Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Profit is not a Dirty Word

Are you proud of making a profit? I know I am! Today sales trainer Mark Hunter tells us why you should be proud too!

This does not mean you're greedy. What it means is you're able to deliver a very high level of value to your customers and you should be proud of it. I don't hear of professional sports teams being ashamed of their performance when they beat their opponent decisively. Of course not! They are proud of it! You should feel the same way also, since you too are a professional.

Now, this does not mean you're out to exploit people. If you are exploiting people, not only are you exercising very poor judgment, you also are showing your ignorance (it's doubtful you will be able to operate with low integrity for very long). Achieving a high level of profit merely means that you're able to deliver a high level of value to your customer, and you're able to do this while keeping your costs in line.

High profit is not bad. It's what you do with it that counts. If you're using the profits to reinvest into the business to help develop your business even more in ways that will help your customers realize even more value, then what you're doing is a real service to your customers and to your prospects. Profits are what allow companies to sustain themselves. Without profits there is no way for a company to survive. They risk either delivering an inferior product or service or going out of business.

I never cease to be amazed at the number of salespeople I meet who are hesitant about their company making a decent profit! This is ridiculous. Stop treating the word "profit" like it is profanity. Your sales motivation needs to be aligned with the realization that profit is a good thing… a very good thing!

Get more great tips and quotes from Mark Hunter, The Sales Hunter, at

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

How to Screw Up a Sure Thing

The Whetstone Group offers real advice for your sales problems. Have you ever encountered the following problem? Read on for their solution!

Problem: Tim, a software sales rep, had been having a rough day. He'd been bombarded with questions from several customers and had gotten behind on a proposal that he needed to finish before the end of the day. Then he got a call from Gene, a prospect who introduced himself by saying, "I've heard great things about your accounting software package. I saw a demo about a year ago, and was not in a position to purchase it at the time, but since then it's become very apparent that I need to integrate it immediately into my system."

"Wow," thought Tim. "This will be easy. It's about time something went right today."

Then Gene said, "I need to know about pricing and availability. And tech support is important, too. Tell me how that works."

Tim went into his pitch. He discussed tech support in detail, covered availability and other options, and explained that the price was $8000 with 30-day terms.

Gene's response was unexpected. He said that $8000 was quite a hefty price tag and he needed a couple of days to consider the purchase more carefully. He'd call Tim back next week.

Tim did a double take. "What just happened?" he thought. "This sale was in the bag, a sure thing, and now he's thinking it over? He said he needed the software right away." And that was the end of the call.

Diagnosis: Tim got lazy, plain and simple. He thought Gene was sold. All he had to do was give Gene the info he needed, then write it up. He got conned into doing a presentation without getting Gene to demonstrate why he was so excited about buying the software. The entire transaction was conducted at the intellectual level.

Prescription: Don't be lured into taking shortcuts. Don't mistake the prospect's enthusiasm for your product or service as a sure sale. Take the time to qualify the prospect and make sure he's real before you make your presentation. In Tim's case, a couple of quick questions would have made a world of difference. He might have said, "Before we discuss pricing, help me understand why this software is so important. I want to make sure the application is correct for you. Mind if I ask you a couple of questions?" Of course, you're probing for pain and one of the most important things to find out is the financial impact of not implementing a solution. Having discovered the financial impact and, assuming it was significant, you will find that the cost of the solution disappears as an objection.

Don't take shortcuts! Don't assume anything. Get the prospect involved at an emotional, not an intellectual, level. Use the system, qualify completely, and get the sale.

Whetstone Group is a sales process improvement company that focuses on helping companies implement a proven sales process that will increase sales, shorten the selling cycle, increase closing rates, and improve margins. Learn more at

Monday, June 28, 2010

Quote of the Week

"One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn't pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself." -- Lucille Ball, actress

How has the summer been for you? Have you been making sales like crazy, or have things been a little slow? If it's been a tough summer, don't get discouraged. One day, one sale, one phone call can change everything. The thing to do is keep busy and be optimistic - these things get you one step closer to that life-changing day!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Fail to Succeed

Sales trainer George Ludwig always gives inspirational tips in his newsletter. This article is no exception!

