Tag Archives: success

The 3 Secrets to Tele-Sales Success

Ever wonder why some tele-sales reps (any type of sales rep, for that matter) are more successful than others?

Scratch the surface and you’ll find that they all seem to apply these three simple secrets:

  1. They find a system
  2. They implement it immediately
  3. They stick to it

You CAN be as successful as you want by following these three secrets.  I can’t take credit for them.  I got them from Bob Burg years ago in an amazing little pamphlet he sent me called, “The Success Formula.”   They’re simple but powerful principles that literally can change your life.

Secret #1:  Find a system

Look, it’s this simple:  being successful in tele-sales has been accomplished by others before you.  They’ve done the heavy lifting. They’ve tested techniques, methods and processes. They’ve failed. They’ve tried again.  And eventually, they got it down pat. They found the “formula.”

The first secret is to discover what they did and simply follow it.  Replicate their system (with obvious customization to your situation).  A system is a repeatable series of actions.  It means they can be copied, implemented and mastered. Burg sums it up by referencing Michael Gerber, author of “The E-Myth,”

 “Systems permit ordinary people to achieve extraordinary results predictably.  However, without a system, even extraordinary people find it difficult to predictably achieve even ordinary results.” 

Okay … so what does that mean to you?

It means doing some homework. Seek out those who are very successful. Bob calls this O.P.E. – Other People’s Experience.  Maybe it’s the top rep in your company.  Perhaps it’s someone you know who is successful in a field similar to yours.  Find a coach or mentor you respect and pick their brain.  Scan the web.  Look for authorities.  Read their stuff.  Find out precisely what they do. If it resonates with you then model it.  Duplicate what they do. Hijack the process. Don’t re-invent the wheel. I sure as heck don’t.

Secret #2: Implement it immediately

When you’ve found your ‘system’ take action; apply it immediately.  Avoid the tendency to ‘wait for the right moment.’  Don’t procrastinate. Don’t wait until next week or the start of the new sales month or quarter. You know you’ll never do it. Dive in. Hunker down.

Why is it that we tend to delay implementing new ideas?

Basically there are three reasons. First, there’s the fear we’ll fail or look silly or be rejected or whatever.  Second, there’s the issue of time. It takes time to master; time that we think we don’t have or can’t afford.  Third, there’s the ‘change factor.’  We resist change because change is awkward and uncomfortable.  Our natural tendency is to avoid it.

I get all that.  I feel these things myself.  But at the end of the day ask yourself, “Do I want to improve (be more successful) or not?”

Hey, if you’re happy with where you are and what you are achieving then don’t DO anything.  But don’t complain either.  But if you want to further succeed then the price you pay is facing your fear, finding the time and dealing with the discomfort of change.

Secret #3: Stick to it

Think of diets.  Follow the diet and you will inevitably lose weight. Admittedly, it can be tough but when you DO follow it, pounds fall off.  And of course, the moment you stray from the ‘system’ of the diet is the moment you fall back into old habits and regain the weight.

The same is true with your tele-sales success formula.  You need to stick to it; persevere; carry on; stick to it. Sure you’ll stumble and fall.  Just get back up. Start again. Build your discipline. You WILL get stronger.  And you WILL succeed.

Here’s the single biggest challenge you’ll face: quitting. Quitting is just so dang easy to do (go here http://www.telesalesmaster.com/1375/motivation/ for more on this topic).  You need to fight that.  That’s why desire and drive are so important.  You have to WANT to succeed if you’re going to succeed.  Lip service ain’t going to cut it.

Summary

There you have it. In less than 700 words I have given the formula to becoming more successful in tele-sales.  It’s so incredibly simple, isn’t it? But it’s not fluff or hype. It works.  It really, really works.  Start your success journey today.

And be sure to visit Bob Burg’s website at www.thesuccessformula.com 

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Controlling Your Sales Destiny – Tip #9: Get Organized, please!

This is the ninth in a series of posts about taking control of your sales destiny and achieving sales success.

Tip #9: Get Organized

This is an important but often uncomfortable topic.  Very important because it directly impacts your success – or lack thereof- in sales.  Uncomfortable because most almost everyone is guilty of poor time management and would rather avoid the topic.

The fact of the matter is most people – including tele-sales reps like you and me- are not well organized and we’ve gotta’ come to grips with it if we’re to move to the next level.

So let me ask, does this seem all too familiar?

