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S M T W T F S
     
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24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31

Syndication

How To Build Your Career In Sales 

 

The road to building a career in sales may be difficult but certainly not impossible, especially if you have a great road map, the right character, and key people in your life who help you move forward. In this episode, we’ll outline what these may look like. 

 

At 22 years old, Mary Grothe started with a Fortune 1000 payroll and HR company. She became an administrative assistant supporting eight salespeople and the number one sales manager in the country. Within a couple of months, she realized she wanted a spot on the mid-market sales team. She asked her sales manager what she needed to accomplish in order to be considered for the position when it became available. For two years, she worked hard and became number one in her role. Looking back to heer first phone call, she was like any other sales rep, very nervous, and was sweating hard, but she also had a strong desire to surpass all expectations.  She certainly accomplished what she set out to do. 

 

Mary eventually took on an equity position as a VP in Sales and Marketing. They rebuilt the company’s revenue engine and quadrupled its revenue in seven months. She liked the thrill of growing a business and as she thought of setting out on her own, her entrepreneurial spirit was ignited. As a result, Mary started her first consulting firm called Butterly Creative in 2011. As a young entrepreneur, she was trying to figure out how to maneuver through pricing her services while maintaining the energy she needed. There were a lot of rookie mistakes in the beginning, so she eventually stepped away from the company. After she gave birth, her passion for the business came back again and she now helps build revenue for larger companies.

 

For the new salespeople 

Mary Grother has these suggestions for new graduates who are just starting out their careers in sales: 

 

  • There are multiple types of sales roles 

A new salesperson doesn’t have to automatically choose to go to a BDR/SDR position. There are so many types of sales positions in business development roles. It is important to understand these roles because each salesperson has the opportunity to match who they are as a person to the type of selling they want to do.  Doing something that is more in line with who they are will likely influence their performance and sales roles in a positive way.  

 

 

  • Understand the equations

 

Part of the reason why Mary became the number one sales rep in such a short time is she knew how to play the game. She knew her playbook and was aware that if she worked at it every single day, she would have success. Most sales reps don’t know what’s expected of them so they don’t have the framework to succeed. 

 

 

  • Communicating to your leadership team about our future goals

 

You need to talk to your leadership team about the progression of your current role, what is needed to meet certain goals, the positions you aspire to attain, and discuss how you are going to get there. Your leadership has to know, so they won’t be in the dark, and they are prepared to receive you when new positions open up.  



Common roles in sales 

Your role in sales will be dictated by the kind of company you will work for and what they sell. Is the company selling a physical product that you can touch or technology, or a service? 

 

Service vs product selling

Mary has observed that service sales are harder to sell because unlike products, you can’t touch it and you can’t see it. It’s hard to compare side by side to a competitive option.  It’s different from a product sale because most people can wrap their heads around a product much easier. Services also can have a want vs. a need. 

 

Transactional vs big-ticket price 

As a salesperson, you need to look at who is buying the product. Is it more of a transactional, high volume sale where you talk to 10 - 30 different buyers within a day or is it a deal that could take up six months to close?. You just have to know where your preferences are.  Mary likes selling big-ticket items because she enjoys complex sales. She doesn’t mind if it’s selling a service; she just loves the challenge of multiple buyers. 

 

Sales reps need to understand the type of selling method that fits them. As a sales rep, you need to look at who you are as a person and how your choice is aligned with your goals. You want to take it a notch further. 

 

What part of the sales cycle do you want to be a part of?

The third thing to consider is where your role lies in the sales cycle. Some salespeople are hunters and love the outbound. With these salespeople, they love starting conversations but they may not be detail-oriented and able to go through a whole three-month sales cycle. Discovery, demo, proposal, and closing may not be their strengths. Others may be on the opposite side of the spectrum and maybe more comfortable working with people they know when it’s time to demo, present solutions, offering renewals, and upselling. 

 

Many new salespeople, especially fresh out of college, are put in the outbound when this isn’t where their skills or personality are the most comfortable.  When this happens, it can cause burnout before a new salesperson is given an opportunity to see the full spectrum of possibilities. They prematurely think they’re not cut out for sales when the truth is, they were just put in the wrong role.

 

The equation of success

Everyone needs a playbook.  That is, you need to know what’s expected of you, what the goal is, and what it’s going to take to get there. Mary’s team helps other companies by building for them an infrastructure of systems and processes around marketing and sales. They also build the revenue engine because more often than not, organizations don’t have one that is properly defined. Salespeople show up to a role and operate the way they think they should but may have no way of knowing whether or not it’s correct.  Why?  They have no guidance through a playbook.  Your playbook is important because it’s the blueprint that tells you whether or not you’re going in the right direction.  You should know, in any season of employment 

  • What’s expected of you
  • How to measure your performance
  • The activities you’re supposed to do every single day

 

If this is lacking in your organization, talk to your leadership team, and ask for that playbook to be created. You shouldn’t be thrown into a role and be told to figure it out on your own. Salespeople should be encouraged to ask for the information that will help them improve. Ask for the metrics, the indicators, the suggested number of meetings, and goals. Find a mentor and discover the path they took to succeed. Look at their numbers and double them to really reach for more and imitate what they’ve done to help them become top sales reps. 



Let sales leaders know your intention 

A salesperson shouldn’t feel like they’ve been passed up for a promotion but you’ve got to participate in your advancement. Do that by letting the sales managers know that you want to move up in the company and do this long before the position opens up. Let them know what role you want to play in the sales cycle and ask what it will take to be considered for the position. This way, you have time to create a plan, set goals, and execute within the timeline required.  By doing this, you’re already established as a go-to candidate by the time the position opens up.  

 

Mary let her sales managers know what roles she was passionate about and went to the game plan she created with them at her side and consistently monitored her progress. If she had waited for two years before she spoke up about wanting a promotion she could have gotten passed up, never having fulfilled the requirements. Because she communicated where she wanted to go, was proactive, and knew exactly what she needed to do, she received 3 promotions in 5 years. 

 

Leadership wants people who are hungry to progress and they pay attention to the people really fighting for it. Look for ways to take on smaller roles on the way to greater responsibilities. With each achievement, surround yourself with people who are positive and can impart their knowledge to you. When you do get that role, always look back in gratitude for the people who helped you. 

 

Do remarkable work. Be the best problem solver you can be. Be kind, be humble, be curious, and be actively engaged in solving problems. #SalesTruth

 

How To Build Your Career In Sales” episode resources 

Don’t be money-motivated. Always focus on your buyers’ agenda and do remarkable work with the right attitude. 

 

Check out Mary Grothe’s LinkedIn and their official company site: Sales BQ. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble now for free at www.crmble.com/tse. This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1296.mp3
Category:Sales, Career, Leadership -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Mindset vs. Skill Set - Which Is More Important In Sales?

 

As a salesperson, which do you think is more important, a mindset or a skill set? What are the differences between the two? In this episode, Donald will explore the value of both.  

 

Defining mindset and skill set

Mindset is your established attitude or beliefs. Mindset has two parts -  a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. A fixed mindset settles into what is working and doesn’t change.  A growth mindset can see the opportunities to improve.

 

A skill set, on the other hand, is your range of ability. What training and skills have you mastered to be able to execute the work you need to do well in your business?

 

Donald Experiences the Difference Between Mindset and Skill Set 

A salesperson should have both a great mindset and the relevant skill set.  When Donald was a young man his friend’s father, who was like a  second dad, gave him the book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. He read it and internalized the information so he believed he would succeed in his goals.  As a result, when Donald started in sales, he was a ball of energy. He watched all the movies and rolled out his B2C experience fresh from college. He was working, setting up appointments and he felt good that he could take all the ideas he’d learned and bring them into professional selling. His mindset was propelling him forward. 

 

Things got a little bit difficult when Donald entered the B2B world. He had the growth mindset but he didn’t have the skill set to go with it. One of the companies he worked for had him knocking on doors and handing out business cards. This was something that Donald did not see as professional selling. Without the proper skill set, Donald felt he was just going around in circles. He eventually moved on to another company and there he got the skill set training he needed. There, he learned how to 

 

  • Use the phone to prospect
  • Make a proper cold call
  • Use LinkedIn
  • Go to networking events
  • Ask effective questions
  • Challenge a prospect about their beliefs to get to better solutions.

 

After gaining such valuable skill sets and merging them with his growth mindset, Donald started to see amazing transformation and acceleration. He started to produce well. 

