Let Them Buy

Where does sales resistance come from and how do you avoid it?

There’s an old saying that goes something like this; “people love to buy but they hate to be sold.” The funny thing is that everyone, that doesn’t understand sales, thinks that selling is about getting someone to do something. It’s not.

Sales resistance is created when you as a salesperson try to sell whatever it is you have to offer. The harder you try to sell the more resistance you create. The solution is simple to state but hard to master. Stop selling.

Because sales has such a bad reputation prospects have a natural defense process they use to protect themselves from being sold things they don’t want. The problem is that the moment they think they are being sold anything they launch the defenses even if it’s something they want.

For example; what did you say the last time you walked into a clothing store and were approached by someone that worked there when they asked you, “Can I help you?” If you’re like 99% of the population you said “No thanks, I’m just looking.” Really? Don’t get me wrong I know some people actually like to look at clothes but aren’t you really there looking for something to buy?

My daughter worked for a popular clothing retailer when she was 17 and she was the number one salesperson in the whole company out of 197 stores. She did that by helping people buy.

Would you like to know what she did to make that happen?

Knowing the typical response to the question “Can I help you?” which, she tried to begin with, wasn’t going to help sales I asked her what people do ask for if they ask for anything. So she thought about it and told me they just about always ask where things are located more often than anything else.

With that in mind I asked her how well she knew her store’s inventory and where things where at in the store. She let me know she knew where everything was and that she was also taking the time to learn about the different brands and material they carried so if asked she would know what she was talking about. (In other words she did her homework and knew her products)

With that information I suggested she greet people when they come in by saying “Hello, welcome to “store” my name is “name”, (without pausing say) most people ask me where things are so if you’re looking for anything in particular just ask because I know where everything is and I can help you find it. (pause) So just let me know OK.”   (Then, I told her to wait for just a moment and then start to turn and move to doing something else nearby)

What happened is that more people were open to the suggestion for help and would go ahead and ask. When they did she would take them to the right place in the store. (Notice, she didn’t just say “You can find those over there” and point. She took them to the exact thing they were looking for.

From there she would help them by finding and recommending things that coordinated with the outfit or whatever was appropriate. This approach virtually eliminated their sales resistance because the genuinely felt she was there to help while doubling or tripling the average order.

So, what can you learn from this and apply it to whatever it is you sell? Start with the beginning. How do you begin your first conversation with your prospect? Are you trying to sell them something before they’re ready or are you there to help them buy? One is an act of taking the other is an act of giving. Is there a different way you could approach what you are doing? In other words; how could you start giving your prospects the opportunity to buy instead of trying to sell them what you have?

When you stop selling the natural byproduct is for resistance to fall. If you do find yourself falling into your old patterns and you sense resistance rising up in your prospect stop selling and ask them a question that will help you understand their situation or needs better. When you do you will find resistance drops and sales increase.

Do you see how this can apply to your particular situation? Do you have questions about how to apply this? If so, leave a comment. Also do me a favor and share this so others can read it as well.

Fear of Rejection

Do You Struggle With Fear Of Failure or Rejection (Part 2)

In my last post I wrote about prospecting and how the fear of failure and rejection keep a lot of sales people from prospecting as much as they need to.

Let’s pick up where I left off and talk about fear of rejection. If you’ve been around sales any time at all someone has told your or taught you that “sales is a numbers game” and that “you need a thick skin to be in sales”. Well that is especially true if you’re doing it wrong.

We dealt with the fear of failure by realizing what the real reason for prospecting is and by changing our objective. If you missed it you can check it out here: https://healthysellingsystem.com/do-you-struggle-with-fear-of-failure-or-rejection/

Learn how to overcome fear of rejection.

We will handle the fear of rejection much the same way. When we have the proper objective and we aren’t attempting to sell anything while we are prospecting we won’t be creating resistance and we can actually take “No.” for an answer. Since we are looking for people with an interest and a need as well as the budget to pay for the solution when they don’t meet that criteria we are successful in qualifying them out. Move on.

That means we aren’t going to try to convince them to let us have an appointment. We aren’t going to desire to change their mind. We are simply going to say thanks and move on. We can always call them back in a couple of weeks if they meet our ideal client profile. Since we didn’t create any ill will by being pushy or attempting to get them to change their mind they will take our call.