Identify someone you consider to be successful and ask that person how many failures he or she had before success came. I guarantee you that any successful person had to learn failure before success. That's what learning is all about: doing it wrong in order to get it right. We don't all succeed at everything we try. Most of us go through failure to reach success, just as we go through fear in order to build courage.

Weightlifting is a great example to illustrate this process of going through failure to reach success. Years ago, when I started building up my scrawny 112 pound body through weight training, my first instructor introduced me to the concept of "going for failure." I didn't think that sounded so fun-"Let's go fail!"-but my coach explained that breaking a muscle down by exhausting it totally was the best way to build it stronger. By going to failure, I prepared my muscles for greater success. I failed so that I eventually could succeed.

Life is no different. Failure is a necessary part of growing and building strength to eventually succeed. Consider the case of a lanky Midwestern boy who chopped wood for his father until he was twenty- one, but who had always hungered for more out of life. He started borrowing books and reading every evening. What he read began to inspire and motivate him to become a risk-taker in the pursuit of success. He was willing to fail in order to succeed, and fail is exactly what he did:

* At age 23 he ran as a candidate for state legislature and lost.
* At age 30 he was bankrupt.
* At age 32 the woman he loved and intended to marry broke off the engagement breaking his heart.
* At age 33 he married another woman who bore him four sons, of which three he lost because they died before reaching adulthood.
* At age 35 he ran again as a candidate for state legislature and again he lost.
* At age 47 he was selected a vice-presidential candidate and again he lost.
* At age 49 he was nominated for the United States Senate and again he lost.

The man described above, however, was elected President of the United States of America at age 51. His frequent experiences of failure gave Abraham Lincoln the resolve to handle the great challenges of his Presidency and the repeated initial failure of the Union forces. He never saw failure as a reason to stop attempting success, and he ultimately changed the course of American history.

Failure is never the end of the road. Failure is how you learn and grow. Whether it's building biceps, achieving financial freedom, becoming the best parent possible, or reaching the Oval Office: you must fail to succeed.

George Ludwig is President of GLU Consulting which specializes in helping clients like Johnson & Johnson, Abbott Laboratories, and Northwestern Mutual improve their sales performance. George is the bestselling author of Power Selling and a widely recognized authority on sales success and peak performance psychology.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Are You Training Your Customer to Do This?

Sales trainer Kim Duke does a great job of passing on sales lessons in a fun, interesting way. Today she shares a story that gave her a flash of realization on how you can improve your sales!

Recently I was grocery shopping with a long list (getting ready for a dinner party). One of the grocery store managers came over to me and asked me if he could help. Loved that!

I thanked him and said I'd almost found everything but that this location didn't have local lamb.

He said ..."Actually - our new meat manager just put out 4 packages of lamb - people have been asking for it."

We walked over to the meat department and there, shoved in a teeny-tiny corner, with NO SIGNAGE were 4 lamb roasts. (Not what I was looking for)

He tapped the roasts with a little bit of annoyance in his voice and said ...

"See - people ask for this, we put out 4 packages and NO ONE BUYS IT. It's frustrating for us."

I looked at him with a big smile and said...

"I can tell you WHY they haven't been sold."

His eyes opened wide "Please tell me!"

I explained:

1. You've never carried this product before so people are used to NOT BUYING IT.
3. Lamb roasts aren't popular - the food TV shows and magazines focus on other cuts.

....and finally......

"You've TRAINED your customers to NOT EXPECT IT"

Meat manager Tom said...

" WOW - I never thought of it that way before! I'm absolutely bringing this up at our next meeting."

Are You Mad At YOUR Customer for NOT BUYING?

Be honest. I bet you've grouched and growled to yourself and others that customers weren't buying something new you've launched.

Guess what? They haven't changed their BUYING HABITS to include you. YET.

Remember - when you're launching something new, it takes time for people to switch their habit. So you'll need more exposure and time to get your new/changed product/service off the ground.

Take a look at what you've currently trained your customer NOT TO BUY.

Kim Duke is an unconventional, sassy and savvy sales expert who shows women small biz owners and entrepreneurs how to increase sales in a fun, easy, stress-free way! Learn more and sign up for her free e-zine at

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Sales expert Anne Miller shows salespeople how to use their words to get what they want - and in today's post cautions against words that can keep you from getting what you want. Read on for her expert advice!

