The Rainmaker Sales Mastery Program Starts Here!
The world has recently come to a stop with virtually every business closing shop. In the coming weeks most businesses will start to open up and begin to do business again. Selling skills will never be so important!
Sharpen up your sales skills and prepare your sales pipeline with The Sales Mastery Program. Although, many have paid hundreds for this program It’s now FREE for you.
There are four separate Modules you can read here or download the PDF to read at your convenience.
Module One Download Full PDF for Module One Full Blog
By Wyn Nathan Davis
All materials are copyrighted 2020. The goal of this program is to teach you how to sell at a very high level and earn the kind of money that you probably thought was impossible for you to achieve.
If you are new to selling then this program will teach you how to avoid many mistakes and to focus on the most important, practical skills and actions that will deliver the fastest possible results. If you have been selling for a while then this program will catapult you to a level of success that until now has alluded you – yes, it is possible!
This program is based on my award winning full-day The Rainmaker Mastery Program. You will get the very same material plus will be able to work on the content in your own time and at your own pace. You will also have the ability to study this material over and over again perfecting your skills and results.
Each module should take about three-to-four hours to complete but don’t worry if you fall a little bit behind. This home study program is designed for you to work at your own pace. The important thing is that you work through each section carefully, do all of the assignments thoroughly and take action on every recommendation – this is important! The more time and effort put into the program the better your results will be. Remember also that this program could be repeated – doing a bit more each time and refining your results. Selling is a skill that can always be improved. I have been selling since I left university and I am still learning and still getting better.
All of the selling skills that we have are interrelated and so I find that my ability to sell is always being challenged and improving. Over the last few years I have really worked on my public speaking skills and this has helped me with every aspect of selling. The fact is that most skills in life are supported by a whole host of other skills. I like to run and I have learned over time that to run at the highest level doesn’t just require a strong set of legs. Core strength, breathing techniques, balance, posture, upper body strength and more all contribute to a strong running performance.
The very same thing is true for selling.
My mind boggles at the skills that I have developed over the years that have made a positive contribution to my selling skills.
- Public Speaking Skills
- General Knowledge
The development of each of these skills has contributed to my ability to sell, and each has leveraged against the other to strengthen my results. The fact is that today my ability to close business has never been stronger and I can directly relate this success to my general obsession with self-improvement. Getting better is really about growing and as human beings if we are living we must be growing. I have witnessed many people who have retired from important careers into a life without goals or direction – the result often is that they lose the mental sharpness and poor health follows. We are either living or dying and if we are not growing we are not living! It has not just been an interest in self-improvement that has made the difference it has been the fact that I have been prepared to take action. Taking action is essential.
The biggest excuse that most people will jump to at this point is to say how busy they are and that they don’t have time for self-improvement. The fact is that improvement really is more about consistency than massive effort. Taking a few minutes each evening to plan and prepare your clothing for the next day will result in a more professional image. Taking just two minutes at the end of the day to plan tomorrow’s activity will result in higher productivity. Taking ten seconds at the end of each sales call to review how it went and how you might have done things differently will improve your skill dramatically over time.
Consider how stones in a river are slowly smoothed and rounded overtime – the power is consistencynot speed and the same will be true with your efforts to improve your skills. Small changes made consistently over time can completely change the person you are – you can become anyone you want to become. If however, you choose notto make improvements in ten years you will be the same person living in the same circumstances as today.
Taking action is essential to getting the results you want. If you feel you are not getting results revisit the program and the assignments to make certain you are taking the action necessary to achieve the results you want from this program.
I will personally coach you on key principles and encourage you to take action, let go of your fears and become the Rainmaker salesperson you want to become! The Rainmaker you know you are! This program is delivered in a PDF format to make it as widely usable as possible. You have also received an MP3 audio version so that you can listen over and over again in your car or on the train! There are no extra tools or programs required, however, it is recommend that you invest in a hard cover lined note book, available at any book or stationery store, to write down your plans, thoughts, feelings and ideas and to complete the assignments. A hard covered lined notebook will keep all of your thoughts safely in one location and can look back on your personal sales development over time!
Here is an overview of the four modules.