The key is with each call to approach them with a different set of benefits to avoid them from always hearing the same thing every time. After a few calls you will get a very good idea of what they are interested in. One of the times you call them will be the right time and they will want to go to the next step. (This is a good point for me to tell you that the next step is only something you should do if they tell you they are ready to invest in a solution. Otherwise you will get really good at presenting and then getting the “stall”)

Prospecting is the life blood of sales so if your sales are not consistently improving or if you have good months then bad months it’s almost always due to prospecting. Take the time to really learn prospecting and you will be on your way to doubling your sales.

If you struggle with sales or prospecting drop me a note, mike@healthysellingsystem.com and/or leave a comment below and let me know what your biggest challenge. Also if this struck a cord share this post with your friends. Chances are it will help them as well.

fear of rejection

Do you struggle with fear of failure or rejection?

If you knew the you never had to face rejection or failure in your prospecting, what difference would that make?

You see statistics tell us that 48% of salespeople never even follow-up with a prospect. Can you relate to that? I mean, it’s hard for me to imagine 48% of salespeople never follow-up with a prospect. Makes you wonder how they make any sales.

The same statistics tell us that 25% of salespeople stop after a second contact. I guess if they didn’t want it the second time they don’t want it all.

And, only 12% of salespeople make more than three contacts. Guess what folks, these are the salespeople making most of the sales.

When you put all this into perspective, it helps explain the fact that 2% of sales are made on the first contact, 3% are made on the second contact and 5% are made on the third, 10% are made on the fourth and 80% of sales are made on the fifth to 12th contact. Can you afford to allow your fear of rejection or fear of failure to keep you from your prospecting and follow-up?

After training over 1,200 salespeople and working with more than 100 entrepreneurs I can assure you that there are only a few reasons salespeople stop before they get the sale. For the ones that don’t even follow-up it’s fear. Fear of rejection and/or fear of failure. It’s these fears that hold them back and to some extent its the same fear that causes the salespeople that will make the follow-up to stop just before the sale.

Let’s face it no one likes to be rejected and no one likes to lose. As the saying goes: “Show me a good loser and I’ll show you a man who is playing golf with his boss.”

OK kidding aside it’s our fear that holds us back, what can we do about it? For starters it helps if you put things in perspective. One of the most important things you can do in sales is to be prospecting constantly. It should be a part of your daily routine. The problem is that when your selling the last thing you want to do is prospect and the biggest reason I hear from those I work with is because it has the most rejection and failure associated with it.

So again I ask, what if you knew you would never face rejection or failure again? What difference would that make in your prospecting? Imagine how that might feel.

Let’s start with the fear of failure first. Failure has different meaning for different people and if you simplify it most people will agree that it’s when you don’t get what you had planned or hoped for, or in other words you did not meet your objective.

If you agree that in it’s essence that is what failure is then we can eliminate fear of failure by properly defining our objective for prospecting.

Without fail when I talk to a struggling salesperson or entrepreneur, if I ask them what the purpose of prospecting is they tell me it’s to make sales. No wonder over time they get to the point they can’t stand it, and they keep looking for other ways to sell their goods or services. They have the wrong objective.

The purpose of prospecting is to find qualified people that have a need and are indeed a good fit for what you have to offer, and that you desire to work with. Did you see the words “make a sale” in there? Do you suppose that a lot of the people you talk to won’t fit this description? That’s the point. Those that don’t fit your criteria are unqualified, which is a success. If they have a need and desire for what you offer, you are successfully qualifying them.  And best of all, you are qualifying them to see if you even desire to work with them or not.  If they aren’t someone you want to work with they are out. If they don’t have a need or don’t see that they have a need they are out.

Simple, no failure. When you have the proper objective for prospecting you literally can’t fail. By the way the same holds true for sales.

Think about what this really means for you. Get really clear about why you are prospecting. It’s not to make a sale. It’s to qualify people in or out so you discover the people you want to do business with. Either way you are a success.

Besides fear of failure, the other fear that holds people back is the fear of rejection so check back for the next post and I will discuss how to eliminate rejection from your process.

Did this post provide you with an ah-ha moment?  Share your thoughts and comments below, and if you know a struggling sales person you might decide to share this on LinkedIn, or another social media website.