today. Sending the emails by batch in the times when people aren’t too busy has become their automating signature. They rewrote the scheduler in a way that emails are sent consistently throughout the hours between 9:00 AM-5:00 PM, rather than sending all the emails as quickly as possible in just one time. 

This has proven a preferable schedule for delivery. 

When sending cold emails, remember these few things:

  • Introduce yourself, your reason for mailing, and state why this is relevant to them 
  • Keep the email short
  • Have a very quick call to action
  • Your goal is to start a conversation

Scheduling tools such as Calendly are also helpful especially if you get a reply showing interest. This is the perfect time to send your Calendly link. 

“How To Write A Cold Email Your Prospect Will Open And Reply To” episode resources

Contact Anton Van Rhyn via his mail anton@wavo.co. They are also giving out PDFS of their frameworks at wavo.co/tse. 

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Accidental Series, Joseph Storer

TSE 1217: The Accidental Seller – Joseph Storer

Accidental Series, Joseph Storer Joseph Storer is one of them. 

Growing up, Joseph Storer wasn’t sure of what his career would look like. He was a lazy student in high school but he had a passion for playing baseball. Joseph thought he’d end up working with cars as an electrician, just like his father. 

In his freshman year in college, he discovered his interest in business and working with people. His first experience in business was right after he went on a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. 

Getting into Sales

Going into the mission field was a difficult decision because he had a student permit that was valid for six years. He was sent to Brazil, learned a foreign language, and lived in a big city. Joseph discovered a whole other world filled with great people and exciting experiences. The mission taught him to have structure and order in his life. 

Coming home, Joseph went back to college for accounting and finance. During the summer, he was able to get a union card and went to work building two dams in Idaho. The pay was very good so he decided to put a halt to his college and continued to work on the dam. 

He was then given another assignment as an aid to an engineer for a new project. While working in Rexburg, Idaho, he met a lady who became his wife. Joseph got married and didn’t go back to school. They moved to Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia where Joseph started his waterbed business. Sadly, the business went down six months after launch and that became the catalyst for starting his professional sales career. 

His friend saw his potential in the world of B2B selling. This, along with having a neighbor who was in manufacturing sales, made him interested in selling for manufacturers. This was his catalyst for getting into sales. 

Challenges in being a true sales professional 

The biggest challenge when getting into sales was the wage. He was working in construction and was earning well and transitioned to sales where he was earning $1,200 a month, as well as a commission-based income. He wondered if he could make ends meet but at that time, there was no choice. 

Maria, his wife, was very supportive and she believed that sales was something that Joseph could do. His boss trained him and taught him basic selling skills. Joseph was given a list of all the hospitals and clinics in the area and was told to set a goal to make at least three face-to-face calls every day. 

He took the lessons to heart and ended up making more than three face-to-face calls a day. Even when he was done for the day, he tried to do one more. At the end of his first year in sales, he was in the top 10% of salespeople in the company. He started his sales career being “consciously unconscious” but through time, he learned to sell and became very efficient in sharing the product line and distinguishing his company from the competition. 

Effectiveness in sales

A lot of his success was due to putting in the face time with people and being available to meet their needs. Joseph took great care of this aspect of sales.

For example, he worked with a hospital in Washington that needed a suction system. The people there said they had very poor suction. Joseph assured them with his products, their suction would get better. They purchased the device but then, Joseph went arrived with a bucket of peroxide, rubber gloves, and did the installation. The next morning, everyone in the operating room was amazed by the volume of blood the suction was able to get. The results weren’t just due to the product but also because of Joseph’s extra steps to make the product work better. 

At 67 years old, he is now in the latter years of his sales career but still, Joseph feels like he is just starting again. He is in a new company and there is technology he doesn’t understand. Joseph is learning and back to the same reliable process, he used in 1977 – getting on the phone, making calls every day, talking to people, getting in front of them, and learning the ropes. 

 Continue learning

In Sales, the more you learn the process, the more effective you become. 

The very principles that started his career back then are the same that are driving him today. 

Joseph loves the medical industry because he knows that he is helping to save lives. He’s making a difference. This is especially evident when he visits third-world countries. It’s not just about6 the money. At the end of the day, he is helping people and for Joseph, that’s what matters. 

Joseph loved learning and learned many languages. This helped him talk to more people and advance his career. 

His boss once saw him speaking Portuguese. It opened up the opportunity for him to lead a Latin American division of his company called Spacelabs based in Dallas, Texas. Joseph did well. He was also called to go to Macau to take care of a $7 million deal. He arrived with his translator but during the presentations, he realized most of the people in the room were Portuguese. The translator sat down and Joseph did all the talking. It didn’t take long until he closed the $7 million deal. 

Joseph is always ready and when an opportunity presents itself, he adjusts accordingly.

As a salesperson, it is important to love what you do so you won’t have to work a day in your life. 

“The Accidental Seller” episode resources

Joseph Storer has a training class called The 1,2,3s of Selling. It’s based on the principle of doing three things and then doing it over again. It is a helpful guide for people who are getting into sales.

He also has a program called the Power of One which talks about how much success you can have when you make one more call. 

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

AI in Sales, Increase Sales, Chad Burn,

TSE 1216: How Can I Use AI To Increase Sales?

AI in Sales, Increase Sales, Chad Burn,Have you ever thought to use AI to increase sales? In today’s society, the application of AI is apparent throughout many industries, including sales. 27% of global consumers say that AI can deliver better service than humans, 38% believe AI will soon improve customer service, and 73% of global consumers are willing to utilize AI if it makes their lives easier. 

Chad Burmeister is a cofounder of  Sales Ex Inc. Their company is rooted in the idea that AI can increase revenue, eliminate repetition, and make selling more efficient and effective. 

Growing up, Chad had always been at the cutting edge of technology and was always looking for ways to make people’s lives more efficient. 

Chad is officially releasing his book, AI for Sales, this Thanksgiving, November 28th along with Stu Heinecke’s Get the Meeting. If you buy both books on Amazon and send them a screenshot, you’ll get a dozen VIP conference codes for next year to attend events such as Sales 3.0 and AISP. With the codes, you’ll get a20% – 85% discount. Chad is encouraging everyone to read the books and meet the authors at the conferences. 

Use AI to increase sales 

Chad has seven virtual sellers who are commissioned, salespeople. The team has set up a daily data poll for these virtual sellers with a company called Lead 411. The data is fed into their CRM and the CRM goes through their email bot, a virtual assistant named Marissa Brown. They create preconfigured emails that filter through these virtual assistants so multiple batches of emails can be sent every day. The AIs are preprogrammed to have a “conversation” akin to what you see on a chat feature. When a person responds, the AIs can communicate with the prospects.

The chatbots can also set up meetings and appointments. The AIs chatbots are configured to know when to schedule an appointment. It knows when you’re out of the office or if you have time for a meeting. 

One simple questions have about a thousand variations, such as the cost of a service or a product. The AI knows what to listen for and offers a very simple answer. It then replies with the cost, along with a link to your calendar so the prospect can set up a meeting. 

As the business owner, you need to teach the AI to respond in a way that gets the highest level of conversion. If you are a BDR (Business Developer Representative)assigned to pulling data from a CRM and pushing the send button, then your job might be in jeopardy. However, most BDRS are doing more than just pulling data. They are also pulling relevant lists, and doing research. Additional tasks include figuring out which people to send emails to, writing a good email, and leaving a voicemail as needed.BDRs are responsible for a complex system of outreach. 

Setting appointments via AI 

Chad’s tools called BDR.AI executes 50 to 100 connection requests per day through LinkedIn and get over 100 emails a day on the same platform. 

By using this software, they get five to fifteen meetings a month.  As a result, the organization can work more efficiently. The AI allows the BDR more time to do other tasks. This would include getting on the phone to connect with people personally. This enables them to understand their customer’s needs and show a more personal interest to the prospects. The tools let the bots and humans do what they do best. 

Tokyo, for example, pushed a 4-day work week and the results have shown about a 40% increase in productivity. That increase can be attributed to the use of AI in their respective industries. 

Salespeople can do more with their day than just sitting in their offices,  making appointments and making calls. They can now spend time with their families or take the Friday off to just improve their quality of life. 

The downside of AIs

In the virtual world, somebody always gets to play God.  While it’s true that salespeople can use AI to increase sales, there are also downsides in using it. Let’s consider the trolley car example and put yourself in the conductor’s shoes. As you’re going down the tracks, there are five people on the right side and one person on the left. You can’t stop the train so you have to pick a side to do an emergency stop. Many people would say to choose the left to minimize the damage.

However, let’s say the five people are wearing an orange jumpsuit and the one on the left is your child. In this scenario, there are many solutions and a million points of data to consider. Mathematician Chris Beal says it would take a very long time before we could put all that information in the system. He further added that the AI can only get to a certain point and then it’s up to us to make the final decision. 

We tend to let the bots make the decision for us but think of the trolley dilemma. In hiring, the bot would go to the more qualified candidate. But who really determines the qualification?

In small companies, a decision like this is easy. It’s much more efficient to get a bot who can do a better job at a lesser cost. The same isn’t true for bigger companies where more political decisions are involved. 

Chad believes that there will be a need for people to help companies make decisions about the ethical use and deployment of AIs. 

AIs assist sellers

AIs are helpful but you need to assess where they can be of help. It’s imperative to know your top three pains to be able to find the right solutions. A lot of companies get their lists wrong the first time because they fail to consider their ideal customer profile. 

Always go for your target list to get the right people and give these lists to your reps. This keeps them from wasting their time looking for unqualified prospects. 

Joe, the head of product from Inside View, says they can go into companies and take a look at their CRM to analyze all the closed deals Their best customer profiles are revealed after analyzing the transactions that have already happened. 

These customers renew, they purchase when upselling is offered, and they pay on time. On the other side of the coin are the clients who don’t pay and don’t renew. Your goal as a sales company is to go after the best customers.

This is the area of AI that helps companies grow. It’s the ability to look at data and change the trajectory of the organization by leading sales reps to the right customers. 

Salesdirector.AI is doing a great job of utilizing AI to improve its sales force. Their bots send messages by text and ask a series of questions pertaining to your sales schedules and appointments. 

AIs are programmed to be efficient. It can go through huge amounts of data using a  fraction of the time. By using AI, you can give your salespeople the tasks that they can focus on such as building trust and rapport as well as building human to human connections. 

“How Can I Use AI To Increase Sales?” episode resources

Reach out to Chad at SCALEX.AI.  Use AI to increase sales and to always stay ahead of the game. 

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Joe Ingram, Phone Sales

TSE 1215: Three Ways To Make You More Successful Selling Over The Phone

Joe Ingram, Phone SalesHave you ever tried selling without being in front of someone? Three tactics to successfully sell over the phone include building relationships, choosing the right words, and knowing the right speed.

Joe Ingram is a sales genius who uses an intellectual approach to sales. Joe realized that phone conversations play an integral part in the process and many people are missing this key point by looking at the training cycle and sales industry.

The average individual in the U.S. touches their cellphones 2,500 times a day. It’s very observable when you walk into Starbucks. Nobody would even notice you walked in because they’re looking at their phones. We are continuously on the phone. 

While using emailhttps://staging1.thesalesevangelist.com/episode866/ is a good way to communicate, the product is only perceived as great up to a certain price. Sending out a well-written email is a good marketing strategy but there’s a big difference in sending emails and talking to somebody over the phone to get the call to action to take place. If the price goes over a hundred dollars, then you need to make a phone call. The way you present yourself and your company, during the phone conversation, will determine if the potential client is going to purchase the product. 

Communicating over the phone

Communication has several elements. As a speaker, you need to be able to perform all of them to accurately get your message across. 

55% of communication comes from body language. The person you’re talking to is watching the way you move during the conversation. For example, when we were at school, we observed how our teachers moved, paid attention to the things they pointed out, and more. All these signals conveyed to us what they felt, what they meant, and what they were trying to teach us. 

38% of communication comes from tone and inflection. You can say the same thing but use different tones to convey a whole different meaning. Tone and inflection tell your client what to pay attention to. 

7% of communication is based on the actual words we use in a face-to-face conversation. In a phone conversation, you lose 55% of your ability to communicate because your client can’t see your body language. Because there are many disconnects over the phone, salespeople tend to veer away from calls as a channel to making a sale. Without body language in phone conversations, you’re left with 80% tone and inflection and 20% words. Based on that percentage, it would be easy for a phone conversation to go badly if the right tone and choice of words aren’t being expressed well. 

As a salesperson, you can’t sound like a customer service provider. 

Many cell phone providers don’t sound excited over the phone because they’re not trying to make a sale. They are talking to you because you need something from them, and regardless of their performance, they know you will not drop the conversation. 

You will tolerate a mediocre to poor performance to accomplish your goals. There’s no selling involved. However, it’s different when you tell them you’re canceling your subscription. You immediately get transferred to someone on their sales team and suddenly, the conversation takes a turn. Their goal is to make you feel better and they want you to feel good enough to stay.

Joe sees this in a lot of companies. They teach their sales department to treat everyone like customers, even though people who are still prospects need to be approached differently.

Building relationships through your phone

Building a working sales relationship takes time. The easiest way to start is by phone as it allows you to hear and understand each other. Joe has worked with companies who are able to make sales using phone calls. 

When Joe was working as a manager in Chrysler Dodge Jeep, he had an employee named Jay. He spoke four languages and it was difficult to understand what he was saying. Jay was able to sell 20-25 cars each month while maintaining great customer satisfaction and profitability, all because of his body language. He made sure that potential clients felt safe during the sale. His clients watched his mouth when he spoke because it helped them to understand him better. Joe knew his customers needed this visual cue so he didn’t talk over the phone but preferred to conduct a sales transaction in person. because then the customers won’t be able to look and see what he’s trying to say.

Joe teaches people how to use better words when talking to prospects. 

Choosing the right words

Our subconscious mind cannot process the negative part of what we’re saying. When we’re told, “Don’t think of a kitten,” our mind zeroes in on the kitten, the opposite of what we’re told. The same thing is true when we tell our clients, “No problem.” Their subconscious mind picks up on “problem” and you want to avoid that. 

A simple strategy is to replace  “No problem” with more positive language. For example,  “my pleasure,” “certainly,” and others. Create a positive mental picture in their heads. Couple your words with great tone and inflection to deliver a good message. 

When a company calls and inquires about your business, don’t think of it as someone trying to buy a product. Instead, think of it as someone who is calling with a list of companies in mind and they’re trying to see if yours is the best.  If they talk to you and you aren’t using the right words or tone – don’t expect your company to be considered. 

If I can’t get your prospects to have a face-to-face conversation, your next best option is a phone conversation that allows you to build rapport

Texts and emails are the segues to get you to an actual phone conversation. If you can sell and close a deal over the phone, then great. If you can’t, your goal is to set a face-to-face appointment. 

Choosing the right speed

You need to consider your speed when talking over the phone as well. Speak based on how the person on the other line is speaking. Be slow in speaking when you’re talking to somebody who speaks slowly. Adapt to the person you’re talking so you can deliver your message in a way they can understand. Listen to their words and use them when you respond. If they are looking for significant discounts, then use the exact terms when it’s your time to talk. 

This is how you show empathy in your conversation. You abandon the phrases or words you’d like to say for those the other person wants to hear. As a salesperson, the way to successfully sell over the phone is to be who your client needs you to be. 

You’ll find many of the same skills you use in a closing face-to-face can be used on the phone.

“Three Ways To Make You More Successful Selling Over The Phone” episode resources

Reach out to Joe Ingram via his phone number (+562 548 526). You can also check his website, ingraminteractive.com. 

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Accidental Seller Series, Stephen Snyder

TSE 1214: The Accidental Seller – Stephen Snyder

 

Accidental Seller Series, Stephen SnyderWelcome to the fifth episode of The Accidental Series. 

Some people are into sales because it’s their passion, while others were led to the industry because of their circumstances. We call them the accidental sellers. 

Stephen Snyder is a district sales coordinator for Aflac. Growing up, Stephen loved playing sports and he aspired to become a professional athlete. In his college days, he was fortunate enough to play baseball. He was good at it and his life revolved around playing the game. Despite that, he didn’t become a professional baseball player. Apparently, life had other plans for Stephen. 

Stephen realized that sports wasn’t for him after doing an internship during his senior year in college. He saw how tough it was to work in the field of sports marketing. You didn’t become the head of scouting just because you knew the game.  His job as an intern required physical labor from 7 AM until the end of the game. A sports manager had to be at the field long after the game was over to help with any tasks needed, including covering the field with a tarp. Stephen thought that he could do more.

Becoming an accidental seller 

By the time Stephen finished his education, the economy was taking a downturn. Although he graduated with a degree in sports marketing and kept looking for work in his field, most available jobs were all about sales. It seemed everyone was either selling a yellow book or insurance. Salespeople were often associated with the “used car salesman” stereotype so because of this, it took a long time for Stephen to consider sales as a long-term career. 

Stephen eventually reached out to his friend who had been working with Aflac. He decided to try sales until he could find himself a “real” job. Years later, Stephen is still with Aflac excelling as a salesperson. He realized the old stereotypes don’t have to apply.  For Stephen, it was about meeting people and talking to them about the services provided by Aflac. 

The difficult part of selling

When he started with the company, Stephen was provided with a script. When a sale didn’t go through, he was made to think that it was because he didn’t stick to the script. Stephen is an introvert and although he is comfortable with talking to people, he’d always kept a protective shell around him where he could remain comfortable. The challenge he was facing in sales was how to prospect in his own way. Like any other salesperson, Stephen was also afraid of rejection. 

There were many days he thought of quitting sales but when he actually got to thinking about it, he found that sales could be fun too. As a former athlete, he found the competition he loved could be applied to sales too.  There was a scoreboard all the salespeople tracked their sales this brought out the competitive spirit in him. 

Seeing success in sales

Competitiveness and a good team atmosphere are great ways for an accidental seller to stay motivated. Salespeople thrive when they know that a mistake is made, they won’t be criticized, but instead, coaching is offered instead. As a salesperson improves and starts setting appointments, he sees his actions cause a snowball effect. This results in good sales.  

Stephen’s first deal started with an elevator ride. He began talking to a man who turned out to be a business owner and the decision-maker in his company. They had a good-natured discussion and Stephen was able to land an appointment. 

That business owner decided to pay 100% of the voluntary insurance product for his employees. It was one of the best deals Stephen’s company had seen. 

After 11 years, Stephen continues to work for Aflac. Working for the company has given him so many opportunities and a certain level of success. 

A salesperson needs to consistently find ways to improve. A scoreboard is one strategy to track success and stay competitive. This is regardless is he’s an accidental seller or not. 

“The Accidental Seller – Stephen Snyder”

Contact Stephen Snyder via his email, stephensnyder2017@gmail.com or connect with him on LinkedIn. 

You can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Prospecting, Terry Hansen, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1213: How to Build A Six Figure Income Even If You’re Not Great At Closing! 

Prospecting, Terry Hansen, The Sales EvangelistEver wonder how you can build a six-figure income even if you’re not great at closing? Closing is one of the most important parts of sales. It is crucial and every word you utter during closing matters.

Terry Hansen hails from Idaho Falls, Idaho. His plan is simple but he still has impressive sales success stories. He’s worked with many organizations and sales reps around the country and helped them boost their sales. Throughout his sales journey, Terry has observed three bottleneck scenarios in which entrepreneurs and sales professionals can get stuck.

The first is that many struggles to increase their sales and income because they are not getting in front of the right kinds of companies and individuals. They are going at it like opening a phone book and just calling from the top of the list, hoping that someone will buy from them. Once on the phone, they don’t spend time introducing themselves, starting a conversation and making appointments.

The second scenario a bottleneck can occur is the lack of a framework to qualify customers and salespeople end up closing with people they shouldn’t. This comes from a scarcity mindset. There will always be goals and sales quotas, that have to be hit. Because of this, many people in sales end up trying to sell to without taking the time to determine whether they’re selling to their target customer. Sometimes, salespeople can close a client and later have regrets because they didn’t share their work values.

The third bottleneck in failing to close well comes from not having the right skills.

It is each of these three scenarios that can become the speed bumps that keep entrepreneurs from growing their sales.

The value of prospecting 

Many sales books stress the importance of having closing techniques. You have to be a champion in overcoming objections and resolving concerns to become successful in growing your sales. Another secret to success is becoming an account manager. You need to have stellar customer service, be able to ask for referrals, take good care of your base, and keep your competitors from your clients.

Terry read a variety of books and did everything they suggested but he still wasn’t hitting his quotas and achieving the level of success he wanted. He then had lunch with a great mentor and was venting about his frustrations. Terry let him know that despite doing the right things, he was still living paycheck to paycheck. His mentor shared an illustration about two salespeople, one great at appointment setting but lousy with closing and the other, great at closing but bad with appointment setting. The first salesperson could schedule 40 appointments per month but only closed 10% of those appointments, which resulted in only four sales per month. The second salesperson lands four appointments per month. He is an amazing closer and but can only close deal 50% of the time, making two sales per month.

Terry understood that he would make more money and build a six-figure income even if you’re not great at closing by being good at setting appointments and increasing opportunities. Closing is equally important but the analogy taught him he needed to redouble his efforts in making appointments and meeting with people.

The challenges in prospecting 

Prospecting is uncomfortable, scary, and awkward.  Stereotypes of salespeople being manipulative, talking a lot, listening too little, and using high-pressure tactics have to be overcome. Most salespeople don’t want to be perceived as manipulative and try to make relationships a priority. However, there can be a period of adjustment as they work to avoid reflecting on the negative stereotype.

Salespeople are having a difficult time getting past the gatekeeper and making contact with the decision-maker. Too often they leave multiple voicemails and emails with the hopes of getting a reply but typically, that doesn’t happen. The challenge is to be compelling in those initial interactions.

Terry tries to be generic in his voicemails to avoid stereotypes. The first three seconds you’re identified as a salesperson are the most challenging.  The person who is being contacted can lose interest regardless of what is being sold. It’s best to veer away from bad introductions and barking up the wrong tree. Salespeople shouldn’t just go through the phone book without a clear idea of who they want to contact. There’s no need to spend too much time trying to facilitate an introduction with people who don’t fit the ultimate goals. Doing so will delay getting in front of the clients who actually need the service or product being offered.

Building your client 

Salespeople should look at their top  10 best clients, profile them and get an overall sense of the companies they represent. From this information, they can build a dream list of similar companies. Use these strategies and tactics to make contact with the decision-makers: create a profile, build and stay focused on a  specific list of desired traits, and use the right kinds of tactics.

Many salespeople hate prospecting because they find it awkward. There’s already a resistance when they call companies and there’s a feeling of relief, not the disappointment when they get a voicemail to leave a message. The voicemail is now an escape. With the gatekeepers, like receptionists, salespeople have to get assertive to get to the decision-makers. The goal is to get past the voicemail and get to a person. This is an opportunity to be persistent

Instead of just saying, “Yes, please,” to leaving a message, salespeople should be a little more curious and assertive. Probing questions such as, “Is he in the office or out of the office?”, “Is he at a meeting?”, or “If you slip a note to him to let him know I’m on the line, would that be appropriate?” can move a salesperson closer to their target client.

Be persistent and follow-through

It’s also a good idea to ask the secretary if it would be okay to wait on the phone until the meeting is done, especially if they’re already wrapping up.

If the decision-maker is out of the office or on vacation, press further and ask if it’s possible to get their personal number. If it’s given, follow up is imperative.. 50% of the time, secretaries will say not but the other 50% will give the number or transfer the call directly.

