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Sell the problem you solve

Sell the Problem You Solve Not Your Product.

“When you sell a man a book you don’t sell just twelve ounces of paper and ink and glue – you sell him a whole new life. Love and friendship and humour and ships at sea by night – there’s all heaven and earth in a book, a real book.” – Christopher Morley “Don’t sell life insurance. Sell what life insurance can do.” – Ben Feldman “It isn’t that they can’t see the solution. It’s that they can’t see the problem.” – G K Chesterton Sell the Problem You Solve Not Your Product. What do the above quotes have in common? The focus is on selling the solution instead of selling a product. And what do most salespeople lead with? A presentation focused on their product. It’s not the sales persons fault. It’s more than likely forced upon them by their employer. BUT… what do salespeople do during a presentation….most of the talking, instead of listening. A high performance salesperson asks good, pointed questions (probing) to uncover problems and needs. In the classic sales presentation, the salesperson actually listens 65% of the time and talks only 35% of the time. The vast majority of salespeople talk 80% of the time and only listen 20% […]

why-my-pantyhoseare-in-a-twist-1

Why My Pantyhose are in a Twist. Closed Mindsets.

I hate a closed mindset. If you resist trying something new, this article is for you. I’m ok if you ask my advice and I suggest something you’ve already tried and it didn’t work. Kudos to you for trying. What I can’t stand is when you ask my advice, have never tried it but you’re convinced it won’t work… for you. That’s being closed-minded. That’s Why My Pantyhose are in a Twist. Closed Mindsets.  Every week, I receive phone calls, emails or social media messages, asking different “what if” or “how to” questions from sales people. And there’s always one in the bunch that has a closed mind to every suggestion. When I ask back.. ”Have you ever tried this” the answer is NO. Then I follow with, “have you ever heard of this suggestion” and the answer is NO. BUT YET the next thing I hear is… ”But Christine, my situation is different.” Dude…we all think our situations are different, special and like no one else. You’re living in a closed mindset. As a kid, I’d try whatever anyone suggested when I wanted to succeed at something. I played trumpet. Lived for trumpet. Loved playing trumpet. My private teacher was […]

social-media

Social Media. Should You? Read Before You Dismiss This Article.

Before you dismiss this article on social media as one you don’t need to read…think again…because this article applies to you. I hear from so many people… “I don’t need to do social media..I’m not _____” (fill in the blank)…you know the lame story you tell yourself. Why am I on Youtube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook? It may surprise you as to why. And it may also surprise you to learn; I’ve been on social media for only a couple of years. But I’m glad I finally came around. It took me two years to learn what I now know about LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, & Instagram. I’m still learning about Facebook. I haven’t cracked that nut yet…but I will. So why spend so much of my time learning social media? Because it’s another tool I can use in my business to gain exposure. I don’t sell…I tell a story. Here’s the Social Media Scoop! Social media is not a get rich quick strategy that so many 20 year olds with no real experience claim they can teach. Yes, the snake oil salesman is younger and in different clothes selling their gimmicks. Those that got on the social media bandwagon […]

4 MYTHS OF NETWORKING

4 Myths of Networking

While still in college, a young man who studying computer science was obsessed with comedy. He performed in small comedy clubs around the college he attended. The young college student interned in NY alt-weekly and his boss passed on his audition tape to Randi Siegel. When she called the young college student, he said, “I know you.” And proceeded to tell her all that he knew. So impressed with his vast knowledge of the comedy industry she agreed to take him on as a client that lead him to two auditions and a part on SNL. Do you know who networked his way into SNL? So after this young man networked his way into SNL. He didn’t stop there. After every SNL show, he thanked Lorne Michaels for the show. After he left SNL he flopped at a few movies, but continued to network…Jay Leno told Men’s Journal. “Most people in show business think they know everything. They don’t really listen to the other person. They just wait for the other person to stop talking. Respectful is the best word I can use for Jimmy Fallon” Yes, it was Jimmy Fallon who networked himself into SNL and The Tonight Show. Myth 1 […]

5 second rule (2)

THE 5 SECOND SALES RULE NO ONE TALKS ABOUT

THE AWKWARD SILENCE. Yes, the subject came up again just last week, during a client’s first session. “Christine, when there’s a lag in the conversation, I usually start talking to fill the void so the prospect doesn’t feel uncomfortable.” Me: ‘What makes you think the prospect feels uncomfortable?’ “Well, if I’m feeling that way, I assume he must too.” Me: “WHY?” “I mean, shouldn’t I keep the conservation moving?” Me: ‘How can you tell he finished his thought.’ “Well…because he stopped talking.” Me: “Don’t you pause to gather your thoughts?” The Light Bulb went on. THE 5 SECOND SALES RULE NO ONE TALKS ABOUT This is one of the most important sales communication tool to learn. The awkwardness of silence was probably singed into your memory banks somewhere back in junior high at a class dance. Boy sees girl sitting alone at a class dance. Boy nervously asks girl “wanna dance?” Girl says anxiously, “sure.” Boy and girl dance never looking at each other or saying a word. The music stops so boy walks girl back to her chair, and sits down next to her. Boy fiddles with his shoestrings not sure about what to say or do. Girl fidgets with her hair not […]

How to move a no to a yes

How to Move a No to a Yes!

