Tag Archives for " Conversation "

David Hooker, Prezi, Story Telling, The Sales Evangelist Podcas

TSE 816: Don’t Bore Your Prospects to Death!

David Hooker, Prezi, Story Telling, The Sales Evangelist Podcas

The battle for your audience’s attention is fierce, so you must ensure you don’t bore your prospects. Storytelling is the key to interesting presentations. The good news is that you’re already a storyteller.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, David Hooker of Prezi explains how to keep your prospects interested and provide the information they need to make decisions.

8 seconds

Some suggest that our attention spans are only 8 seconds at best, but it simply isn’t true. Ever binge watch an entire season of a show in one sitting?

More accurately, there is more competition for our attention. The immediacy and availability of information gives us a subconscious desire to never be bored. People can check Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, or any other platform at will.

Storytelling prevents boredom during your presentations.

The truth is that your prospects know what you’re coming to tell them. They’ve looked you up. They’ve read about your product. They know 85 percent of what they need to know to make a decision.

The good news is that they’ve invited you in, which should be encouraging. The bad news is that you don’t know where the gaps in their knowledge are.

Conversations, not pitches

You’re selling a product your competitor sells. You might have a slight advantage at some point, but it likely won’t last long.

People buy things because of relationships. They’ll decide that “Vendor B was attentive, courteous, punctual. If something doesn’t work right, Vendor B will likely be there for me.”

Conversations help you built those relationships. Storytelling helps you keep your prospect engaged.

You can practice your storytelling skills every day when your family asks about your day. Talk about your day in a way that engages their attention.

Check their facial expressions:

  • Are they engaged?
  • Am I talking too much?
  • What is their body language telling me?

The great thing about practicing on your family is that they’ll tend to be honest.

When it comes to sales, you’ll end up telling the same story again and again, so you can workshop it.

  • If I add a detail does it get a laugh?
  • Does this fact help my customer understand better?

Always work on developing your story so you don’t bore your prospect.

Visuals complement

If you ask your prospect to list the appliances in his kitchen, he won’t visualize a list of appliances written with bullet points in Comic Sans. He’ll visualize his kitchen in order to list them.

Prezi allows you to arrange your content in a way that makes sense. It allows you to navigate the way you need to.

If you have a prospect who only needs information about pricing, Prezi allows you to segment your content so that you can go straight to the content you need. Your prospect will appreciate that you skipped the information that wasn’t relevant to him.

Prezi requires a little bit more time than other presentation programs, but it will help you keep your audience engaged so you don’t bore your prospects.

Episode resources

You can connect with David on LinkedIn or Twitter.

Find Prezi at www.prezi.com, and get to know Prezi’s YouTube channel for tutorials that will help you make the most of Prezi.

Finally, check out The Narrative, a podcast dedicated to helping professionals craft better business stories.

If you’ve enjoyed this content, subscribe to The Sales Evangelist so you don’t miss a single episode. Tell your colleagues about the podcast, and consider leaving a review for us wherever you consume the content so that other sales professionals can find us as well.

Audio provided by Free SFX.

Listening, Sales Conversation, Donald Kelly, Listening Skills

TSE 772: How Can I Improve My Listening Skills?

Listening, Sales Conversation, Donald Kelly, Listening Skills

Ideally, as sellers, we should only talk 30% of the time during a sales conversation and let the prospect or customer talk about 60% to 70% of the time. You want to make sales? Then you have to improve your listening skills!

However, in the real world, I find that many salespeople talk and talk without even listening to their prospects.

Without properly listening to your prospects, you might miss on what’s really important for them. And that means missing your sales deal.

Strategies for Improving Your Listening Skills:

1. Know what you’re listening for.

Go into the first conversation and figure out what can make them buy. Identify the top four drivers why people purchase. Listen for those and poke at those. Know what to listen for so you don’t just talk or be random.

2. Ask meaningful questions.

Instead of the yes or no questions, ask the open-ended questions like what, when, where, why, or how.

3. Follow up.

Don’t be afraid to ask a followup question. Try to really dig deeper into uncovering their real pain point. Use Toyota’s five whys where you keep on asking your prospects why until you get to the fifth why and you will notice you’ve uncovered their real problem. Try to do this exercise even in other areas of your life.

Episode Resources:

The 12 Week Year by Brian P. Morgan and Michael Lennington

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries

Check out the TSE Hustler’s League.

Get a free audiobook download and a 30-day free trial at audibletrial.com/tse with over 180,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, Android, Kindle or mp3 player.