Think positively and don’t assume the other person is unwilling to talk. If your persistence doesn’t work, however, then ask for someone else in the organization. The director of marketing, the human resource officer, the CEO, anyone with buying power in a decision committee can be great alternatives. These days, CEOs and presidents no longer make a decision by themselves. A vote or by committee makes the purchasing decision today. Find two or three of these people in the organization and talk to them. These tactics are not difficult but they do require you to be more assertive and persistent, not aggressive and arrogant.

The secret to prospecting and having conversations with decision-makers is to be more persistent, assertive, polite, and professional.

“How to Build A Six-Figure Income Even If You’re Not Great At Closing!” episode resources

Terry Hansen and his team are hosting a special online sales training workshop this week where they’ll be teaching the three secrets that salespeople can use to boost their sales revenue. They’ll be talking about how to build a six-figure income even if you’re not great at closing. You can go to salespitchmastery.com/register to attend for free by using the special link or you can attend it for $49.

For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you.

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077.

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to.

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE BLOG 027: How Learning and Development Training Can Boost Sales Team Success

Companies are only dedicating 10% of their training activities in improving sales. Should this number increase? A recent report says yes.

The Case for Sales Training

According to the 2019 Learning and Development (L&D) Report from findcourses.com, of the 70 plus L&D professionals surveyed, only 10% reported sales as a top training priority. A whopping 57% of respondents reported leadership and management development as their primary training focus, with customer service, sales and communication rated far lower. The report found links between learning and innovative business practices, diversity & inclusion training and financial growth, and current financial growth with increasing L&D investment. 

L&D training is a key facet of running a successful and growing business. But with sales training being overlooked in companies’ L&D plans, businesses are missing out on fostering their growth in the long term. On top of revenue growth, sales teams impact brand recognition, brand reputation, and building long-term customer relationships. By strategically increasing investment in L&D, you can maximize your potential for revenue growth, while cementing the sales team at the center of your business’ success. 

With only 13% of salespeople producing over 87% of total sales in a typical organization, what L&D strategies will help more sellers become more effective? If you’re a new or struggling seller, practicing L&D professionals have identified some key training insights to boost sales and encourage innovation. 

Invest Upfront, Reap the Rewards

Cost-based functions can always be vulnerable to budget cuts and L&D is no exception. But, home assistance provider HomeServe has proven that keeping L&D a budget priority produces results. Awards for Best L&D Team, Learning & Organizational Development and Leadership Development all went to HomeServe at the 2018 HR Distinction Awards. For HomeServe’s Director of Learning & Development Rebecca Edwards, it was an upfront investment in L&D that illustrated its long term impact. In response to findcourses.co.uk’s 2019 L&D survey, Edwards explained that “When times are tough, it’s easy to forget about training and development, the more you invest in it upfront the longer-term benefits will be.”

Nonetheless, not everyone has access to the right sales training within their organization. Looking outside company walls for guidance and external sales training providers will further your opportunities for growth while fostering a culture of innovation. “You can influence innovation when you’re living it,” finds the head of U.S. Learning & Talent Development at Bayer Karen Bicking. Partnering with external training providers opens the doors to innovative practices that transform your conception of L&D.

The Future is Now: Innovation and Virtual Reality 

Technology continues to form the baseline of innovative L&D practice. Companies with revenue growth are more than twice as likely to use innovative technologies such as game-based learning and augmented reality in their L&D offerings.

Business Insider forecasts that VR software and hardware revenue will jump 587% in the next five years, from $800 million in 2018 to $5.5 billion by 2023. The pioneering technology can already be found in offices nationwide, from companies like JetBlue to the NFL. By harnessing the power of this exciting new technology, L&D professionals have the opportunity to complement existing sales training with something relatively rare, practice-as-learning in a safe environment. 

With beginnings at Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, VR coaching company STRIVR’s Chief Strategy Officer Danny Belch has seen the impact of VR on L&D in real-time. “With VR, because of the on-demand nature, the real-life experience can be fired up at the click of a button … it’s not role-playing. You have this beautifully free space to practice, to stumble upon your words,” Belch observes. He finds that putting the information presented in training into a real-life scenario gives you the repetition needed to get it right.

Technology doesn’t replace quality training however, and Belch explains that while tech innovations like VR can be useful, they should always be complementary to existing L&D materials.  “The companies that have jumped in usually have one champion who really believes in it – the forward thinkers who jump in while everyone else is waiting,” finds Belch. Companies with growing revenue are three times more likely to predict an increase in their L&D budget. By taking the plunge into innovation in collaboration with L&D professionals, you can maximize growth potential through sales training, and ignite a culture of innovation across your organization. 

Staying Agile to Avoid Complacency

Technology can be a direct way to encourage innovation, but it is by no means the only way. Keeping your L&D program agile and personalized to your sales division will help new and struggling sellers adapt faster to the lightning-fast shifts any business may require. Findcourses.com’s 2019 report found that 19% of L&D teams are challenged by employee’s lack of time. Techniques for tailoring training to the present and future needs of your employees and your business like training on optimizing your sales team’s territories helps trainees personalize their learning experience. Personalization can make the L&D process more efficient for all involved, leaving more time for selling!  

While these insights can all function as key ways to boost sales and encourage innovation, consistent evaluation and recalibration are the best ways to keep exceeding expectations. Tiffany Poppa, Director of Employee Experience at Bonobos explains that “Focusing on what’s right with people makes for an inclusive environment where people can openly express themselves, their ideas and even their challenges.” Cultivating a working environment and an agile L&D culture that encourages openness is the first step to inviting innovation to your office, and to keep it there.

The Takeaway

If you are a new or struggling seller or have a burgeoning sales team ready to hit your market, investment in sales training L&D will provide the tools to maximize your sales team’s success. Making that upfront investment in L&D, looking outside your organization for inspiration, researching the latest trends in technology and innovation and keeping your training agile and personalized are all techniques practicing L&D professionals have found successful. Boosting sales training is no small feat, but the research shows that investment in L&D is by far the best place to start. 

 


Max Maccarone is a content editor for the higher education portal educations.com and professional development search engine findcourses.com. Originally from Canada, Max relocated to Stockholm after graduating from York University in Toronto. As an avid traveler, Max is dedicated to creating diverse and engaging learning and development content for a wide range of publications.

Seize attention, Likky Lavji, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1212: Networking Effectively and Creating a Sphere of Influence

Seize attention, Likky Lavji, The Sales EvangelistThe idea of networking effectively and creating a sphere of influence is nothing new in sales. It’s a facet of sales that everybody understands and executes. Networking is one sure way of meeting new people, building relationships, and it eventually opens doors for opportunities. 

Likky Lavji has been meeting people and building relationships for 30 years. He built and grew his IT company based on his referral network. By the time he sold his company, he had ample knowledge about how to do the business. Now, he’s sharing his knowledge with others.

The old methods of doing business 

Face-to-face meetings and getting to know people before starting the business are old methods of doing business. Today, people depend on social media to grow their business. We are bombarded with social diversions making us adept in communicating using social media platforms. The downside to that is it’s becoming more difficult for many to have conversations face-to-face. 

As salespeople, we need to combine old and new methods to make it work. It’s great to go back to the basics. Look at your existing base of connections and get to know them. Identify your best clients from your database, the ones who not only bring in revenue but referrals as well. Once you’ve identified your clients, you can start building your sphere of influence. 

Creating your sphere of influence is easy to do. You need to know your people and reach out to the people they know as well. In a networking event, look for the person who has people around them. Find an opportunity to start a conversation and be authentic. Don’t force anything. It has to be organic. 

Likky once stuttered and it held him back. With the help of Bob Burg, the author of The Go-Giver Way, he was able to move past his stuttering. 

Building relationships 

It’s normal to have some level of fear when talking to strangers in a networking event, or anywhere else. However, that fear can be overcome. You need to veer away from the misconceptions of others. Put those aside and just be who you are. People fear networking because of the notion they have to sell. Change that mindset and think of networking as meeting people and making friends. 

Don’t go into sales mode right away. 

Likky uses the acronym F.O.R.M. to start conversations: 

F – Family. Everybody wants to talk about their family. Some people even have their family photos in their wallets. You can talk about their dogs too. 

O – Occupation. You can ask about their occupation. For example, ask them how they got into their business. 

R – Recreation. Find your common ground and talk about their hobbies and interests. 

M – Message. These are the things you stand for. 

Listen to what they say

Build meaningful conversation and listen to their response. Ask more questions about their interests. It doesn’t matter if they don’t ask you questions because this isn’t about you. Make sure they do all the talking. Bob uses 10 field questions when meeting new people such as, “What do you enjoy most about your profession?” and “Describe the strangest thing you’ve experienced in your business.” 

People get excited when talking about these things. It’s your job to hear and understand what they’re saying. Show empathy and put yourself in their shoes. Understand what they’re going through. Listen well, take notes and follow-up. 

In Bob’s book, he suggested listening with the back of your neck. This means listening to what they’re saying and putting everything aside. All the words would go through your mouth, your face, through your ears, and to the back of your neck. There’s nothing else present except for those words coming into you. 

Giving out business cards isn’t the best way to execute networking effectively and creating a sphere of influence. Whenever Likky sees he may need to give away his business card, he tries to avoid it. 

Connect them to others 

In networking effectively and creating a sphere of influence, another way to do this is by giving referrals to someone else When you meet people in a networking event, ask them who their ideal customers are and you will see there are others in the room who have the same audience that they have. Refer them to those people and help them make a connection. They will learn to trust you because you helped grow their business. Don’t worry if the referral sources aren’t 100% successful.  All you need to do is make the introduction and let them have the conversation. 

If they want to do something for you in return, then talk to them about the kind of customers you are looking for. Consider having a meeting with them first so they know who you are and what you want. You’ll also get to know who they are, their centers of influence. 

If you meet somebody and you promise them something, always make sure to follow through within 24 hours, either by email or follow-up, because they may forget you beyond that time frame. 

A handwritten letter or card is also a great idea in networking effectively and creating a sphere of influence. 

Start building relationships and connections before you start selling. The more relationships you build, the more people know what you do, and the easier it will be to get referrals and make business happen. 

When it comes to building your sales income and boosting your sales, developing the skills of appointment setting. It pays more than the skill of closing sales. The secret to mastering the art of appointment setting is persistence, being assertive, and being polite and professional. 

“Networking Effectively and Creating a Sphere of Influence” episode resources

Connect with Likky Lavji and visit his site. He has a free workshop coming up and you can check it on www.salespitchmastery.com/register. For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. We hope to see you there! You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

The Sales Evangelist, Wendell Jordan, Accidental Seller

TSE 1211: The Accidental Seller Series – Wendell Jordan

The Sales Evangelist, Wendell Jordan, Accidental SellerThis is the 4th episode for the Accidental Seller series.

Wendell Jordan is the owner of Jordan Consults and a local SEO specialist. His company works with small businesses to increase their digital footprint.

Growing up, Jordan and his friends wanted to become professional basketball players. However, playing for the NBA became an afterthought when he reached high school. He actively studied music during his first few years in college. By then, he was in and out of recording studios in New York City.

Perceptions of sales

Wendell thought of salespeople as sleazy individuals. He first came across sales when he was young.  A vacuum salesman was doing door-to-door sales and he wouldn’t leave until his mother threatened to call the police. The salesman was trying to force his mother to buy a product they didn’t need. That  experience had a negative impact on Wendel and affected how he viewed sales.

Wendell’s mother worked for the city of New York and his father was a postal worker. His parents’ jobs, along with how he viewed salespeople made him think that sales was not for him.

He accidentally came into sales when he was checking out Craigslist ads. The ad was looking for someone to work in customer service and didn’t mention  sales. When he went in for the position, it was commission-only, door-to-door sales process. Wendell’s wife played a huge part in his decision to take the position. She had faith that he could do it and  encouraged him to try. He’s been in sales ever since.

Overcoming the fear

Like any new salesperson, Wendell  had fears. He worried he’d become the sleazy salesperson who had to be removed from someone’s home, just like the man from his childhood. In his first days on the job, he shadowed a sales rep and  was told just to take notes. For two days, he tried to learn what he could from shadowing. On the third day, he was thrown into the fire and had to have his first door-to-door experience on his own.

Making a sale on the first day can be difficult but Wendell was able to do it. His first deal felt magical and it inspired and motivated him to keep going. He thought, if he could do it the first day,  he can also do it the second day so he kept going.

However, the lack of sales training affected his morale and the number of sales made. Shadowing others for a day or two wasn’t enough for him selling door-to-door effectively. He just didn’t have the skill set to close and the  result was a lot of deals weren’t pushed through.

Quitting sales

Wendell’s sales journey wasn’t easy. He experienced being removed from payroll and spent a good part of the year in  limbo, not knowing if he’d be able to make a sale again. The instability of the job almost made him quit. An old business partner convinced him to try again, but  this time, he’d be selling websites. Wendell had trepidation considering that his previous sales experience wasn’t stellar. Still, he tried again and started cold-calling businesses.

Wendell went from a door-to-door sales process to  talking to potential clients and educating them about their services.

Sales has been one of the greatest opportunities Wendell has ever had in his life and he would choose it again. It allows him to work from home and learn  about different cultures. The door-to-door sales experience exposed him to different lifestyles and it trained him in different ways to socialize with others.

If you’re new in sales, keep at it. Don’t get caught up in what people perceive sales to be. #SalesMotivation

Shift your focus.

See yourself three years down the road. You’ll think about the number of Nos you got but  you’ll remember the the Yeses were far greater. Focus on the bright side.

“The Accidental Seller Series – Wendell Jordan” episode resources

Reach out to Wendell Jordan via his phone number, 314-325-829. You can also visit his website and check out the contact form there.

For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you.

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077.

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to.

You can also read more about sales or listen to audio books on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Song – Yurr 2 Pretty Gurl

Written By Elliot Ransom Sprinkle

Produced and Performed By Yung Koolade

Song – String Thing

Written By Bradley Jay HIll

Performed By Hill

Song – Funky Super Mall

Written By Dustin Ransom

Produced and Performed By Cast Of Characters

Song – Tipsy

Written By Amit Nagra

Produced and Performed By AlterEgo

Song – A Slow Moving Thought

Written By Bradley Jay HIll

Produced and Performed By Fairlight

Song – Bellicosus

Written By Isaac Joel Karns

Produced and Performed By Isaac Joel

Song – A Champion From The Ashes

Written and Produced By Stephen Keech

Performed By Third Age

 

The Sales Evangelist, Seize attention, Ron Tite

TSE 1210: How to Seize Attention and Build Trust in a Busy World 

 

The Sales Evangelist, Seize attention, Ron TiteAs salespeople, we look for ways to seize attention and build trust. While prospecting and building trust among clients is critical, it’s also one of the most difficult tasks in sales. 

Ron Tite is the founder and keynote speaker of the Toronto-based agency, Church+State as well as the author of Think Do Say: How to Seize Attention and Build Trust in a Busy, Busy World.  Being an executive creative director at a large multinational ad agency, Ron has extensive knowledge about traditional agency marketing, advertising, and design. In addition to that, he’s also an experienced comedian, using that in his own entrepreneurial journey. Ron is also an investor who appreciates the need for sales to do business. 

The desperate need for attention 

Salespeople are looking at the ecosystem correctly but are using the wrong tactics to make a breakthrough. They’ve been chasing metrics that don’t deliver to build long term businesses

There are so many thought leaders, evangelists, and LinkedIn lead generators who are going about it in the wrong way. Seeing this drove Ron to eventually build his own agency.

With a growing number of salespeople, the sheer number of sales reps and clients are overwhelmed by pitches. 

Time Square is a great metaphor. Everybody is in Time Square. Big corporations and companies use traditional means, such as using billboards, to get attention. Meanwhile, there are smaller sellers on the streets that are doing things differently. They are more aggressive, targeted, and their pitch can be customized. These are the people who sell practically everything in Times Square, from ripped off t-shirts to street meat. Every one of them trying to get attention. 

However, the challenge doesn’t stop there, it continues. Now you’ve got their attention, how do you earn their trust? 

Other salespeople are still using the automated messages they used in the 60s when talking to potential clients. They could have customized their message and tailored it but they didn’t. They need to revamp their style with three phrases in mind: based on what you think, based on what you do, and based on what you say. 

Set yourself apart

As a salesperson, the ‘based on what you think’ approach considers the things you firmly believe regardless of what you’re selling. This is important because you aren’t selling a unique product. There are others selling the same product so what you think is what makes you unique. Ask yourself,

Do you believe that:

  • relationships are the key to success?
  • you should deliver the most value?
  • your role as a salesperson is to connect people with the right opportunities?

 ‘Based on what you do’ are the things you do to reinforce your beliefs. The last part, ‘based on what you say.’ 

Salespeople can be hesitant about sharing their products/services with others because they don’t want to come off as “pitch slapping.” It’s important to deliver the right message through their actions and behaviors by talking about what they do in an authentic way and transparent way. 

Don’t create smoke and mirrors and say nice things just to make a sale. People are sensitive to that approach and they can see it a mile away. Use the following questions as a guide to starting your conversation. 

  • Who do you do it for?
  • What do they want you to do?
  • Who do you do it with?

For so long, salespeople have used many strategies to seize attention and build trust but still find it difficult to have a breakthrough. They need to customize their sales pitch and talk to clients according to their needs. There is no need to cheat the system. Rather, they have to speak to potential clients in the right way.

Invest in being good 

Comedians come and go and they try a variety of tactics to make people laugh. However, nobody has sustained a career in comedy by doing anything other than being really funny. It is the same thing in sales. You can try other platforms in the course of your sales career but it won’t work unless you show your humanity and have the best interest of your clients and prospects at heart. Jumping from one platform to another may give you some benefit and short-term metrics but it won’t sustain your business in the long run. 

Ron’s first project when he launched his agency was with a client he already knew. The marketing director discovered Ron was running his own agency and she gave him his first project. The trust didn’t come from Ron chasing tactics. It was due to Ron’s honesty in the business. 

Red Bull is a great company that bases its marketing on the three things mentioned earlier. The company firmly believes that life with an adrenaline rush is a better way to live. They reinforce that belief by encouraging activities where their audience can have an adventure. Their advertising reinforces this message by showing people grow wings after drinking their product. 

Red Bull reached out to one of Ron’s friends Matt, a chef, to star in their videos. The company said they shared Matt’s values and attitude and they wanted him on board. Despite Matt’s respect for the brand, he couldn’t push it through because he didn’t drink Red Bull. The company respected his response because they align with people based on values. They know that many respond and convert because of that approach. The number of converts exceeds those who don’t respond favorably so that’s what they focus on. Still, they just don’t walk away from people who don’t buy their products. 

Looking for ways to seize attention and build trust may be difficult but resist the desire to scheme in order to turn the system in your favor. Do the hard work, roll up your sleeves, and find out as much as you can about the prospects you have. Above all, be a real human being using real conversations. It doesn’t matter if they don’t convert because that’s not your goal. You are there to add value and help solve their problems. When you focus on that, enough of your prospects will convert in time. 

Hiring the right people

A section  Impossible, a book by Mark Roberto, highlights coachability as the number one value managers need to look for when hiring. Salespeople need a desire to learn and have the ability to change and adapt. It’s also important to delegate clear responsibilities to the sales team. Each sales rep can specialize in the activity in which they excel. Don’t rush the hiring process or skip steps. Hire who can do the prospecting, not just close. Don’t hire somebody and expect them to save the business or figure things out on their own. 

“How to Seize Attention and Build Trust in a Busy World” episode resources

Get in touch with Ron Tite via Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. We hope to see you there! You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Negotiating, The Sales Evangelist, Adam Ayers

TSE 1209: How to Negotiate a Mutual Win

Negotiating, The Sales Evangelist, Adam AyersSalespeople are always looking for a win and when closing with clients, landing a great deal while being able to negotiate a mutual win is the ideal goal.  

Adam Ayers studied mechanical engineering and built a software technology startup after graduating. He is now the Chief Technology Officer and founder of the company, Number5, which specializes as an outsource CTO for celebrities, eCommerce companies, and internet brands. Fifty percent of their operations involve running technology, and acquiring customers, for commerce businesses and executing the data science.  The other fifty percent is on custom technology where they build platforms, APIs, and high-performance software on the internet. 

Negotiate a mutual win

When Adam was a child he asked his father what inventors do and the response resonated with him. He was told the best inventors don’t just invent things, they are capable of selling what they’ve invented. That thought motivated him to make things himself, build a team, and sell the things he created himself. As an engineer, Adam has learned to think in frameworks and processes, finding that telling stories are effective ways to negotiate a mutual win and make a sale. 

The biggest problem most salespeople face is the tendency to talk more and listen less. People want to be listened to, to be asked questions, and to be understood. This is a factor that other sales reps forget. No matter what you are selling, you must put the clients’ interests first. Listen to them, ask questions, and understand where they’re coming from. You learn to see their problem and present customers with a solution when you sincerely tune-in to what they are saying. This is how they make the buying decision, to trust the solution you present to them. 

The ideal ratio is 80-20, where 80% is spent listening to the clients’ story and asking them questions while 20% is spent sharing a story about how you’re going to help solve their problems. 

The book entitled, You Can’t Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar emphasizes the Sandler sales submarine, with the initial point being we need to bond and build rapport with our customers.  Showing compassion and kindness and asking people who they are and what they need is the first step to negotiate a mutual win

The importance of self-awareness

It’s a trait that many salespeople need to master to negotiate a mutual win. Being who you are is important because that’s how you connect with people. While compromising is a good thing, you also want to be authentic. Your flaws as a salesperson will make you more human and more relatable to others. A corporate approach in sales is uncomfortable because ultimately everyone is just looking for a smart friend with whom they can make a connection when they’re being sold to. 

Adam sells software development, customer acquisition, and data science. These are products the average person doesn’t understand but they know they need it to grow their business. He understands he needs to nurture confidence in his potential clients, that they want to feel good about hiring him.  Adam highlights his previous experience, his background, who he’s already worked with, their integrity and what he’s already delivered.

Adam’s team doesn’t sell. Instead, they connect with people – they talk, dine, and get drinks.  

While the sales process and negotiations are pretty straightforward, the reality is that it works for his team. When Adam knows that his services aren’t going to fit what the client needs, he is upfront and honest about it. Adam knows his customers need someone who can execute the tasks and if needed, communicate to the stockholders and investors what’s going on. 

Unconventional approach works 

This approach of combining tech expertise with a personal touch is the core of, Number5, a company name inspired by the1986 movie, Short Circuit. Sometimes, people are hired based on relationships and not on their knowledge about technology. 

Their process on how to negotiate a mutual win is shaped around helping clients understand their needs and what their role is to make meet the company’s goals. Adam shows them how his team uses technology to deliver the solution efficiently and effectively. 

One company Adam was an engineer for, had the Five Four Club, a men’s clothing line subscription, that quickly rose to popularity. The company needed the technology to keep up with its growth. Adam not only offered the tech to support the growth but as a leader, helped offer resources to build up the existing team.  Adam didn’t have to explain how the tech worked but still offered suggestions on how employees could support it within their roles.

Clients say that Adam’s approach is abrasive and shocking until they get to know him. Once they see his process and his ability working for them, they’re on board. 

 Many salespeople aren’t just selling, they’re also doers. Sales grow with a better job of doing and executing. 

Moving forward

Adam is always looking for different tools that will help from a market broad perspective and a sales perspective. For example, CrystalKnows is a plugin that helps you analyze the personality type of anyone’s LinkedIn profile. The results will give you an idea of how to communicate with that person. This is an amazing way technology can start connecting people more effectively and efficiently. 

Technology is also helpful for companies that are looking to expand and hire people. The Sales Acceleration Formula, by Mark Roberge, shares it’s not just the experience that’s important, it’s the coachability of the salesperson and their ability to adapt. 

