Albert Einstein's Little-Known Sales Secret

It’s no secret that many of the great business pioneers in our history had little knowledge of their core business.

Instead, they had people skills.

That is what the Master Mind principle is about. Unfortunately, that term is used and abused all over the place in incorrect ways. A true Master Mind is a group of individuals all working together, in perfect harmony, toward a common goal.

Here are some more well-known examples of Master Mind alliances, and then I’m going to shock you with one I never knew about until I read about it last night:

1. Andrew Carnegie

When Napoleon Hill first interviewed Andrew Carnegie in 1908, he was astonished to learn that Mr. Carnegie had no knowledge whatsoever about the making and marketing of steel, even though it was the steel business that made Mr. Carnegie the richest man in the world at that time.

Instead, he assembled a group of people who were experts in the making and marketing of steel, and worked to keep them working together in harmony toward Mr. Carnegie’s goals. (And they made themselves rich in the process, too.)

2. Thomas Edison

Thomas Edison was kicked out of elementary school after only three months, with a note from the teacher explaining that he had an “addled mind” and couldn’t take an education.

He chose a career path - scientific invention - that required a deep knowledge of many of the sciences, yet he knew nothing about any of them.

What did he do? He bridged that gap by surrounding himself with a staff of scientists who did have that knowledge, and could do the things he needed to have done to complete his inventions.

And now for that shocker I promised you:

3. Albert Einstein

I nearly fell out of my chair reading last night about Albert Einstein’s mathematical weakness. Though he had a brilliant and very visionary mind for physics, he was lousy at math.

What did he do? How did he come up with his Theory of Relativity - his famous E=MC2 if he was lousy at math?

Simple: He surrounded himself with mathematicians who had the ability to take his visions and his theories and translate them into provable equations.

Surprised? Don’t be. Because here’s another:

4. Frank Rumbauskas

I personally am not someone who likes to sell. In fact, it took me several years to even get comfortable with the idea of being a salesperson when I always wanted to be a business owner, which did eventually happen but only after going through years of “boot camp” in sales roles.

How did I bridge the gap and consistently have the highest numbers wherever I worked, without a love or affinity for sales?

Easy: I surrounded myself with the most successful sales pros I could find. I learned from them, took the best techniques from each one, and built them all into a system that generated qualified leads for me on autopilot, so I didn’t have to.

In other words, I stopped being a “salesman” and began being an “order taker.” Which, by the way, is a fun job!

That’s when others began asking what I was doing to be so successful without appearing to work very hard, and that's when it dawned on me that I had knowledge others would willingly pay for. At that point
I wrote the first edition of my Never Cold Call Again system, produced two CDs to accompany it, along with some other materials, and, as they say, "The rest is history." It sold so well that I was able to quit my last job only a couple of months later and I even became a New York Times best-seller!

The great news is that it's 2014 - it's the Information Age - and all of the systems, strategies, and techniques I have used to become a top sales pro, and then taught to others, are available to you. From old-school offline marketing, direct mail sales letters and the like, to modern lead-generation strategies like search engine marketing, mobile marketing, social media, LinkedIn, and more, there's no excuse to not be a top sales pro - and ZERO excuse to cold call anymore!

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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What Is WRONG with Cold Callers?

Last week I decided to tweet and re-tweet two new articles, to gauge response from people other than my email subscribers.

As predicted, there were a slew of responses from people who have some kind of bizarre emotional addiction to cold calling. They were the typical responses, such as:

"Cold calling works for me!"
"There's still a place for cold calling in B2B sales!"
"If cold calling doesn't work for you, you're doing it wrong!"
"I make a lot of sales by cold calling!"

Hmm... really? Personally, I think these people are crazy, or delusional, or, probably most likely, just too lazy to bother to learn anything better. They're content with what they're bringing in, and so good for them.

But for people with lofty goals like you and me, that simply isn't good enough!

In a business environment where it's been proven over and over again that 80% of decision makers simply will never take a cold call - yet alone buy from one - cold calling is dead. Or as a major firm that supports financial advisors announced in a report, "Cold calling has gone the way of the Betamax and the wooly mammoth."

Why is this important?

Well, aside from the obvious fact that cold calling is a waste of time, is the fact that 20% of those people will buy from cold calls. And therein lies the problem.

As long as those 20% are still buying from cold calls, salespeople will continue to delude themselves into thinking that "cold calling works!"

Seriously - the average success rate from cold calling is 1%, and among the very best of the best, it's 3%.

Three percent! But is this any surprise when only 1 in 5 decision makers will even respond to a cold call in the first place?

If that 20% of the market would just stop responding to cold calls, people would wake up to the fact that it's a zero-results game, and they'd finally give it up and do something more productive to generate leads.

But, I'm not complaining. As long as the majority of salespeople continue to cold call and keep on fighting each other over that 20% of the market, the rest of us are free to go out and close sales with the other 80%.

I mentioned earlier that the cold calling lovers have some kind of bizarre emotional addiction to cold calling. Because they do. There's zero logic behind a decision to make cold calls when they don't work anymore. And as long as salespeople get a sale here and there from cold calling, the addiction will go on, and they'll continue to be afraid to stop cold calling and begin doing something different and better to prospect for sales.

So that's why it's time for you to...

Break Your Cold Calling Addiction!

There's really no sense in continuing to cold call when even a university study concluded that 4 out of 5 people will never respond. That's pretty bad odds. And in terms of actual sales success, it's even worse than that.

But, there's good news: There's a way out of the cold calling addiction. Lots of ways out. And no, I'm not one of an endless parade of hucksters selling "get rich with social media" products, although knowing how to use LinkedIn properly could provide you with all the business you'll ever need and then some.

If you're still cold calling, get out of your comfort zone, start learning what really works in today's modern economy, and watch your sales numbers explode.

 


New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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How The Internet Has Killed Cold Calling

Yesterday, as I do on every Tuesday, I read Jeffrey Gitomer's excellent sales newsletter, as you should too if you want to be a superstar in sales.

One of the guest articles really made an excellent point: The topic was, you guessed it, cold calling.

The author explained that up until the early to mid 1990s, companies generally had an "open door" policy when it came to cold callers. Salespeople who made cold calls were the primary means of learning about new products and services, and in order to stay on the cutting edge, decision makers would frequently accept cold calls if only to stay educated on what was out there in the marketplace.

Then came the late 1990s, and a little something called the Internet, and all that changed.

How The Internet Killed Cold Calling

Let's be honest here - even though cold calls were far more widely accepted twenty years ago, they've always been annoying, and many busy people only did business via trusted referrals - something I do myself with all large purchases.

Having said that, though, up until the mid-1990s, cold calling had a place.

Why? I'll explain:

Pre-2000: No Internet, or weak and poorly populated Internet. No blogs or online journals, or even good search engines at the time - you had to go to a site like Yahoo and then find the seemingly well-hidden search box. Therefore, salespeople who made cold calls were a useful resource to find out what was new and cutting-edge.

Post-2000: The Internet as we know it today, and now in 2014, you can even do all of your business networking, better than you could do it offline and in person, on sites like LinkedIn. Decision makers don't turn to salespeople to learn about the latest and greatest. They rely on Google, LinkedIn, blogs, social media, and the Internet in general for that information.