After spending millions of her own money to win the GOP senate nomination in California, Carly Fiorina may have permanently hurt her chances of winning in 2010 by her thoughtless comment on incumbent Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer's hair: "God, what is that?...Sooo yesterday." A slip of the tongue can be fatal not only in politics but in negotiating as well.

Think about what you say when you open a negotiation discussion. Is it something like, "I am delighted that you want to do business with us. What do we need to do to get a final agreement"? OR, is it something like, "I am delighted that you want to do business with us and am happy to work out an agreement that works for both of us."?

If it is the former, you may not be risking millions of dollars on the deal, but you are definitely going to get less attractive terms than you would otherwise get with the latter statement. The first statement immediately puts you in a subordinate power position. It makes you sound desperate. It invites being taken advantage of and says, "Go ahead, walk all over me."

The second statement immediately communicates equality in power positions. It suggests that the deal could fail if it is not beneficial to you as well as to the buyer. It invites a collaborative business discussion likely to lead to a fair deal for you both. It says, "Yes, we want your business, but we have pride in the value of our services and will accept an agreement only if it recognizes that value."

Anne Miller is the author of Metaphorically Selling. Check out her site at

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Key to Sales Success

Sales expert Brian Tracy is world-renowned for his sales and life advice. Today he shares the key to sales success - one that will help you in life too!

Learn to Listen Well
A vital key to sales success is listening. The ability to listen well is absolutely indispensable for success in all human relationships. The ability to be a good listener in a sales conversation is the foundation of the new model of selling. It leads to easier sales, higher earnings and greater enjoyment from the sales profession.

Being A Good Talker is Not Enough
Many salespeople have been brought up with the idea that, in order to be good at your profession, you must be a glad-hander and a good talker. You have even heard people say, "You have the 'gift of the gab'; you should be in sales!"

Focus On the Other Person
Nothing could be further from the truth. As many as seventy five percent of all top salespeople are defined as introverts on psychological tests. They are very easy going and other-centered. They would much rather listen than talk. They are very interested in the thoughts and feelings of other people and they are quite comfortable sitting and listening to their prospects. They would much rather listen than talk in a sales situation. Poor salespeople dominate the talking, but top salespeople dominate the listening.

Practice "White Magic" With Everyone
Listening has even been called "white magic." It is too rarely engaged in by business people. When a salesperson develops a reputation for being an excellent listener, prospects and customers feel comfortable and secure in his or her presence. They buy more readily, and more often.

Practice the 70/30 Rule
You've heard it said that God gave man two ears and one mouth, and he is supposed to use them in that proportion. Top salespeople practice the "70/30 rule." They talk and ask questions 30 percent or less of the time while they listen intently to their customers 70 percent or more of the time. They use their ears and mouth in the right ratio.

Action Exercises
Here are two things you can do immediately to put these ideas into action.

First, resolve today that, from now on, you are going to dominate the listening in every sales conversation. Become comfortable with silence.

Second, practice the 70/30 rule in every sales conversation. Listen 70% of the time and only talk and ask questions 30% of the time.

Brian Tracy is Chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, a company specializing in the training and development of individuals and organizations. As a Keynote speaker and seminar leader, he addresses more than 250,000 people each year. Learn more at

Monday, June 21, 2010

Quote of the Week

"The most important thing about goals is... having one." -- Geoffry F. Abert

How have you been doing on your summer goals? Do you have summer goals?

I think the summer is a great time to set goals that you might not usually get to during the other months. Your prospects may be a little harder to get a hold of, your boss may be out a lot of the time, or you may be relaxed and re-focused from your vacation.

Whatever it is, now is your chance to get creative with your goals. Can you try a new call opener each day, or work on changing aspects of your presentation to make them more interesting? What about making a game out of your prospecting calls with a cold treat as the reward if you hit your goal?

Enjoy the relaxed feeling of the summer months by working towards a creative, interesting summer goal! You just may see your sales start to sizzle!

Friday, June 18, 2010

5 Tips For Turning A Prospect's "No" Into "Yes"

"No, I'm not interested." This response from a prospect has the power to send chills down your spine. It's an answer you may have heard more times than you'd like to count!