 

As Donald started to grow, he noticed that colleagues that were decades his senior were remaining at the same level they’d been for years, even with much more experience. The reason? Donald’s teammates had a lot of skill set but with even all their knowledge it was impossible for them to grow beyond their mindset. As a result, they missed out on the opportunities that Donald was able to enjoy. It was Donald’s mindset that helped him excel and perform well. 

 

Bringing Skill Set and Mindset Together

 

Donald was different from stagnant colleagues in that he was able to take advantage of social selling, he could see fresh opportunities, and he was eager to prospect. With the proper growth mindset and proper skill set, he was able to excel as a sales representative. Do you see why both are so critical? Having a great skill set does not guarantee success if you don’t have the mindset that will push you through the glass ceilings you can set for yourself. 

 

Donald suggests taking time every single day to improve and sharpen and expand your beliefs. Listen to motivational videos, repeat your affirmations and goals, and get around like-minded people who can help you build up a positive mindset. Read the books that will help you get that growth mindset. One of Donald’s favorite books is The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho, a book that will help you open your mind to your potential. 

 

Build a great library

One of the best ways to support your business is by getting real about what skill sets you need to acquire and pursue that knowledge through books. Take a look at your prospecting, social, or closing skills. Do you know how to ask effective questions? Take time each day to build these skills and launch your day even better than you did the day before. 

 

Sales books are always there to help you improve and Donald has some suggestions to start your library if you haven’t already. One of Donald’s favorite authors is Mike Weinberg, who provides a lot of great content and value about sales management and simplifying sales.  Kevin Kruse’s book entitled, 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management: The Productivity Habits of 7 Billionaires, 13 Olympic Athletes, 29 Straight-A students, and 239 Entrepreneurs discusses planning and time management.  

 

There are many great authors who have amazing books in a voice that will be perfect for you. If you want to turn your commute, down time, or workout into a university,  download books using Audible and listen to the books if that’s more convenient.  No more excuses. 

 

Which is more important, Mindset or Skill Set?

Of course, both are important but if Donald had to pick just one,he’d pick mindset. He understands that a person with the proper growth mindset can be taught the proper skill set. A person who is able to see how to grow will think of ways to improve like water that finds its way to the ocean. A salesperson with the proper mindset will look for the tribe and that supports growth, will help improve skills, can offer training, and will refine the skills acquired.

 

People who lean on skill set alone will not be able to see where improvement can occur. They get stuck in their ways, work the same strategies, will fail to embrace new technology and never take advantage of creative ways to prospect.  

 

Take time every single day to sharpen your beliefs. It will help you to perform well when it’s time to get to work. #SalesTips

 

Mindset vs. Skill Set - Which Is More Important In Sales?” episode resources 

What do you think? Do you favor mindset over skill set or the other way around? Let us know by putting a comment down below. You can also subscribe and get notified of new episodes. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble now for free at www.crmble.com/tse. This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1295.mp3
Category:Sales Skills -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

How To Easily Track Your Leads From Prospect Status To Closing the Deal

Salespeople track leads from prospect status to closing the deal because that’s how the sales process flows. But how can we keep the information organized so we take action in a way that’s best for a potential client?  

For the last six years, Toni Panea has focused on his role as a sales engineer. Before that, he was running a real estate business and wanted to track all his leads and how they flowed through his business.  He wanted to organize information in a way that let him know how many clients he had when the next appointments should be, and how to prepare for meetings. However, when Toni looked for apps and software that could help, he found there were no available tools that existed. When Toni realized this was a critical need that was missing, he filled the void himself by creating his current business, Crmble. This business would provide what he’d been looking for and it’s helping others as well. 

Tips on tracking your leads 

Salespeople should ask themselves if they have a system that tracks the status of leads, including names, contact data, notes about meetings, etc. Toni recommends using available tools like the Trello app where you can see the status of your leads and add alarms.  Many salespeople use Excel as Donald did, but Trello offers more organizational opportunities. Trello allows you to track more information relevant to your business and sales team. 

The power-up 

Crmble is a power-up of Trello.  Using the existing Trello platform, Crmble is a plug-in that can be layered to provide notification capabilities specifically for sales.  With Crmble, you are also able to connect to third-party services such as Facebook and Google Forms. Others will be added in the near future. 

A feature in Crmble is connecting salespeople to Google Contact to better access a data link from your Trello cards when someone is calling. As soon as you finish the conversation, you can go to your Trello card and update an alarm for the next steps.  You can close confidently knowing you won’t forget future steps. This plugin is a bridge that lets Crmble capabilities stream into that of Trello functionalities. 

For example, Crmble also has reporting capabilities where sales reps can see the number of leads they have in every touchpoint for their sales funnel. There’s also a report on the number of leads converted to sales before leading into the sales funnel. Sales reps are also able to see the percentage of wins, percentage of losses, a report on where the leads are coming from, and the number of leads you get per day. This is a valuable feature when you need to know how your ads are performing. 

Crmble is easy to use and very simple to understand. There’s no need to learn how to code or compute. With Crmble it helps your CRM become even more effective and user friendly.  Otherwise, a system that is overly complicated may never get used. 

Every CRM user needs to be able to work a system without losing important information. #CRM

How Crmble was named

Toni’s wife named Crmble. She has been very supportive from the very beginning and recognized that CRM needed to be in the name to make it easily identifiable. Because this was not a platform that was created from scratch, they are a “crumble” for an existing tool, Trello, that is already considered the best in the world when it comes to project management. They turned this project management platform into a CRM. It’s basically a crumble of many existing tools like Facebook, Google Forms, Google Contacts, and Google Drive, for example, and what you can get from Trello itself. 

For the new salespeople

For new salespeople, Toni suggests that you speak to people with similar jobs. Talk to your friends, teammates,  and colleagues who are dealing with the same issues that you do, and get fresh ideas about how they’re facing and addressing their problems.  When you are just starting, it’s important to know the status of your sales funnel because this status can change a lot. You need to be able to track your leads to be aware of the variety of situations that may affect the sales flow. Discover the kinds of leads you have, where they came from, and their status to know how they need to be prioritized. This information is essential to design an appropriate sales funnel to ultimately close.

CRM users need to find a balance between not working for the system and not losing track of important information. Sales leaders want to be careful of making the CRM so complicated that salespeople won’t want to use it. This is what makes Crmble different from other CRM software. It makes the process so easy. 

How To Easily Track Your Leads From Prospect To Close Deal” episode resources 

Visit Crmble and try the software for free! You can also connect with Toni on LinkedIn to know more about the Trello power-up plugin. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse. This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1294.mp3
Category:CRM, Leads, Crmble -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Learn To Prospect Like An Expert With Steve Kloyda

 

Prospecting isn’t to be taken lightly and there are skills needed before you can prospect well. In this episode, Steve Kloyda helps us figure out how to prospect like an expert. 

 

Steve Kloyda has been creating unique selling experiences for over 30 years and has been able to transform the lives of countless salespeople. In addition to facilitating thousands of workshops across the country, he personally made more than 25,000 sales and prospecting calls, listened to and analyzed more than 25,000 sales calls, and facilitated over 6,000 one-on-one coaching sessions. He has clearly earned the title expert! Steve’s insights have provided clients with a powerful learning experience for anyone who wants to transform their sales and dramatically grow their business. His aim is to help salespeople attract more prospects, retain more clients, and drive more sales. 

 

Steve also remembers unforgettable customer service. One of his coolest sales experiences was at Hilton Head several years ago when it was suggested to him and his wife to go to the Pink House for dinner. It was indeed an old pink house converted into a restaurant and by dessert, his wife just wanted fresh fruit but it wasn’t on the menu. Steve made his request and though it wasn’t a dessert they offered the waiter came back 10 minutes later with a plate of fresh fruits so beautifully arranged it reminded Steve of a work of art. To top it all off, they didn’t even charge them when they were billed! The Pink House went above and beyond all their expectations.  When was the last time you went out of your way for a customer?

 

Steve as the prospecting expert 

Steve started his company, Telemasters, in 1990. He built the company over 18 years and they specialized in creating a unique process for salespeople to prospect. From that point until 2005, the primary tools for prospecting were basically telephone and email. When 2006 came around, social media including LinkedIn started to look like a great platform to prospect. Steve went on an online class with Carrie Wilkerson, The Barefoot Executive, and what she asked him hit him: 

 

What are you really passionate about?

What are you really good at? 

 

Steve has always been good at opening doors and prospecting. To see how many people were looking up topics related to prospecting, he did a Google search and learned that tips, strategies, and ideas were a hot topic. People are searching for these topics about 200 to 300,000 times a month. He decided to sell his Telemaster brand and changed the name into what it is today, the Prospecting Expert. 