“How to Negotiate a Mutual Win” episode resources

Connect with Adam Ayers directly by scheduling a meeting with him through email or look him up on LinkedIn

For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. Group of friends put together this event designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. We hope to see you there! You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Ashlee Reusch, Donald C Kelly, Honesty in Sales

TSE 1208: The Accidental Seller- “Ashlee Reusch”

Ashlee Reusch, Donald C Kelly, Honesty in SalesThis is the third episode for the Accidental Seller series brought to you by The Sales Evangelist. 

Ashlee Reusch is a business development representative at Cognos HR. Ashlee was always on the lookout for change growing up and thus wasn’t chasing a specific career. She graduated high school a year early and proceeded to go to the local community college to get her radiology technical certification. 

Ashlee realized that science wasn’t her passion. The classes didn’t excite her and being a creative person at heart, she felt like the course didn’t foster that part of her. She didn’t want to sign up for endless classes to get certifications to advance her career in the medical field in the future. She was at a loss for what to do next and that’s how she fell into sales. 

Falling into sales 

She was finishing her associate’s degree at a community college and was deciding whether to proceed to her bachelor’s degree at a university. But Ashlee lost her passion in science and didn’t want to invest in her education being unsure of what she really loved. He friends who studied at universities and paid tens of thousands of dollars but in the end, went back to square one because they were no longer interested in the career path they chose. She didn’t want to be in the same boat. 

Ashlee talked to her dad about her predicament. He has been with the local Chevy dealer selling cars. He then suggested that she get a job and try out sales for a full year. She thought of it as an intersection where she wanted to experience the world and figure out what she wanted at the same time. That’s when she became an accidental seller

The first few days were nerve-wracking, especially being there were only 2 women in the sales department. Everyone else was men with the average age of late thirties. Ashlee was 19 years old then. The experience was both exciting and nerve-wracking, especially since there was no sales training available. She shadowed other salesmen for a week and then she was put on the floor after that to sell some cars. 

Since her dad had been in sales his whole life and both her parents were entrepreneurs owning a small art business in the late 90s and early 2000s, sales and business was nothing new for Ashlee. She also saw how her parents worked long hours. There was a lot of instability in sales and that made her think that sales was not her cup of tea. She wanted something stable with normal work hours. Sales was never part of her plan even until her college years.

The accidental seller sells for the first time

Ashlee was an introvert growing up and she likes to hang out in the background a little bit. This part of her made sales a scary avenue. It was difficult for her to talk to strangers face to face and sell them cars. Her limited training lasted only a week. She was the typical salesman but she made it her goal to be honest with her clients. 

Whenever she doesn’t know anything, she tells them that she doesn’t have the answer at the moment but she’ll find it out for them. She found out that people respect honesty and humility. 

She was working on a hundred percent dealership commission roll, so not selling a car means not getting a paycheck. It was a motivating factor to learn the ropes quickly. She spent almost four months before she felt like had things under control. 

She moved from one salesperson’s cubicle to another to learn how to strike a deal in her downtime. She’d listen and take notes on how to handle common objections. She followed her dad’s suggestion. 

A moment of doubt

Being an accidental seller means that sales isn’t your first choice and when faced with difficulties, an accident seller would tend to fold. Ashlee has her moments of doubt and thinks about quitting. When it does cross her mind, she convinces herself otherwise by thinking of all the skills and opportunities of the people she met in the sales industry so far. 

It’s easy to get caught up in the negativity but it’s important to not get swayed by all of it. Her dad told her the way to get out of a rut is to sell. Whenever she feels down, she tries again. 

Her first sale wasn’t that exciting. She sold to a newly married couple who were buying their first car together. It was special for them and they used a true car certificate. All she had to do was a test drive with them and make sure that they liked the car. The experience wasn’t overwhelming but the income that came with it was fun and exciting. 

Moving forward, she went from selling cars to membership training for a large gym chain and made her way into the Chicago tech world. She is now working for a small outsource HR company where she helps businesses accomplish their goals every day. There’s a lot of networking and meeting other people involved. She learns about clients’ businesses and their growth goals and she helps them reach their goals. 

Ashlee would do sales in a heartbeat even if she had other choices and sees no possibilities of changing anything in her sales journey. Sales gave her tons of independence and confidence. It bought her a house and gave her a great career.

Sales is difficult and it’s a roller coaster ride but when you’re in it for the long haul, you’ll be surprised with the many things you learn, the people you meet, and the opportunities you meet along the way.  

“The Accidental Seller” episode resources

Get in touch with Ashlee Reush via LinkedIn and her personal email

With any sales concerns and questions about sales, you can reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let me know how it works for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. Our next semester starts on November 8 and we would love to have you. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami, an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Come and join us. You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Game On

Written By: Benjamin Caleb Johnson

Performed By: BRASKO

Produced By: BRASKO

Larry The Unicorn

Written By: Benjamin Caleb Johnson

Performed By: BRASKO

Produced By: BRASKO

Dust And Dirt

Written By: Markus Huber

Performed By: Tide Electric

Produced By: Tide Electric

Christopher Walken

Written By: Matthew Wigton

Performed By: Falls

Written By: Matthew Wigton

Performed By: Falls

Bad Boys

Written By: Amit Nagra

Performed By: AlterEgo

Frenchy

Written By: Adrian Dominic Walther

Performed By: Liberty

Frenchy

Written By: Adrian Dominic Walther

Performed By: Liberty 

Split Second

Written By: S.L.J. Kalmeijer

Performed By: Sounds Like Sander

Produced By: Sounds Like Sander

Flowin’

Written By: Elliot Ransom Sprinkle

Performed By: Yung Koolade

Gia Le, The Sales Evangelists, Business referrals

TSE 1207: How to 10X Your Income With Repeat and Referred Business

Gia Le, The Sales Evangelists, Business referralsBusinesses, regardless of size, will always find ways to grow. One sure tactic to 10x your income is to use repeat and referred business. 

Gia Le is from Australia with a mixed heritage of Chinese and Vietnamese. She started her career in finance and insurance with an automotive dealership. That’s where she got her start in sales. In the beginning, she went from almost being fired three months into her job to being the top-performing consultant in Australia’s largest automotive holding company. Later on, Gia realized she wanted to have more flexibility in her life. She looked for ways she could use her skills and pursued another career that would give her more freedom and flexibility. 

She tried real estate for a year and noticed that digital marketing, an emerging platform, was being underutilized in Australia. Four years ago,  the use of social media was just starting to blossom. She saw that as an opportunity and decided to build a digital agency where she made just  $500 in her first month. Today, her agency is growing across Australia and Asia. 

Selling using out-dated  methods 

When Gia started with the dealership, her company offered several training programs. She learned the techniques and rehearsed the scripts but nothing was working. The old methods of selling didn’t work for sophisticated customers who saw sales tactics as insincere. She was in the new world using out-dated methods of selling. She struggled for three months until the right mentor appeared. He pulled her aside and told her not to focus on the sale. Instead, he instructed her to focus on the people and realize they’re more than just selling finance and insurance. 

Salespeople want to solve a problem and deliver a service.

When Gia started connecting and focusing on her clients’ pain, empathizing with them, and gaining their trust using the art of storytelling, she started closing nearly 70% of her clients. The dealership was fast-paced and it was important the salespeople could close a transaction in less than a day. 

In Australia, financing and insurance make more money than the actual vehicle, comprising 60- 70% of the dealership’s profits. Gia learned to never give out her business cards because she knew that was a customer’s consolation prize, that they were leaving her with hope and hope she didn’t pay the bills. She had to close before the client left.

Growing the business through repeat and referred business 

People think referrals happen by luck. Getting referrals is actually all about having the right strategy, being disciplined, having a strong thought process, and making sure that the system is bigger than yourself. Gia took advantage of her downtime as a salesperson when Facebook and Google were still growing in popularity. While everyone else was busy trying to find new clients on Facebook, Gia was busy prospecting her old clients. She understood that 90% of her next sale was going to happen before they even walked into the door. When her clients came back, they had made a conscious decision to return to Gia. They remembered who Gia was, what she did and the way she’d treated them.

Not many salespeople kept in touch with their clients the way Gia did. It takes a lot of discipline and tenacity to follow-up, especially when you’re busy. Gia made it a point to have at least six touchpoints when working with a new client.  For example, sending a gift, making sure a thank you note got sent within thirty days, hand-writing birthday cards and calling on an anniversary. With consistency and automated systems in place, relationships were built. It was because of her dedication that clients were consistently referring to family members and friends.

Build a connection

Staying connected is the key. The relationship began when clients signed the contract. Gia would assist them when they wanted to make a claim due to an accident, enabling her to assist clients with a replacement vehicle. She could also help with the contract and make more money for the dealership. Everyone benefited because she stayed connected and earned the client’s trust. 

Gia’s current team also emphasizes having a relationship with their clients. They go beyond what they offer and know they aren’t just selling products and services but also trust and a promise. They even help clients who have poor credit ratings. 

There are many ideas to grow your sales but discipline and consistency are key when using repeat and referred business. If you decide to make 10 phone calls a day to original clients, do it and watch your business grow. 

“How to 10X Your Income With Repeat and Referred Business” episode resources

Visit Gia Le’s digital agency website to see helpful sales strategies, tips, and tricks. Also, check out her own company site. 

For other sales concerns, you can also reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let him know how they work for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. We hope to see you there! You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

You can also read more about sales or listen to audiobooks on Audible and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Vlad Calus, Content Marketing, Lead Generation

TSE 1206: The Main Things Generating The Most Leads Right Now! 

 

Vlad Calus, Content Marketing, Lead GenerationAs salespeople, we often ask ourselves about the main things generating the most leads right now because we always want to be in on everything that works. Consumers’ purchasing decisions are affected by their experiences and we want to know what affects them in order to appeal to those emotions and convince them to buy our products or services. Sales professionals that we are, we love leads and we like getting new prospects. 

Vlad Calus is the founder at Planable, a content collaboration plan for freelancers and marketing teams. It is the most visual platform that helps you preview your social media content before publishing it. Planable helps you check and review your content before publishing it. It makes collaboration and asking for feedback from your teammates easier as well as asking for clients’ feedback before finalizing the content and scheduling the posts through social media. 

Generating the most leads right now

 There are three things that helped Vlad to get leads. The first one was writing a book. He wrote a book called Marketing Themes of the Future which gained them over 2,000 leads in just a couple of weeks. They also published the Content Academy and it generated them more than 500 people in just a couple of hours. 

Publishing is one way to generate leads and that’s what Vlad and his team did. They also did a content calibration report where they reported on the state of content marketing and how content marketing teams are working. For them, their team wasn’t able to generate many people by just a sudden initiative. They did the planning on how to create their content and spent a lot of time on it. The content are called special initiatives. They worked on it for about 12 months and all of the people involved were on the same page. They then had press releases for client launches and they constantly repurposed their content. 

Content calibration 

Vlad’s team looked for the problem in their industry and wanted to address it. Research shows that there have been no content calibration reports done for the last nine years. They wanted to understand the state of the market but there are only old data available. In marketing, data are key players to a business’s success. They then understood the need to generate a lot of data and started the project with their customers, connections on the net, and the people they met. They generated leads by using the data of the report they collated. 

One of the data they have is on how to repurpose content for their followers. There’s also the part where you need multiple stakeholders as part of your content strategy. They also discovered in their research that broken collaboration is wasted time and communicating with your stakeholders vie spreadsheets and emails is one of the most broken workflows there is. They use all these data and share their marketing reports to their clients and potential clients to motivate them to jump on a call with them and start using their Planable. 

It’s applicable to other industries as well regardless of the size of the company. You can make reports using the data from the audience that you are working on and start by sending your audience Facebook polls or sending them a simple type form they can fill out. You can collate the data and use it for your marketing strategies. 

Publishing a book to get more leads works especially if you promote it yourself. Put your email signature in the book and see the number of people who click on it every single day. 

From readers to lead generators 

People who have read Vlad’s book started recommending it to other people they know. The book presented the benefits of collaborating on the content and using many different platforms to create a more collaborative market. The ebook also presented solutions that you can use for your content marketing collaboration as a marketing team. 

Every email we get, we put them into an email marketing flow and we ask them to jump on a call with us for them to find out more about Planable. We send people case studies on how Planable has been helping companies. 

The other thing that helped them in generating the most leads right now is their Content Academy. They interviewed over 30 experts in content marketing from different industries. These people are the front line in creating content, from the ideation, editing, writing, publishing, and generating leads. The Content Academy includes seven-step videos with topics like ideation strategy, content editing, content publishing, promoting, and so on. 

Vlad’s team presents it to potential clients and we give them sneak peeks of the things they can learn in the Content Academy. 

He makes snippets and minute-long videos showing how it would help businesses and publishes the videos on his LinkedIn and other social media. 

In content marketing, don’t be afraid to try creating content and putting yourself on camera. Get yourself out there and just start creating content. Listen to the feedback of the community and write again until you are able to make quality content. 

“The Main Things Generating The Most Leads Right Now! ” episode resources

Reach out to Vlad Calus via his LinkedIn

Go ahead and hit me up for concerns and questions about sales. You can also reach out to me via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let me know how it works for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. Our next semester starts on November 8 and we would love to have you. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Come and join us. You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

DeJuan Brown, Mindset, Donald C. Kelly,

TSE 1205: The Accidental Seller Series 2 – “DeJuan Brown”

DeJuan Brown, Mindset, Donald C. Kelly,

This is the second episode of the series The Accidental Seller. There is a more accidental sellers in the sales industry than we know of. In fact, there are about 4.14 million sales professionals in the United States who fell into this career. DeJuan Brown wanted to be a chemist when he was a kid. He also wanted to be a system analyst because he wanted to follow his uncle’s footsteps who worked as a system analyst for Guardian Life for a long time. But in college, he studied Psychology and Philosophy. The mathematics included in studying both Chemistry and System Analysis dissuaded him to push through with his childhood careers.

His view of sales and of the salespeople came about when his father started selling Insurance when he was two years old. Selling insurance then was very different compared to how it’s done today. People are able to sign up online or pay for their premium online but before, selling insurance was a door-to-door sport. His dad would spend hours going door to door collecting premiums from people. Seeing his dad selling made him think that sales was super lucrative on the back end but also super hard at the same time. DeJuan initially thought that salespeople were undesirable. 

The sale stigma 

The perception of salespeople then didn’t change much until today. In fact, stats show that only 18% of buyers respect salespeople. There’s still a bad stigma and DeJuan didn’t want to be associated with it. Salespeople are seen as sleazy and manipulative and even though his Dad is not like that, he came to adapt that view as well. It’s apparent with a car salesman and the salespeople you see in infomercials and TV. People kept telling DeJuan that he’d be good in sales but for him, it was a choice between using his skills for the worse which is doing sales or using it for the best which is helping people through law and other things. 

The accidental seller

DeJuan was doing a variety of things and was moving from one job to another. He ended up waiting tables and bartending. He was good at it and made a tremendous amount of money in it. His friends kept telling him to go into sales because he’s good at selling entrees but still the stigma of salespeople stuck in his mind. The stigma prevented him from considering the possibility until his buddy got a job at Intuit. His buddy convinced him to get into sales and he applied. He got a schedule for an interview and got a part-time job of 16 hours a week doing transactional sales. That’s when he got into sales. He fell in love with the reward of sales and it was the first time that he felt good about serving people. 

Fears in sales 

He had fears and trepidation when he started sales and most of the fear revolved on the thinking that he had to push people. DeJuan wanted to help people. If they want something, he wants to help them get it and if they do not want to get the product and services, then he doesn’t want to push them and he just wants to leave them alone. The fear went away relatively early in the process when he realized that he was helping people. He understood people and all that they have at their disposal. He gave them all their options and made sure that they made decisions based on what they have.

Helping people changed his paradigm on sales audits. DeJuan thought about quitting during his tough times but his experience helped him get through the rough times. When he isn’t at the top of the leaderboard, he thinks of quitting and starting out on another career.

That fact kept him on and motivated him. There’s no such thing as every time you dial, someone picks up the phone or responds to every email. Understanding that helped him control the inputs and outputs. The mindset shift helped him shift his attitude towards selling. His first sale was unforgettable for him. He was consistent with his deals and he was able to enhance someone’s product or their order.

For his first sale, he was able to sell a logo and on the same sale, he was able to add color and shadow. He also offered the self-sealing envelopes on the same order. DeJuan is now in the enterprise industry and connected with Seismic. DeJuan was an accidental seller but if asked if he was going to choose another path, he’d say that being an accidental seller is one of the best things that happened for his career. 

“The Accidental Seller Series 2″ episode resources

Reach out to DeJuan via his LinkedIn and he will also be in the Sales Success Summit. He is also on TwitterGo ahead and hit me up for concerns and questions about sales. You can also reach out to me via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let me know how it works for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. Our next semester starts on November 8 and we would love to have you. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Come and join us. You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Song credits:

Pick. Written By Matej Djajkovski, Martin Hampton; Performed and produced by OBOY

String Thing. Written and performed by Bradley Jay Hill

Projector. Written by Matthew Wigton; Performed by Falls

8-Bit Blues. Written by Bradley Jay Hill; Produced and Performed by Fairlight

Binary Falls. Written and produced by Matthew Wigton and Caleb Etheridge; Performed by Falls

The Menace. Written, produced, and performed by Bradley Jay Hill

Juice. Written by Matel Djajkovski and Martin Hampton; Produced and performed by OBOY

Bellicosus. Written, produced, and performed by Isaac Joel Karns

Lucorum. Written, produced, and performed by Isaac Joel Karns

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Aaron Ross, The Sales Evangelist, Entrepreneur

TSE 1204: “Impossible to Inevitable”

Aaron Ross, The Sales Evangelist, Entrepreneur

How can salespeople turn the impossible to inevitable

Aaron Ross is the author of the book Predictable Revenue and a proud father to nine children. The book Predictable Revenue is called the sales bible of Silicon Valley. It changed how the fastest-growing sales teams are designed. The book talked about outbound prospecting which can be a very predictable way to drive appointments and if you have predictable appointments, you can create predictable revenue. It also talks about sales specialization instead of letting the sales reps do the prospecting. Managers must break the sales team into specialized groups to assess where they excel. 

Impossible to inevitable  

His new book called From the Impossible to Inevitable is the growth bible. It’s more for C-levels: the managers, executives, and the leaders who understand the few key reasons why a company gets stuck and won’t grow. The book answers three questions:

  • Why aren’t you growing as fast as you can?
  • How can you grow faster?
  • How do you keep it up?

This book touches on sales models and expands to lead generation. From Impossible to Inevitable will teach you the ways of the fastest-growing companies in the world such as SalesForce and Twilio. The first section of the book is called Nail a Niche as it addresses the hard truth that most companies are not ready to grow and that’s the reason why they don’t grow as much as they want. 

You can’t paddle downstream if you’re not even in the stream. 

Nailing the niche

When beginning a business, there’s the tendency of selling everything to everyone. But that doesn’t work. What it does to you is that you either have no customer or you have a bunch of customers who are a little bit of this and a little bit of that. An entrepreneur may sit back and ask which of the customers are easiest to close, or who is the audience that really needs me? It is important to define who needs you. 

Aaron was part of Salesforce, where he built an internal sales program. He left the team in 2006 and did what he wanted to do, like going into adventures and other things. Aaron also worked in a venture firm, then on a thing called Unique Genius, then on CEO Flow. 

He needed to focus on a niche and figure out where his expertise lies so that he could deliver the most value for his customers. He then thought of outbound prospecting. I wasn’t the general sales consulting.

For us salespeople, this can take a lot of testing, talking, and experimentation with companies to get the right package and the right pricing programs before you nail your niche and start to grow faster. Sometimes it can take a long time because we have all these unrealistic expectations on how fast it should happen. 

Do it as Twilio does it

Twilio is a platform company that provides a bunch of technologies. Twilio is used by many companies that build software or iPhone apps to power their message alerts and phone calls. For example, Uber uses Twilio to make an Uber phone call and text because it’s difficult and time-consuming to build it themselves. 

Simply put, Twilio is a platform that companies can use to do many things. The challenge when you are marketing something like Twilio is that it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact help it can offer to a company or a client. 

A salesperson must paint a specific picture for people to get it. Twilio researched to get into the minds of their customers, to understand and build empathy with their customers. 

The common corporate value which is to walk in the shoes of your customer is something that Twilio really lives by. The company put much effort into walking in their customers’ shoes to know what they want and what they are looking for. 

Salespeople need to remember this value at all times, whether you’re writing an email or making a call. You need to know what they need to get your message across. Another secret of Twilio’s success is to let all their employees have a taste of what it’s like being the customer. 

Specific targeting

Turning the impossible to inevitable is also a result of specific targeting. You need to be more specific in choosing your audience. It’s important to talk to fewer people that are relevant to your products or services. 

Having fewer people to talk to doesn’t decrease your number of opportunities. Your goal is to become the big fish in the small pond and specific targeting is the perfect way to do that. It’s harder to change your products and services but you can do the easier part: you change your targeting instead. 

Types of leads

Lead generation is the main driver for your growing business. There are three kinds of lead generation: seeds, nets, and spears. The seeds are relationship-driven leads, these include referrals, word of mouth, and friends/families. Since these are relationship-based leads, they are faster to close and with a higher rate. The downside is that it’s more difficult to generate. Word of mouth is hard to grow. 

The second type is the nets. These are marketing. You are casting a wide net which means you’re broadcasting one too many. These leads include a podcast, billboards, or online marketing. You get more leads in terms of quantity than in quality. 

The last type is spears which are prospecting. It’s when you have typically a targeted list. It’s smaller in number but you get better opportunities out of it. 

Businesses almost always start with the word of mouth but as you start to grow, you will want to venture into content marketing and prospecting. As a company, you need to know the kind of leads that bring in clients. Figure where you excel and put more effort into that first before you move on into other types of leads. 

Pick the one that’s right for you at first and do more of it. Do not do all the three leads at once unless you’re a huge company with millions of funding. It might take years for you to figure out what works best, it might take years for your sales design team to come up with a plan that works, but it’s all worth it in the end. 

One section in the book Impossible to Inevitable is a lesson from Mark Roberge, the CRO of HubSpot. He has hired hundreds of people and the number one thing they look for when hiring is coachability. It’s an individual’s ability and desire to learn and their ability to connect, change, and adapt. 

Companies who are expanding and hiring people should look at the coachability of a person. Aside from that, as a company, you also need to know the kind of roles you need. 

Small steps

If you are a startup business, start with the basics. The CEO starts selling, then he hires a junior person to do prospecting and appointment setting. After a few months, you can promote that person to closing or you hire a closer. You look at your company and you see that there are now two people selling, the CEO and the newly hired close. You also have the junior person to do the lead generation. 

Think of smaller steps instead of going too quickly and hiring the wrong individuals in the process. 

The social media is always surrounded by stories of fast success but the reality in sales and in business is that it takes years before you get to the top. 

Everyone is struggling especially entrepreneurs because it’s your job to struggle and solve problems. So the next time you are discouraged, just remember that many others are in the same boat. #Entrepreneur

“Impossible to Inevitable” episode resources

Connect with Aaron Ross on LinkedIn and check out his website Predictable Revenue. 

You can also reach out to Donald for your sales concerns and interesting stories via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. Our next semester starts on November 8 and we would love to have you. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Come and join us. You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1203: One Major Closing Question Youre Neglecting to ask

TSE 1203: One Major Closing Question You’re Neglecting To Ask 

 

There are times when the sale is almost a done deal but at the end of the day, it’s not pushing through because there’s that one major closing question you’re neglecting to ask. This can happen to everyone, not just for the new sales reps. 