The truth is, in sales you are going to hear "no" a lot more than you are going to hear "yes." Keep in mind that all you need to hear is one "yes" to get a sale. If you are persistent, you may very well get to change a "no" to a "yes" much more often than you think. Today sales trainer Rochelle Togo-Figa shares her expertise.

Here are (5) tips that will help you move the prospect from "no" to "yes":

1. Create a timetable. Ask the prospect: "Does this mean you're not interested now or not interested forever?" If she or he responds, "I'm not interested at this time," ask if you can touch base in a couple of weeks or months. The prospect will let you know when you can call back.

2. Open a dialogue. Ask the prospect: "I'm curious as to why you're not interested." A client of mine did just that when trying to get an appointment with a prospect. She simply asked why. The prospect opened up and gave her a lot of information. My client displayed genuine interest in what the prospect had to say, and the prospect sensed that. They talked for quite awhile. My client ended up getting an appointment.

3. Be persistent. When the prospect says, "I'm not interested," you can respond by saying, "Many of my clients had the same response when I first called, before they saw what we can do for them." Then share any success stories with similar companies you've worked with.

4. Do not take it personally.
Don't let the "no" mean anything more than what it is. "No, I'm not interested" doesn't mean you are being rejected. It means they're only rejecting the offer for now.

5. Remember some "yes" experiences.
When you think about it, you've been hearing "no" since you were a kid, and it probably never stopped you. Imagine yourself as a child. Perhaps you were with your mom in the supermarket and you really, really wanted a candy bar. The response might have been, "No, it's too close to dinnertime!" Did you take "no" for an answer? Absolutely not. You asked again and again and again, each time committed to convincing your mother that you could eat the candy bar and still eat all your dinner. Finally, after at least (7) more tries, Mom probably gave in. Congratulations! You didn't give up. You got the candy bar! You kept going back in and moved your mother from a "no" to a "yes."

When you really want something in your life that's important to you, nothing stands in the way. So why not bring those same qualities to your business?

Rochelle Togo-Figa, The Sales Breakthrough Expert, is the creator of the Sales Breakthrough System. Visit her website at

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Riding for the Brand

Sales trainer Tom Reilly has a wonderful perspective on sales and salespeople. Today he shares about being proud of your brand - both your personal work and your product.

Louis L'Amour, perhaps the most prolific American writer, wrote a short story about it. Cowboy poet extraordinaire Red Steagall scribed a poem about it. In western lore and legend, "Riding for the brand" meant loyalty and pride. It meant that when you agreed to work for someone you would wear his brand as your own. I think we would all be better off if we rode for the brand. It satisfies a basic human need to be a part of something bigger and better than ourselves.

As a salesperson, you ride for the brand when you...

* Wear logo wear with pride, realizing that you are a walking billboard for your company.
* Handle and demonstrate your products with pride.
* Represent your company well.
* Tell the truth, always and especially when it's tough to do.
* Speak well of your management team and peers, even when you disagree with them.
* Give your company a full-day's effort for a full-day's pay.
* Answer your phone with enthusiasm, thanking the customer for the chance to serve.
* Know that your company's brand is your brand; you are part of it.

Brands are built from the bottom up. Your management can invest millions of dollars to promote an image in the market, but how you ride for the brand speaks louder than all the words in the advertising and promotion. Red Steagall said it best:

Son, a man's brand
Is his own special mark
That says this is mine, leave it alone.
You hire out to a man
Ride for the brand
And protect it like it was your own.

Tom Reilly is the president of Tom Reilly Training. He is an authority on value-added selling, and speaks to thousands of salespeople and managers annually on increasing their value to their company and customers.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

When is the Right Time to Ask For Referrals?

We're always hearing we need to get more referrals to grow business, but how and when do you actually ask? Today the Brooks Group shares their advice for getting those referrals you need.

According to the Brooks Group blog, the right time to ask for a referral is only after your client is beyond satisfied – thrilled, really.

Don't ask a prospect to refer you to other prospects until you have had the opportunity to demonstrate all you provide to your clients and they're zealous about sharing how G-R-E-A-T you are...that means before you ask for a referral, you need to...

1. Sell. Complete a sale. (It's unlikely that prospects will recommend you to others before even doing business with you themselves).