Furthermore, they use the Internet to find vendors to serve their needs. In other words, the days of waiting for a salesperson to call or knock on the door are over. Now, prospects are pro-active: They don't wait for a salesperson to call. The get online and find the right salesperson.

Are they finding you? If not, why not?

Guess what - people find me. And they find my sales reps and agencies and resellers. Yes, I'm still out selling on a regular basis, in my consulting and training business. But I haven't made a cold call since about the year 2000.

It all started in 1996 when I got the dream job I'd been waiting for 2 years to get, on a waitlist. My new boss was horrified to see me cold calling - he told me that company was too reputable and too well-trusted to have salespeople ruining their image with cold calls. (Think about that - it's a lesson in itself.)

He teamed me up with the top rep in the office, who introduced me to his many networking contacts throughout the city, all of whom where also top sales pros. I spent time with them, they mentored me, and I learned how they were doing it - and what I learned what nothing of what I expected. Hint: They were NOT cold calling!

As if by a stroke of magic, I finally started making sales. Lots of sales! I soon had so many leads that I was able to pick & choose which ones I wanted, and would give the leftovers to other reps in the office and split the commissions with them.

They all wanted to know how on earth I was generating so many hot leads, and that's when it dawned on me that I had knowledge others would willingly pay for. At that point I wrote the first edition of my Never Cold Call Again system, produced two CDs to accompany it, along with some other materials, and, as they say, "The rest is history." It sold so well that I was able to quit my last job only a couple of months later and I even became a New York Times best-seller!

If you want the same level of success, do yourself a favor: Drop the cold calling charade and begin using modern, Information Age sales prospecting techniques that work. Your wallet and your bank account will thank you for it!

See the full original article at http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/the-internet-has-killed-cold-calling/

 


New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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The USP - Unique Selling Proposition - in 2014

This weekend I read much of the classic marketing book Positioning by Al Ries and Jack Trout.

The book gives a history of marketing, advertising, and selling starting with the 1950s, and what they had to say was a real eye-opener:

In the 1950s, selling was all about the Unique Selling Proposition, or "USP." But toward the end of the 1950s, the USP, due to both overuse and the onslaught of technology, had become useless and ineffective.

Fast-forward about 55 years to today, and what is almost every sales book, sales manager, and sales trainer telling you to use?

A freaking USP!

I personally hate the idea of a USP. Or more specifically, using one in selling. But, like cold calling, everyone is telling you to do it, only because "that's the thing to do."

My issue with a USP is the same as with a cold calling script: It makes you come across as cold and robotic, and people don't buy from cold personalities. They buy from people who show warmth and can communicate well.

The idea of a USP forces you into crafting a "30-second commercial" or an "elevator pitch," which, for all intents and purposes, might as well be a cold calling script, because they have the effect of triggering instant sales resistance and pushing people away from you.

In the relatively few cases when I did meet someone in an elevator that led to a sale, it was by being personable - not by talking business, and not by jumping into a 30-second blurb about what I sell. That kind of nonsense will make the other person RUN as soon as the elevator door opens.

Take a look at the very top-performing salespeople in your organization, and one thing becomes clear: They're personable. They know how to talk to people, they like to talk to people, and they make their huge sales numbers through building relationships and connections, not by pummeling people with annoyoing "USP" elevator speeches.

When I relocated to Dallas I got tons of business by going to networking events. How? By announcing that I was there to make new friends with like-minded people, not by giving a 30-second speech about what I was selling.

Worst of all, guess what the USP was really designed for - not networking. It was invented to be used with cold calling. The idea is to get someone on the phone, or in front of you in person, and pitch your USP.

In other words, you're taking an obsolete and ineffective method of making the initial contact - via a USP instead of acting like a normal, personable human being - and you're delivering it via cold calling, which has the lowest percentage of all sales call success!

In other words....

Stop cold calling already!

Continuing to cold call makes zero sense, particularly even when university studies  concluded that 4 out of 5 decision makers won't even take your call, let alone buy from you. Those are pretty bad odds. Combine that with triggering instant sales resistance by using a USP on the 20% you might be able to reach, and you're finished in sales.

The good news is that there's a way out of cold calling. Lots of ways - more than you can imagine. Jeffrey Gitomer and I did a brainstorm session where we ran a stopwatch for 30 seconds and tried to see how many alternatives to cold calling we could list in that time.

We came up with over two dozen!

So give up the cold calling nonsense, and learn how to use the Internet, Social Media, LinkedIn, how to network effectively (no USPs!) and the other many options out there to give up cold calling forever.

See the full original article at http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/selling-in-the-1950s/


New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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Sales Tip: An Easy Way to Make More Sales - Fast

I’d like to share with you a very easy trick you can use, to get more sales, fast & easy.

I learned about this several years ago when I was studying the science of social dynamics and sub-communication in order to apply the information to improving my sales. But it was a very unusual application of this science – or I should say, a mis-application – that really surprised me.

I learned of it when I met Neil Strauss, author of the book The Game, about a bunch of self-proclaimed “pickup artists” who lived in Hollywood and devoted their time to learning how to pick up women. (Yeah, kinda lame, but there’s good info here so keep reading!)

The gist of what they did was this: They’d approach women in bars, and open conversations with dumb questions about random things, always starting with, “Hey, I need a female opinion on something.”

What this did was allow them to come in “under the radar.” As the book explains, in a bar or nightclub situation, women automatically have their guard up and the usual pickup lines that men use will fail, even if the woman would otherwise be interested in the man. They call this a “programming wall.”

But by using this strategy of asking a completely random question, under the guise of “I need your opinion,” they’d be able to start a conversation and move it forward to where they could successfully get a phone number or ask her out on a date.

What intrigued me most, however, was this idea of “programming walls” and how a woman would not talk to a desirable man, just because he approached her in a way that hit one of these subconscious walls and caused her to shut down.

It ingrigued me because selling works in exactly the same way. Selling is a game of human nature, and you have to know how to make the right approach and avoid hitting these so-called programming walls.

Cold Calling and Programming Walls

I observe myself doing it all the time. Whether I’m walking through the mall and pass by one of those kiosks with an annoying salesperson calling me to come over, or a sales rep approaches me in the typical cold call manner, I completely shut down and want nothing to do with them.

Sometimes I even do this with the friendly people offering free samples in the supermarket – not because I don’t want the sample, but because their method of approach triggers a programming wall in my mind, and I walk on by pretending to be uninterested.

Similarly, someone may be selling something I need, or am even actively shopping for, but when they cold call me, the programming wall goes up, they slam head-first into it, and nothing happens.

Years ago, long before Neil’s book came out, a sales manager who agreed that cold calling is a waste of time explained to us that cold calling is slamming head-first into a brick wall, when we really needed to go around the walls.

That’s why even those who cold call will still perpuate ridiculous stories about how someone “got in the door,” like the urban legend about mailing someone one shoe along with a note saying, “I’ve got one foot in the door, how about the other?”

Obviously someone who has never sold successfully made that one up, but you get my point – getting in the door successfully means finding ways and means of getting around the door and into the decision maker’s office.

Cold calling means slamming into that door over and over again. If you follow the insane advice to “increase your activity,” all that means is you’ll be slamming into it even more and more.

The answer isn’t to cold call. It’s to use effective, Information Age, self-marketing systems and methods that get you around the door. And closing sales.