That one closing question you’re neglecting to ask

Let’s take Dave as an example. Dave is a seller who is wrapping up things with Bob in a phone call. Dave gave an amazing demonstration but Bob is being wishy-washy in his response and told Dave that he is still going to analyze internally first before moving on with Dave’s deal. Now, Dave is upset, furious, and blurted out some things. 

Dave could have done things differently by asking follow-up questions. Seeing it from Dave’s perspective, his outburst was understandable. He’s been working the deal for three months and he thought that he already got everything right. He already told his manager about it and he’s pretty excited for it to officially close. He needed this sale to achieve his quota. 

If he remembered to ask the closing question that many neglects to ask, the result would have been different. 

“Would I make  this purchase based on the same information I know if I were the buyer?” 

Based on the things you’ve shared with the buyer, would you have made the decision to make the investment? Many take this for granted because oftentimes, salespeople are shortsighted. 

Focusing on your pipeline 

Having focus is a great characteristic, however, focusing on the wrong thing isn’t. As salespeople, we need to shift the focus from ourselves and our pipeline, rather, we need to focus on our clients and our prospective clients. 

Going back on Dave, he was too focused on himself and the need for impressing his manager. He is a rising star in the company and the deal would be 25% of his quota. Everything was about Dave. Sometimes, a similar thing happens to us. 

We tend to focus on ourselves and fail to show empathy toward the clients. Stephen Covey’s The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People states that the fifth habit of becoming effective is to seek first to understand then to be understood. 

The outcome would have been different if Dave asked himself the closing question mentioned above. Dave was in a difficult situation. He just got promoted and he’s now in the big boy’s league, this means that he’s afraid. The thing is that all these situations that Dave is facing don’t help his potential client solve his problems. Bob has nothing in him to consider shifting to Dave’s offer. If you were Dave, you would have gone a different path. Instead of looking at your fears, you instead looked at what Bob’s company needs. 

Perhaps you’d look at some studies and do some homework about Bob’s industry in relation to the software that you’re selling. 

Reality in sales 

Not every deal is going to close, that’s a universal fact in sales. But when you try to ask the closing question mentioned earlier, you won’t get in an awkward situation. Take for example the close rates, it’s the sales rep’s number of prospects to the number of deals converted. A 25% close rate means closing 10 deals out of your 40 prospects. The average close rate is between 15%-23%. Some people have higher close rates and others have a lower close rate. 

The close rate would increase if we work a little more in asking the tough questions. Salespeople must analyze the situation from the buyer’s standpoint. You can start the conversion process after every call, ask the buyer the same closing question, “Based on what you know, do you feel comfortable moving forward with us to a demonstration?” “Based on what you know, do you feel comfortable moving forward with us toa proposal?” Do this in every step of the process. 

The closing question you’re neglecting to ask should be given priority now. Ask yourself and the buyer that question. Find more of your ideal customers and have more meaningful conversations with them. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. 

“One Major Closing Question You’re Neglecting To Ask” episode resources

Go ahead and hit me up for concerns and questions about sales. You can also reach out to me via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Use these practical sales tips and let me know how it works for you. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

The episode is also brought to you by Sales Live Miami. It’s an event put on by a group of friends and it’s designed to help sellers and sales leaders improve their sales game. It’s going to be this November 4-5, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Come and join us. You can find more about this event on The Sales Evangelist website. 

We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Ludovic Vuillier, Accidental Seller, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1202: The Accidental Seller Series 1 – “Ludovic Vuillier”

Ludovic Vuillier, Accidental Seller, The Sales Evangelist

Hubspot’s stats showed that 46% of salespeople did not intend to go into sales. That means a massive 4.14 million individuals are now an example of an accidental seller. Perhaps they were working different jobs and suddenly they decided to go into sales or the circumstances prompted them to go into sales. This series will be about the people who have become an accidental seller by hook or by choice. 

Ludovic Vuillier is an entrepreneur who runs the Good Life Manifesto. It is a tool to help you live a good life. It is a guide that’s related to health, business, finance, and relationship. 

Ludovic started his career in sales 20 years ago. He sold for myriads of companies and consulting organizations. He also helped these organizations to find success in their sales. 

But before he went into sales, he wanted to become a doctor because of his interest in the human body. The downside to that is one has to spend over 12 years in school before becoming a doctor, which is something he cannot do. That made him ditch the college path. 

The deciding path 

His father died when he was young and he inherited some money but didn’t have a clue what to do with it. The amount wasn’t big but it was enough to offer comfort. He spent a year and a half traveling. He saw places and learned about many cultures. The experience taught him to be comfortable outside his comfort zone. After that, he fell into sales. 

He started selling mobile phones door to door. His lack of social skills became an advantage because he was able to absorb and pick up the things that work and that don’t. Ludovic also ventured into telemarketing and sold cosmetics over the phone. 

It takes many things to become a salesperson. One has to have a strong will and desire, persistence, and a greater purpose. 

Ludovic started to take on different types of sales jobs including doing sales over the phone, face-to-face sales, one-on-one, one-to-many, and others. He learned how he can influence peoples’ thoughts, emotions, and actions to be effective in the sales industry. 

The challenge that was the sale 

It wasn’t just the money and the people that prompted him to go into sales, it was the challenge in sales. He was hooked with the idea that people have patterns and salespeople can study what makes them tick and influence that. Unlike other new sales reps who are afraid of rejection, Ludovic was just fearless and kept pushing head-on. 

One of the challenges in the sale is the need of doing it repeatedly, like a cycle. He gets bored easily and the thought of doing the same thing over and over again for a long period of time was a huge challenge. Ludovic was able to fight against the boredom by just keeping on. He made the decision of not quitting. 

He was one of the sales reps who didn’t make sales consistently but his perseverance reaped good results as he started to make a sale after another. 

Closing a deal

Closing a deal is exciting, elating, and motivating. He closed his first deal and kept closing deals. His career began to expand and his sales experience continued to grow. Ludovic started to use his talent to help call center companies. 

This, again, came by accident. 

His friend opened up a sales office and he tapped him for help to train his friend’s salespeople. The gig wasn’t going to last for more than a few months and Ludovic knew that. He went there and helped. Within three months, he was able to help the team grow their average revenue to five times more, totaling to $500,000 a month. After leaving his friend’s company, with his friend’s encouragement, he decided to make it a business. 

He then cold-called a few telemarketing companies and set up appointments. He observed sales offices and based his price on the noise he hears in the company. A telemarketing company that makes a lot of noise earns well while a company that doesn’t make a lot of noise means something bad is going on. When it’s quiet, it means he is needed. 

Looking back 

In Tim Ferris’ podcast, he always has this question to ask his guest: “If you could give your younger self a piece of advice, what would it be?” Ludovic said that he would do nothing. Where he is right now was because of the decisions he made along the way. Being the accidental seller that he was, he was able to use all the things he’s learned and picked up while being a seller. 

Learn as much as you can. Life doesn’t happen based on what things are supposed to be. 

“The Accidental Seller Series 1 – “Ludovic Vuillier” episode resources

Find Ludovic Vuillier in any social media. He’s also got two websites, one is a personal travel blog and the other one is the goodlifemanifesto.com

Take some of the principles shared here and remember to not give up. Instead, make things happen. Reach out to Donald for any sales concerns on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. We want you to join us for our next episodes so tune in to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. The Sales Evangelist wants every salesperson to be able to build stronger value and close more deals. Our TSE Certified Sales Training Program will help you be that. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Rylee Meek, Social Dynamic Selling, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1201: What Is Social Dynamic Selling & Why Does This Work So Well?

Rylee Meek, Social Dynamic Selling, The Sales EvangelistMany sellers appreciate how social dynamic selling works well. It’s effective and has connected more than 2 million consumers to their clients. 

Rylee Meek grew up in a small town in South Dakota but is now residing in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He lived in a town with very few opportunities but at the age of 15, he already had that drive to start earning money. Rylee got a job at a pizza joint and made a minimum wage of $5.15 an hour. He dove into the entrepreneurial world at that young age. His family made a significant amount of money from network marketing and that impacted his path. He met many like-minded people who directed him to the right books to read. It was his initial step of taking that entrepreneurship role. 

He then started working with a network marketing company instead of proceeding to college. At 19 years of age, he was able to get his   BMW but then he realized that his income came solely from the effort and from working up to 17 hours a day. So he started to do things differently. He worked for Prudential but then he wanted to work and sell to more people and not just family members and friends. He proceeded to take another job selling home remodeling.

Rylee clearly remembered what the manager told him on that interview, that the job is 85% negative but he needs to focus on the 15% that’s positive to make it through. Until now, Rylee still believes in focusing on the 15% because that’s what matters. Getting 85 Nos to get 15 Yeses was all it took. 

Network marketing journey 

Rylee invested in several network marketing ventures and met many challenges along the way. At one time he became homeless after putting much of his money into a business in Mexico. The government shut down their company and he needed to come back to the states. He spent some time thinking of the things he could do next. He was invited to a pitch presentation and that helped his wheels spinning. His first presentation was done a few months after and he made $2.1 million in sales. They then started recruiting, hiring, and training. When everything worked out well, Rylee stepped back from presenting and started doing coaching, training, and teaching their sales reps. 

Reaching the masses

Rylee was earning well and could take his products to the masses but he didn’t have any passion for his products. While there are many businesses who have so much passion for their products but do not have the vehicle to take their products to the masses. 

He thought hard and brainstormed on all of the things that they’ve been doing right with their company from the coaching to selling their products and services. Rylee wrote everything down and that gave birth to what is now the social dynamic selling system.

Social dynamic selling works well

The core of social dynamic selling is dinner seminars. Invite people and give them a nice steak dinner. You then establish the presenter as the authoritative figure in that industry to gain the trust of the guests. After giving the pitch, you can ask them for an appointment and meet with them the following day to close the deal. 

Creating a message is important. It is an atmosphere where you’re sending an invitation directly to your potential clients to come over to listen to your presentation and craft that into multiple different verticals. 

It takes a little bit of money to make this happen and your product has to have a decent enough margin for this to work. 

Rylee’s team uses direct mail. Many may say that this method is archaic but they had a higher return on investment using direct mail. It beat all the other kinds of marketing including Facebook, Google, and SEO. The response they get from direct mail is crucial in any campaign. Regardless of the method that you’re using, you need to know and track your numbers to be able to see if you’re allocating your funds properly. 

Direct mails

The competition of using direct mail has dwindled today because of the massive amount of junk mail that people get. Companies tend to forget that they are many ways for you to not make your mails appear like junk such as addressing people by their first and last name. 

Social dynamic selling works well if sales reps learn their numbers and not just the art of selling. As a salesperson, you need to know how effective you are and you will see this with your appointment rate, closing rate, and stick rate. 

There are so many components involved in any successful campaign and the first step is knowing your ideal clients. Use the tools available today to figure out your true customers. After that, you can demographically and geographically identify the best area to target those people. Choose the venue according to the result of that targeting. The next step is to craft the message and to create an invitation that’s compelling enough for the potential clients to take action. Everything must be consistent from the crafting of the message down to the day of the event and the actual sale. 

The whole process has a flow and you can’t rush it. 

Always think of your target audience and create the event with their convenience in mind. Do an early dinner for potential clients aging 50 years old. For retirees, you can do breakfast. The rule of thumb is to offer something up the moment they come to the venue because that’s when the law of reciprocity kicks in. 

The goal in every event is not just to sell but to get to know the potential clients and earn their trust. You can do that by creating a fun and laid back environment. People want to buy but you need to create that environment that allows them to make the buying decisions instead of pressuring them just to make a sale. 

Social dynamic selling works well, there is no question about that but you need to follow the process. 

Remember, the first step is knowing who your clients are and it all goes from there. 

“What Is Social Dynamic Selling & Why Does This Work So Well?” episode resources

Reach out to Rylee by visiting his website, socialdynamicselling.com. You can also visit his other site, workwithrylee.com. You can schedule a strategy call with him or with one of his team members. 

If you any sales concerns, you can also shoot Donald a message on his LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a training program designed to help sales reps improve their skills in making sales and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1200: How To Elevate Your Sales Game 

Value, Closing, The Sales Evangelist,As a salesperson, you might have asked yourself the ways to elevate your sales game. 

Dug McGuirk is a national trainer with Tony Robbins. He is a peak performance strategist to help people get a clearer picture of where they are right now in their sales organization including the results they’re experiencing as an individual salesperson or as a team leader. 

He and Tony help individuals see their role in the organization. 

Salespeople can’t change the market, the economy, the way the organization works, and the standard of practice. Tony and Dug want salespeople to see the clear picture and help them realize their true potential. 

Elevate your sales game 

Salespeople are always looking for ways to elevate their sales. The first step to do that is to analyze the things that might be holding back the sales. Sales reps must look at the pattern when they’re stuck. Do not have the tendency of beating yourself up and taking the fall when things go wrong or when you’re stuck. 

Assess the activities that have been holding you back as a salesperson and be aware of them. Look at the pattern of thought, the pattern of activity, and the pattern of focus. These may be small things that you’ve stopped doing like making your bed in the morning, praying, meditating, exercising, and whatnot. 

Most of us are running away from the pain but in order to succeed, we need to go through the pain.  

The best time to get a sale is right after you just made a sale. Listen to the power of momentum. You sell one and own it. Do not doubt your ability to sell, just get on with the selling and be carried by the momentum. 

Believe in yourself

That belief in yourself is so vital in sales. It doesn’t matter that you’re shut down several times or that your presentation is put to a stop. You just have to keep going. 

Sell yourself first and have that confidence before you go off selling to other people. Salespeople have a moral obligation to help others even when they’ve said no for the first few times. You need to get over that objection in order to deliver the message. 

A great salesperson needs to get into that state of gratitude before going into the next steps in sales. You need to be truly present and get clear visualizations of your goals. You also need to believe in your product and the services you sell. 

In sales, your network is your net worth. 

Nothing replaces a full-on immersion and meeting people. The prospects are everywhere so you need to be always selling and offering. Look for strategic partners and find the opportunities and the people who are willing to invest their finances and their energy. Salespeople have skills and it’s up to having the right training to be able to unleash those skills. 

Challenges in sales 

We live in a fast-paced society and everyone wants to speed up the process. Many are caught up in technique hopping when things go wrong. There are three pillars of extraordinary results to address this issue. The first is the strategies and the second is the action plan such as making phone calls, using technology and digging into LinkedIn, Instagram, and other social platforms. All these strategies are not going to work if they’re not implemented and acted upon. 

What most people do is they take action but they do it half-heartedly. This compromises the third pillar which is the mindset. They spend thousands on a strategy and then they move on to the next strategy. They move from one strategy to another and then if it still doesn’t work, they blame the system. 

Don’t do it with the belief that the strategy isn’t going to work in the first place. 

When you do your pitch, don’t do it half-heartedly. When you mail prospects, don’t send a blanketed e-mail because they’ll know that you didn’t put any effort into it. Make a personal email that shows them you care. 

Be willing to get vulnerable 

Salespeople who are crushing it on their sales are the ones who are willing to be vulnerable. They are the ones who are willing to be authentic and putting themselves at risk on a personal level. This is how they connect with potential clients. 

As a salesperson, you need to understand the value that you offer and come from a place of service rather than expecting. 

You learn things as a sales rep when you push through the pain. Look at challenges in new perspectives and work your way around them. Master your ability to perceive what’s going on and change your relationship with the situation at hand. Push yourself ahead with every No you get.

When you’re facing a slump and you’re wondering how to elevate your sales game, you need to evaluate your mindset and be present. Realize how valuable you are and use that to connect with clients on a deeper level. 

There will be more on this at the “Unleash the Power Within” event that’s going to happen at the American Airlines Arena on November 7-10. 

  • Day 1: Turn fear into power.

What stops people from referrals? FEAR. 

What stops people from prospecting? FEAR. 

What stops people from door-knocking? FEAR. 

Turn fear into power and work the muscle of state management. The first day is all about building your confidence as a salesperson. 

  • Day 2: The power of influence 
  • Day 3: The conversation

“How To Elevate Your Sales Game” episode resources

If you’re interested in going, reach out to Dug via his email dug.mcguirk@tonyrobbbins.com or call him on his phone number (646)523-8230. You can also send the word D-U-G to 64600, and you’ll get a link to all his contact information. 

For other sales concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. This course is an aid for salespeople to become better in asking the right questions, presenting solutions, and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Sales From the Street, Motivation, Sales Activity

TSE 1199: Sales From the Street: “I Almost Quit”

 

Sales From the Street, Motivation, Sales ActivityWe all face challenges and sometimes, the sense of defeat is so strong that the phrase, “I almost quit,” is so relatable. 

Luigi Prestinenzi struggled in his sales journey as well. His mom was great in sales and worked for Mary Kay, a global cosmetics empire. His mother won awards and was an icon within the company. 

All the success, however, came to a halt when she suffered complete burnout. Luigi was seven then and he didn’t understand what was truly happening except that he saw his mom hustling and reaching her goals. 

Fast forward to 23 years later, Luigi also fell on the same path. Everything was working well for him but all of a sudden, deals fell apart and they just kept falling through. It was the first time that he found himself in a challenging situation. 

His manager talked to him one Christmas and he couldn’t focus on anything, not the festivities, his family, or the food. He questioned his life and his decisions and he started drafting his resume and looking for jobs. Despite that, he still went back to sales because it was his only option. 

Like other salespeople who got disappointed and might have said the words, “I almost quit,” Luigi also quit – almost. 

Changing the actions and mindset 

Luigi made a decision to triple his sales activity to make up for the last quarter. He realized that the best way to work through it is to change his actions and his mindset. 

He listened to Paul J. Meyer, the founder of the Success Motivation Institute. It was a 50-minute combination of different talks and he listened to it every day in his car. All the talks he listened to prompted him to start his pipes running again. Six months later, he closed the biggest deal in his company’s history. He also won the global sales leader award across 60 countries for that organization. 

Keep Going 

Luigi’s father was a migrant and he’d always tell him, ‘first in, last out.’ People would argue about that saying that it doesn’t foster a smart working mentality. He did not question his work ethic, but he questioned his mindset on things. He needed to change it because he’d still face the same problems at some point. 

There are a lot of salespeople these days who jump from one job to another every 12-18 months. They’re good in the interview process but the moment they hit a bump, they go to the next role. He didn’t want to be that person so he kept going.   

The imposter syndrome kicks in at your lowest points but that feeling shouldn’t let you down. Even when you close a deal, you somehow still feel like you just got lucky. 

You can only control your mindset and the way you approach the situation. 

Break it down to image and pipeline.

  • Image: How are you showing up? How are you getting up? How are you preparing yourself? What is your mindset to achieve success? 
  • Pipeline: Do the activity and get the hard work done. Don’t cut corners in what you do. 

Get these two done and the magic will happen. Do not focus too much on the scoreboard without getting the right mindset. If you’re not getting the target and you’re struggling, just go back to the foundation of success. 

I almost quit,” is fine but never say, “I quit.” 

Sales From the Street: “I Almost Quit” episode resources

Reach out to Luigi Prestinenzi on his LinkedIn account and check out his podcast, Sales IQ. He also talks about sales and does interviews with sales leaders. 

Do you have sales concerns and questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. This course is an aid for salespeople to become better in asking the right questions, presenting solutions, and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Thomas Steenburgh, New Products, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1197: Effectively Sell New Products To Current Customers

 

Thomas Steenburgh, New Products, Donald C. KellySalespeople often ask how to effectively sell new products to current customers. Some clients are satisfied with the current service they’re getting and they’re not keen on investing in another one. There is a way through this sales ordeal. 

Thomas Steenburgh teaches business marketing and sales at the Darden School of Business. He’s also an administrator and has stayed with the school for seven years. 

His team did a five-year research project on how to effectively sell new products to customers and what’s so hard about it. 

Looking at the problem when selling new products

Thomas’ team looked at various factors:

  • The different ways people sell
  • The types of people who excel in the process
  • The organization’s structure
  • The culture that the companies/organization create

The combination of these processes which is finding the right process, finding the right people, finding the right organization, and finding the right culture is the key to making this happen. 

Challenges with new products

If given a choice, most sales reps would love to sell new products because it gives them an advantage at the clients’ accounts. The question, however, is if they’d continue to put the same amount of effort from beginning to end. 

Selling new products takes a lot of energy and more time. Thomas and his team found out that selling a new product takes about 30-40% more time as opposed to selling an extension of a line. On top of that, sales reps need to meet with a lot more people in the buying process and develop a different network site to be able to sell. 

It is very resource-intensive. 

On the customers’ side, when you’re selling a new product, everybody wants to talk to you because people naturally want to know what’s going on in the marketplace. 

Sales reps become hyped due to the attention but not for long. 

When the reality sinks in, they’ll realize that there’s a change in the buying organization. It’s actually late in the sales cycle. This is problematic from the seller’s perspective. What felt like traction would suddenly feel like getting stuck in the mud. Sales reps aren’t making any progress beyond the hype, they become discouraged, and eventually stop devoting effort in selling the product. 

When you face resistance, your numbers don’t go down quarter to quarter. What happens is that it becomes harder to figure out how to make that sale and investment. But if you persist, the effort will pay off in the long run. t can be difficult to make that commitment to selling new products when you have numbers to think of but in time, you will get there. 

New products take a while to sell

Thomas’ research on several companies that did well shows that new products take a while to figure out how to sell. There are a couple of different types of mindsets for reps. One is the performance mindset sales reps who think of the quarterly numbers and the one who gets the joy out of learning and solve problems. 

Research shows that the trajectory of sales from these two mindsets is very different. Performance reps don’t invest in learning the product right after launch. The sales go down initially because they failed to learn how to sell the product. For learning-based reps, there’s a big drop early on because they spend that time learning the product instead of selling and marketing the product. 

In the long run, the sales of the performance reps recover but they go up only so much. For the learning-based reps, their sales go up at a rapid pace but it’s very late after the launch. 

Learn how to effectively sell new products to current customers by finding the balance. 

Finding the balance between selling and learning

What this reminds us is the need to find a balance between these two sales reps. Find sales reps who go out and learn how to sell the product at the same time. Sales leaders need to give their sales reps ample time to learn the product, figure out how to work their clients and their pain points, and know the objections that may occur later in the sales cycle. After that, bring them back to the firm and redesign the sales process to sell the new product. 

Most marketing teams throw the product over the wall then disappear. Sales reps are left to figure things out themselves. Somewhere in the sales organization, sales reps are bound to dedicate some time to learn how to sell and anticipate objections later on. Not all sales reps are willing to devote their time to learning, so sales leaders should find the right person who is willing to learn and put in the time. 

Most sales training for new product launch often focuses on features and benefits, not on the marketing trends. The training doesn’t include changes in the buying process. 

Clients’ perception matters

One example is a company moving from old-line media to digital media. Their sales force was asked to sell new digital ads in this new space. They had the knowledge they needed but they were worried about how to interact with the clients because they hadn’t interacted with them before. 

The manager saw this problem and he approached the team differently. He had a two-pronged approach. He invested time in learning and figuring the market trends and where the marketing was going. He tried to look for ways these trends could help his sales reps sell the new product to their clients. Aside from that, he coached his team to figure out exactly what their job was. He asked each of them to write down their roles in the business. 

This taught Thomas how much emotional component there is in sales. Even when sales reps are thick-skinned, they’re still worried about how clients see them. 

They want to look good and they want to be an expert in front of their clients. 

Going back to the example, the sales reps of the company weren’t confident with just the knowledge of the product. They were only able to go out when they had the right type of market knowledge. 

