Don't Just Dial for Dollars

Don't Just Dial for Dollars

September 19, 2011

“There is nothing like a challenge to bring out the best in man.” – Sean Connery

It seems like this continued recession has some of my business clients grasping at straws, when it comes to sales.”If I can just get in front of even MORE people today, then maybe the fact that it’s costing me so much to do so will go away.”Er … no.

Throwing gasoline on a bad sales process just makes it, well, badder.Which is why I’d like ALL of my clients to consider the approach I’ve written about below. Even if you think your business doesn’t quite “fit” this model, I bet you that there are businesses within your industry who are making it work effectively.But it takes an open mind … but shouldn’t tepid sales (or even simply the desire for even greater growth) open up your mind to the possibilities out there?

Again, I’m not a marketing “guru” — I’m into numbers. But this advice has been given to me enough times that I know it’s legit.Mark Clark’s”Real World” Business Strategy Eliminating Cold-Calling Salespeople spend countless hours pounding the pavement or burning the phone lines, trying to make appointments.

It’s heart-burning (and -breaking) work.But here’s the truth: If you are nothing more than a ‘salesman,’ then nobody wants to see you.

You see, put yourself in the shoes of your prospect: nobody is ever looking forward to having an adversarial discussion with you about whether they’re going to buy something or not.Sure, 100 years ago, face-to-face selling was often the only way to find out about a new product or service.  But that’s not the case right now. What do people do when they’re interested in real estate? They hop online and look up information on the internet.For many, it’s just a lot easier and safer than inviting a real estate agent over for tea & crumpets. But the issue is NOT that real estate agents are obsolete.

The issue is: Does she add legitimate value to what the customer can already get from the internet?  Is she positioning herself such that customers who are ready to do something see her as a valuable resource and call her when it’s time to act?  Or is she just a friendly face who really just wants their listing?You see, she must clearly position herself as someone who drastically speeds the buying or selling process and makes it MUCH EASIER for the buyer or seller to get what they want. And the same principle holds true for sales folks in ANY industry.

So how do you DEMONSTRATE that you, as a sales person, make your customers’ life easier –that time spent with you is time well spent?Well, in your marketing, you focus on *their* problems, not *your* solution. You focus on the itch, not the scratch.This might sound simplistic–but hardly anybody really does this.  If you doubt me, just pick up ANY magazine and flip through it. Ask yourself this question as you look at every ad: ‘Is this ad about my problem, or is it about somebody’s product? ‘The vast majority of the time it’s about their ‘cool’ product.  And nobody really cares. The only thing people care about is their problem.

So here’s a major shift: Instead of being a sales person who’s trying to get in front of people, become a problem-solving Information Source.  (Usually it’s *written* information first, not a phone call.)Generate real leads with complimentary information. You’ll get five times as many sales leads that way.  No joke.