 

Claiming it 

You can’t call yourself an expert unless you’ve walked that path and Steve has certainly walked them all. Today, he is helping salespeople attract more prospects and drive more sales as he provides a clear path for sales and prospecting success. 

 

The basics of prospecting 

The definition of prospecting is  “in search of or to labor for.” As sales reps, we are looking for people who are going to purchase our product or service. We’re also searching for new customers and new businesses through our existing customers. Let’s look at Hector the Prospector as an example. During the California Gold Rush, he found a nugget of gold but he didn’t stop to turn in that one gold nugget. He continued to prospect until the stream dried up and then he looked for another stream. 

 

All successful salespeople never ever stop prospecting. #SalesProspecting 

 

The organic process

Prospecting should be an organic process that starts with identifying who your target audience is. One of the mistakes salespeople make is that they don’t know who they should be selling to and are prospecting people who don’t have the ability to say yes. It really comes down to knowing where your prospects hang out, whether that be online or offline, and identifying ways to approach them naturally. 

 

Prospecting methods over the years

Prospecting methods have changed dramatically over the years. In the 1980s, they had the telephone and snail-mail. There was no voice mail or email. In 2003-2004, social media started gaining popularity, especially platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Steve got the first taste of Twitter in 2008 and he immediately disliked it. He thought Facebook was for kids and with the addition of LinkedIn and Youtube, social platforms were coming from all directions. 

 

Steve soon realized that these tools were becoming an important point of contact in the sales process. Some salespeople, however, started to hide behind the technology and they have bought into the notion that somehow Twitter is going to help them sell. These tools can certainly be used to connect, educate, and engage with your target audience but ultimately, a phone call or meeting will have to happen.  People can’t forget how to engage. 

 

The way Steve uses social media is with his Instant Sales Nuggets and twice a day, he posts a tip on Twitter. He also knows how to ask his network great questions. These may just be a sentence or two that he puts out but still doesn’t post his link. This is the education part he’s happy to provide in order to build relationships and start conversations. He repeats this process across the various social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. He will then periodically post his podcasts on his website or promote his website on Twitter. In order to provide valuable content to his network, Steve makes sure he knows what people are looking for and what they’re talking about so that what he shares is relevant. 

 

Major mistakes when prospecting 

Mistakes can be made online and offline. In addition to believing social media can close a sale for you, the biggest mistake salespeople make online is the  ‘look at me’ approach where their content is all about them. You can do some of that but the focus should always be about giving more information than you are asking for a return as illustrated in Gary Vaynerchuk’s book called Jab Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to tell your story in a noisy social world

 

Mistakes offline go back to the lack of understanding of their target audience and the lack of preparation: 

  • The target audience has not been identified.
  • There has been no preparation made before the call. 
  • Too much time is spent with people who don’t have the power to say yes. 

 

The target audience has not been identified.

Niche down so you truly know who will benefit from your product.  What problems can you solve and who is dealing with these challenges?

 

There has been no preparation made before the call.  

Steve is a big believer in scripts but in this case, the script isn’t just about words you say over and over but includes the outline of what you want to convey and what questions you want to ask that are specific to your prospect.  Know your agenda and stick to it. Steve says, “The purpose of the calls is to keep the purpose of the call the purpose of the call.” For example, if the purpose of the call is to qualify this person, then qualify him. If it’s to set an appointment, then ask for an appointment by the end of the call. 

 

Too much time is spent with people who don’t have the power to say yes. 

Salespeople can waste a lot of time talking to the wrong people. Ideally, before you talk to someone do your research and answer what Steve calls the Rules of Engagement. 

 

  • Who is this person?
  • What role do they play in the company?
  • How do they make decisions?

 

Why do we make mistakes 

Many salespeople are never taught the art of asking the right questions or they are afraid of asking the right questions. One of the books that Steve recommends to sharpen this skill is How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling by Frank Bettger. You can’t produce the right results unless you talk to the right people and ask the right questions. Steve suggests the following guidelines when making a call. 

 

  • Greet with, “Hi, ____.  I know you weren’t expecting my call but do you have a minute to talk.” Salespeople are taught not this question gives a prospect an out but it’s not true. This question allows you to get right into your qualifying questions whereas, “How are you doing?” ends up being a delay.
  • Mix up your questions. You can ask the prospect, “I understand that you’re the person responsible for making the decisions for training for your salespeople, is that correct?” If they say yes, you can keep the same thread going. “Well, ____, you mentioned that you’re one of them, so who besides yourself is involved in this decision?”

 

Ask these questions, give your purpose statement, and ask for an appointment. Create a picture in the minds of potential customers and show up prepared.  When you know what you’re going to say, you don’t become the script.  The script becomes you.  Make a strong first impression. 

 

Social media platforms are a good avenue for starting relationships but at the end of the day, it comes back to the phone and face to face meetings. The phone is still important in the process of prospecting. 

 

Steve’s major projects 

Steve loves to create content. He started a webinar series and did that on a monthly basis every Wednesday. You can also check out his YouTube channel for additional content. 

 

Never ever stop prospecting. If you had the cure for cancer, you’d tell everyone. Your job is to plant the seed. Every salesperson can solve someone’s problem.  It is your moral responsibility to make an approach and make the call. 

 

Learn To Prospect Like An Expert With Steve Kloyda” episode resources 

Connect with Steve via his email. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse. This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1293.mp3
Category:Prospecting -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

How Do I Stand Out From The Competition?

 

Are there still ways salespeople can stand out from the competition? This is an age-old question that was posed by a recent college graduate. If so, how?  In this episode, Donald will share four ways he’s learned, through his personal and professional experience, to stand out from your competition: 

 

  1. Be persistent
  2. Personalize
  3. Use your CRM and bring value
  4. Have energy and drive

 

Be persistent

Studies have shown that many sales reps give up making contact after one or two attempts. In reality, it takes 8 - 12 points of contact before a potential prospect may respond. If you want to stand out from your competition, be consistent and persistent. Of course, this doesn’t mean sitting and calling eight times in a row within a day. You have to ensure you have an organizational flow process. This is the process that moves through the buyer’s journey to get to the interest and awareness phase within the organization. 

 

Use an omni channel approach when strategically making multiple contacts with prospects. The buyers are not camping out in one location. Many salespeople think  the only way you can get in touch with a prospect is through phone calls and emails. With this digital world there are multiple platforms to utilize, like LinkedIn. Don’t just hop from profile to profile but truly invest your time engaging with people you’re already connecting with. Some suggested steps include the following:

 

  • Call
  • Send an email 
  • Reach out on LinkedIn and connect
  • Follow them on LinkedIn 
  • Follow their company 
  • Give them a second phone call
  • Send a gift through physical mail
  • Send them a gift through digital mail,like a gift card

You can modify these steps based on how you choose to reach out to your prospects. The important thing is getting beyond the first two tries. 

 

Always Personalize

Donald uses some important strategies when it comes to personalizing a message.  One of the most important elements in a message is to use their name. No one wants a generic message. Make use of a personalized message and let them know you’ve looked at the problems their company is facing. Address these issues in your message and bring some value that ties to their concerns. Provide a solution specific to their challenges. 

 

A great way to personalize a message is by sending a video.  This way, a potential client can see your personality before they ever get to meet you in person.

 

Personalize your message! Your first impression is not the time to be lazy. #SalesImpression

 

Bring in value and use your CRM

Another way to bring value is to go back to your CRM. If your company doesn’t have a CRM, you can visit Crmble. It’s an awesome tool that companies can use for free but upgrades are available. If you already have CRM already, go back to the very beginning and see what problems you were addressing then. Check out if it was a decent sale and read through a thread that might give you some current insight. While it may take some work, you'll be armed with the knowledge of the issues these customers were facing and be able to apply current solutions now and into their future. 

 

Energy and the drive 

Whether you are a seasoned salesperson or a new graduate, another way to stand out from the competition is to know that you are awesome! Your clients have the chance to get YOU - your passion, your desire, your work ethic … only you can bring that.  Know that you are your own best asset.  

 

How Do I Stand Out From All The Competition?” episode resources 

Donald is currently working on his new book, Sell it Like a Mango. In the book, Donald has written about his experience in Jamaica, seeing people sell the same exact product and seeing some have greater success than others. You’ll learn what made them stand out in Sell it Like a Mango. 

 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse. This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1292.mp3
Category:Sales Talk -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

How To Leverage LinkedIn For Better Networking

 

LinkedIn is an important social platform for people looking to broaden their network. In this episode, Bobbie Foedisch will be talking about how to leverage LinkedIn for better networking. 