- Developing a winning attitude
- The power of intention
- The Law of Causality
- The Sales Process
- Why we buy
- Personal presentation
- Where the money is
- The Power of Social Media
- The Law of Social Proof
- LinkedIn Secrets
- How to get 10,000 LinkedIn Connections within days
- Leveraging the power of your LinkedIn and Social media network
- How to really network
- The Power of Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
- Special Module – How to Successfully Cold Call *
- Creating a Sales Pipeline – Prospecting Power
- How to create a Power Prospect List
- Find your perfect clients
- How inconsistency creates sales roller coasters
- Selling Smarter NOT Harder
- Creating awareness of your personal brand
- How to build a huge network
- Creating a compelling personal statement
- Prospecting and Selling on LinkedIn
- Creating an audience
- Preparing for sales situations and deliver sales presentations
- Negotiate sales and pricing
- Eliminate price objections
- Destroying sales objections
- Monetize your offer
- Double your income fast
- Change your thinking and change your results
- Monetize every action
- Become ruthlessly efficient
- Leverage technology
- Simplify, Simplify, Simplify
- Spread the good news
- Book all the meetings you need
- Eliminating fear
- Create a Miracle Mindset
- Learn to choose your thoughts – become a Mastermind
- Maintaining results for the long haul
- Get stronger – The Power of Discipline
- Health, Fitness and Money
- Develop multiple streams of income
- Guarantee your position
- Creating a success plan
- 10 things that always work
- 10 things that always fail
- 25 must-do actions that will change your life forever
Please take the time to carefully complete the assignments – this is where the power will come through the personalization of the tips, tricks and strategies.
Developing a winning attitude
Many people feel that because they want something badly that they have a winning attitude but think about this for a moment. Think about people you have met that want things to happen in their lives but whose aggressive, self-centered attitudes simply turn off those around them. A winning attitude is not about wanting something to happen in your life it is about attracting the right people and the right events into your life. When we spend too much time thinking about ourselves we bore and turnoff those around us. A successful attitude is not about how ‘we feel’ but about how ‘other’s feel about us. The most successful people add value to every interaction with others. Successful people make everyone they touch feel better.
Success in life is always about adding value.
When a business buys sugar by the boatload and repackages it in convenient, well-designed, one-pound packages that we can buy at our local shop and take home to use they have added value. When we meet a person and through our charm and thoughtfulness make the time they spend with us more pleasant than time they might have spent doing something else we have added value.
As salespeople, when we speak to a prospect, customer or key influencer and present our product or service in a manner that offers value they will buy.
Having the right attitude to sell and to more than just sell but succeed wildly as a salesperson – becoming a Rainmaker – is about having a deep belief that we must add value to every single client experience. To add value we must first place ourselves in the shoes of the prospect and ask ourselves what this person wants. This is not an easy thing to do! Most salespeople assume that other people want the same thing that they want but this is most often not the case.
The right attitude is a deep understanding that everyone has their own reasons to buy and that by adding ‘real’ value to every client experience we can help them get what they want.
The right attitude is a willingness to add value wherever possible!
Hard work will create results but success is not about hard work alone – it is about adding value. A salesperson can work all night long preparing the best quality presentations imaginable but if the presentation does not focus on adding the value that the prospect wants, they will not buy!
Is your desire to succeed bigger than your own ego? Can you set aside what you want long enough to learn what other people want? A winning attitude is not just about wanting something it is about wanting something enough to be someone different!
The most powerful gift you can give anyone is to make them feel understood – this is real work – and the results can be powerful. When we make our clients feel truly understood we move them from being simply satisfied customers to be raving fans!
Take a moment to write an honest evaluation of the quality of your business relationships. Do you have a strong connection with prospects and customers based on your attitude of delivering superior value? Pick your top 20 customers and rate your relationship honestly.
The power of intention
Selling at a high level is based on the development of a wide range of key skills however; great skills will only get you halfway there. The very best salespeople have a deep-set intention to win. This core belief is based on the belief that the customer absolutely needs the product or service and that the salesperson has everything needed to win the business.
Individuals who absolutely believe the value of what they offer inspire others to follow. Think of the passion of Steve Jobs, Martha Stuart and Richards Branson. If you believe you will succeed, others will follow. This has been called the Law of Attraction and the salespeople who possess this deep intention have enthusiastic, loyal customers. If you don’t believe in yourself, your company and the product you deliver then find something else to sell – your success depends on it! The best salespeople look very carefully at what they sell and find reasons to be excited and enthusiastic. Even the best companies have problems but the best salespeople are always looking for the best within themselves and within the company they represent – they find reasons to support a deep intention to win. Imagine if you were selling Gold for the price of Silver wouldn’t you be excited? Of course you would! You would talk to everyone you met about the amazing opportunity. Develop that passion and belief in the value for what you sell and then set a deep intention that every qualified prospect must and will buy from you. Your belief and your deep intention will become irresistible!