Let’s face it…there are only a handful of reasons why buyers don’t buy…. No Trust No Money No Time No Urgency No Need HOW TO MOVE A NO TO YES! What is the buyer really saying “no” too? How you frame your question could be one reason why your getting a “NO” response. You see there is a psychology to selling and words matter. Are you selling to your needs or to the buyers needs? AND . Whenever you’re offering a “change” the buyer always processes that as CHANGE PAIN! The thoughts tumbling around in their brain sounds like this…. “I don’t know this guy or his company” “It may not workout which will cause the company loss in revenue.” “I don’t have time to change.” “I’ve seen this rodeo before.” “We’ll have to get others on board, and that’s not easy.” So the prospects “automatic response” to you is… “I’m happy with my current vendor.” Here’s how to answer Miss Buyer. “Miss Buyer, I’m glad you’re happy. Wouldn’t you agree in business, it’s good to have options.”? Usually, you’ll receive a “yes’ response…Then follow with, “That’s all I’m really offering to you.” Understand this… Do these two things to ease the Change Pain. Empathize […]

THE CRITICAL FOLLOW UP WINDOW

The Critical Follow Up Window of Opportunity

You’re sitting in front of the prospect closing the deal and he throws the ‘ol “I need to think about it” objection. What’s your typical response? “Let’s talk about it. Perhaps I can answer your concerns now?” And the prospect states the same objection again, “I just need to mull it over. I never say yes right away.” What do you say? Here’s what I hear back from well intention sales people….. “Christine….When should I follow up? Should I give the prospect a week, two weeks?” The answer is NO… There’s a critical follow up window of opportunity, and following up after a week or two…well…you’ve lost the sale. Selling is tempering the buyers’ battle between emotion and logic. The buyer’s objections are speaking through his logical mind, BUT he buys from his emotional mind. There’s an internal tug of war going on inside of him between his logical mind and emotional mind. What side wins is determined by your follow up window of opportunity. The Critical Follow Up Window of Opportunity The answer is you have less than 48 hours to follow up. That’s right…two days. Every hour after you’ve left the prospects office, the emotional mind diffuses and […]

COLD CALLING FOLLOW UP (1)

3 Lessons I Wish I Knew When I First Started Selling

My first sales job was back in 1982. And 34 years later… I’ve learned a few things…a few lessons I wish I knew when I first started selling. In this article, I’d like to share with you those lessons so hopefully, you can avoid making the same mistakes I made in the beginning. 3 Lessons I Wish I Knew When I First Started Selling. Lesson #1 Sales Training Never Ends! After my initial sales training, back in 1982, I thought I knew it all! And when I became moderately successful at sales, I thought I had arrived! Boy….big mistake. Sales training never ends! To avoid the same mistake, let me invite you to do what I do now…I read one sales book each month. And I have a few favorites that I’ve read over and over… Zig Ziglar’s Over the Top Jeb Blount’s Fanatical Prospecting Many sales pro’s fall into the trap of getting into the groove of selling and thinking…. “If it ain’t broke why fix it?”    My answer is…“When you stop learning, you stop growing.”  If you want to push to the next level of achievement in your sales career, keep educating yourself in order to grow. The […]

COLD CALLING FOLLOW UP

3 Clever Tips the Sales Pro’s Use for Successful Cold Call Follow Up

One of the most courageous and…let’s face it…insane things you do as a sales pro is make cold calls. At least…cold calling can feel insane at times. Why is it insane? Because you’re trying to have a meaningful, professional conversation with a total stranger…over the phone. You’ve interrupted his busy day, so you have 5 seconds to make a great impression that will cause him to want to listen further… Yeah..that’s insane. Some of you sit in a cubicle surrounded by other sales pros making call after call… Some of you sit in your home office all alone with a cat staring at you wondering when it’s dinner time. That last part would be me…and the cat is called Kitten (she has a mean stare!)     And still some of you are road warriors making cold calls in between appointments. No matter your situation…cold calling is necessary.. still.. in today’s market place. Others will tell you it’s not….listen to their advice and you will starve. You may be asking yourself…Why the focus on cold calls follow up? Because, my guess is your cold calling numbers are close to mine…out of 100 dials, you’ll only get through to about 12% […]

How to Increase Your Pipeline Easily

How To Increase Your PipeLine….Easily!

REFERRALS…UGH! Oh wait! I have a tip for you! Keep reading because I’m super excited to share this strategy. I’ve been using it and have had incredible results… so I had to share it with you all! Let’s face it…everyday as a sales pro you’re looking for ways, leads, advantages to fill your pipeline..to keep it flowing with opportunities. Am I right? Do I have a tip for you! This is not my idea, so I want to give credit where credit is due. It was shown to me by Marc Barnes, a Regional Director with Combined WorkSite Solutions. It’s a referral strategy that will keep your pipeline full and flowing..there is a catch though. You gotta do it! This post is about How to Increase Your Pipeline….Easily!  Let’s get started. If you’re a follower, you know I preach about not asking prospects or new clients for referrals. As a matter of fact, save yourself the embarrassment…don’t ask. Why? Because prospects and new clients know nothing about you or your products.They have no experience with you or your company..that’s why they’re reluctant to give out referrals. Seriously…would you refer someone to your business clients, family or friends that you barely know? We […]