What matters: 

  • Figuring out what’s different about the sales process
  • Knowing what your roles are in the sales process
  • Knowing how to make a difference in your clients’ business
  • Encouraging people that they have all the resources they need

When sales leaders and sales reps consider the factors above is when things can start to take off. 

It’s not always the one on top

Another research result shared by Thomas is that it’s not always the best overall performing rep that becomes the leader in selling the new product. Sometimes it’s someone else from the team. If somebody figures out how to sell the product fast, you need to share the knowledge and the best practices at some point to the rest of the sales team. 

Sales culture is important to be able to effectively sell new products to current customers. Companies need to take a long-term perspective on the sale. Give your sales rep some space to figure out how to sell the new product and let them invest in learning. 

The best performing reps focus deep on the sales process and ask questions about how the new product is beneficial to the clients. 

Best performing reps focus deep on the sales process while average reps focus on the immediate thing. #SalesFacts

Focus on learning first then move on to performance. 

“How To Effectively Sell New Products To Current Customers” episode resources

Stay in touch with Thomas Steenburgh. You can find all of his information on his academic page. Do you have sales concerns and questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. This course is an aid for salespeople to become better in asking the right questions, presenting solutions, and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Video, The Sales Evangelist, Sales

TSE 1198: Closing Questions

 

Video, The Sales Evangelist, Sales

Salespeople are good at closing deals but before that, we are great in making closing questions. Master the closing deals that ensure a done deal client. 

Benton Crane isn’t from the advertising and marketing background. He is from data analytics and started his career in Washington D.C. as a statistician at the Census Bureau and analyst in the National Intelligence Agency. He then partnered with the brothers Neil, Jeff, and Daniel for a campaign. The combination of their creative skillset and his analytical skills created a system that makes advertising campaigns effective. 

The power of videos in the business

The most powerful form of communication happens in face to face conversations between two individuals. These face to face interactions are how you make out the nuances of a conversation. This will allow you to listen to the tone, see the gestures and body language all happening at a subconscious level. 

Video is the medium that’s closer to that face-to-face action. When you talk to someone on the phone, you miss the body language and all the subconscious communication that’s happening. But with video, you’re able to capture a large portion of what happens in face-to-face interaction. 

Aside from that, videos are scalable. The people you can’t meet through phone calls can be met via videos. You can take your most effective salesperson and sales pitch and scale that up to reach millions of people using videos. 

Effective pitch through videos 

People have thought that the world of sales and marketing are two separate camps. In the advertising space, it’s often about infomercials or traditional branding styles like what you see in Nike and Apple. But it doesn’t work that way. You can blend those two worlds together. 

For so long, there’s been a competition between the two camps. The salespeople would trash the marketers and the other way around when in fact, they can incorporate together to create a great pitch. 

Incorporate a story in your sales pitch and put in brand humor, voice, and character to make it more memorable. #SalesTips

At the end of the day, no matter how effective the sales pitch, it’s not going to build the long-term brand. Squatty Potty, for example, has the humor and the character and that what makes it memorable. If you break down that video for a sales structure, you’ll see that it follows the perfect sales structure. 

The sales structure

The Squatty Potty has elements that are as follows: 

  • It has the hook
  • It captures attention
  • It shows empathy
  • It understands the problem
  • It presents a solution, 
  • It has a call to action for viewers to buy the product. 

When it still doesn’t work, then build that credibility. Make that call to action as soon as possible. There will always be a percentage in the audience who are ready and there’s also a percentage who are not quite ready. So, address their concerns and build that credibility. Give them another call to action after you’ve done that. 

Anyone can create videos. Creating videos takes hard work but everyone can learn how to do it. The principles that Benton’s team use in making a $5,000 video are still true in making a $500,000 video. It’s not much on the scope and budget, it’s more of doing the right thing at the right time. 

The Squatty Potty story 

Benton’s team just did a successful video for Poo-Pourri and when the CEO of Squatty Potty saw that video, he just knew that they needed to have theirs created as well. They came to Benton’s team and his team was initially cold since they just did one for the same product. But then they thought of ways on how to make it less disgusting to talk about and make it more proper and put together. 

They landed on the unicorn idea and it all happened from there. They made it safe, colorful, and less awkward to talk about. They had to reach a broader audience so they needed to do something a little more unexpected. 

Squatty Potty worked with Shark Tank and Bed Bath and Beyond prior to working with them. They were making $4 million a year and jumped to $25 million after they worked with Benton’s team. It was around that ballpark. 

Bobby Edwards, CEO of Squatty Potty, had the guts to put a pooping unicorn as the face of its brand. But the risk was worth it and took them to where they are today. 

If what you’re selling provides a real solution to the problem, then the video can work. It can be a sales tool and it can also be just a part of the sales process. Either way, it’s a powerful tool to use.  

Investing in the video can go both ways, losing your production investment or gaining millions of dollars in return. Incorporate your closing questions in your videos and make the best out of it. 

“Closing questions” episode resources

Connect with Benton Crane on his LinkedIn or via his site, harmonbrothers.com. For more sales concerns, connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. This course is an aid for salespeople to become better in asking the right questions, presenting solutions, and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Client Relationship, Andy Racic, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1196: Sales From The Street – “Are You Firing Me?”

Client Relationship, Andy Racic, The Sales Evangelist

One of the scariest questions to ask in this field is, “are you firing me?” You might have asked this yourself, out loud or in silence, but regardless of how, it’s nerve-wracking just the same. 

Andy Racic has been in professional sales for nine years and most of those years were spent serving HR professionals. These days, Andy is with a software company called Tango Health. They offer B2B software and outsourcing solutions to help professionals across the country. 

The beginning

While Andy was living in Houston, he was working for an agency recruitment firm called Michael Page. The agency recruitment space is 100% sales: that is 90% sales and 10% consulting. They were in the business of the oil and gas market and despite the difficult times in the business, their agency was able to establish a good relationship with their clients. Out of the blue, one of their clients asked him to help find a recruiter. 

That was an alarming thing to hear because to him it sounded very much like looking for their replacement. It was a source of concern because the market was going downhill so their company was looking for ways to keep their clients and continue serving them. 

Andy ran that client inquiry to his manager and they dug into it. They discovered that the company was having a big project that would involve a lot of hiring for them. The company was looking at 30-50% growth and they were looking for more people. Andy and his manager went back to the drawing board and built an entire recruitment process outsourcing model for that company. 

They then made the call and presented the model for them and convinced them to trust them a little bit more instead of hiring another recruitment agency that they hadn’t worked with before. 

Putting the best foot forward

There were doubts about whether what they did would work. The market was changing and the client could have gone in a different direction instead of working with them. Still, Andy and his team did what they could. 

Andy’s team did a thorough briefing on the situation with their client’s internal stakeholders and presented a team that would help in the recruitment process. He gave them the background of each individual along with their track record and the reasons why they’re a good fit. 

They won their trust and worked with the company, so to speak. Andy’s agency found a lot of people for them and delivered good results for them. 

When a problem arises, salespeople can always go back to the traditional process of evaluating the problem and going deeper to understand that challenge. You need not have that “Are you firing me?” moment when you learn to take measured steps and prevent such a situation to arise. 

A good salesperson needs an open mind whenever he hears information because the snippets of information may make or break your business or the deal. Be on the lookout for what’s going on and dig in until the third level questions to ensure that there are no assumptions on your side. Make sure that you make the best out of any situation. 

When you’re talking to a client, listen intently to pick up something especially when things go south. Stay present when the client is speaking rather than making them repeat what they said because that’s how you win a deal. 

“Are You Firing Me?” episode resources

Are you firing me? Listen more to what Andy has to say about that. Get in touch with Andy Racic via his LinkedIn profile. Make sure to customize your messages for a more positive response from Andy. You can also connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. This course is an aid for salespeople to become better in asking the right questions, presenting solutions, and closing deals. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

New Products, Dan Cockerell, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1195: Creating Great Customer Experiences To Close More Deals

New Products, Dan Cockerell, Donald C. KellyCreating great customer experiences to close more deals is often a neglected sales strategy by many. That shouldn’t be the case. 

Dan Cockerell grew up in the hospitality industry. He went to Boston University and worked at Disney World for a summer. He officially joined the Walt Disney Company as a parking attendant in 1991 after finishing college. After 26 years and 19 jobs at Walt Disney, he decided to leave to start his own consulting company. 

Most of the employees in Disney who are working as executives in the operation started in the frontline roles to understand the customer experiences at the ground level. Disney isn’t sales but the structure that is used in its marketing is similar to sales. 

Translating it to our language, salespeople are bound to creating customer experiences to close more deals

The beginning of Disneyland

Walt Disney was ahead of his time. He was an animator and he wanted to create a 3D world where people could escape reality and step into movies. He wanted to create happiness together as a family. This was his original thought for building Disneyland in 1955. He kept the business clean, he was nice to people, and he valued them. People kept coming back because of the Midwestern values set by the company. 

Dan understood then that people are looking for experiences. Even millennials these days are looking for experiences rather than buying objects that lose their value over time. Experience, on the other hand, gains value over time. Disney had a great business model: to make emotional connections with people and have a great product and service to offer them simultaneously. 

The immense popularity of Disney parks stems from its ability to create experiences. 

Creating great customer experiences to close more deals

Disney did a lot of research and measurements to help the company improve. They have round table discussions, group discussions, and surveys. They pulled out a group one year and made a survey on what makes them different and why people keep coming back to Disney World. The Disney team had their expected answers, including the fireworks, the hotels, the attractions, the food, the characters, and others. 

There are four things, however, that Disney and salespeople have in common. 

Disney makes people feel special

They translated that to the cast members and they had a common purpose which is to create happiness for guests. Their team always looks for ways to make their guests feel special every day. It’s challenging when you have 50 million guests coming to the park every year. 

The same is true in sales, salespeople need to make their potential clients and existing clients feel special. Often times, it’s the simple things like sending them notes on their birthdays or when there’s something big to celebrate in their company. You have to invest in time with them. 

Disney treats people as individuals

Connect with people individually and make exceptions depending on one’s situation. As salespeople, you also need to treat people as individuals. Don’t quote them because the policy won’t work for some of them. Figure out a way to make exceptions according to their needs to make them feel like individuals. 

Creating great customer experiences to close more deals doesn’t have to be expensive. It takes attention to detail in order to connect with people. You just have to hire people who are keen on taking interest in people.

 A team needs a good leader or role model. Show your people that you are approachable and you want to help them with their sales problems as much as possible. Talk to them and be with them. Seeing their role model in action motivates them to do better in creating great customer experience to close more deals. 

Get down with the best practices you can as an organization no matter how small these gestures are to make your potential and existing clients feel special. Think of the ways you can give your clients great experiences. 

Disney respects everyone 

Respect is basic. People who come to Walt Disney are treated equally regardless of where they are staying. Guests who pay $99 a night and guests who pay $1,200 a night are given the same amount of respect. Disney isn’t looking at the color of the skin, the language people speak, and where they came from. Everyone must feel welcome without prejudice. 

Salespeople must show respect to all clients regardless of color, language, or policy they are going to get. Even when, as a leader, you aren’t particularly fond of the organization you are in, you still have to take personal pride in your profession. 

When you treat your team professionally, they’ll also respond professionally. 

When the clients’ experience fails, it isn’t the fault of the sales rep but that of the leader. You might have hired them in an environment they shouldn’t be in, you might not have trained them, you might have failed to give them feedback, and/or acknowledged them enough. 

Leaders create the environment for their people then their people go and operate in that environment. #SalesQuote

Be knowledgeable 

Salespeople need to know the product inside out and really believe in it. It’s a lot easier to sell to clients when they hear the excitement in your voice. A good salesperson also needs to bring the product to the next level by implementing it to the needs of the clients’ company. Explain how your product or services would cater to the needs of their company. 

We don’t know the answer to every question so when the client asks you something that you have zero idea what the answer is, be honest. Dial-up a person who has the answer or read more. Don’t just give them bad information to save face. 

Close more deals

Four things are laid out in creating great customer experiences to close more deals. 

  • Make people feel special
  • Treat people as individuals
  • Respect everyone
  • Be knowledgeable

Pick one from these four ways and start doing it to change your sales game. Do this one bite at a time. 

“Creating Great Customer Experiences To Close More Deals” episode resources

Connect with Dan by visiting his website, DanCockerell.com. He has his email there and his phone number. 

If you have sales questions, concerns, and great stories to share, don’t hesitate to connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales rep get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. Every seller should be making six- figures and this can be achieved with our rigorous training schedule and group coaching. Join us for a new semester beginning each quarter. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Stu Heinecke, Donald C. Kelly, Contact Marketing

TSE 1194: Use Contact Marketing to Breakthrough to Anyone

Stu Heinecke, Donald C. Kelly, Contact MarketingProspecting is always a challenge for sellers, but it’s easier when you use contact marketing to breakthrough to anyone. 

Stu Heinecke is a Wall Street Journal cartoonist, a marketer, and an author. Stu has been nominated for the marketing hall of fame twice and has authored the popular book, How to Get a Meeting with Anyone. There are many ways salespeople can contact their clients and make a breakthrough, Stu’s book helps you navigate the whole process of reaching out to various clients. Stu is now writing his second book about how business cards can help salespeople reach out to prospective clients and what makes these business cards so special. 

In the business industry, he helps his clients’ sales teams break through their top prospects.

Contact marketing to breakthrough to anyone 

Stu is a fan of great business cards. Unfortunately in this digital day, clients aren’t keen on business cards anymore. The tables have shifted and they’re no longer given much emphasis as compared to then. This is saddening when in the sales world, a business card is the first conquest point to form a meeting. People just type out names and numbers directly to their phone and check them out later on. The thing about this is that most of the time, clients won’t even remember the name of the sales rep they talked to. Thus, we go back to the basics, only this time, we upgrade it into something more. 

From cards to devices 

Say goodbye to business cards and hello to engagement devices. The regular business cards aren’t impressing people anymore, especially those with long titles. So, instead of giving them a card, you give them an engagement device. 

An example of this is Kevin Mitnick’s card. It’s a piece of thin metal that has been cut out. When you try to pull out the little pieces, it gives you a lock picking set. You can see the details etched into the metal. The card isn’t just a card, it’s also a metaphor of what he does for companies. He makes virtual locks and offers it to companies to keep hackers away from breaking into their system. 

There are no logos, words, and descriptions in the card. The card speaks for what the company does. 

The goal is to make business cards serve as visual metaphors of what you do best. It still fits in their pocket but they use it differently and not only for when they give you a call. 

How does contact marketing work?

These new business cards all tie up to the contact marketing model. Businesses should be able to set a baseline for a response. The goal is to have a 100% breakthrough to everybody that we make a bargain. 

You do that by giving them an impressive card that points to your landing page. Seeing how wisely done your card is, they’ll be more curious about what your landing page has in store. This might be the start of conversion. 

Stu’s book has a great compilation of stories about how they can begin their campaigns using contact marketing. His books are filled with ideas that you can borrow and apply to your own journey towards contact marketing to breakthrough to anyone. 

Do not be intimidated by the positions of the people you want to reach. You need to believe that you belong in that space because of the value that you bring. 

Contact marketing is sales and marketing working together. It’s a micro-focused campaign where you can spend some money, but the expenditure will be nowhere near the marketing costs. 

“Use Contact Marketing to Breakthrough to Anyone” episode resources

Connect with Stu Heinecke on his LinkedIn account. You can also check out his books on Amazon. 

If you have sales questions, concerns, and great stories to share, don’t hesitate to connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales rep get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. Every seller should be making six- figures and this can be achieved with our rigorous training schedule and group coaching. Join us for a new semester beginning each quarter. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce high-quality podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1193: What are the 6 Critical Steps to Developing a Successful Sales

TSE 1193: The 6 Critical Steps To Developing a Successful Sales Strategy

Sales strategies aren’t born from thin air; rather, there are six critical steps to developing a successful sales strategy

Lance Tyson is an author and speaker who runs his own training company. Tyson Group has been ranked by Selling Powers as one of the Top 20 sales organizations in the world. It has been operating for 15 years and invested in Dale Carnegie Training in 2010. They work in the sports entertainment industry and one of their biggest customers is the football team, the Raiders. They coordinate with the sales team to sell premium tickets, sponsorships, suites, and others. His team also works with Michael Jordan’s company and several tech companies where they coach, train, and consult with sales teams. 

Lance isn’t just teaching; he is also out there grinding and doing all the sales work that his salespeople are doing. 

Six steps to developing a successful sales strategy 

Attitude, perseverance, and grit aren’t part of the steps. These things must always be present but let’s think of outcome first. In some cultures, the word relations isn’t great and it’s often overused. We prefer the term rapport.

This is one of the three outcomes you need to go after. Partner rapport with credibility. While rapport gives you influence, credibility gives you people’s trust. The third one is showing a level of understanding. These three are the beginning of the steps to developing a successful sales strategy which is the following: 

  • Connect
  • Evaluate
  • Diagnose
  • Prescribe
  • Dialogue
  • Close

The six critical steps to developing a successful sales strategy 

Connect

We talk about connecting with others all the time but the conversation of connecting is different today. You may be trying to deal with a level of preoccupation by the buyer. You have to connect with people via text, email, or voicemail and talk to people to build rapport. The fragmented conversations can be broken down and taken to connect step to overcoming preoccupation. This will lead to building rapport, credibility, and a  level of understanding. 

Evaluate

When you go to your doctor’s appointment, one of the first things they do is to evaluate you. The same is true in sales. We evaluate our prospects to determine whether they’re interested or not.

Other businesses call this assessment while some refer to it as an opportunity. Whatever you call it, it’s the step where salespeople deal with the inherent objection of disinterest.  

Diagnose and Prescribe

This is where salespeople make an educated guess. Ask yourself what they need most and do not forget about creating a level of comfort. A lot of salespeople walk in the door and make assumptions based on their grand experience, they then ask a few questions.

You need to talk to the clients through their feelings and their thoughts. You need to look at their past, their present, and the future to make a good diagnosis. After the evaluation and diagnosis, you make a prescription. 

Dialogue and Close 

After getting your prescription, your next step would probably be talking with your doctor and asking questions so as to get a clear understanding of your health problem.

In the same manner, after giving your prescription as a salesperson, your next step is to have a dialogue to overcome any form of objection. Ultimately, having every question answered, your next step is to close. 

Researcher or salesperson

The biggest challenge right now is the confusion that most salespeople are stuck in which happens in the connect step. Inside sales reps are responsible for prospecting. You can’t trust everything that’s written on LinkedIn and you can’t just get somebody without fact-checking what their bio says.

This creates a problem for sales reps because they often feel like they don’t have enough information to move forward. Thus, the confusion of whether to spend more time on researching about the prospects or looking for prospects to pitch. 

It gets harder because it takes at least six touches to get in contact with a target and another six to get an appointment. Salespeople are now trying to cheat the process and just connect because they’re exhausted. 

Many sales reps these days just sell their whole service in one move. They’d say it’s free and without obligation. This is a mistake that many salespeople make. Instead of getting on the phone and pouring it out in one go, sales reps must be patient and sell one piece at a time. 

If you can’t sell time, you can’t sell your products or services and that’s what people in sales lack: time.  

Getting better in evaluation 

We do a lot of sales assessment and we do predictive index studies on people to see where they’re weak and to know where to start on their training. We’ve seen that salespeople are often not good facilitators. What most salespeople do is spray and pray. They start asking questions right away without getting into the introduction stage of presenting what’s going to happen in this meeting. 

Salespeople can evaluate better if they learn how to facilitate and set things up better. Sales isn’t just about asking questions, it’s also about facilitating the meeting well and making good set-up. Evaluation is a back-and-forth process. You ask questions and they answer, all the while maintaining a good grip on where the conversation is going. 

On prescribing

There has to be a level of dramatization in prescribing. Salespeople need to make prospects understand that reason why they want what they want. Dramatize your pitch the way they want it. 

You are trying to overcome doubt in the prescribed step. So, describe your products and your services in a way that answers a few questions. Don’t just state facts. Learn to become a storyteller because that’s how you make them listen. 

Remember the six critical steps to developing a successful sales: you connect, then evaluate, then diagnose. After these, you make the prescription, have the dialogue, and close. Take your sales per process and see where you are and where you’re potential customers are. Make sure that both of you are on the same spot, if not, take a stop and go back or move forward.

“Steps To Developing a Successful Sales Strategy” episode resources 

Connect with Lance Tyson on Twitter, LinkedIn, and his website, Tyson Group

Don’t hesitate to connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

Wanting to learn and hear more about sales? This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where they are now to where they can be in the future. Every seller should be making six figures and this can be achieved with our rigorous training schedule and group coaching. Join us for a new semester beginning each quarter. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561)570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. One of the great books right now is the StoryBrand by Donald Miller, do give that a go. 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Donald C. Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, podcast

TSE 1192: Changes to The Sales Evangelist Podcast

Donald C. Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, podcastThe time has come to bring some changes to The Sales Evangelist podcast. The TSE podcast has been around for six years and over time, we’ve been mentioned in a number of magazines including Yahoo Finance, Entrepreneur, Huffington Post, Forbes, HubSpot, and others.

This all goes back to you for sharing the content with your friends and for helping us grow over the years. The podcast continues to evolve to adapt to the needs of the industry. Starting this October, there will be a couple of changes to The Sales Evangelist Podcast. 

Humble beginnings

The podcast has been around for a long time and it’s because of your support. We kept on going and pushing forward because we have the passion and drive for it. The TSE podcast started with two episodes a week: one 10-minute tip and one with a sales expert who’d give us advice. We then jumped to doing podcasts three days a week and later on, to five days a week. The team grew and the quality of content improved.

We started without getting paid but in time, opportunities and sponsorships came along.

The six years presented great chances to learn from the best in the podcast industry and I’ve had the privilege of emceeing the Podcast Movement, the world’s largest podcast gathering. I met many podcast leaders who are very successful in the podcast space. The interaction taught me to keep improving the quality of the content to differentiate from the stiff competition in the industry.

Changes to The Sales Evangelist Podcast 

The stats and community have spoken. The majority of listeners listen to two or three episodes a week, saying that they don’t have time and there are too many to keep up with all the episodes produced.

We have decided our episodes from five a week to three a week. Of the three episodes, two of them will be 30 minutes long and will include guests. The Wednesday episodes will be 10 minutes long and will be a little different. You can send in your questions, concerns, and challenges, and we will address them in the podcast. It is also a miniseries with a combo of interview, journalism, and storytelling. This will start in October and the first series is about the Accidental Seller and why 41%-43% of salespeople fell into sales. The next series will be about some of the most successful bestsellers in history and what made them so compelling.

The episodes will go live on Monday and Friday mornings at 2:30 AM EST.

Our friends from Australia can listen to the podcast after they get off of work. Our listeners in Europe can get access to it a little bit earlier. As for our great listeners from California, you can have your early morning grind while listening to our podcast.

The podcast will also have a new look starting this October.

We’re putting more focus on the storytelling aspect and research for our podcast. You can listen to the episodes on Pandora, Spotify, Stitcher, Google, and iHeart.

The websites will also have some changes. It will be easier to receive a notification whenever a new episode loads. You can also opt-in to get emails and recaps of your favorite episodes.

In time, we’ll also dive into YouTube. We are planning on repurposing our content to put it on YouTube.

“Changes to The Sales Evangelist Podcast” episode resources

You’ll start seeing these changes starting this week. You’ve all helped us grow and we want to know your thoughts. Don’t hesitate to connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Wanting to learn and hear more about sales? This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales rep get from where you are now to where you can be in the future. Every seller should be making six- figures and this can be achieved with our rigorous training schedule and group coaching. Join us for a new semester beginning each quarter.

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077.

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. One of the great books right now is Sales Management Simplified by Mike Wineberg, do give that a go.