  • a cluttered desk,
  • scads of paper, notes and files scattered around your work station
  • constant multi-tasking on three, four or five items
  • brochures, price lists, bulletins and memos strewn about
  • quotes waiting to be completed
  • behind on dials,
  • ten applications open on your browser,
  • frantic last minute proposals being worked upon
  • late follow up calls
  • checking out Facebook updates
  • behind on prospecting and new business development … you’ll do that tomorrow, right?
  • lost phone numbers – again
  •  incomplete thank you cards to clients who bought a month ago,
  •  month end sales deadline (drop everything)
  • checking your e-mails every 8 minutes
  • texting friends and family
  • fire-fighting with shipping, billing etc. … gasp…
  • fiddling with your cell phone

The Net Impact

The net effect of such chaos is psychological (and physiological) stress that takes its’ toll on your sales success. At some level, it whittles away your energy, drive, focus, and motivation.  Put another way, you’re not nearly as effective as you could be or should be … and that affects your sales, your revenues, your personal income, your personal life … your sales destiny and more.

So What Are You going to Do About it? (See Tip #2)

Being organized, managing your time, setting your priorities, working on the right ‘stuff’ at the ‘right’ time etc. is not something most people are born with.  It is something they learn.  If you struggle with some (or all) of these traits, own up to it and  then DO SOMETHING!  Here’s a couple of ideas to get the ball rolling:

Action Item #1:  Tonight, stay late and thoroughly clean your desk and work areas.  Ruthlessly purge the clutter.  File things properly and neatly.  Scrub – literally – your desk clean. Organize your pens and pencils.  Get rid of those boxes of crackers, bags of chips, chocolate bars and old cups of coffee.  Why do this?  First, it’s a symbolic start at taking control of things.  Second, it gives you an immediate sense of accomplishment.  And third, when you arrive tomorrow you have a fresh clean environment and this, by itself, gives you a sense of clarity and purpose.  It works.

Action Item #2:  This evening, at home, take twenty minutes, get on line and Google “time management” and “getting organized.” Read a few articles on taking control.  Just twenty minutes – that all. Then go to Amazon and look at time management/organization books.  Do some research and then invest in yourself by buying a book or two. (Refer to Tip #7)

Summary

Here’s the thing, taking control of your sales destiny by controlling your time and activities is EMPOWERING.  Once you learn how to do it, you’ll be filled with amazing self-confidence.  You experience a “I-can-do-anything” kind of energy. Really, you will.  But not only does it help you in your sales career, it helps you in your life.

 

 

 

 

 

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Just 1 More -How to Create 240 More Sales Opportunities

Here is a guaranteed way to create 240 more sales opportunity!

When you’re finished your dialing for the day, pick up the phone and dial one more time. When you think you’ve reached your limit, dial one more time.  Just one more. That’s it.

No big deal. One more dial.

Doesn’t sound like much but think about it.  One more dial is 5 more in a week.  In a month, that’s 20 more dials and in a year that is 240 more dials. If you have a 30% contact rate, that’s a little over 70 more live prospects.  If you close at, say, 20%, that’s 14 more sales.

You see, doing just a little more and pushing just a little bit harder can yield impressive results.

Now, imagine if you said to yourself, “Okay, just two more dials before I call it quits.”

What happens when you dial 3 more? And 4?  What about 5?  Just 5 more…

Do the math and succeed in sales.

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Why Sales People Hate Cold Calling

This blog features sales expert Kelley Robertson.  Kelley is one of North America’s foremost experts in sales training and I think you’ll see why in this article. Enjoy!

Cold calling is a fact of life for most people in sales. Sure, the vast majority would prefer to rely on referrals, word-of-mouth, or some other lead source that reduces or eliminates their need to make cold calls. However, unless you deal with an established set of accounts, you will, at some time, be required to cold call in order to generate sufficient leads for your business.

Having said this, even the most seasoned sales professionals often resist this strategy unless they are poked, prodded and pushed by their manager. Excuses include:

“I don’t like the rejection.”

“I don’t want to come across like I’m desperate for business.”

“I don’t want to sound like a telemarketer.”

“I don’t like interrupting people at work.”

“I don’t know what to say.”

However, I believe that there is another dynamic at play that prevents people from embracing cold calling. It’s the need and desire for instant gratification. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The prize inside the box.

We know that cold calling seldom generates quick results. It takes a lot of dials to connect with live people. It takes finesse to deal with receptionists, gatekeepers and executive assistants. It takes a certain amount of creativity to deal with the barriers that get in our way. It takes multiple attempts and a bulldog sense of persistence to finally connect with decision makers. And, finally after all that work, we eventually manage to make contact with our prospect only to hear, “No, thanks.”

I once read that there are two types of people. People who are willing to wait for a reward and those who want the reward now even though the payoff may be higher if they wait. I suspect that people who have the ability to wait for a payoff also possess the ability to make more calls than individuals who need immediate gratification. Let’s face it. Capturing a sale is highly motivating and many people have a difficult time making call after call with little to show for it. Making fifty or sixty dials and not capturing a sale or being unable to connect with a buyer or decision maker can be extremely frustrating. Spending an entire day on the telephone is even more challenging and difficult.