 

Bobbie Foedisch is the founding partner and Chief Social Selling Officer at All About Leverage. The company develops social selling, lead generation, and networking processes. Bobbie has been in the business development space for most of her career. She’s seen the power of leveraging social media and now, along with her team, they have cultivated a lead-generation process that they offer to their clients as a voluntary benefit business.

 

LinkedIn now has over 413 million users and they are growing daily. This makes LinkedIn a perfect platform for you and your business. You can use it to leverage your online and offline marketing presence. 

 

Use LinkedIn Strategies available

One of the best ways to start your LinkedIn experience is by using a picture of yourself as your profile photo. It’s tempting to use a company logo but people don’t develop a relationship with a logo the way they want to connect with people. When selecting a picture make sure the photo looks like you and you look professional. This is your first impression so make the most of this opportunity by having a great headshot. 

 

Customize your message and be yourself

The message is an important part of your LinkedIn profile as it shows effort on your part.  Don’t make it a generic.  Show your personality and let people know you care. Be yourself so people get a true sense of who you’d be face to face.  

 

Build your network right away 

The purpose of LinkedIn is to grow networking opportunities so be confident in building right away. Have a purpose to connect and know the worth of your business. Look for the people you can partner with or who will benefit from your service or product.  They are waiting to be found.  

 

The social selling process

It’s important to have your own social selling process. Here’s a process that Bobbie suggests: 

 

Put your content out there

You need content that will resonate with your network but be sure to tie it back to your subject, job, or area of expertise. Before you begin, assess how you are going to create your content. Will you create your own or curate your content? Either way, your content should be interesting or relevant to your audience. 

 

Start the conversation

As a thought leader, begin conversations that are compelling and will allow conversations to occur.  Post these “ice breakers” on LinkedIn network groups, Twitter, and add them to your company page on Facebook.

 

Time your posts well

Do your research about what days and times to post on the social platform you’re trying to engage with so you have maximum exposure. This will help ensure you are reaching at least 60% of your network. 

 

Join groups for content and networking

LinkedIn groups allow you to reach beyond your network. Having the right content can help you leverage the groups for face-to-face networking events. You can search LinkedIn groups for the niche that reflects your target audience. Search for specific details such as company name, job titles, geographic locations, and other details that will help you narrow down the search. You can then offer your message to the group.

 

Advanced save and purchase

Make use of LinkedIn’s lead generation. Do this by saving your purchase based on your ideal client profile. LinkedIn will automatically send you a lead generation list every week. 

 

Leverage your first degree connection

Learn to leverage your network. Look at your connections and narrow them down to exactly who you want to reach. Meet with your different referral partners weekly and aim for an average of five introductions. Statistics show that this type of warm lead generation has a 60% conversion rate. 

 

The following features on LinkedIn will help you broaden your reach:

  • Thought leadership
  • Content marketing
  • Face-to-face networking
  • Online and offline social activity
  • Reaching people in your community and across the world

 

Effective cold-calling 

Even with everyone using social media as a way to connect, there is still a lot of value in cold calling. Bobbie suggests the following to be more effective:

  • Narrow down the list
  • Monitor recent activity and comment on the things you care about
  • Engage with people and create opportunities for conversations. 
  • Move from connecting online to connecting offline

 

LinkedIn is more effective the more you use it. Be visible on the platform and allow people to get to know you each day. Your LinkedIn profile is the first thing that pops up when somebody searches your name so make a great first impression. Match the sales process to the buying process if you want to be successful. Focus on people who are interested.

Sales is no longer just about selling but guiding people through their needs and being there with a solution. 

 

How To Leveraging LinkedIn For Better Networking” episode resources 

As a salesperson, focus on the relationships and don’t expect things to happen overnight. Take your time and learn from your mistakes. 

Connect with Bobbie Foedisch via LinkedIn or Twitter using the handle: @linkedinbobbie. If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

This course is also 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1291.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

How To Overcome Your Fear of Selling During Challenging Times

 

Fear can be common for salespeople regardless of where you are in your career. The fear of rejection can paralyze us and impact our performance. In the current climate of a pandemic, one fear that salespeople are dealing with is that customers won’t be interested in what we have to offer.  In this episode, we’ll talk about how to overcome fear of selling during challenging times. 

 

Nina Cooke works with entrepreneurs, their coaches, consultants, and sales specialists. Her task is to help them overcome their fear in order to get them to move toward sales conversations. Nina helps salespeople overcome their negative thoughts and the lies people tell themselves. Nina’s goal is for her clients to see how powerful and magnificent they can be as they run their business. 

 

The origin of fear

The origin of a lot of our fears occur in childhood. We were all born with a blank slate and then picked up the programming of other people over time. From a very young age, we start to take in information and make assessments about our world and the people in our life as we observe activities and conversations around us. These observations can heavily influence how we view our place in this world. If we see others are fearful, for example, we tend to take on that fear and it can take a grip into adulthood. 

 

Another example of a child making assumptions about their environment may come from their parent not playing with them, even though they promised. As this child starts to see this as a trend, they begin to wonder why the play isn’t happening. Is it because they aren’t important enough? “I’m not important enough” is now a limiting belief they take into adulthood. As their belief takes hold, they begin to collect evidence to prove it’s true:

 

  • Someone wasn’t listening to you while you were talking because you weren’t important.
  • You spoke up in a group and no one listened because you weren’t important. 
  • Parents didn’t take notice of you but  focused on your siblings because you weren’t important. 

 

We build meaning around events and then live our lives as if these beliefs were fact.

These limiting beliefs become a crippling way of thinking, especially if it keeps you from seeing your full potential.

Change of mindset 

We’ve got to be careful about settling because of a limited mindset. Changing your mindset is necessary to redirect your path.  These limitations are keeping you from reaching out to people during a pandemic: 

 

-“People aren’t interested in what I have to offer.” 

-”They don’t have the budget for my products.”

 

These are concerns but they’re not necessarily the reality. How do we know this?  Because other salespeople are thriving.  If they can do it, you can too. 

 

One of Nina’s clients set a goal to have six new clients/customers in the month of April and while she wasn’t able to lock in all six, she was able to get five new customers! If we continue to reason our way out of growing our business, we won’t have a business to return to when this pandemic is over. We have to carry on taking action by knowing our value and realizing that there are people who need what we have to offer. There are people who are willing to invest in the solutions to their problems.  

 

Breaking away from the negative influences

It’s very easy to be influenced by the negativity around us but know that you have a choice in how you think. You can’t stop someone else’s negative outlook but there is always a choice to buy or not. Reset your habits of thinking toward hope and optimism. Accept only the mindset that will prompt you to take action.

 

Other people around you may have a bleak outlook about conducting business but don’t take that on. People are still purchasing! The more people you contact, the more people will know you are ready to do business but you have to call for them to know. If you can keep a resilient mindset, then you’ll be okay, even when people say no, because it’s one step closer to yes. 

 

Perseverance through challenging times is going to take effort but it will put you ahead of the people who don’t even try. Know your value and stay active. It isn’t personal when someone says no.  Their “no” means they are not ready to purchase but they are not rejecting you.  Just allow your customer to guide the sales cycle and be available when they’re ready to go. 



Transforming the mind

Before you change your mind, it’s first important to know your goals. Let’s say for example that your goal is to generate 30,000 a month as your income. What thinking is stopping you from achieving that? 

 

Nina helps you figure out your limiting beliefs. After rating your limiting beliefs from a 1-10 scale, she takes you through a simple process to remove that block from your subconscious once and for all. 

 

The biggest  limiting belief Nina’s clients are currently experiencing is, “It’s inappropriate to make offers right now because people can’t afford me.”  This belief is keeping you from people who need your product or service. Once you remove the limitations, you’ll find the people who are ready to invest and start focusing on how you can add value. 

 

Nina has another client who offers retreats and one of the activities is taking people dolphin watching. Due to the social distancing, she’s switched gears and now offers virtual retreats. At last count, 30 people signed up for her virtual retreats. This is now going to be part of her sales funnel moving forward. She pivoted and created a new market! 

 

Take on new opportunities 

There are opportunities available right now for the people who are ready to take action.  The expanding mindset will help you see the opportunities and take back control.  When you are in control you’re able to make things happen. 

 

Oftentimes, we limit ourselves and can’t see the big picture. Our vision shrinks until it no longer serves our goals.  You need to become aware of these thoughts in order to remove them from your system. Salespeople have an unlimited untapped potential and the only thing that can stop them from digging deep and being the best they can, is themselves. You are the person getting in the way of your own success. You can have the best coach, the best strategy, the best prospect list, and the best scripts but all of these only work if you stop sabotaging yourself.