2. Service. Provide superior, unsurpassed, unbelievably good, outstanding service.

3. Confirm. Have you provided superior service and is anyone unhappy with any aspect of what you've done? Find out by either asking directly or listening to feedback from your clients.

4. Ask. A great time to ask for a referral is immediately after you receive a compliment, "Would you be willing to share that with your friends?"

5. Identify. Help your client think about who would be a good prospect for you

6. Introduce. Ask whether your client is willing to provide you with an introduction or if it's okay for you to just contact the referral. Make sure it's fine for you to use your current client's name when contacting the referral.

7. Meet. Approach the referral immediately and appropriately. "I've been working with your friend/partner/associate Bob and he suggested I give you a call and I promised that I would..."

If you ask too early (or ask someone who's not 100% satisfied), one of two things is likely to happen…

1. You'll get NO referrals; or
2. You'll get some referrals, but they won't be strong and you will have turned down the enthusiasm of your client.

Either way, not only have you wasted the referral opportunity, but you've probably also jeoardized your current prospect. As my grandfather used to say, "don't jump the gun, hold your horses, don't get ahead of yourself, wait a hot minute." Instead, follow the seven steps above and you'll see a better return on your ask.

The Brooks Group is a Sales and Sales Management Screening, Development, and Retention company that has helped more than 2,000 organizations in 500 industries transform their businesses by focusing on building and sustaining top-performing sales, sales management and business development programs. Click here to sign up for The Brooks Group's Free Sales Training Newsletter.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

20 Reasons Why Customers Say Yes!

We're always talking about reasons why prospects aren't responding - You're not doing this, you need to do this, etc. How about we get a little positivity in here and talk about all the reasons why your prospects ARE buying from you? Today sales trainer Jim Domanski reminds us of all the things you're likely doing right, that are getting you the sale. Congrats on all your hard work!

"Closing is often cited as the most difficult skill or technique for sales reps to master," says Domanski. "The primary reason for this is the fear of hearing "no."

Give your head a shake! Sure prospects say no, but a lot of them say yes.

Give yourself a fight chance. Instead of focusing on why a prospect might say no and freaking out over it, focus on why a prospect (or customer) might say yes. By doing this you create a positive mindset and you begin to think of why you should ask for the sale instead of why you shouldn't.

Post this list somewhere visible. Read it two or three times a day or whenever your spirit is flagging.

Here are 20 Reason Why Your Prospects Might Say Yes:

1. For whatever reason, the client likes you. People buy from people they like.

2. The client trusts you. Double whammy. People buy from people they like AND trust.

3. They see the value of your product or service.

4. Your price is good. Maybe even great.

5. They want what you have.

6. The prospect doesn't like your competitors.

7. The prospect doesn't see any extra value in your competitors.

8. He/she is in a good mood and buys off the cuff.

9. The prospect is in a hurry and wants to save time.

10. The prospect is unhappy with their present supplier and wants a change.

11. The client wants to minimize his risk with the present supplier.

12. The prospect wants to send a "message" to their present supplier.

13. The prospect wants to make a change in product and try something new.

14. The prospect is a new buyer and has no allegiance to the existing vendor.

15. You sell well. You're good at what you do.

16. The decision to buy from you can make the prospect look good in the eyes of his boss.

17. You have a great offer. Why not?

18. You are politely persistent and the prospect admires your tenacity.

19. The prospect feels the need to reciprocate because you did or sent something of value (like an article, a card, a bottle of BBQ Spice).

20. Your marketing material was persuasive.

There are probably 25 more reasons if you simply take the time to think. Many reps dwell too much on why a prospect might say 'no' and convince themselves not to ask for the sale. This leads to discouragement, stress and burnout. The smart choice is
to go into a sale thinking of all the reasons why a prospect might say yes. This leads to a positive attitude that reflects in your demeanor and in what you say.

Think yes and sell more.

Jim Domanski is the President of Teleconcepts Consulting Inc. and works with companies and individuals who are frustrated with the results they have been getting when using the telephone to generate leads and sales. For more information visit: or call 613-591-1998.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Quote of the Week

"Luck is not chance, it's toil. Fortune's expensive smile is earned." -- Emily Dickinson, poet

Sometimes Monday mornings can be really hard. You're tired from the weekend, thinking about all the projects you have coming up, and balancing a list of things. Today's quote reminds us that no matter what you have going on, this Monday morning is an opportunity to seek and find your fortune - as long as you put in the effort!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Attract Audiences and Sales!