Experts on this subject say that you need to recognize that every ‘no’ brings you one call closer to making an appointment or landing a sale. Some people say that you need to “go for the no” and to use those ‘no’s’ as a stepping stone to hearing a ‘yes.” While these philosophies are technically true, it takes much more than that.

It takes big picture thinking. It requires the ability to postpone the pleasure of getting the reward and developing the discipline to work through the pain and challenge of making dozens of calls with little to show for it.

So, here’s the $64,000 question: how do you develop this ability?

I’ll warn you; it’s not easy. In order to develop the ability to get used to a delayed payoff you actually have to make these calls, as painful and challenging as it is. You need to condition yourself that you will eventually get a reward for your efforts. I know, you were hoping for a magic answer or quick result. Unfortunately, the quick-fix solution exists only in infomercials, novels and movies.

Let’s take a look at this from a slightly different perspective. When you learn a new hobby, sport, language, etc., it takes time to just to become comfortable. It takes longer to develop a level of consistent proficiency. And, it takes even more time to develop your skill to the point of excellence. The same concept applies to cold calling. You can’t expect to make ten or fifteen calls and master the skill. In fact, that number of calls won’t even get you to the point of feeling comfortable. You need to block time in your schedule on a daily basis to make calls. The more calls you make, the easier it will get and the more proficient you will become. As your skill improves, so will your ability to generate leads and secure appointments. You will become more adept at dealing with receptionists and executive assistants. And this will eventually translate into sales.

I guarantee that it will be a grind at first. However, if you can push through your initial resistance you can develop the ability to postpone your need for instant gratification. And as you do this, your results will improve.

© MMXI Kelley Robertson, All rights reserved.

Do you know what sales blunders are costing you money? Get a FREE audio program, Sales Blunders That Cost You Money and two other sales-boosting resources by subscribing to Kelley’s newsletter at www.Fearless-Selling.ca or email Kelley@Fearless-Selling.ca

Kelley Robertson, author of The Secrets of Power Selling helps sales professionals close more sales at higher profits with less effort. Kelley conducts sales training workshops and speaks regularly at sales meetings and conferences. Contact him at 905-633-7750 or Kelley@Fearless-Selling.ca.

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Part II: The 10 Reasons Why You Don’t Sell As Much as You Should (or Could)

In my last blog I posted the first five reasons why you don’t sell as much as you could or should … and what you can do about that.

Here are the final five.  Any of them sound familiar?

6. You need an attitude adjustment

Attitude can be a real sales killer and may be holding you back from extraordinary results. Look, if you don’t like your boss; if you feel your prices are “always” too high; if you feel your list is lousy; or you feel that your competition has a better product, a better offer, better terms … whatever;  then quit. Don’t waste any more of your time.

Or, alternatively,  change your attitude. It’s as simple as that. Negative thoughts and beliefs will hold you back from succeeding.  So here’s what to do.  Stop whining.  Stop blaming and finger pointing.  And above all, stop excusing yourself.  Your sales success is YOUR responsibility.  And finally ask yourself this question, “So, what am I going to do about it?”

7. You’re complacent

You might not be selling as much as you could or should because of complacency.  It means you are content, perhaps even smug about your sales results.  You’re happy with what you are making and achieving.  This is not necessarily a bad thing provided you are meeting or exceeding your objectives.

The only trouble with complacency is that it’s a slippery slope.  It gets easy to stop doing the things that made you successful…and you don’t realize it. One day you wake up and you’re behind the game.  Complacency is common and it creeps up on everyone from time to time. The good news is that complacency is relatively easy to fix.  Push yourself every day by trying something new or setting more challenging objectives.  Make 10 more calls. Push for one more sale.  Get in 15 minutes earlier.  Prospect a half hour longer. S tay an hour later once a week.

8. You’re lazy

Being lazy is different than being complacent.  Lazy lies several steps past complacency.  Laziness is knowing what to do but consciously choosing not to do it.  And excusing it. Laziness is seeing what needs to be done and ignoring it.  No one likes to admit that he or she is lazy. If your sales are down and they’ve been down for a while, you need to have a little ‘heart-to-heart’ with yourself.  Only you can answer the question.

9. You don’t invest in yourself

Your sales might not be where you want them because you have done nothing to help get yourself to the next level.  You haven’t invested the time or the money for self-improvement.  That you are reading this article is a good start but, have you bought a book or DVD on sales in the last six months?  Have you thought of hiring a coach? You see, the moment you invest a few bucks of your own money is the moment you have something to lose and something to gain. You create risk.   After you invest the money, invest the time. Schedule a half hour a day or a couple of hours a week to read and learn new techniques. Get new perspectives.