 

The best salespeople don’t have special powers.  What sets them apart is they change their mindset and take action. Everytime they face resistance, they overcome and win. They do this again and again for every block they experience. 

 

Look at the big picture

As a sales rep, always look at the big picture. Do not focus on your thoughts and the negative words that threaten where you want to be. Nina and her team are there to help you get clarity and replace negative thoughts with the positive beliefs that will prompt you to take action. 

 

The best salespeople work on their mindset, take lots of action and build up courage and resilience. #BestSalesPerson

 

“How To Overcome Your Fear of Selling During Challenging Times” episode resources 

Stay connected with Nina Cooke through her linkedIn account and her website. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

This course is also brought to you in part by  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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1290.mp3
Category:Sales Fears -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

What I Wish I Knew Before Going Into Sales

 

To benefit the many new graduates and new sellers entering the sales arena, I’ve spent time thinking about the things I wish I knew before going into sales. This episode goes out to my buddy Isaac, who is just entering sales, as well as the other new graduates and new sellers.

Many sellers have initial experiences that leave them wondering if they made the right career choice. This month on The Sales Evangelist, we’re focusing on the class of 2020, but our messages will resonate with those who are entering the sales world for the first time as well as veterans who have been selling for a while. 

Believe in yourself and starve your doubts

Mindset is incredibly important, but I didn’t understand that initially. I remember watching movies like Boiler Room that portrayed a charismatic sales rep who would sweet-talk buyers and say anything necessary to land a sale. I figured sales was entirely about skillset.

When I came into sales, though, I realized that mindset is probably 70 percent of the effort. Unlike football, which requires learning physical tasks, sales is largely mental. 

Are you self-conscious about your ability to find prospects? Are you worried about people saying no to you? Do you believe in your product or service? All of these things tie back to your mindset and your belief, and you have to begin with a belief that you’re going to succeed. Believe that what you’re doing matters, and believe that you’re going to succeed.

I give credit to my buddy Jared Easley whose podcast Starve the Doubts first introduced me to the idea of dealing with doubt and worry. Feeling overwhelmed by doubts can cause you to wonder whether you’re cut out for sales, so you must avoid the temptation to fuel your doubts. 

There’s a Native American proverb that says that we each have two wolves within us: a good one and an evil one. Whichever wolf we feed most often will survive. You can feed the doubt or feed the belief in success. Create a proper mindset, develop some goals, and determine how you will overcome your existing belief system

Sales is not about winning or losing

Movies like Boiler Room perpetuate the idea that in any transaction, the seller is the winner and the buyer is the loser since the seller got money and the buyer got hustled. I wish I had understood that better before I got into professional selling. 

When I started selling B2B, I realized that I was engaging with very intelligent people. These were smart executives who weren’t going to be tricked or bamboozled. I wish I had realized this when I started selling. 

I realized after studying The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People that our job as sellers is to create a situation in which both parties win. We should create relationships in which both parties will benefit because the seller will close the deal and the buyer will solve a problem. Because the buyer needs our expertise, we’ll provide it and help them overcome a challenge. Once that happens, he’ll richly compensate us for our diligence and support. Sales is about helping the buyer identify a solution to a problem and then persuade himself that your organization offers the best solution. 

You must be ethical. You must deliver the things you promise to deliver in order to avoid customer churn. When you lead with the belief that your goal is to help solve problems, you’ll create raving fans in your customers. Focus on how you can help. 

Become an expert at asking effective questions

When I started out in sales, I thought that sellers did all the talking. I was surprised to find that many of the successful sellers are like Dr. Phil: they ask effective questions. 

Sellers who do this build rapport, and they are able to gather all the information they need to solve problems. And when you master the art of asking effective questions and doing follow up, your customers will tell you everything.

Consider a situation where you ask the buyer why his company is considering making a change right now. Some sellers would stop with that question, but sales pros will go deeper. 

“Why haven’t you been able to solve this problem in the past?” 

“If your current vendor is working well, why are you considering a move to another?”

I’ve spent too much time pitching my company’s great track record and providing information that my buyer didn’t really want to hear. By asking better questions and probing, I was able to gain true understanding and help my customers solve problems, which helped us close deals faster. 

 Don’t take rejection personally

Your customers will not wake up this morning planning to reject sales reps today. They won’t conjure negative ideas about you or your product. 

Most likely, when you call, they won’t be ready to talk. Give them a call back. Don’t take it personally if they reject you the first time. If you take these things personally, it can negatively impact your future phone calls. 

I wish I had known when I first started selling that rejection wasn’t personal. 

Compete with yourself

I ran track in college, and I learned the importance of being as aerodynamic as possible. If you turn to look behind you to see where your competitors are, you create drag. The wind pushes against you and you lose your forward momentum. 

We learned to focus on improving our times. Although we did compete with other people, we worked on beating our own previous performance. Eventually I want to beat my competitors so I can win the race, and I will definitely work toward that.

In sales, work to beat your yesterday. Don’t compare your pipeline to that of other sellers. 

Be disciplined

Dedicate time to prospecting.

Understand that you will make a lot of calls in order to find the customers who have a problem that you can help solve. You have to send out emails, connect with people on LinkedIn, and do all kinds of outreach in order to fill the top of your funnel. 

 

You have to kiss a lot of frogs in order to find ideal prospects. #SalesTales

Sales is a numbers game: the more you put in, the more you get out. New sellers may see veteran sellers succeed and assume that they aren’t prospecting much. What they don’t know is that the experienced seller goes to network events at night and generates leads in other ways beyond the phone. They are asking their current customers for referrals that lead to new business opportunities. 

Put in the sweat equity to become a master prospector. Be disciplined enough to prospect daily. 

Do the opposite of what everyone else is doing

When everyone else zigs, how can you zag?

If everyone else is relying on phone calls, maybe you can change things up a bit. Add something new.

If the goal is to get to the prospect, consider sending something via snail mail. Use LinkedIn. Use video. There are many, many people trying to connect with the people you’re reaching out to. Find ways to stand out from the competition.

We want to help

We create content like videos and podcasts because we have been in your shoes. I’ve been a seller who was frustrated with rejection and worried that I chose the wrong career. 

These things I wish I knew before going into sales changed my selling experience, and I want to do the same for you.

I want you to find more ideal customers. I want you to know what to say when you connect with them. I want you to build value, close more deals, and challenge your mind to do big things. 

“You Can’t Do It All On Your Own” episode resources

Subscribe to the podcast. Connect with me on LinkedIn

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

You can also connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com

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.

Direct download: TSE_1289.mp3
Category:Sales Experience, PreSales -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Why Giving Your Prospects An Out Upfront Will Help You Win In The End

Sometimes we need to lose a customer before they become a client. In the current climate of a pandemic it’s important that we give a client an out in order to be sensitive to their struggles but we still want them to know we’re open for business, right?  How are these two needs served in the way we communicate?

 

Jeff Kosser is the CEO and the founder of Zebrafi. The company is often known for its top-selling book, Selling Zebra, seeing the Zebra as the perfect prospect. The company’s philosophy is pretty straightforward. When people see Zebras, regardless of where that might be, they always know what it is. The simplicity and the purity of this fact  is the philosophy behind what keeps their business running. 

 

Jeff Koser has also built a software business based on software-guided selling. It’s a tool that guides B2B salespeople through the best practices of how to communicate and collaborate with the prospects and customers to ensure both parties arrive at a mutually beneficial place.

 

Selling in the present situation 

It’s imperative that salespeople be sensitive to the current world situation. Jeff’s goal sales goal is lofty, as he wants to change the way people sell throughout the world. However, to be able to do that, we first have to  recognize who we are as salespeople, what we are as a business, and what we’re selling. Our business may not represent something that is a priority for people right now, and that’s okay, but as we seek to keep our businesses going, we need to diversify our approach. 

 

Jeff Koser believes that we must approach every sales situation, whether it’s prospects or customers, with language that gives them an out. When you want to keep in touch with your customers or prospects by email, for example, genuinely ask about the safety of their family and their employees. Not just in a way that allows you to check off the “sincerity box” but in a way that your customer knows you are there for THEM. Be respectful about how you reach out to them and acknowledge they may have very different priorities by the time you contact them. Let them know that if the timing is right, you want to help, but regardless the relationship is the priority and you will come alongside their needs on their terms. 