We're all looking for new business, and sales trainer Elinor Stutz has some simple ideas that can point you in the right direction. Read on for her advice!

As the economy experiences its ups and downs, the expression, "Don't put all of your eggs in one basket" holds very true for business. This is the time to try new services, create new products, find new associations, collaborate, partner, and jot down everything you can think of that "might" work better.

Just as markets fluctuate, so do your prospects and steady clients. Your best defense against market fluctuation is to be well-diversified with a strong foundation in place.

Your foundation is built upward by maintaining strong relationships with your current clientele, and then outward by steadily creating new offerings to attract additional audiences.

Tips for attracting more sales:

1. Prioritize new ideas in terms of ROI and appeal. Nothing is worthwhile unless you enjoy it.

2. List your top 3 ideas based upon outcomes desired, potential downside, and steps required for implementation.

3. Re-prioritize and put your new plan into action.

Your focused mindset on continued reinvention becomes your marketing-communication strategy demonstrating you are a leader and expert in your field. Old and new audiences will be watching, taking note and taking advantage of your new services.

Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale and author of "Nice Girls DO Get The Sale: Relationship Building That Gets Results", has transformed her highly successful sales career into a sales training company. Her clientele is comprised of Entrepreneurs, Network Marketers and beginning salespeople with 0-5 years experience. Learn more at

Thursday, June 10, 2010

What Do You Sell?

Business expert Diane Helbig has a wonderful new book out called Lemonade Stand Selling. She goes back to basics, to make selling as clear and simple as when you sold lemonade as a kid. Sounds good to me! Here's one of the ideas discussed in her book.

"The goal is to craft the product package so you will have clarity about what it is and what its value is. If you offer a service rather than a product, define your scope of work." -- excerpt from Lemonade Stand Selling

It is so very important that you know exactly what it is that you sell. Too often, small business owners want to be all things to all people. They fear that if they don't have a broad menu of products or services they will miss out on business.

Here's the catch - if you offer too many things you dilute your message. How do people know what you excel at? How do they know what your core competency is? It's harder to be great at several things than it is to be great at one or a handful.

If you pick one thing that you do exceptionally well, you will be able to develop a clear message that you, and others, can land on. This will make your sales effort much easier.

Now what if you offer a service? Understanding the scope of work will help you stay profitable. If you have a vague idea of what the service is, you will have trouble holding the same understanding as your client. This can lead to conflict - conflict you don't want. When you are clear about the scope, you can discuss it clearly and concisely with your prospects and clients. You can detail it in a contract so there is no question about where the job begins and ends. Take the subjectivity out of it.

Does this make sense?

How can you apply it to your business?

What questions does this raise?

Diane Helbig is a Professional Coach, and President of Seize This Day Coaching. She works one-on-one and in groups with business owners, entrepreneurs, and salespeople. Visit her website at

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

What Your Customer REALLY Cares About

Sales trainer Kendra Lee recently posted this tip, and while short, it really gets you thinking. She shares what customers care about - do you agree? What is your experience? Share in the comments!

"There are only 4 things your customers care about right now," says Kendra Lee.

1. Cost containment or reduction
2. Improved productivity
3. New or increased revenue opportunities
4. An initiative they've identified

You must be able to appeal to one of these to grab their attention and secure an appointment. Consider how your solution can do that, and use that idea in your value proposition.

Kendra Lee is a Prospect Attraction Specialist and president of KLA Group. Specializing in the IT industry, KLA Group helps companies rapidly penetrate new markets, break into new accounts and shorten time to revenue with new products in the SMB segment.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

We Already Have More Business Than We Can Handle

Sales trainer Mike Brooks is an expert at dealing with objections - today he handles a difficult one - "We already have more business than we can handle."

Clients use all sorts of objections, but sometimes I think this is their favorite. I mean, how can you argue with someone who tells you they don't need what you have to give them because they already have enough of it?

Well, let's face it, nobody has TOO much of anything, especially business, and while 80% of your competition get blown off when they get this objection, the top 20% know what to say.

After you read and adapt the three closes below, YOU'LL know what to say, too!

