A sales gem is priceless, if mined correctly
Every salesperson is looking for a gem. A sales gem: one rough-cut diamond that turns a lost sale into a found sale; one emerald that can change a customer’s response from “no” to “yes.” I’ve asked readers of my e-zine, Sales Caffeine, to send me their sales gems. Hundreds replied.
Below are some of the gems:
• My working sales strategy is: Service for others in your heart. Jennifer Clarke
• When I enter the sales arena, the decision maker I have prepared for anticipates that I will be KEEN. My antennae will be hot, and the client and I will like each other. We will be in THE DANCE. That’s when it really becomes fun. Salespeople who feel this way and are EAGER TO ENGAGE in the fascinating dance can become GREAT. Those who are anxious about their self-perceived weakness or are self-pressured to “close the deal” need to change and see the JOY, HUMOR and INTERESTING LIFE EXPERIENCE of each sales opportunity. Otherwise, they should do something they really enjoy. Michael Kaplan
• In our industry, when someone asked: “What kind of business are you in?” my answer would be something like: “We do 60 percent corporate and 40 percent leisure travel.” About 10 years ago, I quit answering in those terms and changed my reply to: “I’m really in the relationship business, and I happen to sell travel.” It helps me and my probable purchaser remember that it’s all about having a quality relationship. Calvin Dennis
• My sales gem is a quote from Abraham Lincoln: “Good things come to those who wait. But only what is left behind by those who hustle.” Todd Sims
• All through my presentations, I think of one thing: “I am transferring enthusiasm.” So, when I see the prospect laugh with me and become involved during the presentation, I know I’ve done my job. If I’ve done well in transferring enthusiasm, the prospect asks me to start the paperwork while he writes the check! Cedric Licuanan
• If you need to ask for referrals, it means that you haven’t done your job. If you had, your customers would happily recommend you to their friends. Asking for referrals proves you are simply a seller of a product, not a trusted professional. When was the last time your surgeon asked for referrals? Anonymous
• The task of overcoming objections is reserved for salespeople. Professional advisers, on the other hand, know that if they truly understand their client’s “objectives” there will be no “objections” to overcome. David Gordon
• My grade school principal always said, “A smile increases your face value.” My smile helps me engage my customer. It’s the real me, and it’s genuine because I enjoy meeting with people. Here’s an added dimension: A smile increases your voice value. When you’re on the phone, people can “hear” the smile and attitude in your voice. It’s tough to muster a smile you don’t feel. Work on your attitude. Expect to enjoy meeting that new person and finding that new opportunity to help them. One of the best things about being in sales is meeting and working with people to help them benefit from what you have to offer. Nancy Raffetto
• When the airlines decided they wanted to change our compensation model to zero, we, of course, had to adjust, so we began charging corporate clients directly for our fees. Although I struggled for a while in presenting the new reality, now when explaining our service fee structure, I usually say, “I’d rather explain our pricing once than continue to apologize for lousy service.” Most clients intuitively understand that the piddly fee isn’t the real issue; it’s having smart, able people available to solve their problems. Calvin Dennis
• Build honesty into your relationships. This is a must with clients, but should be part of all your relationships. Give without expecting anything in return. This is my first rule of networking. It’s really more about net-building, because I don’t consider it work. Rickey Gold
• “Sell to help the other person, and let your sincerity of purpose shine through.” This quote is on my wall. It helps me look at things from “their” perspective. Nick Gory
• “No” doesn’t mean “no” — it means “not now.” I also keep a file of sales ideas that I collect from various journals, books and material like yours and share some of the ideas each week in our operations meetings. Everybody contributes to sales! Steve Whitcraft
Pretty nice selection of gems, eh? Want a couple hundred more? Go to www.gitomer.com, register if you’re a first-time user, and enter SALES GEMS in the GitBit box.
Jeffrey Gitomer, author of “The Sales Bible” and “The Little Red Book of Selling,” is the president of Charlotte, N.C.-based Buy Gitomer. He gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings and conducts Internet training programs on selling and customer service at www.trainone.com. He can be reached by phone at (704) 333-1112 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.