- See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/the-fastest-way-to-easy-sales/#sthash.DAM2hzIG.dpuf

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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The Ineffectiveness of Cold Calling

Last week I got an email from a sales manager.

Expecting the usual ranting and raving of a lunatic with an unhealthy emotional attachment to cold calling, I opened it, began reading, and… was pleasantly surprised!

His opinion was not only that cold calling doesn’t work, but that anyone who is still doing it has some very dangerous learned behaviors that must be un-learned before sales success can happen.

Never mind the studies showing that 80% of decision makers will never, ever buy from a cold call, or that it now takes an experienced salesperson 7.5 hours, on average, to get ONE qualified appointment.

What he explained is much worse than that. So let’s get to it:

The Insanity of Cold Calling

The explanation behind this has to do with a principle of psychology defining the seven character defects that cause people to behave the way they do.

These character defects are called “Learned Behavior.” The good news is that, when addressed with Behavior Modification solutions (BMOD), they can become “Unlearned Behavior,” but it takes longer!

Now here’s where it gets interesting: Salespeople as a whole have some HORRIBLE “Learned Behavior”!!!!

I see it all the time as I’m out with reps who have years of experience, and over those years, have picked up terrible habits, saying things that are totally irrelevant and have nothing to do with the prospect’s needs – all the usual suspects such as, “We have the best service,” “We’re the marketing leader,” blah blah blah.

But the worst learned behavior of all is COLD CALLING.

It blows my mind that SO MANY valuable, and extremely effective, alternatives to cold calling exist today, from long established self-marketing strategies, to the Internet, to social media, to good old-fashioned networking and relationship building, and so many, many more.

But due to learned behavior, otherwise intelligent and capable salespeople get up every day and begin wasting endless hours cold calling instead!

The bottom line is that most salespeople fail, not because they’re bad salespeople, but because of this “Learned Behavior” that has essentially programmed them to do things that don’t work anymore!

I Used To Be A Failure, Too

When I started out in sales, i was a miserable failure myself, because I was told over and over again, and had it endlessly drilled into my head, that I MUST cold call. When I objected and said it wasn’t working, I was told to cold call even more!

THIS IS THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY!

When something isn’t working, the answer isn’t to do more of it. It’s to change your activities and your behavior to something that does work.

And guess what? Cold calling DOES NOT work, not anymore, not in today’s economy!

The solution, therefore, is to STOP cold calling and START doing something that works instead!

- See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/the-insanity-of-cold-calling/#sthash.a3sreyt3.dpuf

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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Still Cold Calling in 2013? Think Again!

I received a VERY interesting email from a reader, a regional sales manager for a large company, last week. The subject line of his email was, “All salespeople are sick if they are still cold calling.”

Intrigued, I immediately opened it, and was pleasantly surprised at the arguments he offered!

Before I get to that, here’s a reminder of a basic principle I teach:

Cold calling, quite simply, is … DUMB!

Not only does it get appointments at a very low rate of success, but worse yet, appointments set by cold calling are usually a waste of time, with a low-quality prospect who probably isn’t fully qualified, and ready, willing, and able to buy from you right now.

But I digress. Back to the point of this email…

The “Sickness” of Cold Calling

The explanation behind this has to do with a principle of psychology defining the seven character defects that cause people to behave the way they do.

These character defects are called “Learned Behavior.” The good news is that, when addressed with Behavior Modification solutions (BMOD), they can become “Unlearned Behavior,” but it takes longer!

Now here’s where it gets interesting: Salespeople as a whole have some HORRIBLE “Learned Behavior”!!!!

I see it all the time as I’m out with reps who have years of experience, and over those years, have picked up terrible habits, saying things that are totally irrelevant and have nothing to do with the prospect’s needs – all the usual suspects such as, “We have the best service,” “We’re the marketing leader,” blah blah blah.

But the worst learned behavior of all is COLD CALLING.

It blows my mind that SO MANY valuable, and extremely effective, alternatives to cold calling exist today, from long established self-marketing strategies, to the Internet, to social media, to good old-fashioned networking and relationship building, and so many, many more.

But due to learned behavior, otherwise intelligent and capable salespeople get up every day and begin wasting endless hours cold calling instead!

The bottom line is that most salespeople fail, not because they’re bad salespeople, but because of this “Learned Behavior” that has essentially programmed them to do things that don’t work anymore!

I Used To Be A Failure, Too

When I started out in sales, i was a miserable failure myself, because I was told over and over again, and had it endlessly drilled into my head, that I MUST cold call. When I objected and said it wasn’t working, I was told to cold call even more!

THIS IS THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY!

When something isn’t working, the answer isn’t to do more of it. It’s to change your activities and your behavior to something that does work.

And guess what? Cold calling DOES NOT work, not anymore, not in today’s economy!

The solution, therefore, is to STOP cold calling and START doing something that works instead!

- See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/still-cold-calling-youre-sick/#sthash.Pj5zMmc1.dpuf

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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Why Selling Is Really Stupid

Not too long ago, someone emailed me to let me know about a heated debate over my book that was taking place on one of the sales discussion forums online. Because I get such a kick out of all the old-school “You must cold call or die!” fanatics still lingering out there, I immediately signed on to have a look. Sure enough, salespeople who are still out there working every day, fighting it out in the trenches to make a living, were agreeing with me. On the other hand, some coach who charges corporations thousands of dollars to train salespeople posted a lengthy message about how we live and die by cold calling. There’s no other way, this high-paid trainer said.

(Interestingly, I took a look at this person’s site. I went to the articles archive. The very first line of the very first article said, “Salespeople don’t succeed because they don’t make enough phone calls.” Needless to say, I clicked my back button and got out of there! No wonder why so many companies I work with are furious at some of these coaches they’ve paid $5,000 or more to. Could you imagine paying someone $5,000 to have them come in for one day of training, only to have them stand there and say, “Make more phone calls!” We already have managers reciting that mindless chant all day long!)

What I really noticed in all of this is the same thing I always notice. The salespeople who are out there, making a living NOW, seem to understand the truth about cold calling. They know the score. Then you have a bunch of managers, trainers, and coaches who have been out of the field, and therefore out of touch with reality, for ten years, twenty years, or even longer, and yet they still insist that cold calling is the only way. Period. Plain and simple. Don’t even try to argue with them, because  they’ll fly off into a rant about how anyone who disagrees is just plain wrong, lazy, or – get this – is mentally insane. Yes, one of these coaches’ sites I looked at is based on some quack theory that salespeople who don’t like to cold call have a variety of  mental disorders that can be effectively cured through psychotherapy. So, according to this person, exactly 100% of us are wacko! Sorry, but in my opinion, this goes way beyond silly. It’s downright insulting and offensive to those of us who have to get up every day and make a living in sales. One must wonder if anyone who touts these quack theories has ever sold in the first place. After all, most of my managers had never sold and they claimed to know all they keys to success!

(Ok, just for fun, as if paying someone $5,000 to have them tell you to make more calls wasn’t enough, imagine paying someone $5,000 to tell you you’re crazy!)

The point I’m trying to make here is that the “cold call or die” people are generally those who have been out of the field for an extended period of time, or have never sold in the first place. The people who have the “cold calling isn’t working anymore, what else can I do” attitude are those who are out there today. These old-time coaches apparently haven’t realized that times have changed and we live in a new reality now. Seth Godin explained in great detail exactly how and why Interruption Marketing is dead and has almost zero chance of working in our new economy, and how Permission Marketing is the way to go. Guess what, folks – cold calling is the  most blatant form of Interruption Marketing ever known to mankind!