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1189: How to Nurture No into YES

TSE 1190 How to Nurture “No” Into “Yes”

A good salesperson knows how to nurture “No” into “Yes”. Hearing No in the sales world is common regardless of what you sell or to whom you’re selling to. When you hear a no, you can’t just back down and give up. You need to get back on track and fix it. 

Craig Klein is based in Houston and he works in the energy business. He used to make deals with large oil companies and the deals would take a year or more to close. With that period of time and the level of complexity of every sale, he sought help from others. 

He began Sales Nexus to address that inefficiency. Today, his company helps other businesses to grow and aims to help everyone in the community give their fair share of making their community a better place to live. 

No is difficult to hear 

Craig was trained by Dave Blanchard for awhile. Dave does executive training and he talks a lot about our need to be right. Humans as we are, once the idea is planted in our head and we start dreaming about it, the idea becomes real. If that idea is taken away, we end up getting hurt. 

It is the same with sales. We meet our clients with big plans for closing the deal but when we turn up, we are told no and that hurts. There’s a lot of burnout in the sales position because sales reps tend to make many phone calls and end up getting No. The thing about it is that when we hear No, we tend to take a step back and sometimes, we don’t ever make a step forward again. 

Nurture “No” into “Yes”

Salespeople need to learn to be a bit aware of themselves and to focus on the customers’ needs, not on what they need. It’s also important to realize that sometimes, the prospects say “No” not because they don’t want to do business with you. They may be tied to a contract to your competitor or now may not be a good time. 

The primary way to nurture “No” into “Yes” is to have a sales strategy that makes you stay engaged with the prospects and build relationships over time. #Relationships

It’s not efficient to just focus on who you can close this month, it’s also about focusing on the people you can close deals with in due time. 

Stay in touch 

For every No you get, you make sure to take their name, their email address, their phone number, and keep it somewhere safe. You always have to write down everything you have learned from this customer including their budget cycle and their needs. Then, you create a system that allows you to keep connecting with time and getting them engaged. Check them out every once in a while and ask them how they’re doing. Let them know that you’re there. 

Meanwhile, you can find somebody else who is ready right now. Just keep nurturing and keep moving forward. 

Change your mindset that you will close every deal you have because that won’t happen. Instead, think of every appointment as a way of establishing a relationship based on trust. Resonate to them that you came not just to close but to understand what their needs are. 

Salespeople are like doctors. Physicians don’t sell their service in a way that’s too in your face. They diagnose their patients and examine what is something wrong with them. They then show you the patients how they can help with the problem. 

The same is true for salespeople. We examine their problem and we show them how we can help. You don’t sell the product the moment you meet them. You warm them up and figure out what they need first before presenting your options. 

The automated email drip campaign 

Craig’s Sales Nexus Platform uses an automated email drip campaign in order to stay in touch with their potential customers. They take every lead and put it into their system and into an automated email drip campaign. The potential clients don’t just get generic emails, they get personalized email depending on what they need. 

When the time is right for them, they’d click on the link to their site and they’ll be notified by it. This is their time to give them a call and ask them if anything has changed. 

One of Craig’s clients used the auto-drip campaign and things have been better for them now. They used to have sales reps call chiropractors all day long but these professionals are busy and they don’t look at their phones most times of the day. Then they started putting the chiropractors’ name on the system, they searched for their needs, and on the things they focus on.

They are then placed on their appropriate auto-drip where they get emails that are relevant to their needs. When they interact with the emails, the company is being notified and they get to start pitching again. The auto-drip system allows them to build relationships with prospects without compromising their sales rep’s manpower. 

There other ways to do it. Some are using the typical marketing system and sends out weekly or monthly emails to their list. Others also hire someone whose job is to focus on making mails and sending them out. 

“How to Nurture “No” Into “Yes”  episode resources 

Reach out to Craig Klein by visiting his website. Check out the site to get downloadable PDFs on how you can organize your customer list to send the right emails to the right people. 

Wanting to learn and hear more about sales? Don’t hesitate and connect with Donal via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a 12-module program for salespeople like you to improve your pitches and presentations. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, do give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1189: Pulling Profits Out of a Hat

TSE 1189 Pulling Profits Out of a Hat

Pulling profits out of a hat is something that salespeople are raving about. But how do you go about it? 

Brad Sugar has been in the teaching business for 26 years and now has coaching offices in over 80 countries. He’s also a published author with 17 books in his name. He appreciates being able to help others grow their business and keeps expanding his business to be able to help more people improve their sales. 

One of his recent books is Pulling Profits Out of a Hat: Adding Zeros to Your Company Isn’t Magic 1st Edition. This book teaches companies how to get multiple growths instead of percentage growth. As salespeople, challenge yourself to multiply your growth. If your company grew by 15% last year, make it an aim to grow it 15 times more this year. 

The starting point is to believe that your business can multiply and have the right attitude in getting it there. 

Pulling profits out of a hat

Every business person is a business owner. Whatever your role is, whether it be a salesperson or a sales leader, you have your own section of the business.  

Set your goals and be specific about them. What are the goals you want to achieve two times, five times, and so on? There are five core disciples mentioned in the book – strategy, business development, people, execution, and mission. You need to start with the strategy. 

Strategy

Strategy can be broken down into four main points: 

  • Leverage
  • Scalability
  • Opportunity
  • Marketability

We define leverage as doing the work once and getting paid for a long-term basis. Bill Gates, for example, understood leverage. He made software once and he sold it forever. These days, Microsoft doesn’t sell software anymore. They make you pay for it every single month. Steve Jobs understood leverage after he got fired from Apple. He bought Pixar and found ways to sell a movie repeatedly in various formats. They sell their products and they set their businesses up in a way that customers buy it over and over again all the while making a lesser effort in selling it.

Salespeople find this challenging because they’re not wired to do this. They are trained to do sales one at a time as opposed to the marketers who do multiple sales at a time. The selling one at a time mentality kills the business. A salesperson should remember all his strategies, from the short-term to the medium-term, and the long-term. Don’t go directly to the long-term strategy where you build your reputation with social media and create content. Start from the short term goal of picking up the phone and making a call.  

Scalability 

Brad defines scalability as the next sale should cost less and is easier to sell. Salespeople need to keep building, to look at what the product or services they’re selling, and how they’re selling it. Work the scales into your program and go backward. Think of ways of how you can continually make money month after month. 

Set goals that are based on the market and the opportunity size and not based on your own needs, desires, and previous results. #SalesSuccess

Marketability 

Look for products and services that are easier to sell and check their marketability. Zappos has a good market. It sells shoes and many people want shoes. They want shoes now, they want shoes next month, and they want new shoes just to look good. The market is rich and they have a product that’s easy to sell. 

Sales, marketing, and customer service all have to go hand-in-hand. This is easy if you don’t want to grow your business but if you want to grow your business exponentially, you need to have a great sales system, a great marketing system, and a great customer service system. 

Break down the marketing to the most granular loads and work backward from there because that’s how you get good results. You don’t leave the basic steps of doing the call even when you’ve already made it to the building connection phase. 

Continue getting at least 20 connects a day or whatever number you’re supposed to reach as a sales rep. There is no limit on how many you must do but there is a limit on how little you must do. 

Testimonials and rankings are two of the most important things in marketing today. Find ways to make people give you testimonials and ask them to rank you.

Value 

Another thing that would help you be better in pulling profits out of a hat is to add value. Keep learning because you can only ever own as much as you’ve learned to make. It’s also important to make sure that your sale is made before you turn up. 

In real estate for example, when somebody calls asking for an appraisal, do not just send them an e-mail. Make it more personal and let them know why you’re the company for the job. Send them a box filled with the magazine where testimonials of your customers are found. Deliver it to them as fast as you can. When the prospect gets the box, they’ll think you’re a genius and they’ll want to work with you because you aren’t just an email. You are as visible as the testimonials in the magazines show. This is how you make the sale before even showing up. 

“Pulling Profits Out of a Hat” episode resources

Always continue learning and never wish life were easier. instead, wish that you were better. If you get better at sales, then life gets easier. If you get better at marketing, and marketing gets easier. Connect with Brad in his social media accounts. He is in LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. You can also visit his website Brad Sugars and ActionCoach.

You can also ask Donald any of your sales concerns via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 Modules and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.  

 

TSE 1188: 3 tips to improve Closing

TSE 1188: 3 Tips to Improve Closing

Johnny-Lee Reinoso, Donald C. Kelly, Closing

For organizations looking to expand their footprint and extend their reach, these 3 tips to improve closing will help them achieve those goals.

Johnny-Lee Reinoso operates a sales and marketing firm called C Level Partners that helps organizations expand their footprint, gain new clients, and move in the direction of their goals. He believes that sales is everything. His experience from the management side, from the individual side, and from the sales rep side gives him a unique multi-level vantage point.

1. Listen to understand

The biggest challenge Johnny-Lee consistently sees is that sellers listen to reply rather than listening to understand. He recently carried out a DILO, or a “day in the life of” exercise with a lean, mature team that all suffered from the same problem. They all listened while waiting for the opportunity to explain why their company was so great.

Sellers master the art of articulating their value, but before we win in the marketplace we have to master the art of listening. We’ve all heard it before, perhaps in the saying, “Telling is not selling.”

But if we truly applied this truth to our everyday behaviors both in and out of business, we would know exactly how to articulate our value proposition to become the solution that the prospect needs.

2. Exhibit empathy

In many cases, the discovery call that precedes the demo doesn’t actually help the seller understand the challenges the seller is facing. In order to understand the problems they are trying to solve, you must listen and develop empathy for the pain they are feeling.

Empathy helps us understand why people do certain things and how they end up where they are. When you care about helping people, you’ll be able to support them while they tackle the challenges they face.

When we ask questions that lead them down the path of discovery, our prospects will outline exactly what they need and how you can help.

Empathy acknowledges how the existing challenges affect the company’s bottom line and understands how important it is to consider shareholder value in the face of problems.

Empathy cannot be rushed.

When you communicate that you’re with them in the challenge, you’ll become a trusted advisor.

You cannot begin the work of solving a problem until you understand several things.

  1. You must understand the challenge and how the prospect got where he is today.
  2. You must understand whether he seems himself getting out of the situation.
  3. You must understand how impactful it is for the business if he doesn’t get out of the situation.

Once you build empathy and understand those three things, you can begin the next step of prescribing.

3. Prescribe with confidence

There’s a fine line between arrogance and confidence, and you must prescribe solutions with confidence.

An arrogant person might immediately say, for example, “I have exactly what you’re looking for.” Arrogant people don’t listen.

When you do step 2 right and you have empathy and understanding, you’ll find yourself in the position of a therapist of sorts. Like a therapist, you have to be welcoming, calm, and professional.

Therapists don’t say, “Wow, you’re messed up.” They also don’t say things like, “I’m exactly what you need to solve your problem.” Instead, they operate with confidence, saying things like, “I’m so glad you took the first step. I’ve dealt with similar challenges before and I know we can get where you want to be.”

Therapists become trusted advisors. They communicate that they are looking out for the patient’s best interests.

Confident sellers must do the same.

Pay attention to tonality

Tonality is critical to communicating the right level of confidence. Be enthusiastic. Be happy and excited that you’re speaking with a credible person.

Recognize the two different kinds of buyers: technical and economic. Technical buyers are people who can use your service but can’t make the decision to buy your service or product. Economic buyers make the ultimate decision.

There are two different ways of closing those two kinds of buyers. Because you can only engage a technical buyer for a certain period of time, you’ll eventually have to divert to the economic buyer.

Know how to ask questions like this: “I know you’ve been looking to address this challenge for quite some time. Is it common in your organization to bring the CFO in at this point to make the final decision?”

You must sniff technical buyers out early in the sales process.

Never ever give a proposal to someone who can’t buy.

Using phrases like “this is what we have been doing,” and “working with companies like yours,” communicates confidence. Eliminate phrases that include “I think,” or “it should.” #Tonality

Confidence

Passion is extremely contagious. You have to know when to elevate a pitch or speak faster or slower. Johnny-Lee is a firm believer that tonality creates the environment. Because prospects who are on the phone can’t see you, they are still picturing something. They are picturing whether you’re tall or short, aggressive or not. They can picture you, and it’s your job to make sure they picture you as a trusted advisor.

Confidence comes from studying your value proposition. You have to understand your value proposition. You also have to readily know what your value proposition has done in the workplace. That means knowing the stories and the case studies.

People are sold auditorily, visually, and kinesthetically. Tell your stories with passion, with conviction, and with numbers because people love numbers and percentages.

Don’t share numbers if they haven’t shared their stories and their challenges with you first.

Acquire

Don’t admire what other organizations and colleagues and sales leaders are doing. Acquire what they’ve been doing, and exceed the expectations you’ve set for yourself.

Instead of comparing your personal and professional life to the people around you, humble yourself and ask questions of those who achieved those levels of success. That will help you build a roadmap to success in all areas of your life.

“3 Tips to Improve Closing” episode resources

If you’d like to connect with Johnny-Lee, email him jlr@reinosoglobal.com.

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register!

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also share this with your friends and colleagues.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1187: How do I deal with Unresponsive Inbound Leads

TSE 1187 How Do I Deal With Unresponsive Inbound Leads?

There are tricks on how to deal with unresponsive inbound leads. Dealing with people who come to your website and who give their phone numbers and emails but don’t want to talk to you doesn’t have to be difficult. It is true that many who visit your site want the freebies and they ghost you for reasons you can’t comprehend. 

The sales reps are frustrated because the appointment is not getting through, nor are the emails, or the calls. 

This happens because we’ve conditioned the buyers this way. We’ve taught them the concept of opt-in. They give us their emails for emailed permission-based marketing and we call them or mail them to get an appointment. Other companies are doing this as well and buyers know the pattern and are now looking for ways around it. They often give a bogus email address or an old one that they no longer check making it next to impossible to get in touch with them in the first place. 

Deal with unresponsive inbound leads 

There are two ways to deal with unresponsive inbound sales. The first one is connected to marketing. Examine what you’re offering to the prospects and extend your offer beyond your freebies. They may not be ready to purchase yet and they just want to review your offer so give them something else they can munch. Include another link to something else within your gift. Try to put an invite to your webinar. They can click inside the opt-in to see what the webinar is all about. Engage them further and nurture them into actual leads. 

Give them something a little bigger, perhaps a one-on-one free consultation session or your phone number. Turn the opt-in into a strategy session to be able to talk to your prospects. 

For qualified leads, engage them further by giving them more information. They will qualify themselves and they will give you their phone number and have a conversation with you. Once they go to your webinar, they become converted leads which allows you to give them a pitch or offer your product for 15% off. 

Give the prospects what they want in order to get what you want. #SalesTips

Give them the piece of content and education on the webinar to get the conversion going. As a salesperson, deal with unresponsive inbound leads by giving them what they want first.

You can also use a thank you page as a dual opt-in or a webinar sign-up page to further turn your unresponsive inbound prospects to interested prospects who want to learn more about the business. 

Stop the old school strategy 

Deal with unresponsive inbound leads by letting go of your old school strategies. Stop sending a generic email which contains the usual information about the company, the features and benefits of the product, or the invite for a phone call or appointment schedule.  

Emails such as these are long and asking them for a phone call at the end of it is a huge jump. 

Shorten your email and change your subject line. Go for simpler yet impactful opening such as, “Did you get the download for this or that?” The recipient will see your name, your signature, and all the other necessary information and he is bound to answer a resounding Yes. They need to recognize you as an individual. 

This is when you ask! 

Ask your question when they’ve already responded to your previous mail. If they reply with a Yes, ask them for a phone call to answer any questions they might have. If the prospect shows interest and gives his phone number then quickly respond by giving a phone call. The key is to follow up right away. 

Have a 2-step strategy for prospects who are not ready to buy right away. Make it your goal to make them reply to you before you ask them to have the sales talk with you. Remember that buyers these days are cognizant of opt-ins so warm up to them by using this 2-step strategy. 

If you’re doing insight sales and you’re responsible for all inbound sales, you might want to ask them what prompted them to download the content. Do what you can to engage them in a conversation. 

“How Do I Deal With Unresponsive Inbound Leads?” episode resources

Build stronger value and have more meaningful conversations with your prospects. Close more deals and challenge yourself to go out and do big things every single day. 

For sales concerns, you can connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 modules and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound

 

Company Culture, Purpose, Josh Levine

TSE 1186 Write Your Company’s Obituary: Identify or Rediscover Your Company’s Purpose

Having to write your company’s obituary sounds a bit morbid but there’s a good reason why doing this is important. One result is that doing so will help you identify and rediscover your company’s purpose. 

Josh Levine is a culture company strategist and works with technology, social enterprise organizations, and firms to help them improve their work. His goal is to make the employees love what they’re doing by building strong relationships, higher trust, and deeper engagement. 

Josh published a book called Great Mondays: How to Design a Company Culture That Employees Love. It talks about all his learnings for the past 10 years in advancing the idea of company culture as a strategic advantage. It defined what culture is and gives people the tools that they need to improve the culture. 

Write your company’s obituary 

This was a tool that Josh’s mentor used and many clients would react negatively upon hearing it. There is more to sales than just putting the product out there and selling it. It’s more than just the numbers. Doing business isn’t only about the money; it’s also about understanding what you are trying to do with your company and with your life. 

This is also about knowing your own purpose and helping the organization discover its  ‘why?’ 

Imagine that your business closes its doors after 30 years. Don’t think of the reason why it shut down. Your goal is to write down two or three short paragraphs about why your company will be remembered and will be most missed. This will give you the opportunity to see what you achieved that made the difference. 

Josh’s team works with a board executive team and leadership peers together. They make teams write because what matters isn’t just the end result. They also consider the kind of language, the words, and the phrases used together. 

Obituary exercise

Don’t stop short of the fantastic. When you start writing your company obituary, you need to go beyond how far you think you can make it. 

The point of the exercise is to come up with your achievements and look for the possible ways that you’re going to achieve those. 

Josh had a client who said that they would solve poverty. It’s a far-fetched goal and impossible to do but it didn’t keep them from aiming to do so. When the discussion happened, the team thought of how to make it work and figured out that their technology connects communities together. The community that works together will solve poverty. With that, their previously written achievement of solving poverty now sounds plausible. 

Define your purpose

Next, you have to define your purpose. The company’s values are the hows and the company’s purpose are the whys. Businesses and companies need to figure out the why behind what they’re doing. You won’t be able to find your purpose if you’re thinking about this quarter’s return or this quarter’s sales number. 

As a sales leader, you can help define the purpose by shaping the culture of your company according to the company’s vision. You can help strengthen the team and find the values and purpose of the company over time. 

Components of a company’s culture 

There are six components mentioned in the book Great Mondays. The first three are as follows: 

  • Purpose
  • Values
  • Behaviors

The first two define the company’s purpose and values. The third component is the behaviors. Behavior is the center point of culture and is what you are trying to adjust to help people make better business decisions. 

The next three are the following: 

  • Recognition
  • Rituals
  • Cues

Recognition and rewards have been used in businesses. These are effective strategies in aligning behaviors to build and strengthen the synapses of culture. Your goal is to spread your culture and share the behaviors. 

Keep reminding your peers why they’re in the business and getting the people back to the top of the pyramid. Love what you and find something that you believe in to make everything worthwhile. 

“Write Your Company’s Obituary” episode resources

Great Mondays: How to Design a Company Culture That Employees Love is available on Amazon. The purpose of the Write your company’s obituary exercise is laid out in the book. 

You can download the supporting materials for free at free@greatmondays.com. You can also sign up for newsletters, one minute Monday, and case studies.  We will e-mail you all the necessary information for building cultures that matter. 

Connect  with Josh Levine via Twitter and LinkedIn. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

For sales concerns, you can shoot us your question anytime. Connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Listening, Meetings, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1185: Why Do Salespeople Talk So Much?

Listening, Meetings, Donald C. KellyWhen I asked The Sales Evangelist community what they wanted to know about sales, one of the questions that emerged was, “Why do salespeople talk so much?”

It annoys a lot of people, primarily because if you talk too much, you’re probably listening too little. 

Persuading people

Somewhere in the growth of the sales industry, sellers convinced themselves that talking would persuade buyers to make purchases. We believed that if we talked more, they’d hear us more and they’d more likely believe us. As a result, they’d say “yes” more. 

Unfortunately, that just isn’t true. 

Many people don’t realize that the greatest salespeople listen more than they talk. You’ve likely heard the adage that you have two ears and one mouth, so you should listen twice as much as you talk. 

If you pay attention, you’ll likely discover that the best salespeople are those who use their speaking opportunities to ask questions. They seek to understand their buyer’s perspective and to stimulate conversation that helps them gather important information. 

Stimulate the buyer

Let’s go back to the scenario we discussed earlier in the week. If someone owns a car that costs them a lot of money every month for repairs, you could ask that person questions to help him realize that he has a problem. If you walk him through the math and help him understand how much that amounts to every year, he may find that he could be driving a much newer car for the same price.

Good sales reps will ask questions that will help him realize the problem on his own. 

  • Why are you spending that much money on your car?
  • If I could show you how to spend one-fourth of that amount and get a reliable vehicle and still have money to save, would you be open to learning more?

He’ll likely be willing to at least learn more. 

Features and benefits

Without even discussing features and benefits, you’ve inspired him to consider his situation. You said nothing about the radio, or the seats, or the transmission, or the exterior of the car. You helped him persuade himself to explore the possibilities.

Many sellers dislike the awkward moments in meetings when things get quiet. Each side wonders what the other is thinking and, as humans, it just feels wrong for us to sit in silence. We assume the buyer is thinking something negative. 

A Harvard study found that when people talk about themselves, it triggers the same pleasure sensations as food or money. The study also found that volunteers who were offered a chance to earn money by answering questions about other people passed up potential earnings in exchange for a chance to talk about themselves. 

Why do salespeople talk so much?
We’re more comfortable talking about ourselves because we’re confident about it. The conclusion is that sellers who want to fill an awkward silence will likely talk about themselves.

Meeting prep 

Sellers who prepare for meetings would more likely understand the situation and the buyer and his company. As a result, they’ll be more confident in their understanding of the customer’s challenge. They’ll ask appropriate questions that help the buyers travel down the path to making a decision. 

Write some thought-provoking questions prior to the meeting. Challenge your prospects’ way of thinking. If you feel awkward about a specific question, you should probably ask it anyway. 

If your prospect seems to be avoiding a topic, see if you can find a way to bring it up anyway. The conversation will either progress toward conversion or your prospect will decide he isn’t ready for change. 

Study the customer and his company. Learn about the potential problems they are facing and figure out a way to solve them. 

“Why Do Salespeople Talk So Much?” episode resources

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Janet Clark, The Sales Evangelist, Sales Process

TSE 1184 Sales From The Street: “The Heart Flow Sales Process”

Janet Clark, The Sales Evangelist, Sales Process

Sales is a process and every salesperson has to master the heart flow sales process before expecting results. 

Janet Clark’s company, The Freedom Shift, is a sales matchmaker. Janet matches high-ticket salespeople with coaches and consultants who want to expand their sales team. She is also helping the coaches with their lead generation and figuring out their qualified leads because this part of marketing can be difficult. 

Before she built her company, Janet started in corporate sales selling B2B. She built sales organizations for big telecommunications and internet-based companies. It was only five years ago that she started selling high-ticket transformation programs for top-level coaches and consultants. 

B2B selling and transformational selling

In B2B selling, a salesperson is selling somebody in a corporation and spending somebody else’s money. Their decision is still laced with emotion but it’s more of making the right decisions so as not to lose their jobs. 