 

What our business represents may not be a priority for everyone right now.  We are approaching every sales situation with a simple out. #SalesApproach

 

Respectful selling

Jeff recently received 149 email messages in his spam folder within a 24-hour period. Due to automation and account-based marketing, there are several tools that can come with good messaging but unfortunately, even good messages are getting buried just from the sheer volume. There will always be those companies, however, that believe talking about the product at the very beginning of the message is the best way to begin an email.  During a pandemic, when people are struggling, this isn’t the best approach.  Making sensitivity and respect a priority in your communication will preserve the dignity of your business, and your prospect’s. 

Doing otherwise could tarnish your personal brand or that of your company’s.

 

Despite the volume of spam email Jeff received, he opened a few of the emails with the more interesting subject lines. The most annoying emails came from companies that introduced their products as soon as he opened the message without any reference to the struggles going on in the world that we are in right now. Other emails that were only slightly better began with, “Hope you’re well and healthy…” before launching into the product information. Both approaches are typically ineffective but they’re even more inappropriate in the current climate.

 

What you can do

To improve their approach, salespeople can do more research. First, they should know if their company fits the priority and needs of their prospects and customers. Jeff Koser recommends salespeople know the following before pursuing contact: 

 

  • That their product or service can help solve their prospect’s current problems. 
  • They’re talking to the decision makers.
  • How much value needs to be created within the prospect’s timeline. 



Jeff’s current clients take this advice to heart. Some of Jeff’s clients also seek his help because they’re preparing to launch well once this pandemic is over and they want to be able to reposition their businesses to accommodate future needs. One of the things Jeff recommends is to talk with their clients’ customers. Doing this allows them to ask their clients’ customers what problems have been solved by buying their clients’ solutions. 

 

This method allows them to see their client through the eyes of existing or former customers. The customers’ words are always going to be more powerful than any marketing department. Additional information is gathered by talking to the executives who are the decision makers for the customer solution. 

 

Selling to the executives 

In the world of sales, the person with the most power is the one who makes the purchasing decision. Jeff Koser defines power as the people who can buy, even without a budget because they can move the budget around. Even now, if you’re able to convey the value you bring to these power people in a way that positions you as a problem solver, it’s possible to have a thriving business.  

Many salespeople are mistakenly assuming that now is not the time to prospect but the reality is, these decision-makers are stuck at home too. While people are sheltered in their homes, we have an opportunity to reach out. Jeff Koser has clients that they’ve been respectfully reaching out to for months and they are wanting to talk. Why? People are now looking for something positive to do in their day. Many are ready to give back to their customers and the  company partnerships who have treated them well. 

 

Getting by in time of corona 

Sales is a lot of work, even more so if you add  the goal of talking to your client’s customers. However, it’s worth the effort. Many companies don’t directly work with the power person but they are always there, somewhere behind-the-scenes. Even if  you do meet them and they approve the purchase, the relationship doesn’t usually stay at the power level. Your relationships will be more consistent at the user level, the day-to-day person who is benefitting from the solution directly. 

 

Research also entails doing a deep dive into the details of the business you want to work with you so have a better understanding of how your product or service can best align with their needs. Without this level of preparation, your contact may go no further than a conference call and this is not your end goal. 

 

The information from the customers who use your client’s solutions serve as the raw materials for building the rest of the tools to help guide the sales through the software-driven path that Jeff’s company creates for each customer. 

 

The software guided selling 

Jeff Koser has a new product called Zebra Salesbot for Salesforce. It’s a little button within Salesforce and when you get a hit for a good prospect or  customer, it will look for five more similar companies within that industry. Their current industries include manufacturers of software, high-tech software companies, and services companies. They used federated search to comb the web to load the AI. Jeff Koser’s company has been working on it for several years and now, it’s coming to reality through beta testing. 

 

Prospecting when the pandemic ends will be another challenge. Jeff and his team have created a talk track and email template to better approach prospects and customers. Always remember  your words will prove that you care and that you’re sensitive to the hardships everyone is going through while letting people know you’re open for business. 

 

“Why Giving Your Prospects An Out Upfront Will Help You Win In The End” episode resources 

Recognize that sales isn’t about you, it’s about the priorities of your prospects and customers so make respect a priority when you make contact and allow them to have a way out. Reach out to Jeff Koser via his website.  

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

This course is also brought to you in part by  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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1288.mp3
Category:Sales approach -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

The Sales Manager's Guide To Greatness! 

 

You may have been a top salesperson, and still continue to be, but that doesn’t always qualify you to be a top sales manager. Both have very different skill sets and require mastery in very different skills. 

 

Kevin F. Davis is the author of the book The Sales Manager’s Guide to Greatness: Ten Essential Strategies for Leading your Team to the Top. Kevin started his career in sales at an entry level position and worked hard to become a general manager. His new role gave him the opportunity to train and coach 250 sales people and directly manage the sales team and sales managers. 

 

He also founded TopLine Leadership, Inc. where they have offered sales coaching and leadership workshops to corporate clients and groups of sales managers for the last 27 years. Other books Kevin has written include Getting into your Customer’s Head and Slow Down, Sell Faster.

 

On writing the book 

There aren’t a lot of books written about how to effectively manage sales people so Kevin wrote his books to help fill this void in the marketplace and to offer support that was sorely lacking. Research has shown that up to 80% of all sales managers in North America don’t get the training they need in order to be successful. Their company may not have a budget for it or they offer management training that is too general to solve the specific problems of their sales managers. 

 

Not enough time 

Managers have to spend the majority of their work day answering emails, dealing with interruptions, going to meetings, and answering questions from their sales team. With this constant activity, they are too overwhelmed the distractions to coach their salespeople.    

 

The self-serving bias  

Most salespeople think they’re better than they actually are. We tend to overestimate our capabilities and underestimate our weaknesses. The result is a sales team who think they’re better than they are and don’t fully appreciate the mistakes they may be making. Because they aren’t being coached, they don’t know they’re making mistakes and end up perpetuating existing problems. Unfortunately, salespeople are getting a lot less feedback from overtaxed sales managers. Because they are so busy, managers tend to wait for a sales rep to come and ask questions instead of being proactive. An opportunity to coach comes from approaching the sales team with critical questions throughout the entire sales process. Kevin points out that the salespeople on the team who appear to be  the least needy are probably the people who need coaching the most.

 

Great salespeople don’t always make great sales managers. #SalesTruths

 

According to Kevin, a great sales rep who has mastered  their sales role inhibits that individual’s success as a sales manager. As sellers, we love to take charge of a situation and work it through to have a successful outcome. Once you become a sales manager it can be tempting to jump into a conversation a sales rep is having with their client. This can send a message to the team you don’t trust their process and destroys an opportunity for valuable coaching following that meeting. Kevin further added that the sales people who report to you are your Number One customers so you should care about how to make them the most effective they can be. 

 

From being task-oriented to people-oriented

 

One attribute of a great sales leader is recognizing the importance of sharing time between tasks and coaching their team. Sales managers need to be able to focus on their salespeople and connect on a professional and personal basis. 

 

As a sales manager, it’s your job to ensure that your salespeople are with you and they know what the team is trying to accomplish. While it’s good to be task-oriented, it’s equally important to be people-focused. Kevin mentioned the valuable lessons he learned from the story of Beth Comstock (now the vice-chairman at General Electric) about how important it is to focus on people and not just be a task-master. 

 

Understand the buying cycle 

 

The sales forecast is a misnomer. The sales forecast should be a buying forecast. It is important to understand the customer’s buying process to maximize the sale. Sales managers need to be able to recognize when a buyer is purchasing differently from the way the sales rep is trying to sell. Oftentimes sales reps sell faster than the customer wants to buy. The buying process focuses on improving the accuracy of the forecasts instead of depending on the guesswork of sales. The key to this is by asking the right questions. One example would be to ask the sales rep, What are the buying criteria in order of priority?  When a sales manager asks the right questions, the sales rep knows what to ask the customer. 

 

Managing sales people requires a completely different set of skills from selling. If you’re looking to get promoted, set a goal to become as masterful at  leadership as you are selling.

 

“The Sales Manager's Guide To Greatness!” episode resources 

Connect with Kevin Davis via his website and you can also follow him on Twitter (@kevinfdavis) and LinkedIn accounts. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

This course is also brought to you in part by  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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1287.mp3
Category:Sales Manager, Training, Coaching -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Why Every Seller Needs To Create An Ideal Sales Profile 

 

It is imperative for all businesses, no matter the size, to be able to describe their target customer. It is equally important for businesses to create an ideal sales profile. This will help you identify the right hire for your sales team. In this episode, Donald will talk about the  importance of defining the ideal sales profile in detail. 