Selling Is Selling

Another point I’d like to touch on is something I faced when I was in sales, trying to get out of one industry that had stagnated and into another. Every time I went and interviewed for a position in a different industry, I got the knee-jerk “You apparently
have a proven track record, but if you haven’t sold in our industry, we can’t hire you.”

This drove me nuts because I knew that selling is selling, much like what I explained to a reader in a previous mailbag about cross-cultural differences. Just as people are people and human nature doesn’t change from one nation to another, it doesn’t change from one product or service or industry to another. I know people who have been highly successful in a variety of totally unrelated fields, and I also know people who have been miserable failures in a variety of fields. It doesn’t matter. One of the mistakes I made early on in selling was to assume that something that had been highly effective for someone in another industry would not work for me. Not so. The only thing that really changes from one industry to the next is product knowledge, and that’s a whole lot easier to learn than how to sell.

I’ve previously mentioned the fact that our students are in a wide variety of industries – it’s safe to assume all industries at this point. I want you to realize this so you don’t go and make the same mistake I did early on of saying, “Well, that may work for you, but it wouldn’t work for my product.” Spend time talking to salespeople you know who are in completely different industries. Unrelated industries. (By the way, they make great referral partners. A lot of sales reps only network with people in related industries. By restricting yourself like this, you’re closing yourself off from a potentially huge number of referrals.)

Some of the industries I’ve had the pleasure of working with are:

Steel frame sales. Custom tailors. Life insurance. Investments. Telecom. IT and  internet. Funeral sales. Door-to-door vacuum cleaners. Thermal coatings for buildings. Legal services. Dentists. Shipping. Educational products. Accounting  services. Copiers. Software. Business credit lines. And the list goes on and on.

These people are all reporting great success.

And they’re all using the EXACT same techniques and principles.

So don’t pigeonhole yourself because you think what works for someone else won’t apply to you. Try it! The worst that can happen is nothing. (Did you hear that? I didn’t say the worst that can happen is you fail or you lose the sale. I said the worst that  can happen is nothing. So why be afraid of something that isn’t there?) Just watch  out for that one moron coach I mentioned, or you’re likely to be labeled as psychotic for doing something other than cold calling.

Selling Is Stupid

Okay, before you get offended, realize that I’m in sales too! I’m not making fun of  selling. I’m saying that it’s stupid when you use my definition of the word. For a refresher, here are my definitions of the words “buying” and “selling:”

Buying: The act of willingly acquiring for money something that you want or need. The buyer generally leaves the transaction feeling happy and satisfied.

Selling: Attempting to convince another that they want or need your product or service despite the fact that they may not. The purchaser typically leaves the
transaction with a strong feeling of buyer’s remorse.

Think back to what you’ve been taught in training about doing an excellent follow-up to alleviate buyer’s remorse and minimize cancellations. Now you know why.

With that in mind, does it makes sense to sell to someone? Or does it make sense to get them to buy from you? Think about it. Think about whether the things you’re doing on a day-to-day basis are selling, or if they’re setting people up to buy from  you. This is very powerful when properly applied.

Speaking of definitions, when I came up with these, I looked up the standard  dictionary definitions to find out what they said. Naturally, I also looked up the definition of cold calling, and was quite surprised and shocked to find this:

Cold calling: The ethically questionable practice of making unsolicited calls to  people one does not know in order to solicit new business.

Wow. “Ethically questionable.” That doesn’t speak very highly of cold calling. It’s a reflection on how cold calling is perceived today. It proves that cold calling immediately triggers a lack of trust and a credibility issue.

Maybe some of these know-it-all dictator managers and old-school coaches and trainers should look at this.

Try something different!

Don’t keep doing something that isn’t cutting it!

Don’t put too much trust in managers and coaches who have been out of sales for decades!

And whatever you do, don’t get yourself committed to the psychopathic hospital because you don’t like cold calling!

- See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/selling-is-d-u-m-b/#sthash.za5CHzh5.dpuf

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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Cold Calling Is For Idiots

I was literally laughing out loud at Jeffrey Gitomer’s excellent newsletter . The main article was a very damning indictment of cold calling, and more specifically, of managers who are still dumb enough to tell their sales reps to “make more calls.”

But it was this line in particular that really brought out the laughter:

Make more cold calls? Huh? In 2013? Really?

The idea of “make more calls” is predicated on this very flawed logic: “We don’t have enough sales coming in, since cold calling isn’t working for our reps, so let’s do MORE AND MORE of it!”

The concept is this: Get every sales rep in the office either on the phone, or out door-to-door, and spend the entire day making cold calls.

Umm….. DUMB.

Does “make more calls” result in lots of appointments? Sometimes. Do these appointments turn into sales? No.

Why “More Cold Calls” Doesn’t Work Anymore

It’s pretty obvious that with enough cold calls, you can definitely set several appointments. But, appointments made from cold calls convert into sales at an astonishingly low rate.

I can remember spending 80% of my time cold calling, back before I knew better, while cold calling generated only 5% of my total sales.

Why is this so?

Quite simply, because busy, successful people will almost never accept cold calls. In fact the famous University of North Carolina study concluded that only 20% of decision makers will take a cold call.

Who does this leave?

The time-wasters, people with no authority to sign but who have nothing better to do, or worse yet, who get a sick power trip out of taunting salespeople. Sales author Tony Parinello calls them “Seymours” because they always want to “see more” but they never buy!

The main problem with “make more calls” is that it focuses on a “quantity over quality” mentality. What happens? Salespeople madly dial the phone or rush from door-to-door, quickly setting appointments without doing ANY qualifying at all. (Top sales pro go so far as to quality prospects OUT, not just merely qualify them.)

The end result is a bunch of wasted time and worthless appointments with people who are never going to buy. So you’ve not only wasted a bunch of time cold calling, but now you get to waste time on fruitless appointments, and probably leaving endless voicemails and emails for these non-buyers!

How To Solve The Problem

Hey sales managers, listen up: If you want to increase sales, improve your team’s attitude, and increase the bottom line, forget about cold calling!

And if you’re a salesperson, here’s my advice to you: STOP cold calling and START doing something that works instead!


New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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A Valuable Sales Lesson - From A Cat!

You can learn a lot from a cat.

How to sell, for starters.

You see, cats and dogs are very different. We have one of each in our  house, and if I want the dog to come over, it’s pretty simple – I call  her over! 9 times out of 10, she jumps up and trots right on over, happy  to see me!

The cat, on the other hand, is a different story. If you try to call a  cat over, it will ignore you. The harder you try, the more you will be  ignored.

Totally opposite of the dog.

And guess what – sales  prospects aren’t dogs. They’re cats, and if you want to get them buying  from you, you need to learn and understand “cat theory.”

Cat Theory
Cat theory is simple: It states that it’s up to you to get the cat to  come over. You’re the one taking the action. However, you must trick  the cat into believing that it is the cat’s own idea to respond to you.

In other words, you’re really getting the cat to come over, because  you want her to. But she believes it’s her own decision – that she’s  doing it of her own accord.

