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Welcome to the final blog in the Secret to Sales series.
Truly great, kickass salespeople make sure they are well informed so they can position themselves as highly knowledgeable, extremely resourceful and someone to be respected and listened to. The truth is they also don’t consider themselves sales people.
Does this come as a surprise?
The truth is… they might be activists, strategists, inventors, tech geeks, brand guys, lawyers, film makers, creatives, musicians, popes, presidents – and every single one of them has to sell. They need to sell an idea, a belief, a vision, to create movement, gain traction and close deals.
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve shared how to reframe sales in a way that’s right for you and get your strategy right. I also mentioned in my last post that really believing what you are selling, is the key to the big unlock but before we get to that, let’s see what is really holding you back from getting out there and selling.
The root of all evil.
We’ve all had the bad sales experience and this, in my humble opinion, is the root of the problem and why people think that they can’t sell.
Now try to think of a horrific sales experience. This shouldn’t take you long.
I’ll bet good money, that you instantly recalled an awful call from one of those PPI guys, or a knock at the door from a darned pest of a man from the electricity or phone company or some such other every day service provider – who has no passion for what they do. It’s a paycheck and that’s all to them.
These everyday regular bad experiences mean we all connect the word sales and all salespeople to this negative connotation. Am I right?!
If you start from here, no bloody wonder you are daunted, horrified and outright dreading the idea of selling yourself, business or service.
Now try to imagine, a good sales experience. Close your eyes for a minute if it helps. It’s harder right?
Your mind is probably bouncing to customer services, a helpful bar owner, or that great travel agent or perhaps that personal shop assistant who helped you that one time. There is no question they were all selling to you but certainly it was a softer sell. You were already there, interested and looking.
So think a bit more.
Someone must have impressed you somewhere along the line… made an approach to you on the phone or in person now what was it they said?
To be perfectly frank, it should be either extremely hard to remember if they said much at all or exactly the opposite in that they said so much but in more of a free flowing conversation. With tons of good advice it is impossible for you to reiterate, never mind learn from, and spin into your own spiel. And this my friends is part of the secret of the power of the mindset.
If you encountered truly one of the greats, it would have all seemed so natural, they would have treated you as an equal.
They would have had an authority about them and a quiet confidence that drew you in. They would have considered what they had to share with you something of extreme value and worthy of your time.
Of course, their knowledge on their chosen subject matter will have been extremely astute, this helps build your trust but isn’t what makes a sale.
I have no doubt that you are an expert when it comes to your area of expertise.
You don’t need to learn someone else’s spiel, you need to learn their mindset and replicate that.
Here’s how you can do this too.
1). Banish the bad thoughts
You need to know this; every bad experience you have had in sales is due to someone being badly trained, badly equipped and therefore coming from a place of lack. They are not passionate about what they do, they don’t believe in what they are selling and therefore they cannot sell.
Forget these people. Stop thinking of sales as a dirty word.
Think about what sales will bring you when you make a sale. Money, power and respect.
Sales means growth, you can do more of what you love and less of what you hate. You can diversify, explore new opportunities, meet new people and extend your reach.
Start worrying about how not being good at sales will keep you small.
Start prioritising learning to master it and start dreaming of the success you will achieve that you never dreamed possible.
Most people aren’t “born sales people”… they become sales people by learning and adopting the mindset of “I am going to get good at sales”.
2). Get your head on straight
Start looking for what works. Or to coin a favourite saying of my Dad’s “Get your head on straight” which simply means stop worrying about everything else and focus on the task”.
This kind of expression sounds like something from a war film or a sports champions’ biography because they both have a similar scenario, they are battling their way to the top. They do this with talent and strength, perseverance and a belief in what they are doing and that they will be victorious. Sales is no different.
Great sales people are relentless in their mission. Instead of a battle of strength it’s a battle of wits – the goal to get you to their way of thinking.
They have skilled up on techniques, (opening, closing) they have considered all the possibilities (arguments for and against) and made sure they have the most honed strategy and above all they have practiced.
Notice the next person to persuade you to consider their offer. Listen to people who are selling something. Be that someone you admire, a partner, friend or someone you don’t know. Pay attention to their approach, the ones that instantly make you feel at ease and interested in this new concept. Look out for the parts that makes you listen to what they have to say with more interest. How do they break it down? How did they close? Analyse all of this and start making a conscious effort to get good at sales.
3). Reframe the challenge
Read the first in the Secret to Sales blog series:3 Ways To Reframe Sales So That It Works For You for more on how to do this and constantly recite the following mantras until you believe it.
“I am here to guide them to the best solution”.
4). Stay true to your strategy
You know where to focus your energy and only share need-to-know options that are tailored to the individual – You are an expert in your field. See the second blog in the series Why You Need To Know Your Customer’s Habits in Order To Sell for guidance on how to build a sales strategy.
You are sharing knowledge, solving problems, helping, sharing and teaching. You can do this by always being one step ahead. In your chosen field this is easy. You are an inspiration. Get out there and talk to people. Spread the word, make it happen.
You desire to make a difference – make this your number one focus. Make it your duty to make the sale.
Speak to people – as many as possible, whenever you can and find ways for others to spread the word for you.
Make a difference.
To summarise, each great salesperson you have ever experienced has approached you with curiosity, intelligence, passion and a belief they could make a difference. Sure they have followed a process, worked on their confidence, practiced, made mistakes and found things that worked and that didn’t.
The bottom line is they kept going. They didn’t give up. They found their way because they believed in themselves and what they were doing.
Whatever the opportunity is that brought you here, it is not going to hang around.
You need to grab it with both hands and get yourself skilled up, level the playing field and develop your approach, strategy and mindset to win. I have no doubt you can take the above and add a dash of trial and error and do this on your own, but why not let me get you there faster?
Get in touch today and discover how I can support you getting to the next level.