Response #1:

"I know that feeling; I do too! But for some reason, my boss wants to keep it that way so he thinks it's a good idea to continue to market and introduce others to our products and services. And it's the same way for you as well. Momentum is great, but if you don't keep it going, it will first slow down, then it will stop.

Here's what I recommend: Let's get you started with the (package/solution) as it is, since we both agree it will keep your business coming. And then after the 6 month trial period, we can reassess. All we need to do to get your started is..."

Response #2:

"And ________ I know that the reason you have so much business is because you have the foresight to invest in (your kind of solution). It's actually a pleasure to work with clients like you because I know you already understand the need for this kind of (product or solution).

And because you already know the value of this, I'm going to recommend you start with us on the professional level that allows you to leverage your way into our top position. That's only (X amount). How do you want to handle payment of that today?"

Response #3:

"That's a nice position to be in. And to make sure you stay that way, I'd recommend starting with our mid-level position. That way you'll get X amount of (leads/results) and so won't overwhelm yourself. If you find your other (companies offering some similar solution) starting to slip, then you can simply transfer that part of your business into your account here.

What I recommend is that you start with (X amount/position) and then increase it over time as you need to. What is the best way for you to handle this start up account?"

Mike Brooks,, is creator and publisher of the "Top 20% Inside Sales Tips" weekly Ezine. If you're ready to Double Your Income Selling Over the Phone, then sign up to receive your FREE tips now at:

Monday, June 7, 2010

Quote of the Week

"Never turn down a job because you think it's too small. You don't know where it can lead." -- Julia Morgan, architect

A lot of times you're told not to accept a client because they're too small and will drain your time and energy. And while that's sometimes true, don't let that kind of thinking keep you from accepting new clients. You never know when that small client may refer you to a bigger one, or how working with them can lead you to new opportunities. Keep your eyes and your mind open!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Make Selling Fun!

Today sales trainer Joe Guertin gives us some ideas to make selling more fun. I don't know about you, but I like the sound of that!

I had a salesperson recently tell me "selling just isn't fun anymore." Hard to hear, but not an unusual feeling these days. Almost every job carries some additional performance stress these days so, if you're in sales, you'll have your fair share.

Now I'm not a fire and brimstone motivator, but I can give you three reasons why selling can be as fun...or even more fun...than it's been in the past.

1) Business IS improving. Slower in some sectors, sure. But if you've made it this far, you're a likely survivor. And customers are going to want to talk to you!

2) Opportunities are opening up for displaced workers. As with every recession, some old jobs won't be coming back. But, if you can sell, employers are going to want to talk to you.

3) "That which does not kill us, makes us stronger." That may sound good in the movies, but how does it help on the street? Staying mentally strong is crucial to staying positive and active. Think positive, always.

And here are some action ideas...

Break Negativity Cycles
We're like doctors, in that we continually see people who need help. In tight times, they'll talk more about problems than solutions. Our job is to help them (and ourselves) to be more solution-focused.

Break old, toxic habits
Forcing yourself to learn new technologies or talking to customers about changes in their business can spark new thoughts and ideas on how to do things

Get more creative
One of my favorite sales calls was to a fast food franchisee dressed in that chain's uniforms. The shock value was great, and we got the business.

Focus on successes
When times are tough, lost and postponed sales take the spotlight. Don't start, or end your day without a mental review of personal successes, whether they're actual sales, tough-to-get appointments or a great service call.

Focus on new opportunities
Now's a great time to build your network, and that includes using online services like Linkedin to make new connections with people and special interest groups. Some of the 'old' approaches to selling will be less productive, and getting new approaches into your mix can help get you fired up.

Next time someone says "having fun yet?", tell 'em "yes I am, but the best is yet to come."

Joe Guertin is an advertising sales trainer, speaker and coach. His programs have informed and entertained sales professionals nationwide. Visit his Sales Resource Center at

Thursday, June 3, 2010

How to Handle the Price Issue - Part 2

Yesterday sales trainer Sam Manfer shared some tips on how to handle the price issue. He's back today with some more tips you can start using right away.

1. Ask how low the price has to be. That is, below what number, or in what range does the price have to be. If the buyer only knows how to sell low price to his end-user, then you may want to show him how to sell a higher price, by doing the above suggestions. Be careful. Contractors say this all the time, and I've never met a contractor that said he made money on a job.