Sales prospects are exactly the same way. That’s why direct sales  approaches trigger an instant, subconscious sales resistance in people.

Think about it. When you’re walking through a shopping mall or other  market place, and salespeople at those kiosks yell to you to come over  and look at whatever useless trinket they’re selling, your first  reaction is to shut down and either ignore them, or give a polite “no  thank you.”

By contrast, an intelligently constructed store window, containing goods you would like to have, does the polar opposite: It entices you to draw nearer, take a closer look, and possibly enter the store to buy.

You may have thought it was your own idea to go into the  store, but in reality, the store’s staff made you come in. They set  things up to draw you in, while letting you believe it was your own idea to do so.

And that’s how cat theory works in the real-world of selling. You  must create the ideal circumstances to get prospects to come to you,  ready to buy, while letting them believe they did it all on their own.

Using This In The Real World
Cat theory applies across the spectrum of sales situations, from  prospecting all the way to the culmination of the sale (enticing them to  buy instead of “closing” them).

It’s in prospecting, however – or more precisely, lead generation – that it’s most effective.

When you create the ideal circumstances to get qualified prospects to  come to you, much like that store window, they do just that – and the  balance of power is in your favor, since the prospect approached you  rather than the other way around.

 - See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/how-to-sell-to-a-cat/

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business   Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast    Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to    download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again    lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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"Goes To Show That Cold Calling Does Work!"

I saw Wall Street, one of my two all-time favorite movies, this past weekend again for the first time in a long time!

Naturally, considering what I do for a living, I had to laugh when  Bud Fox gets promoted to his new corner office and the sales manager  says over the loudspeaker, “Goes to show that cold calling does work.”

Of course the irony of the scene is that Bud wasn’t cold calling at  all. (What he was doing is illegal, but that’s another story  altogether!) And just before that announcement, one of the cold calling  reps was fired. Go figure.

This nonsense goes on in just about all sales offices. Ask any sales  manager what their top performers are doing and they’ll tell you they’re  cold calling.

Of course they’re not. If they were, they wouldn’t be top performers –  they’d probably be on probation, or out of a job completely!

It happened to me all the time when I was new to sales and trying to  find my way. It goes without saying that all sales managers – except for  one – told me to cold call, but it was even more frustrating when I’d  approach top sales reps who told me the same thing.

It drove me nuts because I’d watch them and observe them and clearly see that they were not cold calling.

Finally I started at a new job where the sales manager had a brain,  and when he saw me start cold calling, because I didn’t know what else  to do, he pulled me aside and said, “Frank, I didn’t spend thousands to  hire and train you to have you doing the job of a minimum-wage  telemarketer.”

That’s when he let me in on the dirty little secret:
Cold calling is a sham and a waste of time!

He teamed me up with the top sales rep in that office. We went to our  first appointment together where I could watch him work his magic.

On the way over, he explained, “Calling people at random is a  complete waste of time. There is a certain percentage of the market who  is pre-disposed to buy from you. Your job is to get those people to know  about you so they call you and you become their order taker.”

That’s when the light bulb went off for me.

He told me that 20% of the market absolutely will never buy from me,  20% will buy if they know about me, and the other 60% are up in the air  and need to be “sold.”

The failure of most salespeople comes about because they waste their  time calling on the 20% who will say ‘no’ and the 60% who will say  ‘maybe’ instead of spending all of their time in front of that 20% who  will definitely say ‘yes’ and BUY.

By the way, that 60% ‘maybe’ crowd is the worst of all because most  of them will string you along and waste your time without buying! At  least the ‘no’ people will say no and not waste your time. (I bring this  up because most sales managers will instruct salespeople to go after that 60%, which makes no  sense to me. Under my sales philosophy, you work with them only after  they move into the 20% ‘yes’ crowd.)

In any case, that day was a HUGE eye-opener for me.

From that point forward I only spent my time with top sales pros. I asked lots of questions, observed, took them to lunch, whatever I needed to do to gain their knowledge.

Over time I learned all of their lead-generation tactics, worked them  into a system, and began using that system to the point where I had  more leads than I could handle, and since most of those leads were in  the 20%, pre-disposed ‘yes’ crowd, my closing rate was an astonishing  80%, compared with the 20% average in my company!

Eventually others wanted to learn from me, and that’s how my Never Cold Call Again system  came about. It’s the complete storehouse of all that knowledge  and ’inside information’ that I used to become a top success in sales,  and that thousands of others have used to do the same.

- See original article at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/goes-to-show-that-cold-calling-does-work/


New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business  Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast   Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to   download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again   lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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New Webinar: Advanced Sales Closing & Profit Justification Techniques

WEBINAR: Advanced Sales Closing & Profit Justification Strategies

DATE: Thursday, September 26th, 2013
TIMES: 11 AM and 3 PM Eastern Time
PRICE: Only $29

I’m proud to announce that I’ll be conducting my next live webinar on Thursday, September 26th, at 11:00 AM Eastern time, and again at 3:00 PM Eastern time, on Advanced Sales Closing and Profit Justification Strategies.

This will be a LIVE webinar and nothing will be sold. You get TWO HOURS of content that’s JAM-PACKED with powerful techniques you can begin using, immediately, to begin closing more sales – today – using the very same strategies and techniques I used to achieve an astounding 80% close rate in sales.

What You’ll Learn:

- How to achieve an 80% close rate
- How to do proper fact-find to develop a bulletproof proposal
- Step-by-step processes to get prospects to BUY with no hard selling
- How to use Profit Justification to show prospects how your solution puts
money into their pocket
- Why prospects can’t say “no” to a Profit Justified proposal, and how to
do it correctly
- Presentation strategies to make you stand out from the crowd
- … and much more!

Learn how on this webinar! Following my webinar presentation, I’ll open it up for live Q&A, so don’t miss out.

 

-> Register Here:

Click Here to Register for the 11:00 AM Session

Click Here to Register for the 3:00 PM Session


Can’t Make Either Session?

No problem! I’m going to record the webinar as it happens, and you’ll receive a recording the following day. So register anyway to be sure you don’t miss out on this powerful, hard-hitting content.

And if you do attend the live session, you’ll still receive the replay, so you can continually refer back to the material as needed in the future.
 

-> Register Here:

Click Here to Register for the 11:00 AM Session

Click Here to Register for the 3:00 PM Session

 

Feedback from our last webinar:

“I attended Frank’s “Get Hot Leads with LinkedIn” webinar and it was EXTREMELY informative and useful. He was very specific on the steps needed to create and maintain a highly effective LinkedIn networking campaign. I can’t wait to get my LinkedIn functionality up and running. I haven’t been so excited about a marketing solution in a long time!” -Rick Mickunas, Aegis Data

“The $20.00 I spent yesterday on the LinkedIn presentation was worth every penny. I took action yesterday, and I thank you for it. It’s my sincere hope we can connect via LinkedIn.” -John J. Polidori II, MBA

“Frank, I just attended your webinar and found the content very valuable.” -Pablo Pittaluga, VP of Sales, IT ROI Solutions

“I also attended that webinar and found it very helpful. and motivating. I recommend Frank and his books highly.” -Edward Reeve, First Financial

“I would like to say how I enjoyed the webinar which took place on the 3rd October, it highlighted some key points and useful tips.” -Devyesh Patel
-> Register Here:

Click Here to Register for the 11:00 AM Session

Click Here to Register for the 3:00 PM Session

I look forward to seeing you there!