Facebook group The Sales Evangelizers

John Brubaker, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Upselling

TSE 583: Stop Leaving Money on the Table

John Brubaker, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, UpsellingToday’s episode is jam packed with great insights into two of the essential aspects of sales: Prospecting and standing out.

Today’s guest is John Brubaker, a nationally renowned Performance Consultant, speaker, and award-winning author. He has written six books on leadership performance including his latest book, Stadium Status. John shares his secrets to keeping a healthy pipeline and the secrets to upselling.

John actually started as a lacrosse coach and getting fired on his birthday became a blessing in disguise that eventually got him into the world of sales and entrepreneurship.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with John:

The Coach Approach:

  • Don’t sell. Recruit.
  • John took his skills he learned as a college recruiter where you sell the invisible and you’re selling hope, dream, and education.
  • John sold radio airtime and took the best practices he learned selling a more expensive product or service and applying it to the world of advertising and sponsorship.

How to Sell a Dream:

John did college recruiting for three years until going on his own as an entrepreneur, speaker, and author. He says the fundamentals of selling are all the same.

  1. Prospecting – Identify good opportunities.
  2. Qualify the prospective buyer. – Be able to sniff out the suspects. Separate suspects from prospects.
  3. Tell a story and make a compelling offer. – People want you to solve a problem (ex. save money, find them more time, new revenue stream).

Be different.

John explains that It’s ingrained in us through our educational system to fit in and stand out, to be seen and not be heard. You’re not taught to question authority or taught to be different. So it’s hard to be able to differentiate. You have to find ways to differentiate, to add more value, and stand out.

Your reality is not always right for everyone. The faster you can get a no from the suspects, the easier it is to sort through the prospects and figure out the right ones to get a yes. According to John, best practices are well and good. However, they become common practices. Unique, remarkable brands stand out for something and one thing ideally.

Make an intangible product tangible.

John tells a story of how they actually turned an intangible product where they sold airtime into a tangible product through experience. And through that simple act that no one else was doing, they hit the rating books for the first time in the history of the station.

Another example is Flo. Progressive Insurance took an intangible product which is insurance, that’s not sexy and they attached a human being with a fun, goofy character to it and put her on a retail store front. They made an intangible tangible and they made it fun.

Get creative and make your own version of that. Have the courage to stand out and be different.

Do not rush the process.

In sales, we’re always rushing and doing everything so fast. Learn how to work your process and just play the long game.

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Strategies for Upselling:

  1. Show people success.

Show to them early on how your product solves a problem. Oftentimes, a buyer will trust you with something small before they’re willing to trust you with a bigger deal. Show first that you can drive traffic to the door. Once they’re happy with that, you have that opportunity to upsell.

  1. Attach celebrity, social proof, and name recognition to your brand.

In any way you can, try to tie in celebrity, social proof, and name recognition to your brand.

  1. Build that trust.

What business are you really in? First and foremost, you’re in a relationship business. Built that trust and it will pay dividends later.

Strategies for maintaining a healthy pipeline:

  1. Build a brand that attracts instead of chasing.

Cold calling and those traditional ways of selling are an example of chasing. People are going to run away from you and that’s exhausting.

In order to get people interested, you need to first be interesting. Be different or be invisible.

In his book, Stadium Status, John interviewed American country rapper Cowboy Troy where he explains the concept of the Law of Sevens.

  1. The Law of Sevens

Seven is the number of methods you need to employ to make your brand known. Our brain remembers things in units of seven. (ex. phone numbers). Have seven different ways to connect people back to your brand. Figure out seven ways that you can make yourself known to the public and attract people to you.

Create a minimum of seven different points of awareness for people to be attracted to you and make you a household name (ex. Publish a book. Host a radio show or podcast. Contribute articles to a magazine or trade publication. Get out and speak. Be a media guest.)

Seven is also the number of times people need to see your message before they move to take action.

Some insights from John’s Book Stadium Status: Taking Your Business to the Big Time

  • The biggest problem you have is not having enough people to pay attention to your brand, product, or service. The Law of Sevens come in here.
  • We are in an attention economy. Attention comes first. Then, you can monetize people’s attention.
  • Obscurity is the biggest thing everyone is fighting in sales, not the competition or lack of resources.

John’s Major Takeaway:

Focus on your first few fanatics. We have our fans and we have our super fans. The more we cater to our super fans and over-deliver to them, the more they advocate for us and they can expand the amount of attention we get for our brand.

Episode Resources:

Find John on www.CoachBru.com or www.CoachBrew.com (John’s bonus strategy: If you have a website, buy the misspelling of your website.)