Take a moment to write down ten great things that your business delivers to its customers. Put yourself in the shoes of your happiest, most satisfied customers and ask yourself what value they find in your business. Then create a list of three of the most powerful and then commit that list to memory. Every morning on your way to work repeat that list of three to yourself. Every time you pick up the phone to speak to a prospect or customer repeat that list to yourself. Every time you visit a prospect or customer repeat the list of three to yourself. Print your list and post it above your desk. In a very short time this will become a sales mantra and will become part of your thinking. Prospects and customers will sense the authentic, sincere passion you have for your work and they will buy!
The Law of Causality
The Sales Process
Unsuccessful salespeople and companies treat each pitch and each sale as an individual event as if they were baking a cake from scratch or building a car by hand. They do not build a library of experiences and leverage those experiences. Before Henry Ford created the modern assembly line each car was hand crafted. This process made automobiles luxury products that only the wealthy could afford. Automation meant efficiencies and effectiveness. A sales process does the exact same thing for your sales efforts. Once you understand this you can design a sales process, which will allow you to sell and close much more effectively.
A sales process can be very complicated depending on your industry; however, the basic components are always the same nine:
- Qualified Lead
- Cold Calling / Engagement
- Trial close
- Service the sale
Let’s look at each of these components separately.
- Some people seem to think that a list of leads is the telephone book. Chances are that is not true for your business. A lead is somebody who actually wants or could reasonably need your product. Leads form the basis of every sales process. Every successful business requires a steady stream of leads that have the potential to buy.
- Qualified Lead. A qualified lead is a lead that is ready to buy now. If you are selling razorblades then all men are prospects but only men with facial hair that shave are qualified leads.
- Once we have identified qualified leads then the selling starts. Actual prospects are people we have identified have a use for our product, have the ability to buy our product and are people with whom we want to do business. These are men with facial hair, which shave, live within our target market and have the income to buy our razorblades. Now the selling starts.
- Cold Calling. Before you can begin the actual selling you must, in many cases, reach out to someone and ask them to give you a few minutes of your time. In many cases this could be calling past customers or it may be calling qualified prospects cold and asking for a few minutes of their valuable time. Many businesses have well developed marketing programs that supply a constant stream of warm and interested inquiries, however, most new businesses require that the salesperson pioneer in a sales territory where the product or company may be completely unknown. Cold Calling is a vital and important part of the sales process. We will cover this in more detail later.
- There is one absolute, indisputable fact about selling. People will not buy from people they do not trust – period! If doesn’t matter if it is a Rolls Royce of a can of Coca-Cola, if we do not trust the person we will not buy. Every sale begins with establishing trust. It doesn’t matter if we are a large company that has been around for one hundred years if the customer does not trust the person they are dealing with they will not buy. Depending on the value of the sale and the needs of the prospect establishing trust could take a second or two or may take multiple meetings. The basis of trust, however, is established within the first few seconds of engagement. If you are unable to engage – whether in-person, within an email or on the telephone the sale will be a struggle. The best salespeople learn how to project confidence, present a trusting image and engage.
- Once we have engagement then it is time to present the offer. Now remember people buy for their reasons not ours and so put yourself in the shoes of the customer and pitch to their interests, their needs and their emotions. One of my favorite expression in selling is – “The customer writes the pitch.” This doesn’t mean the customer ‘actually’ write the pitch it means that by listening to the prospect, by understanding the needs and emotions of the prospect, we craft our pitch! In the most basic of terms selling is about listening to a prospect’s needs and then rephrasing those needs as a pitch.
- An objection is not a problem it is simply part of the process. A prospect may want to buy instantly but will still have questions and objections. This is part of the prospect’s process of justifying the sale. If a prospect has an objection they are interested. If there is no interest they will, most of the time, end the conversation. Objections are good! Don’t fear them!
- Trial close. As you deal with and process objections it is time to conclude the sale and actually ask for the business. Don’t not ask for the order at this point, if you get a ‘no’ it is very difficult to go back as you have sawed the branch off behind you! A trial close allows you to test the waters and undercover any hidden objections. A simple presumptive closing technique such as, ‘would you want this in blue or red?’ allows you to confirm if the prospect is ready. If another objection is raised then go back to dealing with the objections until you feel ready to use another trial close.