To your success!

Frank Rumbauskas

- See more at: http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/webinar-advanced-sales-closing-tactics/#sthash.OtLGanGh.dpuf

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How to Make More Sales with Less Sales Activity!

Having spent many years as a top sales pro, and after nine years of analyzing thousands of top salespeople as a sales coach & consultant, one glaring truth stands out above all the rest:

The people making the MOST sales are going on the LEAST number of  appointments! 

This is an astounding statement, especially since it flies in the face of the more activity & more appointments, “more more more” culture of today’s sales management. 

Here’s Why It Happens:

When a sales cycle happens very quickly, the closing rate tends to be very high because the prospect sees the immediate value and the salesperson is able to close the sale with minimal objections, if any at all.

On the other hand, when an appointment is set several days in advance, the prospect naturally builds sales resistance in anticipation, and has plenty of time to come up with logical reasons not to buy.

Notice I said LOGICAL reasons! Not token objections like “I have to sleep on it” or “I need to think it over” or “we need to get 2 other bids first.” I’m talking about LOGICAL objections that even a great salesperson would find difficult or impossible to overcome. 

To illustrate, let me tell you a true story: 

A while ago I sat in a cubicle beside another salesperson, who I’ll call Mike to protect his identity (not his real name). Mike was older and far more experienced than I, and truth be told, a better salesperson. He was a better talker and was better at carrying on a conversation. 

Mike spent hours each week setting tons of appointments. He’d look at his full calendar, get excited because he thought more appointments equalled more sales, and he’d go out and work his appointments. 

He made enough sales to cover quota and get by each month, but never more. (In fact I remember him driving an entire summer with no air conditioning - in 115-degree Phoenix heat, mind you - because he didn’t have the cash to cover the repair.) 

Mike was satisfied with that result; after all, he figured that he was selling as much as he could. As long as he kept up that high number of appointments, he’d continue to make 100% of quota and would keep his job. 

And then I came along… 

In this sales office, there were five reps, yet I was bringing in over half of all total sales. That’s right – I represented 20% of the total sales force but brought in over 50% of all sales! (You may remember this story from the 37-page PDF download since my old boss wrote the foreword and told the same story.) 

And not only was I bringing in most of the sales, but I was going on fewer appointments than any of the other reps in the office! 

As expected, this baffled everyone, and all the rumors started – I must have been getting leads from the boss (in reality there were no leads), and all the other usual suspicions when a top sales pro actually knows what he’s doing, but others refuse to believe it thanks to their own self-imposed limitations. 

But it’s true. How did I really do it? 

Simple: I kept each sales cycle as short as possible! I did this as follows: 

1. I only spoke with highly qualified prospects who already knew they needed to BUY what I was selling.

2. I kept appointments to a minimum, which was especially shocking to everyone in an industry where a 3-appointment sales process was standard (an initial, a presentation, and a closing appointment).

3. I kept the sales process as short as possible. In most cases I moved into closing the prospect on that very first phone call and sent over the contracts by fax or e-mail (keep in mind these were very highly qualified prospects). 


There you have it – the three simple steps I followed to outsell the rest of the office combined, with LESS work. 

What did my co-workers do? When they found an interested prospect, they set an appointment. In other words, they took someone who was ready to BUY RIGHT NOW, gave them several days to think of all the logical reasons not to buy, objections that neither you nor I nor anyone else could possibly overcome, and they didn’t make the sale. 

What You Need To Do:

Here’s what I want you do to: I want you to stop going through this silly multiple-appointment process when you don’t need to. When you do it, you’re just taking people who are ready to BUY and give them plenty of time to decide not to. All without your help or input. 

The key to selling MORE with LESS work is to speak only with those prospects who are ready to buy right now, and guide them into buying. 

That’s it. So start doing it. Only work with highly qualified, ready-to-buy prospects, and close them as quickly as possible. 

Read the full article here:
http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/less-appointments-more-sales/ 

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Avoid This Stupid but Common Sales Mistake

It’s nearing the end of the month, and as always, sales reps are scrambling to make their quotas, and managers are scrambling to finish big to make their bosses happy.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that I’m getting the usual barrage of sales calls, all while I’m trying to work hard and make my numbers great before the end of the month arrives!

But there’s one sales rep in particular who is driving me nuts, because I most likely WANT to buy from him, but he won’t LET me buy. Insane, right?

Here’s what I mean:

He’s my rep at an existing vendor I’ve already done business with. I received an email from him over a week ago telling me that they’re running a hot year-end special but I’d have to purchase before May 31st to get in on it.

I wrote back and said, “Great, shoot me the info and pricing.” His response? “Let’s schedule a call tomorrow.”

Being buried in work myself I never got around to setting up a time with him. But if he’d just sent me the info, pricing, and how to order, I most likely would have bought.

Fast forward a week: I got the same email. “Frank, we need to talk SOON or you’ll miss out!”

At the time, I was in a tire shop getting a new tire for my car – a huge nasty pothole destroyed one of mine – so I quickly wrote back from my iPhone, “Don’t have time. Send pricing and info. I want it.”

Nope. That’s too difficult for him. He wants to play phone games instead. And with family arriving to visit in two days, guess what? I’m not going to get in on this month-end special. Oh well. I won’t miss it.

But him? He just lost a sale!

And the worst part is he didn’t even have to “sell” me – I basically said, “Yeah I’ll buy, send the info,” but noooooooo… that would be too easy. He’s insistent on doing the whole “steps of a sale” garbage and that just cost him a sale. (I used to work with someone who did this all the time, as you may remember from a previous email.)

People are busy this time of year. In fact, most decision makers are always busy. That’s just a fact of life. So when someone wants to buy, let them buy! Don’t botch the sale by insisting and demanding on a meeting when none is necessary. Your sales numbers will thank you for it!


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Can You Have Too Many Sales Leads?

I know it sounds like a ridiculous question, but it’s true.

Before I explain, let me tell you a story:

As I’ve written previously – and to the astonishment of many of my fans – I used to be a cold calling monster. I’d cold call all day, every day, and forget that I was supposed to be selling something, not just prospecting all day long.

That reality would hit home every time my commission check arrived. The old saying, “Too much month at the end of the money” was all too often the case.

Eventually I figured out how to get leads without cold calling – in other words, I worked out the system that now forms the basis of the strategies and techniques I teach today – and before I knew it, I had an endless supply of hot, qualified leads!

The problem was that the novelty and thrill of being flooded with so many people who were ready to buy right now was almost like an addiction. I kept pushing my lead generation systems more and more and more.

Once again, despite my success in lead generation, my commission check would reflect the fact that I had all the leads I could ever want and more, but never got around to closing most of them.

The Law of Cosmic Habitforce

Napoleon Hill coined that term. Later in life, when he wrote Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude with W. Clement Stone, he explained that it was his 17th law of success – the one missing from the original The Law of Success and Think and Grow Rich.

It took a lifetime of experience and “hard knocks” to learn it.

Likewise, I found myself falling into old habits very recently.

I’ve mentioned that after relocating early last year, I turned into a networking machine in my new city in order to make new business connections as well as friends. I was so successful at it that I even did a webinar on it.