Check out John Brubaker’s books:

The Coach Approach

Stadium Status

Join our online workshop this week, 5 Simple Strategies to Increase Your Win Rate and get real stuff you can apply and implement into your business!

Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

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Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 535: TSE Hustler’s League-“Become An Expert In The Details”

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Are you keen to details? Or are you just too assuming your prospects will understand? Today’s snippet taken from our past training session over at the TSE Hustler’s League is focused on being expert in the details. Where in your sales process can you better focus on the details?

A few areas where you can focus on details:

  1. Qualifying

Get a better grasp on not only their statistics but really dive more into the challenges they’re facing. This way you can put together an even more compelling solution. You can be technical, but if you’re able to do a better job of getting the details out of them, every account would be a slam dunk for you.

Do a better job on the front end by really uncovering all their pain and most importantly, getting them to feel it. Help draw out emotions from them.

  1. Presentation

Make sure your prospects understand your product and what that means for them, exactly what value you’re bringing to the table. Make it seen in their mind why it’s important for them to have your product or service. Paint a picture by telling a story.

Stop assuming your prospects already know these things and they understand. Go deeper into details and when you do that, you get better results.

The Principle of the 5 Why’s

This was originally conceptualized by Toyota but this principle has been used by a lot of companies today because it’s so effective. The idea behind this is to dig into the details. For each problem, ask why five times so you can go deeper to the core root of the problem until you can offer a solution.

For example:

A person drives into work and gets a flat tire. Most people say you need to get the tire fixed. Instead, ask yourself…

  1. Why did you get a flat tire? (I hit a pothole.)
  1. Why did you hit a pothole? (I was driving fast and I didn’t see the pothole.)
  1. Why were you driving fast and didn’t see it? (I was late for a meeting.)
  1. Why were you late for a meeting? (I didn’t set my alarm clock.)
  1. Why didn’t you set your alarm clock? (Because I was lazy and went to bed early so I didn’t have the time to set it.)

The deeper you go, the better you understand. The root problem here is that this person is unorganized. For sure, there’s going to be another issue other than the pothole.

Today’s Major Takeaway:

Dig down into the deepest level of your customer’s whys. Go into the details.

Episode Resources:

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TSE 385: TSE Hustler’s Leagues-“The Power of Three”

TSE Hustlers' League, Conference, DO BIG THINGS, Sales

Today’s episode is another great snippet from the TSE Hustlers League. This is Part One of the Power of Three as we talk about how you can meet with your prospects without complicating things.

The Power of Three:

The concept behind the power of three is to not overcomplicate things with your prospects. Studies show that the number of claims you should share with a prospect is THREE.  This maximizes the impact of your story because it makes it more believable.

Why not beyond three?

  • It gets you to a tipping point where people start to become skeptical.
  • It complicates things.
  • It pushes the prospect to the end decision.

Options, features & benefits: Power of Three Applied

  • Options are great. But the key is not to give them too many options to the point that it gives them a decision paralysis.
  • Identify the core challenge of your prospect then focus on three things you can do that can connect to this core concept.
  • What’s more powerful is being able to present valuable things to the prospect. They may be unknown to them but you may have the solution for it.


Episode Resources:

Please support us in our Indiegogo campaign, a movement to inspire others to Do Big Things. Simply go to www.DoBigThings.net.

Get a free audiobook download and a 30-day free trial at audibletrial.com/tse with over 180,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, Android, Kindle or mp3 player.


Stories, Building Value, Business Meeting, Sales Leader

TSE 312: Stories Are A Great Way To Create Value

Stories, Building Value, Business Meeting, Sales LeaderToday, we’re going to talk about how you can utilize stories in your selling situation to establish tons of value, credibility, and to help sell more.

People love to buy, they hate to be sold.

As what Jeffrey Gitomer says, “People love to buy. They hate to be sold.”

Find a way to make your potential customer feel that they’re buying as opposed to you selling them. What can you do to help them feel that they’re in control and that they’re buying?

Why tell stories?

You share the experience of someone else who has seen the value in what you have to offer.

Powerful elements of storytelling:

  1. VALUE

Use a story in order to establish value in your product or service. Paint a picture that they can identify with and make them visualize your goal to help them make their lives better.

The hero’s journey

This is a theory formulated by Joseph Campbell wherein any movie has the same situation with an individual on a journey who finds a mentor and goes through a trial and they have to overcome that challenge. Then they go through an atonement period until finally coming back full circle.


Use of senses

Make the story as impactful to them as possible. Encourage your prospect to use their senses. Make them visualize all five senses or as many senses as possible while telling the story.

Episode Resources:

TSE Episode 1 with Jeffrey Gitomer

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The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, Donald C. Kelly