In transformational selling, a coach or consultant is selling to a company owner who makes a decision to invest in himself to reach a new level of personal growth. A coach or consultant talks to a person who spends his own money. There are a lot of emotions involved in making the decisions of doing high-ticket investments yourself. 

The key to connect with people is to reach them from the heart, hence the heart flow sales process. Every letter in the word Heart Flow stands for one of the steps in the sales process. 

Factors to consider 

Two things need to happen before someone invests in a high-ticket program. Number one, the prospect has to know that the program works. They need to feel a level of trust in the person delivering the program. The second factor is for the prospect to consider whether the program will work for him.  

Marketing and the qualifying piece answer that question. Talking to the prospect about the program and how good it is alone wouldn’t result in a closed deal unless the conversation goes deeper and they figure out where their fear is coming from.

The Heart flow process is not hardcore selling and it’s not manipulative. 

Most people need a push and not manipulation. Sometimes, they need to borrow the confidence of the salesperson in order to make big decisions. There is a fine line between being confident and pushing somebody a little beyond their comfort zone and doing something manipulative. 

People who make investments need to see results and they won’t get the results they want when you bring them in the program in a coercive way. 

The Heart Flow Sales Process

Heart 

Heart Flow is divided into three sections and as mentioned earlier, every letter stands for a step in the process. 

  • Hello
  • Explain
  • Ask
  • Recap
  • Teach

Hello is the greeting. It’s when you sit with your clients and figure out who they are. This is where you build rapport. Next, is to explain how the call is going to go. Set the stage right away and do an agenda before the call. It is important to take the prospects through the process in order to steer them in the right direction. 

Ask, because fact-finding and interviewing are two important parts of the sales process. Learn to ask the right questions and the typical objections in the program you are selling. When you realize that the person is not a qualified prospect, you go to the next section. 

Recap the things that they’ve said to ensure that they know you’re listening and absorbing the information they gave you. 

Teach is the transition point where you start giving them some information. It’s important to teach them something that they’re not aware of and give them that eureka moment. Teaching them little things that they don’t know or might have known in a way that is an Aha! Moment. 

Flow

The next section is Flow. 

  • Feeling
  • Layout the offer
  • Own the silence
  • Wrap it up

Feeling is asking them how they feel about what you’ve said. This step makes them reflect on the things you’ve said and respond accordingly. This brings you to the next section, layout the offer. 

This is where you explain to them that what you just taught them (in the Teach step) is incorporated in this program. Layout to them the elements and the components that make the program work. It’s more of the benefits and results of the program rather than the times of the day you’re going to do the coaching calls. 

Own the silence and don’t make the mistake of owning the talk after you’ve laid the offer. It’s important to mute yourself and let them come up with what they’re thinking. 

The last step is to wrap it up. Answer their questions and move forward into getting them into the program. There is science to the sales process and a way that it needs to flow. There’s also an art to sales so that every person brings their own artistic way of doing the process. The heart flow sales process allows you to be creative but still keep the process flowing so that you can stay on track. 

Refrain from reading a sales script and do it in a natural format but in a guided way. 

Sales should be a normal conversation with people where you’re helping them through the process of making a decision. #SalesHacks

“Sales From The Street: The Heart Flow Sales Process” episode resources

As a salesperson, make sure that you’re doing this for the right reason and not just to make a commission. Connect with Janet Clark. You can find her on Facebook, High Ticket Sales Collaborative or visit her site, The Freedom Shift. You can also shoot her an e-mail if that’s more convenient for you. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

For sales concerns, you can shoot us your question anytime. Connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound

 

Sales Demo, Digital Footprint, The Sales Evangelist, Greg Dickinson

TSE 1183: Modernizing the Software Demonstration

Sales Demo, Digital Footprint, The Sales Evangelist, Greg Dickinson

Modernizing the software demonstration can help prospects better understand your product value and keep your digital buyers connected to your product throughout the buying process.

Greg Dickinson is the CEO and founder of Omedym, which is “my demo” spelled backward. He’s trying to help businesses utilize today’s latest and greatest technologies to augment and improve the digital demo process. 

Product experience

Most sellers can point to a personal experience in which a bad product experience eliminated a vendor from consideration in the buying process. 

People tend to have different processes and sometimes the more junior players are the ones that are giving the top-of-the-funnel demos. If you ask your team members to each give a demo, you might find yourself wondering if each person is selling the same product. The demos can be that different. 

Digital buyers

Buyers are more digital than they were five years ago, which is the biggest challenge in the software demo industry. The average software buyer spends 5 percent of the buying process with the sales team. So if you think about the “request a demo” button on your website, it’s your first interaction with a potential buyer. For most companies, that button generates a pop-up form, and the bounce rate in the industry is 85 percent. 

People at the top of the funnel want to learn a little more about your product. Maybe they read some content about your product and they want to see a video. When a form pops up, your digital buyer leaves your website. 

Sellers, ask yourself as a buyer whether you tend to fill out forms in this situation. If the answer is no, why do you expect your own buyers to do so? Instead, websites tend to hold demos hostage by scheduling them or exchanging them for an email. 

Your prospects want to engage and understand your product. Modernizing the software demonstration can help your prospects get the information they need to make a decision. 

Inside sales

The going research suggests that buyers want to see the product you’re offering within the first two minutes of an interaction. Your solution sounds great, and it solves a problem they are struggling with, so they want to see the product. Typically, the inside salesperson will insist on asking a bunch of questions and booking a discovery call and then a demo. By the end of that 3-week period, you’ve lost the buyers’ attention. 

In response, some companies have allowed the inside sales rep to give the demo, but that usually doesn’t work. The inside sales rep wasn’t trained to do demos, and she may not have the skillset to do them. 

Demos are more than a “show up and throw up” proposition. They are hard. 

Your customer wants to feel like he’s in control of the sales process. He wants to see what he’s buying. 

Video demos

Greg said that even the companies who are posting one- or two-minute videos to demonstrate their products aren’t getting a good response because they are effectively spraying-and-praying. They generate four or five snippets that they hope will address their buyers’ questions. 

Greg’s technology allows you to create your best demonstrations, and then interact with the software to get a personalized demonstration. 

If you want to know whether the software can do parallel workflow, the software will bring you to the right asset and the right section to find that answer. Instead of searching through 10 or 15 separate posts, the user can find the content he needs. 

The average watch time for a business tech buyer is just over two-and-a-half minutes, so allow them to ask a question and see a relevant demo. 

Build a picture

Think of your typical buyer’s team. It isn’t just one person. It’s usually multiple people with different points of view and different ideas of what’s important in the software. 

If you can allow your customers to ask questions and then have the streaming of the video and the demo to that person at that moment, it’s much more impactful. Perhaps more importantly, Greg’s software records all the activity so that the marketing and sales teams know the buyer’s intent. 

  • What was Donald’s interest?
  • What did he watch? 
  • How long did he watch? 
  • What questions and follow-up questions did he ask? 

Once you gather this information, you begin to build a picture of Donald. The self-guided demo allows the seller to understand what Donald’s interests are so he knows what to talk to Donald about. 

New world

Your customer wants to talk specifically about how you can help ease his pain. Whether you call it the consumerization of the business buyer or the Amazon effect, people are used to buying things a certain way. That attitude doesn’t change when we’re at work. 

Buyers want a certain part of the sales cycle to be self-guided. Then, when they are ready to engage with sales, they want to begin with the topic that interests them rather than starting all over again. 

Digital footprint

Buyers can get their data in a million different places just like sellers can use the Internet to learn about buyers. We’re losing the ability to influence buyers because we’re spending less time with them. 

If you don’t provide a digital means for the disconnected independent buyer to stay engaged with you in the digital world, when it comes time to make the purchase, he may not remember all the aspects of your software. 

If you’re selling software, keep it in front of your prospect. Give him the opportunity to constantly validate your value as he’s making the decision criteria. 

These tools don’t replace sellers, but they augment them by creating a digital footprint that helps the buyer stay connected with you. He can get the information he needs based upon where he is in the buyer’s journey. 

Uber, for example, provides the same service as a taxi cab, but it created a better buying experience. Uber made it easier and removed the friction, so it won the market. 

The challenge for digital buyers is the same: your sales process hasn’t changed so we’re making the buying process harder. It’s why our win-rates aren’t as high. The buyer doesn’t have the information he needs to make a decision. 

Buying team

In many cases, you’ll never meet with the entire buying team. It might be true that you only met with about half of them, so they are anonymous to you. 

Now, those buyers are in a Friday meeting and someone is presenting all the information about your product. Wouldn’t it be great if that buyer had seen portions of the demo on his own? You can’t always be last. 

Instead of figuring out whether to be the first impression or the last impression, strive to be the impression. Give that buyer a chance to consume your demo content by modernizing the software demonstration. Record that demo, make it available to the buying team, and use a technology that allows them to find topics within the demo. 

The team isn’t going to spend 90 minutes watching, so help them find the topics that are pertinent so they can spend 10 minutes learning about your product. You’ve had a chance to touch a buyer you never would have touched. 

Buyer’s perspective

Greg’s tool works for anyone who sells a product, and Omedym believes that the product experience, the demo, and the product engagement are part of the buyer’s journey. It’s one of the most important aspects of the buying process. 

Starting with the top-of-the-funnel demo to the sales demo and the scripted demo, video is playing a very pertinent role. Omedym focuses on software because you truly can’t be everything to everyone. 

Take a different perspective and figure out how modernizing the software demonstration can help your buyers buy. 

“Modernizing the Software Demonstration” episode resources

You can connect with Greg at Omedym.com, or on his LinkedIn. He welcomes feedback and conversations because he learns from the information.

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Relationships, Rejection, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1182: How To NOT Ruin Relationships When Selling To Friends

Relationships, Rejection, Donald C. Kelly

Have you ever wondered how to not ruin relationships when selling to friends? This can be difficult because you would still want to keep the relationship even when they’ve said no. 

This isn’t a unique struggle, it’s common to most salespeople. Perhaps the products could be beneficial to your friend or family so you want them to try it. You have a moral obligation to at least explain some ways to fix their problem without turning it into something bigger. 

Solve the true problem 

Assess whether what you have is truly a solution to their problem. You can’t sell a car to your friends when they already have one that is running in perfect condition. Even when you’ve told them about the new features of the car you’re selling, they’re not going to get one because they have a good car that runs just fine. What you presented to them isn’t a solution because there wasn’t a problem in the first place. 

It is important for you to seek out whether there is a problem and figure out what it is before you present your product. 

Be genuine 

Do not present a solution that would benefit you; rather, give them a solution that would benefit them. 

Perhaps their car needs fixing and they are spending way too much for the repair. This is a great time for you to share the features of the car you’re selling. If they don’t have the income to purchase it, then help them get the income by looking for a credit union. 

That genuine heart helps build trust and your friends will potentially lead you to other people with similar problems. The people you’ve helped will come back to you and buy from you again later on.  

Do not pitch something to your family or friends because your sales manager told you to do so. Don’t approach them with the mindset that they’ll buy your product because they feel guilty. 

Consider your approach 

Always set the rules before you play the game. Consider your approach and be straightforward. Because they are the people you are close with, you have the benefit of honesty from them. Before you make your pitch, remind them that if they are not interested, there’s no need to beat around the bush and that the relationship stays the same regardless of their choice.

Once they understand that, then you can move on with your pitch. Put emphasis on the fact that you are willing to help with their problems. If their car isn’t working well and they are spending too much for repair every week, tell them that they can go to another car salesperson. You are merely giving them options on how they can address their problems. 

Don’t approach them like you would any other clients. Instead, approach them in a loving way. People recognize trust and love and if you use that approach to your friends and families then you’ve unlocked one great strategy on how to not ruin relationships when selling to friends

No isn’t always a No

Many salespeople keep selling even when the person has said no. This happens a lot because in sales, it is about the numbers and others take it to another level. As a salesperson, you need to have a threshold.

Most sales reps, however,  see a list of names to reach out without knowing who these people are or their concerns. They see names and they see numbers automatically. They don’t look at the names as individuals who might be facing some personal issues at the moment. 

Studies have shown that 92% of salespeople give up after getting a NO without realizing that 60% of consumers say no four times before saying yes. Some say no because they are busy or they aren’t a fit for what the salesperson is offering. 

If someone is in the right market and they fall under the criteria of your ideal customer profile, then they do have a problem that you can solve. You have a moral obligation to at least explain it to them, and not just once. 

Change your approach from someone who just wants to set an appointment and talk about the product to someone who wants to help them and educate them to overcome a challenge they are facing. 

Build relationships

The Sales Evangelist, for example, is virtually everywhere and we’ve been sharing a stream of content on a regular basis. We are found in every platform where our ideal customers may be. We are on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. People may have not expressed their interest now but they are individuals that we can follow up and put into other sequences for us to reach out. 

If they aren’t ready to buy this month, then connect with them and ask them if they are willing to receive educational information. If no, then let them go and if yes, then look for ways that you can continue educating them. 

Don’t pitch them the product when they’re not yet ready to get it but maintain a relationship and to do a follow-up after enough time. Remember to stay in touch. 

Nurture that relationship until such time that it picks up. 

A portion of that 60% who said no to you will eventually make a yes if you stick around and pitch in the perfect timing. So, build a relationship with those individuals in a loving way and be present in whatever means or platform they like to digest your content. 

“How to Not Ruin Relationships When Selling to Friends” episode resources

The Sales Evangelist records podcasts regularly. Some of our contents are answers to questions sent to us by salespeople. If you have concerns, you can shoot us your question anytime. Connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! If you want to take your sales to the next level, then I recommend that you join us with our group coaching. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Sales Leaders, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1181: 3 Things Leaders Do To Hurt Sales Rep Relationships

 

 

Sales Leaders, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C. Kelly

Sometimes, there are 3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships and most times, they do it unintentionally. This is especially hard because sales leaders and sales reps spend a lot of time together. A bad leader can negatively affect how a sales rep makes his sell. While a good leader helps how sales reps can improve their sales. 

Marc Levine founded his ImprovMySales business four years ago. The company is dedicated to creating wonderful and profitable places to work. Before this business venture, Marc was part of a sales team as a national account executive and technology and professional services. For the last 16 years, he has been developing leaders and teams, teaching people communication skills, selling services to certain companies including Citibank, Prudential, and Best Buy.  

3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships

There are probably more, but let’s focus on just the three things for now. 

  • A leader does not create a psychologically safe environment
  • The leader forgets about humanity 
  • The leader is emotionally unintelligent

August has been a leadership month and people have been talking about the important things to become a good sales leader. This involves setting a vision and becoming a good coach. It’s about creating a culture where sales reps can thrive and succeed. 

When a leader fails to create that safe environment, the sales relationship takes a hit. 

By definition, psychological safety was a term coined by the social psychologist, Amy Edmonson. Google did a two-year study and analyzed the qualities of its most effective teams. The results of the study have shown that teams promoting psychological safety produced better revenues and their team members stayed in the work longer than others. Psychological safety is a team norm that says it’s safe to take risks, to be vulnerable, to ask for help, and to disagree with the rest of the team. 

When you do, you won’t be ostracized for disagreeing but instead, you’ll be honored and validated. 

An environment where sales leaders can thrive

As a parent, when your kid doesn’t understand something, you want your kid to feel safe to come to you and ask for help without getting embarrassed. The same is true in sales. As a leader, you need to develop a team where your members can be honest and can come forward when they don’t understand something. 

You want your team members to come to you about their problems early on in the sales cycle rather than at the end of it where the deal is falling apart. This is the essence of psychological safety. 

It’s an environment where people can ask for help, be vulnerable, take risks, and be supported 

Create a psychologically safe environment 

This doesn’t happen overnight. It happens when your sales reps come to you asking for help and instead of reacting, you validate and support them. Do it a couple of times for the team members to realize that you want to help them. 

Sales leaders also need to stop blaming the team members. Blame and accountability are two different things. 

Blaming makes the blamed feel bad and threatened. It’s when sales leaders bombard the reps with questions like: 

  • Why didn’t you hit the quota last month?
  • What are the reasons why you lost that sale?
  • Why aren’t you doing this?

These questions foster negativity. Accountability helps you raise the team’s standard without making the reps feel bad. It’s more like saying, “Hey you didn’t hit your quota last month and I know you’re disappointed. Let’s talk about what happened that may have contributed to this and let’s figure out the solutions.” Build an environment where your members can be comfortable in having a dialogue. 

As a sales leader, you also need to admit your own mistakes. Research shows that when you admit your mistakes, the people around you will come close and will open up about theirs as well. 

There’s power in vulnerability and when you use that power, you will see your sales team come closer and open up to you. 

Leaders forget about humanity 

The next in the list of the 3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships is forgetting about humanity. 

Salespeople are like stand-up comedians. We go out there showing confidence knowing that we’re going to be rejected. We are a fragile group. When sales leaders remember the humanity of the people on their team, the members tend to go above and beyond. The members put in incremental efforts. 

Sales leaders also need to stop making the team members like little versions of themselves. Every member is unique with their own set of skills and strengths. Forcing things that you do well onto them will make them feel resentful. Instead, honor their strength. Validate the things that they do well to make them feel excited and engaged. Make them feel heard and understood. 

Remember that you are working with human beings who have hopes and fears. and get scared. Honor that part of them. 

Build strong relationships with your sales team

Sales leaders need to build strong relationships with their team and practice emotional intelligence. Daniel Goleman wrote in his book Working with Emotional Intelligence that people with emotional intelligence are more successful in their careers than those who are just relying on pure intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and regulate your own feelings to understand and empathize with the feelings of others. As a sales leader, you need to be aware of your emotional triggers to be able to manage them. If you fail to develop that, you can easily be overtaken by your emotional triggers and start to judge your team. 

These triggers tend to show up again and again and these are no surprises. 

Some of the triggers are when your sales rep didn’t hit the quota or when someone in your team isn’t adapting to the new technology, and when someone’s not putting something into the CRM.

So, list your triggers and think of all the situations and the people that trigger the fight, flight, or freeze responses.  

The sales team and all its members are the backbones of an organization. We want them to feel empowered and we can’t make that happen if we don’t provide them an environment where they can thrive and if we keep blaming them. Have conversations with them and make them feel good so that they’d want to produce for you. 

“3 Things Leaders Do To Hurt Sales Rep Relationships” episode resources

Connect with Marc at improvmysales.com or reach him at (718) 637-7890. 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! If you want to take your sales to the next level, then I recommend that you join us with our group coaching. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound

Inbound, LinkedIn, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1180: Can I Classify My LinkedIn Leads As Inbound Leads?

 

Inbound, LinkedIn, Donald C. KellyWith all the focus on social selling, it can be difficult to determine whether you can consider referrals and connections that result in LinkedIn leads as inbound leads.

If a prospect connects with your content which leads to a conversation and then an appointment, can that be considered an inbound lead?

LinkedIn connections

You’re likely among those sellers who understand that your LinkedIn profile is your personal profile. You cherish it and treat it with respect. You post thoughtful content and share impactful videos and write articles and long-form blogs. You’re creating content that your audience can engage with. 

If those prospects end up in your direct message as a result and that leads to a conversation, that’s an inbound lead. Though it might not qualify as inbound in the traditional sense, you’re engaging in the same activities. No matter who creates the content, it’s an inbound lead. You could even give it a unique KPI name like “social media lead” or SML.

Converting leads

If I connect with 15 or 20 business owners today and 10 of them reconnect with me, the result is 10 new social media leads. I can nurture them by creating videos, posts, or articles and tying the content to my new prospects. 

Ideally, those people will engage in a conversation.

I recently connected with a woman on LinkedIn who later posted a good piece of content. She mentioned me and others she had recently connected with using a “shout out.” Turns out all the people she mentioned continued to engage with her on LinkedIn

I’ll watch her content now since I had a positive interaction, and I might eventually decide to engage with her company. She’s nurturing us as prospects.

Engaging content

Then, once you do, be intentional about connecting with those who interact with your content. Work to connect with your second- and third-degree connections. 

Try this simple paragraph:

Thanks so much for commenting on my post today, James. Permission to connect here on LinkedIn?

Usually, when you connect immediately, they’ll appreciate your outreach. You can start a conversation that may lead to further interactions.  Now you’re getting more contacts off your ideal customer or prospect. 

Blur the lines

Imagine you have a targeted list of prospects that you’re trying to reach. You’re making phone calls to named accounts and you’re connecting on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook. 

If you separate your prospects into different categories, you can optimize them. 

I recently connected with someone on LinkedIn who became a social media contact and then a social media lead. When the prospect asked about sales training for a team, it led to an initial appointment. 

That connection would haven’t happened without engaging content on social media and our interactions there.  

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Proposals, Conversion, Adam Hempenstall

TSE 1179: Business Proposal Trends in 2019

 

Proposals, Conversion, Adam HempenstallWhat are some of the business proposal trends in 2019 that you’ve used and that have worked for your industry? Trends change so often that we have to keep track of all the changes to be in the loop because what’s new today may be old news tomorrow. 

Adam Hempenstall has been in the web design business for almost 20 years. He started doing basic websites and brochure sites before the company transitioned into a custom software company. They started building CRMs for different companies and have now invested full time into improving their proposal tool known as Better Proposals.  

Business proposal trends

The most important thing is that you’re not just seeing a transition from the old school PDF method but the clients’ reluctance to change. There is, however, a massive shift towards people opening proposals using their phones.

Proposals need to be web-based these days. It has to do with what everything else is doing. They’re not just documents anymore, they’re experiences. Clients should be able to read the proposals by the time that you’ve sent them. 

Aside from that, proposals should be sent quickly. Based on the observed data, there’s a higher rate of conversion for proposals that are sent within 24 hours compared to proposals sent in 3-4 days. The other important thing is trying to understand your client most. 

From the data and stats Adam’s company is running, they’ve observed the following business proposal trends in 2019 that work:

  • Convenience over quality
  • Being quick in sending proposals 
  • Caring about your client

Convenience over quality 

People favor convenience over quality. This is apparent in the number of people watching videos on YouTube instead of going to the shows. Live shows mean better quality but people would opt to watch it on YouTube because it means that they can watch it immediately. 

People want things the way they want them. For example, you’ve sent a proposal and the client is reading it in his train ride because that’s the time that he allocated for it. The client is not going to sit there and zoom in through the 15-page PDF proposal you’ve sent. That is not convenient for him. He’s probably going to skim, get bored, and close it down. He’ll make the decision over the price and all that effort of making the proposal is going down the drain because you’ve sent it in a format that isn’t convenient for him. 

To beat your competitors, you want to stand out when you’re sending proposals. You don’t want to send the same ones that others are sending. This is especially true if you’re selling software, marketing, or anything with digital elements. You want to show your prospects that you are at the forefront of technology. 

Track proposals

If you tell your prospective clients that you can make their website better and more responsive, you won’t send them a proposal in PDF form. Instead, you send them a web-based proposal and put a tracker in it. 

This will allow you to see the activities that your prospective client is doing. You’d see that your client has opened the proposal and that he’d spent a good amount of time reading it. 

You can give him a call half an hour later to just check in on how it was. You’re in a good place to speak about it because it’s still fresh on his mind. 

You can’t do that with PDFs but you can do it if you use web-based proposals. 

Adam and his team made a high-end proposal for a furniture company. The proposal was great but they didn’t have another meeting with them. After six months, the company randomly opened the proposal and Adam got a notification that they checked the proposal. Adam shoots them a quick message just asking how things are going and if they were able to find a solution to the problem that they were trying to solve last year. The company replied saying that they weren’t able to appreciate the value of the proposal then but are now willing to talk about it. 

This is what tracking can do; this is what a notification can do. 

It’s equally important to repeatedly follow up after a proposal, but not up to the point that you’re putting it on them. 