10. You don’t have the talent

Maybe your sales aren’t so great because you lack the talent.  Talent is an inherent ability to do well or at least, well enough. Not everyone has it. I can’t dance a lick. I have NO talent for it. Can’t sing either. Wasn’t blessed with it.  Some people aren’t cut out to be sales people because they don’t have the talent.  If you have tried everything suggested here, if you have moved from sales job to sales job and have not been ‘successful’ then maybe you don’t have the talent. Maybe you should move on to something else. No shame in that. Call it a moment of truth but it could make your life a whole lot more enjoyable.

Summary

If you haven’t gathered by now, your success is up to you.  It’s your choice.  Making certain choices is not always easy but it is the only path to sales success.  Choose wisely.

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7 Cold Call Opening Statements From Hell

When cold calling, the opening statement is THE most critical element to your success. If you don’t nail the opener and get the prospect’s attention, you needn’t worry about the rest of the call. In short, you can’t afford to make a mistake.

Regrettably, mistakes are made but the troubling fact is that the SAME mistakes are made repeatedly, every day, by thousands of sales reps.  Here are seven cold call opening statements that illustrate the typical blunders tele-prospectors make.  Are you guilty?

Example #1: “Hey Pete, How are you today?  This is Jane Seamore calling for H8 Enterprises. Have you heard of us?”

Two points here. First, “how are you today” is insipid, trite and wastes precious time. Prospects don’t like it so don’t use it. Secondly, the hope is the prospect will say, “Why no, tell me more about your company because I have loads of time on my hand.” Of course, they don’t. They don’t have time for idle chit chat and irrelevant questions. Cut to the quick. Get to the point.

Example #2: “Katie? Henry Eighthly calling from Tower Transport Logistics in London.  Katie, the reason for my call is to follow up on an e-mail I sent you on how we can reduce your long halls shipping costs.  Did you get it?”

In this example, Henry just handed the prospect a bona fide objection on a silver platter. About 95% of the time the prospect will say “no” and ask you to send it again. They get rid of you in a New York minute and then  they’ll avoid your call like the plague when you follow up. Never ask if they got something or read something.

Example #3: “Oh hi. Is this the safety manager? Good. I’m Justin Kovalev calling from Senator Safety products. We specialize in safety communications programs. Did I catch you at a good time?”

Notice, the rep did not use the prospect’s name. Using the name helps get the prospects attention. Not using a name screams that you haven’t done your homework. Next, nothing will stop a cold call faster than asking if you have caught them at a good time. Sure, it’s polite but it’s never a good time. They’re busy and you’ve given them a great way to blow you off. Instead,  use this handy trigger phrase:  “If I have caught you at a good time, I’d like to ask you some questions to get a feel for your situation…”

Example #4: “Ms. Harris, my name is Mary Worth and I’m a financial adviser who works with single moms who struggle to plan their financial future.  Let me ask you, what are some of the personal challenges you’re experiencing when it comes to planning for your kids’ education?

Aw shucks, this started so well! The unique proposition statement is great. However, the following question is a real cold call killer. Who in their right mind would open up to such an intimate and personal question in the OPENING statement? Never, ever make your first question something that is challenging, embarrassing, personal or awkward.  Sure, it’s a bold and enticing question but you haven’t earned the trust or the right to ask it at this moment. Start with an easy question to get a wedge in the door.

 Example #5:  “Hi, this is Mark Major from Mensa Medical. We specialize in a variety of hospital supplies.  I was wondering: what would it take to earn your business?”

This opener has been around since 1953. It was cheesy then and it is cheesy now. Translated, it is saying is this: “I don’t want to earn your business the old fashioned way through a needs analysis. I want you to make it easy for me, a stranger, and just tell me.” There is no attempt at rapport and there is certainly no benefit to the busy prospect.

Example #6:  “Antonio? My name is Brandon Mirovich calling from Vaststar Software.  We work with HR professionals helping them streamline their personnel review processes. Antonio, if I could show you a way to reduce the time it takes to write, conduct and complete a personnel review by 50%, would you take a moment to listen?”

This opener seems to offer a rich benefit. You’d think the prospect would be salivating. The trouble is, this opener has been overused for 27 years.  Every prospect has heard it at least seventeen or eighteen times in their career. And this has made them skeptical and cynical. High falutin’ promises and benefits are seen as slick and untrustworthy. So, when you offer your benefits, make them reasonable, not ridiculous.

Example #7:  “Dr. James, this is Tracie Hardie calling from Orbital Dental. We’re the dental specialists. Dr. James, we offer a wide range of  (insert a 600 word pitch) blah, blah, blah.”

Sadly, this is STILL the most common cold call opener: The telemarketing pitch. The idea is to vomit and spew out information and hope that something sticks. No one wants a monologue, sermon or speech. Your cold call opener must have your full name, company name, a reason for the call, a benefit as to why they should listen further, and finally a question that gets a dialog going.

Cold calling doesn’t have to a hellish experience. Give yourself an edge and make the process easier by avoiding these seven blunders.

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