 

Oftentimes, as salespeople, we start our days with a list of things we want to accomplish in our day. By the end of the day, however, we realize we didn’t get to do what we set out to do. As a result, you come up with excuses for why you didn't get your tasks completed. You can avoid that by creating the ideal sales profile. This is about the picture you’ve set in your mind about how you will conduct yourself in each activity throughout the day, long before they happen.

 

Visualize your success

The greatest swimmer of all time, Michael Phelps’ was taught by his coach about playing tapes to watch his performance.. His coach told him to visualize the perfect race and all the details surrounding those moments. His job was to play in his mind every scenario that could occur: What does the audience look like, what is the feel of the water temperature, how does he feel mentally and emotionally? He would visualize his win over and over again until eventually he knew exactly what to do to win the race. He visualized it before it happened. 

 

The greatest people in their careers and fields have all visualised their success long before they ever got there. That’s exactly what you need to do - visualize your success before it happens. 

In a sales situation, salespeople can get distracted because more often than not, we focus on external factors. We spend hours, days, and even weeks coming up with the ideal customer profile. Your task now is to create the mental tape of your ideal sales profile succeeding in every scenario.

 

The ideal seller

Who is the ideal seller? The ideal seller is you, at your best,  able to sell in every possible scenario. It’s about more than what it looks like to execute a sale, it’s about what the seller can do under various situations. 

 

In 2008, Michael Phelps was competing in Beijing and while in the water, his goggles broke but this didn’t stop him. He still won. How was he able to pull through? He had already visualized himself winning the competition with broken goggles. Michael Phelps had already created his ideal swimmer profile, planned out what he’d do in a variety of adverse circumstances and saw himself win anyway. His preparedness enabled him to perform without skipping a beat. 

 

What does your ideal seller look like?  It’s you selling within the different scenarios you’ve already seen in your mind. #SalesProfile

 

Envision yourself

It helps to see yourself accomplish everything on your to do list. If you have made up your mind to make phone calls at a certain time of day, then ensure you’ll do what you have planned no matter what other schedules will pop up. If you planned on making phone calls at 2 PM, then make the calls and prospect. Envision yourself sitting in your chair, making calls, and think about what you’ll do if you’re faced with any distractions. Let it play out in your mind until you’re positioned to get back on the calls. This will help you to know what to do and say in order to  take control of the situation. If you don’t, you have a greater probability of getting pulled away from the task at hand. 

 

You can apply the same visualization technique to negative conversations. Some clients will not be receptive to your offer but you can envision how you’ll handle these scenarios beforehand and prepare what you’ll say. You don’t need to have all possibilities covered but you can have a better idea of how you’ll respond for a greater success rate. 

 

  • Envision yourself to be a seller who hits quota 
  • Envision yourself to do prospecting everyday
  • Envision yourself to perform well under pressure

 

Play the situation in your head

You may have created a habit of doing a different activity when you’re supposed to be prospecting but habits can be replaced with some creative visualization.  Believe that you will prospect at a set time and stick to it.  If you’re playing a tape in your mind of being distracted, replace it with focus and execution. 

 

If you make prospecting a new habit and stick to it, your mind will replace the old tape and success will be the new norm. Your mind will recognize these habits as something you do on a regular basis. As a result, you’ll have the energy and the capacity to perform your goals. The key is that long before the habit is formed, play the tape over and over again in your head until your brain believes it.  Once that happens, the actions will start to match until it’s truth. Just make sure that as you release the negative scenarios you’re replacing them with your best actions.  If you don’t, your mind will fall back into old habits of thinking.  Get those new habits locked in!  

 

The importance of mind setting 

Instill in your mind that you are a problem solver.  What you think, you’ll become. 

 

“Why Every Seller Needs To Create An Ideal Sales Profile” episode resources 

If you have more questions, don't hesitate to comment on this episode. Donald will get back to you with the answer. Find Donald C Kelly in all the other platforms out there. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

This course is also brought to you in part by  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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1286.mp3
Category:Sales Profile, Ideal Sales Profile -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

We all experience pain and grief and in these seasons, we can feel depths of emotion that are hard to resolve.  How does unresolved grief affect your sales potential? Let’s learn about dealing with unresolved grief today with Herdyne Mercier. 

 

Herdyne Mercier is the Chief Grief Crusader and host of  Redefining Grief Podcast with Herdyne Mercier. Her job is to create safe spaces so that broken hearts can be seen, heard, and validated. The process helps you get unstuck from your unresolved grief and get you to a place of purposeful living. 

 

Redefining grief 

Herdyne defines grief as experiencing any kind of loss. This isn’t limited to losing a loved one to death. Grief can also be felt when you move to a new place, experience job loss, go through divorce, or when filing for bankruptcy. Herdyne had the exact feeling when along with her husband, they filed for bankruptcy back in 2007/2008. The real estate market crashed and they couldn’t sell their home. Her husband, James Mercier, could not find a job with a Master’s Degree.  Herdyne had to become the main provider for the family while James delivered newspapers and sushi. As a new mother, she grieved having only thirteen days to spend with her newborn son before she realized she had to go back to work. As James adjusted to being a stay-at-home father, he too grieved as a man because of the job he’d lost.  

 

The grief almost cost them their marriage when Herdyne told her husband that she needed a divorce but James, in his wisdom, suggested they go to counseling together instead. The process of overcoming her own grief helped her create a brand that represents a woman who had forgotten to put on her MASK (an acronym we’ll explain) but is now healed. In her healing, she is now able to serve others. 

 

Days of grieving

Many are grieving loss due to the pandemic. People have lost their jobs and some have lost the people they love from this illness. We have all lost something in this pandemic and are trying to figure out how to navigate this new normal. There’s a lot of frustration and pain in the process. 

 

The first step is to not compare your grief story to someone else’s. We may feel that our loss is greater than others but in truth, we can’t actually quantify loss. Our culture does not teach us how to deal with loss. Instead, we focus on aiming for the top and shooting for number one. We want the biggest house and the nicest car, but we aren’t told what to do with our emotions. We’re not guided toward healing when loss occurs. 

 

This is nobody’s fault - not your parents, not your grandparents, or any other people around you. Circumstances are what they are; however,Herdyne teaches to be still and know your purpose. How do you go about doing that? 

 

The truth and connection anchor

Emotional anchors will set you free.  The first, is truth.  Be honest about your grief. The next anchor is connection. Look for that person in whom you can confide and be totally transparent.

One of the biggest myths a griever has to overcome is the belief they have to do it alone.  

 

Overcoming your truth

They say time heals all wounds but Herdyne doesn’t believe this to be true. Time doesn’t heal all wounds. While time may pass on, you can remain emotionally stuck. 

 

Some also believe that keeping yourself busy will help you forget your grief, that if you stay busy, the grief will eventually fade. The truth is, grief won’t just disappear.  Left unchecked, it will manifest in other ways. These alternatives are just pacifying and soothing behaviours. Giving a hungry baby a pacifier only means you’ve helped to delay, but not address, the real problem of hunger.  In the same vein, you need to heal and not just soothe by taking time for yourself,  finding a community, possibly hiring a grief coach or a therapist, and finding a wisdom circle. Seeking wisdom in your situation is how you’ll see the beauty of restoration. 

 

The restoration anchor is the phase where you’ve already managed your grief and  taken care of the pain and the loss. 

 

Your grief

Everyone’s grief journey is different, so we can’t compare or police anyone’s journey. We all have our own time frame and can even experience grief flare-ups. Anchor into your truth, your sadness, and your heartache. 

 

In seeking the wisdom within your situation, you can begin healing the grief. #Healing

 

The importance of dealing with your truth

Oftentimes, people can be tempted to “go with the flow” in order to ignore the pain. For example, you may be hurt because your friend wasn’t there when you needed him/her. Instead of talking it out, you decide to get on with your life to get over it. You think you’re okay until your friend calls and you don’t answer your phone.  Because you didn’t address the root cause of your pain, your feelings haven’t been resolved.

 

The first step toward healing is to seek wisdom. Herdyn has many free resources about how you can find wisdom. This resource has 61 different ways you experience grief and how you can deal with each one. Once you know how to deal with grief, you’ll be closer to setting yourself free. 

 

When we were children, we were told to go to our rooms when we cried. As parents, it’s our job to let our children grieve. Instead of asking why they’re crying, ask them to share what their tears represent. Allow them to express themselves and let them tell their story. 

 

Follow the MASK

At one point, Herdyne was wondering why she wasn’t selling the shirts from her brand. She was wearing the product, sharing it on social media, and once in a while, had it in her Etsy store. Still, the shirts weren’t selling. Herdyne sought wisdom by enrolling in the TSE course where she learned that she needed to do more than just wear her items, she needed to promote her brand, Wifedence. She realized she needed to share that her brand means standing up and showing love, offering support, and living life with a purpose. It means standing up and having the life you deserve. 