- This is simple. You ask for the order, get the payment or the purchase order or a clear authorization to buy. Once you have done this end the conversation and move on. Stop talking about the order! Too many salespeople keep selling after the close and end up killing the sale. Take the customer for lunch, or golf or move on to the next appointment but stop selling!
- Service the sale. In many respects the sale starts once you get the order and making certain that the customer is happy and will bring more business, bigger business and even referrals.
Once you have defined a predictable, workable successful sales process for your business then you have created your own sales assembly line. This is the point where your sales become steady and regular and you can begin to predict what the sales will be next month and next year because you fully understand what makes your sales process work. Once you have created a workable sales process then the real magic begins. You can hire additional salespeople and train them to use the same sales process. This is where art become science. When the sale is an art success is impossible to predict but once you create a sales process it become science and can be predictably repeated by anyone trained in the system.
There is a fundamental truth about the sales process and your success as a salesperson and this is it – your success as a salesperson will absolutely be limited by your weakest link in the selling process. Your will never be stronger than your weakest skill.
Honestly evaluate your skills and performance in each stage of the sales process. What is your weakest skill? What three things could you do today to improve that weakest link and to raise the performance of each stage in the sales process? Next, take some time to think about the successful sales you have had and then use those experiences to write your own sales process. This will be an evolving process but once you begin to think of selling as a process and documenting success and failures you will be on your way to creating predictable success.
Why we buy
There are a million reasons why people buy but all of those reasons can be boiled down to one. We all buy because we want the feeling that we get from buying that product or service. Learn to ask good questions, listen carefully, make astute observations and people will tell you why they buy. Unsuccessful salespeople talk and talk and talk. Successful sales people listen and listen and listen.
Please note that we only buy for emotional reasons and there is no exception. When was the last time you ate something purely for the nutritional value? When was the last time you bought clothing just to keep you warm? We never buy things simply for the function they provide. Even people who do buy purely functional products usually do so to feel superior over others.
Ultimately we all buy for emotional reasons and justify with logic. Your job is to find that emotion and the place to start is with engagement.
Think about the last ten actions you took – it could be anything from kissing your spouse when leaving for work or having a cup of coffee instead of a cup of tea. Ask yourself this, ‘what feeling did I want to get by making that decision?’ It could be security, comfort, pride, satisfaction, or any one of a dozen emotions. Once you have written this list write another ten emotions that your customers might satisfy by doing business with you. Once this is done write ten emotions that your customers might satisfy by NOT doing business with you.
Fundamental to every sale is engagement! Without engagement every sale becomes an uphill battle, however, with engagement every selling situation ‘clicks’ and success escalates! Engagement is not about making the kind of deep connections that support marriages and life-long friendships but rather about creating friendly moments where you become instantly trustable and likeable. This is a skill that some people have more readily at their disposal than others but developing almost instant connections is ultimately learnable. Engagement is really about being open, honest, friendly and welcoming and is at the basis of charm and charisma.
Engagement is not something that you can fake – as easy as it is to connect and engage with people instantly is just as easy to get it wrong and alienate.
Start by being open and sincerely interested in other people, smile and say hello. Don’t introduce yourself but ask them a question. With practice you will find that you are creating instant engagement with everyone you meet. You will find that people like you more, that people are friendlier, and ultimately that selling becomes easier and easier. Sincerity is essential; as we can all smell a phony so practice being open and engaging with everyone you meet. You will get better overtime and with your new skill at instant engagement your closing rate will skyrocket!
Set a day aside and make a real effort to instantly engage with everyone you meet. Smile to people on the street, say hello, say thank you, open doors and provide small gestures of assistance to whoever crosses your path. You will find that you feel better, have more energy and that you will tend to attract more positive events into your life. This is not about making deep connections – just focus on instant connections. As you continue to practice you will get better and faster at connecting to people and you will find that most people will meet you half way – you will become more likeable and more popular.
It is a fact that everybody judges everybody. It is in our DNA as when we were Cavemen and focused on survival it was essential that we instantly assess everything and everyone in our environment just to stay alive. Today life and death is less of an issue but we still instantly judge people – on the way that they talk, the way that they dress and every visual cue available. In selling, we are selling ourselves first and so visual and aural cues are important. Do not underestimate the importance of personal presentation.
In selling it is best to stay neutral so as to ‘turn off’ as few people as possible. A blue or grey suit, classic choices, simple makeup and few personal adornments make the best choice. If you want to express yourself as an individual you are, unless you sell in a very niche market, going to pay the price in lost sales. People do not buy from people they do not trust and if people do not understand you or what you stand for they will have trouble trusting you. This is not right or wrong – it simply is!
