“And there is no such thing as a no sale call. A sale is made on every call you make. Either you sell the client some stock or he sells you a reason he can’t. Either way a sale is made, the only question is who is gonna close? You or him? Now be relentless, that’s it, I’m done.” – Jim Young, Boiler Room
Entrepreneurs are very passionate about the skills or talent but they don’t really like selling.
The number one reason businesses fail is because they don’t have enough money. Whether you plan on owning a business or not, this is important for you to know because you work for someone. And that someone is a business. The people who tend to keep their job the longest are usually good at sales because if you are bringing in revenue it doesn’t make sense for your employer to fire you.
There are entrepreneurs who think their products will sell themselves. They think, “if I just create something that is great, the rest of it will fall into place.” Unfortunately that is wrong.
When you are in business, it is up to you to persuade people to buy what you are selling.
Without sales, there is no business, without the top line, there is no bottom line [in your income statement]
Have you thought about the fact that just about every time Steve Jobs appeared in public, he was selling us something?
And yet few rolled their eyes and said, “oh, here comes another sales pitch.”
Jobs sold us expensive, high margin hardware that we knew would eventually become obsolete, and yet people lined up to hear the pitch. How come?
I think it is because he was saying:
“Here, I made this. It might be worth talking about.”
Inherent in this statement is the flip side, “it might not work.”
And in almost every case, he was right. That it might be worth talking about, and that it might not work.
In almost every case, skeptics pounced. People discussed his work.
Sometimes he was early, but he was usually interesting. That is a slot that is available to more people than ever before, regardless of industry or audience.
Average stuff for average people is getting ever more difficult to sell. If that is all you have got, get something else.
Here are some of my few sales tips:
- The number rule of entrepreneurship is: Don’t find customers for your products, rather find products for your customers. This way you will provide customers with offerings they want instead of what you think they want.
- Everyone is not your customer.
- Tell your story and your story must be true. Authenticity and transparency are key. If your story is not true, you will be found out and you will be called out on social media.
- Tell your story to people who want to hear it. People who have already expressed interest in your product or service want to know more. They’ve “opted-in” to hearing your story. Tell them more to improve your relationship with them and make it sufficiently interesting that they will want to tell their friends. This is how something goes “viral.” Enhance the relationship with people who have identified themselves as your prospects.
- Sell to people who want to listen to you instead of disturbing strangers with your message.
- Be remarkable. “Remarkable” = worth making a remark about. What about your product or service is remarkable? What can you do to make it so? If nothing, is it “different and better?”
- When you sell don’t be pushy all the time. Be pushy at the right time.
- Sell the problem you solve, not the product.
And on a final note, before you go out and start selling you should have some fun and watch the movie Boiler Room. There are some great sales scenes in the movie that you can learn from.