Sales truths or sales consequences? They’re up to you!
by Jeffrey Gitomer
Published: November 15,2004
Here are a few nuggets of sales truths and sales wisdom that will make you think, make you act and make you money.
MANY DECIDE. If you want the truth about the sale, talk to a someone who will NOT make the decision. This person will tell you the real story — and with the new information you possess, you can go into a meeting with a decision maker and have real answers.
LIVE BY PRINCIPLES. Being a person of principle means that you are self-guided — and in that self-guiding way, you will come to inspire yourself. I would rather do business with someone who is principle-driven rather than money-driven.
Money-driven people have a few bucks but always seem to be on the hustle — and you can smell them — just like spoiled milk.
Principle-driven people have wealth — but that wealth is not just in money: it’s in their reputation, in the actions they take and in their personal pride. Moreover, it’s not just about their success — it’s more about their fulfillment.
People that live by their principles are much more likely to be fulfilled when they are counting their money. We all count our money. The question is: How do you feel once you know the total?
THEY BUY. QUIT SELLING. The salesperson needs to understand that sales are about the buying motive — not about the selling system. If the buying motive is not evident or uncovered, the selling system doesn’t mean jack.
NOTE: It’s not about your selling skills; it’s about their buying motives.
GET READY. If you haven’t researched the customer, don’t make the sales call
NO RISK — NO NOTHING. No one wants to take the risk, but everyone wants the reward that risk brings. YOU can get them off the fence, YOU can eliminate the board from making the decision and YOU can make them more comfortable by identifying and eliminating the risk elements of purchasing from you.
NOTE: If the risk is price — the compensation is value.
FLIP CHART GOLD. I always use a flip chart when I have a new idea or I start a new project. The flip chart helps you define and outline ideas and concepts in ways you hadn’t thought of before. As you write each point, you’re spurred on to the next point — and you think “Oh, yeah” while you write furiously. The flip chart is the perfect medium to make a concept transferable to the prospect.
NOTE: Flip charts are cheap. They cost between $50 and $200. Are you waiting for the boss to buy you one? MAJOR CLUE: You have your own money. Start to invest it in the most important person in the world: YOU.
What’s one idea worth? What’s an idea that you capture worth? How many ideas have you lost because you didn’t write them down? The flip chart captures. The flip chart communicates, expands and solidifies plans. The flip chart preserves so you can see what you’ve done and revise your plans.
The flip chart is not an option.
ELECTRONIC MAILING. Start collecting names and e-mail addresses of contacts, customers, prospects, vendors, people of influence, friends and anyone in your business world. The single most valuable asset you or your company can possess during the next 100 years is your e-mail mailing list.
GIVE VALUE FIRST. Take a moment and list your top 10 powerful connections. You know, the people who make things happen and can make things happen for you.
Now ask yourself: “What have I done for these people lately?” Be honest. If you haven’t done anything, these are people you call every once in a while just to suck their blood.
People call me all the time and ask to buy my lunch so they can “pick my brain.” My response is: “I have a $1,000 an hour brain-picking fee, so I’ll buy your lunch.” That stops all the bloodsuckers. (I make about $10,000 a year eating lunch.) How many people are willing to pay you to go to lunch?
RELATIONSHIP CHAIN. Establish relationships with people above and below your main connection. Remember, it’s not just your buyer. You have to know all the people in the food chain — so if one person drops off the food chain, you won’t starve to death.
RELATIONSHIP QUALITY. The quality of your relationships will determine the outcome of events when there is a problem or issue with price, delivery, quality or service.
NOTE: I’m NOT saying that when you have a great relationship you can ignore important issues and skate by. I AM saying that a great relationship will act as a buffer and allow all problems and issues to be resolved harmoniously. And just to put the power of the relationship issue to rest — it is the single biggest factor in determining re-orders.
GitBit: If you would like a few more sales “thought-starters,” go to www.gitomer.com — register if you’re a first time user — and enter PROVERBS in the GitBit box.
Jeffrey Gitomer, author of “The Sales Bible,” and “Customer Satisfaction is Worthless, Customer Loyalty is Priceless,” is president of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer. He gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings and conducts training programs on selling and customer service. He can be reached at (704) 333-1112 or e-mail
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