Just being there and being consistent is enough. 

Sending proposals quickly

We’ve all had a time where we’ve completed a proposal quickly and had a good overturn deal. There have also been times that we’ve procrastinated and done other stuff instead of doing the proposal and when you’ve finally done it, your client has already gone with the other guy. 

Adam’s company looked at the actual data of real proposals that people send through their software platform a few years back. Using the raw numbers, they tried to figure out different factors that affect proposal conversion. You can see the study on betterproposal.io/reports in both 2018 and 2019. They found out that sending the proposal within 24 hours after the initial meeting converts 25% more than if you send it in 2-3 days. 

In Adam’s company, they meet their clients on a neutral ground. They have their meetings in top-end hotel lobbies because it’s comfortable and you can talk to the prospective client freely. When he leaves, you get to stay, order yourself another drink and write the proposal right then and there. It gets difficult when you give it a few more days because by then you remember very little of the meeting. 

All those little things that you forget from the meeting were important to the client and if you wait more days before you write the proposal will lose you the deal eventually. 

These include the following:

  • The actual words they used
  • The phrases they used
  • The expressions they made
  • The body language they gave off

All those things that you remember within a couple of hours will be forgotten within a day. 

Write your proposal immediately after your sales meeting to increase the chances you’ll win the deal. #SalesProposal

Care for your clients 

This part doesn’t have anything to do with the proposals. It is more of what happens before the proposal, and it’s doing good discovery. 

You can’t write a good business proposal for a person or a company if you don’t do good discovery. You can have the experience but that will only help you so far. You need to ask questions and you need to dig in and get them to reveal as much as they can. 

You need to understand what they are trying to achieve.

Scratch beneath their surface-level problems to figure out their fears and help them find the solutions. You’re changing the proposal into a personal level and by then, it’s not only the surface-level solutions of the problems you’re proposing. 

You are sending them a proposal that truly addresses their deeper concerns. 

Care about them, care about the situation, and do what you can to get the truth of their situation. 

So, ask the right questions and don’t be afraid to get a little bit uncomfortable. 

Trying out the three suggestions mentioned above will make your proposals better. Instead of sending PDFs, send a web-based proposal and save yourself lots of time. It’s also convenient and it’s a conversion booster. Aside from that, web-based proposals are cheap. 

“Business Proposal Trends in 2019” episode resource

Sign up to Better Proposals website and see hundreds of templates. They also have contracts and other things you can check. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Marketing, B2B, Bill Bice

TSE 1178: B2B Sales Optimization

 

Marketing, B2B, Bill BiceB2B sales optimization requires a longterm commitment to creating quality content that will grow your audience and increase your success.

Bill Bice, CEO of  boomtime, said he was born to be an entrepreneur, launching his first business when he was 14. He loves to talk about sales and marketing because it makes the biggest difference in business. 

Data and marketing

As business owners, we all know that we have to spend money on marketing, but it’s tough to do if you’re not seeing the ROI. For Bill, marketing is about data, which allows you to understand what’s working. The difficulty occurs when you have too much data because it can be difficult to gather valuable insights that help you improve marketing.

Smaller companies often have more freedom to bring their sales and marketing together. In larger companies, the two disciplines are separate, and they are often at odds. Marketing isn’t doing the support work the sales team needs and each blames the other for lack of performance. 

In smaller companies, the CEO or entrepreneur can decide to tie the two together. 

Bill calls himself a big fan of the challenger sales approach, which resulted from research done in Fortune 500 companies. The concept of using key insights to drive a sales approach creates sales optimization in smaller companies. It’s a perfect example of tying together marketing and sales so that marketing generates insights that truly help sellers. It creates better opportunities which result in better success. 

B2B sales optimization

To begin with, businesses must be better at 

  1. capturing leads 
  2. following up on those leads
  3. staying top-of-mind with that larger audience that we’re building 

In any complex, high-value sale, a content-driven approach to marketing is the perfect way to optimize the sales process. 

Then, if you’ve done the hard work of taking care of your customers, they’ll tell others about your business which creates referrals. Now the goal is to amplify that effect, 

How do we make word-of-mouth work even better? 

Capturing leads

Micro-commitments are the most effective part of capturing leads and in doing B2B sales optimization. Your website was once a replacement for the Yellow Pages, and a way to get people to pick up the phone. Now, the most important piece of information for a prospective client is an email address.

If you ask for the prospect’s name, you’ll reduce conversion by 20%. If you ask for the phone number, you’ll reduce conversion by 60%. Every additional field you add reduces conversion by another 8%.

Ask for the one thing you really want from the prospect, which is an email address. You have to be willing to do something that is really hard in order to get those referrals and capture those leads. 

You have to give your best stuff away for free. Give away your deepest and best expertise in exchange for the really valuable thing, which is the email address. #CaptureProspects

The traditional battle between sales and marketing centers around what makes a qualified lead. All we really want is to get people to follow us on LinkedIn and to get the prospects’ email addresses. If we grow our audience in those two places and we’re constantly sending people back to our website with high-value insight, that creates success. 

What’s actually hard to do is the day-to-day work in the trenches, because it’s the consistency that makes this work. 

Marketing mistakes

There are B2B sales optimization mistakes that marketers commit. The first on the list is talking about themselves. Nobody cares. 

Are you talking about the problems your target audience struggles with, and are you helping them solve those problems?

Of the content you provide to your prospects, 90% should be entirely focused on the problems your audience is having and the insights you bring that they can’t get from anywhere else. 

The good news is that if you have a niche in the marketing your company serves, then hundreds of those companies will share the same problems. 

CEOs struggle to find those insights because they are running their own businesses. Your marketing department must take advantage of that. You must train your sales team to use a key-insight driven approach. 

Secondly, you must commit to this kind of approach in your sales and marketing. You should plan for at least a year. It won’t be a miracle fix. 

Test and iterate

All forms of content work. Whether you use video, white papers, or checklists, you must test each idea to determine what’s best for that particular segment of the target audience. Even with the explosion of LinkedIn, most B2B sales optimization organizations aren’t leveraging it the way they could. 

The whole point is to grow a new audience and LinkedIn is the easiest way to get your word out to a larger audience of exactly the right prospects. 

Avoid being salesy. Be there to help your network. Use your key insights to drive interest in what you’re doing. Share insights with consistent posting. 

Get the executive team involved in building the audience. Then, turn those connections into opportunities for the sales team. 

Bill’s team sends 40-50 connection requests a day, and they follow up on each one of those accepted connection requests with a recently-written article by that executive that tackles a problem and shows your audience how to solve it. 

Following up on leads

Everybody wants more leads, but most companies generate all the leads they need. The easiest thing to do is to follow up on the leads you already have. 

Most sales teams aren’t very good at using the CRM so they aren’t capturing leads. No follow-up exists. 

Bill’s team created a process that requires going through email boxes of everyone who is client-facing and capturing those email addresses. Add those people to your CRM and then apply a nurturing campaign that follows up on every single lead. 

Sellers tend to focus on things that will create a commission in the next 60 to 90 days. When you get a prospect that may take 6 to 12 months to close, you may see a tendency to drop those. Put a system in place to capture those leads and follow up with them. Use that data to understand when they are interested so you can assign a salesperson to them when they start paying attention. 

Lead follow-up represents the lowest-hanging fruit in most B2B organizations. Think of the number of people you meet at trade shows, and then figure the number of leads that actually get added to your CRM. They are all valuable prospects, but some may not be immediately valuable.

CRM

Bill dislikes the fact that CRM systems are designed for sales managers, but his team uses Pipedrive. He does appreciate the fact that modern CRMs integrate email systems so that you can see all the email interaction that’s happening within the company.

The more your company automates around CRM, the more likely the sellers will actually use it. Make it a tool that actually makes their lives better rather than just a tool that tracks what they are doing. 

In an ideal world, sales managers will work to uncover objections and help the sellers be more effective. 

Top-of-mind

Once you put some real effort into building a larger audience, it will begin to grow organically because you’re giving them social currency. Word-of-mouth works best, and we want to amplify that. The best way to do that is to give the audience that already knows you — current clients, past clients, and prospective clients — the tools to create referrals for you. 

If you’re giving them insightful and helpful content, the next time the issue comes up while they are having lunch with a peer, they’ll have the perfect thing to talk about. As your audience shares your content, you’ll get organic growth. 

Getting started

Everyone is terrified at this piece because actually doing it is the hardest part. Other than in early-stage startups, companies will struggle to accomplish this unless they tag a dedicated resource. Hire a large enough team to make it happen. 

In Bill’s case, they don’t do the writing themselves. They hire people who are already in that market, who understand it well, and who don’t have to be trained. That kind of approach works consistently to develop a steady flow of high-quality content. 

It’s a combination of well-written content with good insights that match the company’s tone. 

Coming up with ideas is the easy part. 

Send an email with a single link and a catchy headline. Drive your audience back to the website. Link all those articles together so that you create a trail of crumbs and you can see what really interests them. Your reader should never reach the bottom of the blog article and not have a next place to go. 

About us

The second most visited page on almost every B2B site is the About Us page, but 99% of the time, that page includes a boring list of executives and bios. It doesn’t sell you on the company. It doesn’t take you to the next natural place that you should go to. 

You’re trusting your prospects to figure out where to go but you really want to control that customer journey and tell the whole story. Managing that journey improves the capture rate of leads. 

Many customers choose companies who have a face on the business. They will choose you because there’s a real person behind the business who cares about them as a client. 

No quick fix

The number-one battle we face in marketing is that there’s no quick fix. This approach works, but it’s a long-term commitment. If you apply it all through your sales team, you’ll create a dramatic trajectory for your company. 

The challenger sale reports that 53 percent of why customers buy from your company traces to the sales experience rather than the product, the price, the service, or the delivery. The key is how they are sold. 

“B2B Sales Optimization” episode resources

Bill loves to talk with business owners and marketing directors about sales and marketing. You can connect with him at boomtime.com, or on LinkedIn

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Inbound Leads, Marketing, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1177: Our Inbound Leads Are Causing More Work Than Good Sales

Inbound Leads, Marketing, The Sales Evangelist

Often, you hear salespeople say, “Our inbound leads are causing more work than good sales.” It’s always on the question of who should follow up on inbound leads and how to go about it effectively.

Many small organizations are having a hard time utilizing their inbound strategies effectively. We don’t have all the variables and all the situations within an organization. Still, we can assume that there are three people on a sales team. 

The sales team

Assume that a sales team is composed of three people: the marketing person who does almost everything, the junior assistant who helps with content creation, and the outsourced person who does the marketing strategies. Among the three, who should follow-up the lead? 

Not all leads are created equal. This means that before deciding who will follow up the lead, the lead should be evaluated first.

You don’t want your salesperson pitching to a lead that in the end would go to another competitor. 

Do a pre-qualification 

Do a pre-qualification in your organization to know if the people you are going to have the conversation with are ready to consider the deal. Set a benchmark and rules for what you consider a marketing quantifiable lead. Consider the following questions: 

  • What is considered a sales qualified lead?
  • What is the KPI of your organization? 
  • How many new inbound leads do you want to get per quarter/per month?
  • How much money do you want to generate from those leads?

The answers to those questions will lead you to your ideal customer. It would also help you identify the triggers that qualify them to be a marketing quantifiable lead and a sales qualified lead. 

The work is far more efficient because when a lead comes in, your salespeople can vet them and follow the pre-qualification factors you’ve set to see if the lead can generate new business for the organization. This is also helpful in maintaining your current customers. There’s no time wasted in sifting through leads and trying to figure out which one works and which one doesn’t. 

Create a system

Create a system to efficiently manage the workload. The marketing team can do the pre-qualification to increase the odds of the lead being converted into something real. Whenever a lead comes in, let marketing take a look at it and check the website and the title of the person. 

Then let the intern or junior marketing rep take over the other tasks like looking into LinkedIn, HubSpot, Marketo, or other platforms you have to find the data that you can transfer into your CRM. 

You can then sign that into the sales team for it to become a sales qualified lead. The system prevents wasting time on people who aren’t real prospects. 

Marketing can help fix the problem of having to go back to the beginning of the funnel and pre-qualify the leads again because they’re not yet ready then. 

  • Fix your content
  • Develop a good strategy
  • Make a drip campaign for people who are not yet ready 
  • Separate the marketing qualified lead and your sales qualified lead

Website leads matter

The sales team sometimes takes for granted the leads that they didn’t hunt for. A good example is leads coming in from the websites. Salespeople have this notion that they can get more of those so they ignore them. It’s the mentality that since they didn’t work for it, it doesn’t mean much. 

You must recognize that the organization spent thousands of dollars to get that lead. The organization paid for the marketing and the sales rep to produce content on your site. You have writers and you have graphics on your site. You have all the different infrastructure to make sure that your website functions. 

It is disheartening when a sales rep doesn’t take that into consideration when a lead comes in via the website. 

Whenever an inbound lead comes in, it is best to use your flow process to follow-up particular prospects. It should be written and put in your company’s playbook so that everyone can read it and use it with every inbound lead that comes in. 

Follow-up right away 

A stat from insidesales.com said that a lead that’s contacted within five minutes is 100 times more likely to convert than leads that are followed-up 90 minutes later.

When a lead comes in, follow up right away. You’re more likely to convert than if you wait. #SalesHacks

Strike while the iron is hot. 

Do a quick research and evaluate whether the person is real, see if it’s a true marketing qualified lead, and toss it over as a sales qualified lead if it ticks all the boxes. 

The sales team can take a quick visit to the person’s website, check their LinkedIn profile, and the pages they’ve visited on your site. 

Tools like HubSpot and Active Campaign allow you to see where they’ve signed up and the number of times they’ve looked at the pages. You can then use these data to have a meaningful conversation with the prospect leads. 

Focus on the people that matter

Include in your flow process the phone call and email for the first time then do the same things a day later. Connect with them on LinkedIn and share some of their content for seven full business days. 

Do the same things that you would do with a cold person. Nurture the lead and try to grab his attention. Even if they’re not ready now, then at least you can toss it back into the marketing pool and revisit it another time. 

With the right system and by focusing on the people that matter, your work is going to be minimized but the return is going to be much higher. Filter your inbound leads and let the marketing do the review. Recognize the good ones and toss them over to the sales reps to reach out and convert. 

“Our Inbound Leads Are Causing More Work Than Good Sales” episode resource

Email Donald for more questions or connect with him via LinkedIn.

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! If you want to take your sales to the next level, then I recommend that you join us with our group coaching. Our next semester begins mid-September. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

If this episode answered your concerns about why your inbound leads are causing more work than good sales then don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound. 

Jamie Shanks, Donald C. Kelly, Social Selling

TSE 1176: Specific Account-Based Sales Development Best Practices For The Modern, Social Sellers

Jamie Shanks, Donald C. Kelly, Social SellingFrom account selection to sales plays, Jamie Shanks helps sales professionals understand and adopt best practices for the modern, social sellers.

Jamie is the CEO of Sales For Life, which is the de-facto standard in modernizing account-based sales motion. The company specializes in social or digital selling. It evaluates how you sell today and infuses modern digital sales activities into your process. 

Account-based selling

Account-based selling refers to focusing on a set number of accounts, whether it’s organized by territory or strategic value. Instead of relying on inbound leads or channel leads, you must go outbound.

Jamie named his book Spear Selling based on a sales analogy of fishing: inbound efforts are a little like fishing with a net because you can’t choose the fish that land in your net. When you fish with a spear, you swim in the deep water and choose the whales you’re going to hunt. 

Typically, companies focus on account-based motion because they need to increase their average annual contract value (ACV) or lifetime value (LTV). 

Adopting an account-based approach

Companies often get the very first step wrong, which is account selection. Many companies use what Jamie calls wallet-share based thinking. When he was working with a company in the health and wellness space, an account exec pointed to Peloton as a company he was focused on connecting with. When questioned, the AE mentioned that one of the company leaders was a bike enthusiast who thought it might be a good fit. 

The truth is that the health company has no more strategic connection to Peloton than its competitors do. In fact, if they went through the data of relationships, they might discover that the competitors have greater social proximity to the account. That means you may devote 8 months trying to win this account to find that there’s a hurdle you didn’t account for. 

Getting the account selection process right is half the equation.

Companies that ask their sales professionals to build a list of accounts will likely find that they stack ranked companies based on revenue, number of employees, and market share potential. They didn’t think about the fact that people buy from people and relationships matter. 

Sales is a game of relationships. If you could reverse-engineer your existing advocates and customers and identify which accounts have the highest social proximity, you’ll have an advantage that your competitors can’t take from you. 

Account-based models

A centralized model looks at the equation and asks how certain sales resources like inside sales, BDRs, SDRs, and LDRs can mine the total addressable market. It maps green-flag accounts based on relationships, opportunities, and strengths. They could be referrals, partners to your existing customers, or others you’re connected to. Red-flag accounts are those where your competitors have relationships, strengths, and opportunities. 

The decentralized model seeks to identify those accounts that a company already has connections to. The idea is that the company can activate those accounts faster than the competitors can. 

Companies might go with the centralized model because it uses the $20-an-hour inside sellers to do the work instead of the more-expensive AEs. They might choose the decentralized model because they want everyone in the field to be able to unearth the total addressable market of their area. Each person is CEO of his own territory.

Account selection is a skill that everyone needs to master.

Modern digital sellers

The modern digital seller selects accounts based on relationships or social proximity and then plans those accounts using four pillars. 

  • Triggers
  • Referrals
  • Insights
  • Competitive Intelligence

These sellers build a war room or a simple one-page document that outlines the compelling stories that they can share with their audiences. When they target the accounts, they’ll use digital technology like video or LinkedIn to share insights and monitor buying engagement.

Use account segmentation to think about how much time you’ll spend on every account. Apply Pareto’s Law realizing that you’ll spend 80 percent of your time on 20 percent of your accounts which will yield 80 percent of your return. You won’t spend the same amount of time on every account.

These sales concepts have existed forever, but you’ll accelerate your momentum because digital technology allows you to identify who cares, who you should focus on, and how you can move the deal through the cycle more quickly. 

Digital sales

Social selling includes elements like LinkedIn and Twitter and Facebook, but those aren’t the only elements. Modern digital sellers use any available technology to aid in the sales process. 

Companies that engage in digital account-based selling might go through the following steps:

  1. Map the total addressable market.
  2. Map the accounts that exist within each vertical.
  3. Which accounts do we not have but have open opportunities?
  4. Which accounts have we never spoken to?
  5. Of those companies we’ve never spoken to, where do we have a competitive advantage like a trigger or a referral?

If they use tools like LinkedIn to map the social networks of their customer base, they can determine whether anyone knows someone at those companies. Together with marketing, the account executives can storyboard to create a series of sales plays, which might include social media or digital tools.

They can use LinkedIn to communicate with key executives and invite them to an event because they know that conversion is twice as high with physical meetings as with virtual ones. They are using digital tools to bring customers into the analog world. 

Sales play

Sales plays are no different than football plays. The play seeks to achieve a certain result. The seller needs a first-down. Digital sellers might use video, emails, phone calls and other tools to tell the story of them versus their competitors. 

Your goal at an account is to activate the account. The activation cycle is the number of plays that you’ll run against that account. In that time, you’ll either qualify them or replace them. You cannot call into this account forever.

The best account-based teams have a defined activation cycle. Let’s assume it’s 90 days. If you don’t activate within 90 days, you’ll replace it with an account that has a great relationship opportunity. 

Sales plays exist inside that cycle. You might have three to eight different stories you tell along that 90-day journey. Those sales plays or touchpoints are organized as cadences and sequences. 

If you want to win the biggest and best accounts in the world, most companies aren’t coming inbound. You have to tell compelling stories to push them off their status quo. 

Build a series

Once you’ve identified your targets, you must build a series of plays and stories that make the person actually care. 

  • What are three to eight different things they want to know about? 
  • Do they want to know about market trends?
  • Do they want to see a real-life video of customer experience?
  • Will they want to know where they stand compared to their competitors?

What does the future hold for your customer? Think about the customer and develop a series of stories before you start hammering away at the phone. #StorySelling

Get started using all of the available tools. Jamie calls LinkedIn Sales Navigator one of his favorite. There are 500 million people on that platform. He calls it the world’s largest party.

“TSE 1176: Best Practices For The Modern, Social Sellers” episode resources

Grab a copy of Jamie’s book, Spear Selling.

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Donald C. Kelly, BDR, TSE Certified Sales Training

TSE 1175: TSE Certified Sales Training “How to Succeed As a BDR”

Donald C. Kelly, BDR, TSE Certified Sales TrainingWhether you’re learning it for your own work as a BDR or you’re preparing to help another seller, there are five important keys to help you succeed as a BDR.

If you’re looking to move to the next level as a seller, The Sales Evangelist Certified Sales Training Program group coaching program allows you to train at your own pace, either alone or as part of a group. The next semester begins this month. 

Drink your own Kool-Aid

Make sure you understand the product or service you’re selling. In fact, I recommend that you actually use it yourself. If it’s an enterprise software SAP or something large like that, you won’t likely buy it for yourself, but you should understand how the system truly operates. Know how it will help the customers you’re pursuing. 

If you’re a BDR, you’re probably not chasing every single customer. You’ll probably have a territory or a certain kind of client. Look at industry reports to understand your customers and how your solution will help. Ask previous clients why they like your solution so much.

It will also help you speak their language and be more confident in your conversations. Know the problem that you’re able to solve for your buyer.

Be intentional

BDRs must make sure to follow their company’s process, and then they have to go a step further. They must know their ratios. 

  • How many conversations does it take to get to a demonstration?
  • How many demonstrations do you typically do before you land a sale?

Keep track of these numbers. Email me and I’ll share my own prospect tracker with you. 

When you have these numbers, sales becomes more of a science. Each day, you can specify how many new opportunities you want so you can get to a demonstration. 

You won’t be as successful if you aren’t intentional. 

Listen

Become an expert at listening. Listen to the things your prospects say as well as the things they don’t say. 

Read case studies, find out what some of your current customers are doing, and understand their problems. If you listen closely, you’ll begin to notice when they aren’t telling you the real issues. Be a silent expert.

Ask tough questions

Sellers sometimes want to appear knowledgeable, so they talk a lot. Instead, focus on the caliber of questions that you’re asking. 

Make a list of these questions you can ask your prospect. Also, prepare a list of follow-up questions. If, for example, your prospect says that he already has a solution in place, you must be prepared to respond to that. Maybe something like this: “I’m not here to break up great relationships. I do, however, know that contracts end and that people typically will look for new vendors. Would you be open to see if we could benefit your organization?” 

Lead with the intro, “Out of curiosity” to soften the edge on a question like, “Why are you waiting until next year to change?”

Make sure you find great opportunities for your team.

Personalize your approach

Take advantage of video to personalize your approach. Depending on the type of business you’re in, use a tool like BombBomb to make a simple video to the prospect and include this in your flow process. 

If you’re sending emails and reaching out on LinkedIn, your personalized videos will help you stand out among the other BDRs. Personalized videos will help you connect with the right clients and produce better results. 

Outwork yourself

Compete against yourself. If you did 15 appointments last week, set a goal for 17 this week. Push yourself. Don’t compete against your teammate’s goals. Constantly seek to improve.

Success will naturally come if you constantly out-hustle your previous performance.

“How To Succeed As A BDR” episode resources

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com or try our first module of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free. This episode has been made possible with the help of  TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a training course designed to help sellers in improving their performance. We want you guys to go out each and every single day to find more ideal customers and do big things.

I hope you like and learned many things from this episode. If you did, please review us and give us a five-star rating on Apple podcast or in any platform you’re using – Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also share this with your friends and colleagues. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

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