2. Get to the final final decision maker and those in between. Subordinates want the low price based on what's important to them, not necessarily what the top people want or want to avoid, i.e. delays, image, risk, etc

But, you'll have to give the subordinate the assurance you can come in at the lowest price (whether you will or not) for what he wants before he'll let you talk to his boss or higher. Therefore, you say, "We can get it to the lowest price, but before I can give you our final bid, I have to talk with the other decision makes to be sure of their expectations." If this person flinches, it a big red flag, meaning he hasn't bought into you yet.

This is also a good strategy to use if you feel the buyer just wants a price and to get rid of you. Agree you can probably give him the lowest price, but before you can commit, you'll have to talk with others. You'll learn if he's serious.

3. Ask what will happen if no one can meet their price expectation. Obviously if they have a big enough budget, there will be a lowest price. However, if they can't afford it, then they'll have to make adjustments, and you'll learn what's important and what's not.

4. Ask if she always selects based on low price. Most people will say no. So ask, "What are the criteria that make you leery of low prices?" If it quality or capability of those bidding, ask, "What would disqualify a supplier?" or "What capabilities do you use to qualify a supplier?"

Bottom line, it's all about knowing what the buyer and the key decision maker wants. Price is only a component, but must be taken seriously. Wal-Mart has the lowest price, but you don't buy all your goods at Wal-Mart even though they're sold there. There are other factors contributing to your decision. Same applies with your customers. The only differences between B2C and B2B sales are many decision makers and a pecking order. Get to the key influencers to learn what's important and what's not, and what price will win the order. Then you can decide whether or not you want to offer it.

Since 1995 Sam Manfer has been speaking, consulting, writing and leading seminars in sales and personal development. As a keynote speaker and seminar leader Sam has addressed thousands of new and experienced sales people and managers all over the world in all types of businesses and industries. Learn more at

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Tips to Handle the Price Issue

Price is tricky. Today sales trainer Sam Manfer shares some ideas to help you get past the price issue and really find out what your customer wants.

Price could be what s/he wants if everything else is the same. Price could be what someone tells you when they want to get rid of you. Price could be for a resell and the final seller only knows how to sell low price. Price could be what a subordinate thinks the boss wants, as in, "Get us the best deal." Price could be in this range, or within my budget, or what I can afford. Price could be, "We're big and we know we can squeeze you."

So here are some tips to handle price.

1. Learn what's most important to the buyer relative to your product or service. He'll say "Price," but then you say, "What else?" Keep drilling down to understand his vision about what your service or the end result will do for him. What's he afraid of? After he tells you, ask again, "OK and what else is important?" What's he worry about? What does he want to accomplish? This will provide ammunition later.

2. What's she expect to be in the price? Don't be afraid to ask even if there is a spec. Terms and assumptions can be misleading. She wants it delivered on time. When exactly is that? She wants good service. What constitutes in her mind good service. Ask her to define good service. Do this term by term because there may be things she doesn't care about as much or not at all, yet they're in the specs. Or, you think it goes without saying. Many times the buyer will say, "Give me the same as last time or what we have, but cheaper." Don't assume that all the components of last time are critical to this buyer.

3. Be prepared to offer some ideas that you think should be important just in case he says, "Price and that's all." i.e. you might say, "Well, what about delays?" or "What about approval from the insurance inspectors? Or whatever you know should be a concern. Be careful however. What you think he should value, may not be what he values. Your job is to find out what he values and would be willing to pay extra for.

Since 1995 Sam Manfer has been speaking, consulting, writing and leading seminars in sales and personal development. As a keynote speaker and seminar leader Sam has addressed thousands of new and experienced sales people and managers all over the world in all types of businesses and industries. Learn more at

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Quote of the Week

"Deal first with whatever is causing you the greatest emotional distress. Often this will break the logjam in your work and free you up mentally to complete (the) other tasks." -- Brian Tracy

I know it's Tuesday, but I thought this quote would be a great way to start off the week. Sometimes all you need is a reminder to get back on track and deal with issues you've been putting off. It's not easy to tackle something that worries you, but the feeling of completing that task will make the rest of your day seem like a breeze!