 

When you’re grieving, remember MASK. 

 

  • M - maintain your peace
  • A - acknowledge your emotion
  • S - seek community 
  • K - this too shall pass

 

When facing grief as a salesperson or as an individual, don’t just ignore it. Address your grief and overcome it. 

 

“How To Unlock Your Sales Potential By Dealing With Unresolved Grief” episode resources 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

Catch Herdyne Mercier on May 7, 2020 7PM EST for her Master Class webinar where she’ll be talking about unlocking your purpose to heal your unresolved grief. Go to her website to check out the free webinar. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1285.mp3
Category:Healing, Grief -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Why Your Brain Lies To You: Cash Is NOT The Best Motivator

 

Although money is one of the indicators of growth and success, it’s not necessarily the best motivator when it comes to incentivizing a sales team.

 

Tim Houlihan and Dr. Kurt Nelson are consultants who have spent more than 20 years working with companies to design incentives that will increase productivity within sales teams.  Just a few years ago, they started a podcast that provides practical applications in the real world. One of their topics, motivation through incentivizing, is especially helpful for sales managers. 

 

People tend to make decisions based on an emotional gut response, even though we mistakenly think these choices are made based on rational thought. Emotion and motivation come from the same root making it difficult to distinguish one from the other. Money has less of an emotional connection than we realize and because motivation is tied to our emotions, money can be a poor incentive for a sales team. 

 

Human beings as emotional creatures

Daniel Kahneman won a Nobel Prize in 2002 for his idea about the one thinking vs two thinking, an automatic response versus one's cognitive reflective thinking. Human beings respond quickly to a number of situations because that’s how we survive. 

 

The brain takes only 3% of our body weight but it consumes 20% of the energy used. The brain then tries to conserve energy with the speed of decision making. When we make emotion-based decisions, non-rational judgements are made. 

 

The illusion of motivation 

Because we think we know our own motivation, we think we can analyze what motivates others.  While we can be sympathetic, knowing what others think has too many variables for us to make a consistent, accurate assessment.  If we focus on someone’s emotions, instead of assuming what they’re thinking, it is far more effective to ask directly.

 

Cash is a required component

Cash isn’t bad as an inventive. It’s a required component in any business and it’s needed to pay the bills, mortgage, buy food, go on vacation etc. However, once those needs are met, incentives that are more material or experiential in nature move people into greater effort.

 

Tim did research with Dan Ariely from Duke University, the author of the book called Predictably Irrational. For their study, Tim and Dan took several call center reps and broke them into four groups, each getting a different reward. They found that the people who were rewarded with prizes such as bicycles, cockpots, and other non-cash items performed 30% higher than their counterparts who received cash.

 

Motivation and Emotion 

When we evaluate the value of an incentive, a cash reward is easily calculated against the effort it takes to get it.  When a non-cash reward is offered, it’s harder to estimate. The thought process then goes to the level of desire for the prize and the motivation becomes emotion-based rather than calculative. 

 

The Four Drive Model, developed by Paul Lawrence and Nitin Nohria, illustrates the different ways people can be motivated. 

 

The four drive models: 

  • Acquire and achieve:  Reward System
  • Bonding and belonging: Organization’s Culture
  • Challenge and creating: Job and Organizational Structure
  • Defending and defining: Vision/Reputation and their Performance Management System

 

Competition as a motivator

When Tim begins his lectures,  he asks the students to raise their hands as high as they can. He then asks them to raise their hands even more.  About 30-40% of them will continue to stretch a bit more which means they weren’t raising their hands as high as they could. They always had a little incremental effort reserved. 

 

Tim would then say that whomever raised his/her hand the highest would get the candy bar in he was holding. Invariably, there would be people who stood on their chairs to get the candybar.  In this scenario, the motivation wasn’t the prize.  It was the competition.  

 

The same is true for the sales reps. 

 

Tim and Kurt often hear sales reps say that their whole lives revolve around money.  Was this true? Tim and Kurt decided to team up with a global automobile manufacturer in Saudi Arabia to test the dealer owners. These were extraordinarily wealthy men so cash was not a good incentive.   Instead, they were offered lunch with Nelson Mandela who was still alive then and living in South Africa. They then added another element of competition and told them they would get to land their private jets at the Johannesburg Airport in the order that they finish the contest. The team set up a big tent on the tarmac and received them as they landed. Each owner in the competition worked extra hard to not be the last one to land.

 

They didn’t need more money but they sold more cars in order to achieve something that would elevate them above their peers, a prize they couldn’t get on their own.

 

The hedonic component

The hedonic component speaks to a prize being perceived as a luxury.. When we get cash, we tend to assign its function such as education, bills, mortgage, and other necessities. As a result, the mind has already spent the money.

 

However, if  the prize is a $5,000 trip to Hawaii you take it as it is. Our brain doesn't spend that value the same way it does a cash reward. The trip to Hawaii will be an experience that you get to remember far into the future.

 

Money becomes a less motivational tool because a cash prize isn’t likely something you will share with friends or social media. A trip to Hawaii, a bicycle, and other non-monetary prizes come with a story you’re happy to share.  

 

Cash incentives tend to be allocated to needs. Merchandise and trips have a luxury component. #SalesTruths

 

The pinnacle of happiness 

There’s research that says $70,000 is what it takes for a person to be happy and above that, happiness flattens out. The reality is we don’t have a good understanding of what is going to make us happy. For salespeople, they believe they will be happier if they’re paid more. This isn’t necessarily false because money can increase performance and motivation. However, money doesn’t really make us happier. Sales managers have to be mindful of relativity. Relativity occurs when salespeople see other sales reps doing the same things they do but are paid more. This is a big demotivator as they begin to compare themselves to others.

 

Stack ranking 

Stack ranking is another misnomer in sales. A lot of sales managers say that peer pressure is good and believe people are motivated to greater action when compared to others.

 

This can backfire when middle tier performers are asked to compete with the highest performers.  The middle tiers may work hard but just not enough to be among the highest.  This can be very discouraging. 

 

It’s far better to allow the same levels of people to compete against each other so they all have the same equal opportunity to win.

 

Take it one step at a time

People want to be accepted so they remain content with the status quo.  Sales managers, however, can veer the incentive system toward a non-monetary reward.  When this is done, it’s important for sales managers to ensure they take into account perceived value. To illustrate, there’s an emotional difference between gaining $100 and losing $100. Even with the same amount, the idea of losing over gaining bears a much bigger emotional impact. The best way to make incremental change is by not taking away anything from the cash plan but do add a non-cash reward. You need to make changes from cash to non-cash in a very slow and incremental fashion.  Give your sales reps the time to adjust to the new system until they’re ready for a non-cash reward. Do not take away their X just to give them Y when Y is much less than X’s perceived value. 

 

Examples of non-cash rewards

The most powerful example of the non-cash reward that Keith has seen is a group travel reward. The award was by the sales district and winners all got to travel together with their spouses to places within 300-400 miles. It gave the winners a close-knit bond with each other, as well as their spouses.

 

Back in 2008, Tim was working with an insurance client that was declining at 35% annually. When Tim suggested the company use prizes that were non-monetary but equivalent to their commission, the business went flat instead of declining. 

 

Structuring your incentive system

There are a variety of ways you can set up incentive systems and Tim and Kurt can help define what’s best for your company. They work with the sales team to understand the psychological factors that motivate the team to increase sales.

 

“Why Your Brain Lies To You: Cash Is NOT The Best Motivator” episode resources 

There’s always an emotional aspect to every decision but we don’t always react rationally. We need to understand how our brain reacts to emotional responses. 

This episode is brought to you in part by Crmble, the easy-peasy CRM for Trello that helps you manage your contacts and leads without investing in complicated solutions, sync all your data, manage custom fields, and get powerful reporting on your sales. Try Crmble for free now at www.crmble.com/tse.

Connect with Kurt Nelson and Tim Houlihan on Twitter. They also do their own podcast that you can check out. 

If you are interested in more sales stories, you can talk to Donald directly. Reach him via these channels: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook about 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. It will help them elevate their sales game. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can go and visit www.thesalesevangelist.com/closemoredeals 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. Other songs used in the episodes are as follows: The Organ Grinder written by Bradley Jay Hill, performed by Bright Seed, and Produced by Brightseed and Hill.

Direct download: TSE_1284.mp3
Category:Sales Rewards, Sales Incentives -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

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