The trouble is, I was having a lot of fun networking. Way too much fun. So much so, that I spent far too much time out of my office going to networking events and speaking at local organizations, that I fell way behind on my work! (And in the process, I picked up even more work through my new connections – pushing me even farther behind.)

I’ve now whittled my schedule down to two groups that I’m a permanent member of, and will occasionally drop in on the Chamber where my company is a member, but that’s it.

The Trouble With Having Too Many Leads

I know I’m not the only person who does this – many people have bought the Never Cold Call Again system, flooded themselves with hot leads, and then continued to fail because they were either having too much fun racking up all those leads, or lost the sales because they never had enough appointments in the past to develop any real selling skills.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times: We’re not paid for prospecting. We’re not paid to go to appointments. We’re not paid to go to networking groups, or spend drive time in our cars between meetings.

We’re only paid to make sales. Period. That’s it. End of story.

So MAKE SURE you convert those leads into sales - only then are they worth anything! And if you have lots of leads but not enough sales, re-prioritize your time so you're spending it closing the leads you already have instead of endlessly chasing down new ones!

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What Pablo Picasso Taught Me About Sales Success

Last night I went to an entrepreneur networking & learning event that I attend once a month, and the speaker told a GREAT story that I’d like to share with you.

I don’t know if it’s true or not, but it goes like this:

Pablo Picasso was sitting in a diner one evening, enjoying dinner. The waitress recognized him, and asked if he’d be kind enough to draw her a quick sketch so she could have a Picasso of her own.

He said, “Sure,” and for the next five minutes, he frantically sketched on the back of his paper placemat, drawing his sketch.

Once he finished, he showed it to the waitress, and said, “That will be $10,000 please.”

She said, “What? You only spent five minutes working on that!”

Picasso replied, “No, it took fifty years to reach this skill level. That will be $10,000 please.”

Are YOU Worth $10,000?

Picasso’s witty reply about how it took him fifty years, and not five minutes, to develop his skill set really rang true with me.

I thought back to my beginning years in sales, and all the failure, frustration, and seemingly wasted time I experienced.

Like all salespeople, I started out cold calling, because that’s what I was told to do. “It’s a numbers game, and the more calls you make, the more you’ll sell!” my managers told me.

Eventually, I realized that cold calling was NOT working, and continuing to do it would fulfill the definition of insanity. It was at that point that I began a long period of trial-and-error, lasting several years, as I uncovered and perfected ways to get tons of hot leads without cold calling. (And learning what works really surprised me – it was nothing of what I expected!)

I took all that information and knowledge gained through difficult years of trial-and-error, and assembled into a system. And I still use that same no cold calling system to this day, with my own sales reps and resellers in my Dallas SEO company.

I became a top sales pro, enjoying massive sales numbers and a very big commission check each month, because, like Picasso, my years of hard work had finally come to fruition - and YOU can do the same!

Read the original, full article here:
http://www.nevercoldcall.com/blog/a-10000-sales-lesson-from-pablo-picasso/

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I Used To Be "The Cold Calling Monster!"

Yes, it's true - even though you know me as the "Never Cold Call Again" guy,  I used to go by the nickname "cold calling monster"!

That's  because when I went into sales, I had a fierce determination to  succeed. So I took the advice I was given - to cold call - and I took it to an extreme.

I  made no less than 100 cold calls, each and every day. Sometimes it was on the phone, sometimes in person (canvassing), and sometimes a  combination of both. But I never fell short of my 100 calls. Cold calling was my life.

And I got leads - tons of leads! Yes, despite what you've heard from me  about cold calling falling to get leads, I have to admit I was swamped  with them. I was setting appointment after appointment, to the point where it was difficult to find enough time in the day for my 100 calls, but I always figured it out.

My confidence in this plan was bolstered by stories from managers and 'old  timers' about sales reps who were making over a hundred thousand  dollars a year, by blocking out time every day to lock their office  doors and make a hundred calls.

I knew my success was guaranteed!

And so I went on with my 100 calls a day, believing that it would not only  work but the longer it took to pay off, the more I'd succeed in the end.  My schedule was hectic, and I still remember one particular day when I had seven appointments and still did my 100 cold calls, mostly by canvassing the buildings where I had the appointments and then making up  the rest on the phone.

It was a really great feeling to go home after such a busy day, with a feeling of accomplishment that I'd really done something. Slow boring days always gave me a lot of anxiety about not getting anything done, so a crazy day full of a hundred calls plus a bunch of appointments really made me feel good.

This went on for a long time and my high activity levels kept me really pumped up all the time.

But there was a problem…

The huge sales numbers never came!

That's right - I was barely closing enough sales to scrape by, let alone make  the big killing that I had been promising myself and that all the old  timers said those 100 calls a day would bring me.
And so that brings up the next question…

Do more leads = more sales?

Of course more leads equal more sales. That's only common sense. You can't get a sale without first having a lead - leads are the starting point  of all sales success. No lead means no prospect, which means no one to sell to and no one to close.

However, there's a catch. (Isn't there always a catch?) The problem is that all leads aren't the same.

There are good leads and bad leads. And that brings us to one of life's basic truths:

Quality always trumps quantity!

We all know this! Yet in sales, the drive is always on to get more and more and more leads, with no regard to the quality of those leads.

It's natural to want to rush out to meet with anyone who will give us an appointment. After all, the basic mindset taught in all sales training  is that sales is a numbers game. If you close 20% of your prospects,  then doubling your number of appointments should double your number of  sales.

But it doesn't really work out that way.

I failed miserably when I started in sales, not because I was a bad  salesperson, but because I was spending my days as the "cold calling monster" trying to rack up as many leads and as many appointments as  possible, without regard to the quality of those leads.

The Three Categories of Leads

Later on, when a top sales pro took me under his wing to mentor me, I finally learned that there are three categories of leads. Most salespeople are  spending time with the two wrong ones - people who either will never buy  from them, or people who are undecided and never make a decision.  (Those are the ones who string you along endlessly with 'check back in 6 months' or 'we need to think about it first.')

That third category consists of people who will most likely buy from you, if  they only knew about you and had the chance to meet with you.

When I learned about that, I soon had fewer leads and fewer appointments, but far more sales.

Best of all, I had a lot more free time. I was selling more by doing less work - by focusing only on people who were pre-disposed to buy from me, I was closing 4 out of 5, instead of my previous record of 1 in 5 when the leads came from cold calling.

After I had mastered this concept and developed a system of lead-generation  strategies that brought me an endless supply of hot leads - people who  were ready to buy right now - I began teaching that system to others, and you know what they told me?

The same thing happened to them: They began selling a lot more while doing far less work.

And since most salespeople spend nearly 100% of their free time  prospecting, you can see what a huge improvement happens to your  schedule when cold calling is eliminated.

(Oh yeah, and your stress level goes down. Way down.)

Imagine never having to make cold calls, and meanwhile, your sales come in each  month, since leads are filling your inbox on autopilot. It's a great feeling - I know, because I achieved it.

And now it's your turn. All of that knowledge is ready and waiting for you right now. All you have to do is make a decision to get it! Whether you choose to learn by reading blogs, online discussion forums, attending a seminar, going to a Meetup or master-mind group with fellow salespeople, THE KNOWLEDGE IS OUT THERE! Now it's time for you to go out, acquire it, and learn how to succeed without the drudgery of cold calling!

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Cold Calling Just Might Make You ... SICK!

I received a VERY interesting email from a reader, a regional sales manager for a large company, last week. The subject line of his email was, "All salespeople are sick if they are still cold calling."

Intrigued, I immediately opened it, and was pleasantly surprised at the arguments he offered!

Before I get to that, here's a reminder of a basic principle I teach:

Cold calling, quite simply, is ... DUMB!

Not only does it get appointments at a very low rate of success, but worse yet, appointments set by cold calling are usually a waste of time, with a low-quality prospect who probably isn't fully qualified, and ready, willing, and able to buy from you right now.

But I digress. Back to the point of this email...

The "Sickness" of Cold Calling

The explanation behind this has to do with a principle of psychology defining the seven character defects that cause people to behave the way they do.

These character defects are called "Learned Behavior." The good news is that, when addressed with Behavior Modification solutions (BMOD), they can become "Unlearned Behavior," but it takes longer!

Now here's where it gets interesting: Salespeople as a whole have some HORRIBLE "Learned Behavior"!!!!

I see it all the time as I'm out with reps who have years of experience, and over those years, have picked up terrible habits, saying things that are totally irrelevant and have nothing to do with the prospect's needs - all the usual suspects such as, "We have the best service," "We're the marketing leader," blah blah blah.

But the worst learned behavior of all is COLD CALLING.

It blows my mind that SO MANY valuable, and extremely effective, alternatives to cold calling exist today, from long established self-marketing strategies, to the Internet, to social media, to good old-fashioned networking and relationship building, and so many, many more.

But due to learned behavior, otherwise intelligent and capable salespeople get up every day and begin wasting endless hours cold calling instead!

The bottom line is that most salespeople fail, not because they're bad salespeople, but because of this "Learned Behavior" that has essentially programmed them to do things that don't work anymore!

I Used To Be A Failure, Too

When I started out in sales, i was a miserable failure myself, because I was told over and over again, and had it endlessly drilled into my head, that I MUST cold call. When I objected and said it wasn't working, I was told to cold call even more!

THIS IS THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY!

When something isn't working, the answer isn't to do more of it. It's to change your activities and your behavior to something that does work.

And guess what? Cold calling DOES NOT work, not anymore, not in today's economy!

The solution, therefore, is to STOP cold calling and START doing something that works instead!

Read the full article here:
New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast  Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to  download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again  lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com/

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Powerful Sales Lessons - from a Baby?

My wife and I had our first child recently - woohoo! It's been a lot of fun, and a huge learning experience as well.

Since  this is our first and we had no idea what to do, we hired a baby nurse  for a few days, not to take care of the baby as much as to teach us how  to take care of the baby ourselves.

The  most obvious part of baby care is that you're never pleading with or  begging the baby to do anything. Instead, you create the ideal  circumstances to get the baby to do what you want, or what's best for  the baby.

What's  most interesting is that unlike typical, sleep-deprived, frazzled new  parents, we're sleeping pretty well and are relaxed and life is going on  mostly as normal. All this because of a little bit of knowledge!

This  was also true when we got a dog. We have a Great Dane, and with a dog  of that size, you can't mess around with it being untrained. So we hired  a military dog trainer to come to the house, but rather than train the  dog directly, what she did was teach us how to train the dog. The  results were pretty amazing, and people are  continually amazed at how  well-behaved she is.

Again,  there was no begging or pleading or saying "please" to the dog. You  create the ideal circumstances, and the dog does what you want it to do.

The bottom line with both dogs and babies? Begging doesn't get them to do what you want.

So ... WHY DO YOU KEEP DOING IT WITH YOUR SALES PROSPECTS?

If  begging doesn't work with dogs or babies, it most definitely won't work  with sales prospects. In fact, it actually turns them off and gives  them all the reasons in the world not to BUY from you.

Like  parents who go through life, or at least those first few months,  frazzled and  sleep-deprived, most salespeople go through their lives  frazzled and stressed out. And frequently broke.

Why?

Because  they're not learning HOW to be successful. Worse, they sell in a way  that comes across as BEGGING and PLEADING to prospects!

Begging & pleading with baby = fussy difficult baby.
Begging & pleading with dog = bad dog.
Begging & pleading with prospects (even if you don't realize you're doing it) = NO  SALES.

So  do yourself a favor, stop begging & pleading with prospects. Stop  putting  prospects up on a pedestal and supplicating to them and  treating them like  superiors. Instead, take charge and create the  circumstances for them to buy right now.

"Circumstances? Hell, I make circumstances! ATTACK!"
-Napoleon Bonaparte

You need to have the same attitude in sales! Don't beg & plead - ATTACK!

Read the full article here


To your success,

Frank Rumbauskas

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com

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The Worst Cold Call I've Ever Heard!

You've probably figured out from my newsletters that I'm a big fan of the movie Wall Street, and, true to form, I usually live out Gordon Gekko's famous quote: "Lunch is for wimps!"

However, once or twice a week, I let myself slip and have lunch, and it's almost always at the same, hole-in-the-wall, but phenomenal, asian noodle soup house.

They sat me right near the counter yesterday, and so I got to hear all of the phone conversations that went on.

And, sure enough, the restaurant received a cold call while I was eating!

Before I tell you that story, though, you need to know a bit of background about the restaurant: It's been there forever. It's consistently rated the best noodle house in the entire Dallas metro area. And it's ALWAYS packed - any time of day, any day of the week.

As a result, they don't need any marketing. (If anything, they need more tables!)

Not surprisingly, since they've been around since before the Internet, and because they already have all the business they can handle, they don't have a website.

The Dumb Cold Call

Ever since the housing crash happened and the recession began, a "get rich quick" cottage industry has sprung up, teaching people how to start their own businesses doing web design and related services. 

As I was enjoying my soup, one of these people cold called the restaurant, trying to sell them a website.

The owner, who isn't very friendly to begin with, answered the phone. "No we do not have a website," I heard him say. "No, we don't want a website!" I heard him yell. Finally he slammed the phone down and hung up on the annoying cold caller.

What Went Wrong?

Why didn't this restaurant owner want to meet with the cold-calling web designer? What made him slam the phone down in anger, when the cold-caller refused to take "no" for an answer?

That's simple: He wasn't a qualified prospect!

And therein lies one of the two biggest problems with cold calling: It simply fails to find enough qualified prospects to keep you fat and happy. (The other major problem is that it's an unacceptably huge time drain, but that's a topic for another email.)

The study done by Baylor University I recently told you about concluded that it takes an experienced salesperson 7.5 hours to get one qualified appointment. A lot of people balked at that and emailed back, "I get way more than one appointment in that much time!" But they're missing the key point: The study only considers a qualified appointment with someone who is ready, willing, and able to buy - now.

And cold calling simply doesn't find enough of them to make it worth your while.

So do yourself a big favor: STOP cold calling, and START using effective, intelligent, Information Age methods to start bringing qualified prospects to YOU!

New York Times best-selling author Frank Rumbauskas is the author of the Never Cold Call Again® System and has won numerous accolades, such as Readers Choice for Business Book of the Year from 800-CEO-READ, and has been named one of Fast Company’s top 30 most influential people online. To learn more, and to download a free 37-page PDF preview of his Never Cold Call Again lead-generation system, visit http://www.nevercoldcall.com

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