Pick a day this week and dress in the most professional, classic manner possible. Avoid too much makeup or perfume and any accessories that stand out. Pay attention to the difference. Do people treat you differently? If it works for you try to integrate the changes into your normal routine and keep adjusting until you start to get the kind of feedback you want.
If you spend your day on the telephone you can do the same thing with your voice by smiling while you speak, speaking more slowly, and avoiding multi-tasking. If you have a mirror near your desk look at yourself in the mirror while you’re speaking. It will focus your attention on the person you’re speaking to on the other end of the phone line. This is the telephone version of being well dressed!
Where the money is!
Most salespeople make one primary mistake that keeps them from becoming Rainmakers – they treat everyone the same. All customers are not created equal. Some customers have more money to spend, bigger budgets and a broader scope with which to do business. Think about a British Airways Flight. There is Economy, Business and even First Class sections on some flights. A business class passenger may take up three times the space but may pay ten times the fair (more profit). A First Class passenger may take up to six or ten times the space of an economy passenger but the First Class passenger can pay up to fifty times the economy airfare.
Find the First Class customers in your market and you will make more money. A small company may lease two vehicles a medium sized company may lease two hundred; a very large company may lease five thousand – get the picture? Learning to find and sell to the largest customers can dramatically change you income and your lifestyle.
When I first became self-employed I started my business as an independent sales representative. Basically, I provided a sales function to manufacturers for a fixed commission. When I initially started, I continued doing the same thing that I had been taught as an employee. As an employee, I followed what the senior guys seemed to be doing and of course what I was told to do by management. What was that? Organize the sales territory by customer and work out a sales call schedule that makes the best use of your time. For example, Monday would be spent on the North, Tuesday downtown, Wednesday in the East and Thursday in the West, and Friday in South. All of my accounts would be given the same amount of time and I would try to fit in a certain amount of cold calling into the weekly cycle.
Does it work? Sure it does!
I worked hard, kept organized and did pretty well. I was pleased with being self-employed and was earning just a bit more than I had as an employee – a positive move.
Then, one day, everything changed. I started to spend more time with a few large customers who had the potential to be even larger. I listened to their concerns, brainstormed solutions, and met with more of their staff in many different roles throughout the company. I soon found my sales were increasing dramatically. I reorganized my schedule so that I would still see all of the customers on a regular basis but the smaller accounts received a visit every two or three weeks instead of every week.
The time I gained was used to work with the larger companies. In fact, I worked even more hours by adding weekend product demonstrations in their stores. I supported my brands in their businesses, worked hard to provide ideas and solutions to help them sell more and make more profit. As a result, I was rewarded with more sales. I was selling more by selling less!
Prior to starting my own business, in the early 1980s, I was earning about $40,000 dollars a year – a decent salary at that time. At the end of my second year as a self-employed salesperson my income had grown to $200,000 and at the end of year three it had grown to $400,000. This was as a single self-employed salesperson with no employees, selling in the same industry as I had worked as an employed salesperson earning about $40,000. I was earning ten times the average salesperson and probably working about 20% more hours. The other sales people could clearly see what I was doing but none of them ever followed my lead. Even today, so many years later, they are still selling the same products and calling on the same customers in exactly the same way.
Selling more is NOT about more selling – it never has been.
How could it be about more selling? How many hours are in a day? How far can you drive or how many telephone calls can you make? We are all limited by the number of hours in the day and if we are going to make more money, we need to work smarter. Now, I know that we have all heard the expression ‘work smarter, not harder’ but I wonder how many people really know what that means.
Here is a riddle. Take a piece of letter-sized paper. Draw two small dots on each end of the paper. Now connect the two dots without drawing a line between the two dots. How is it done? Well, just fold the piece of paper until the two dots meet, of course!
Some may call that a trick question. Not at all – just a different way to look at the answer.
If we are going to sell smarter then we don’t need to work harder. We need to think harder and ask different questions.
In every industry there are the few who are selling six or ten or twenty times what the average person is selling. How is that possible? Well, clearly they are not working twenty times harder – they are working differently.
Take a look at your work and pull it apart. Try different things. Look to different industries or different countries to see if something is being done differently that you might be able to adapt. Experiment, test, measure and evolve the way you do business.
There is always a better way.
My method of optimizing sales results was to envelop myself in my customer’s business and to understand everything about their business and what made it tick. I got to know the people – all of the people.I brought donuts to the warehouse staff, cold drinks on the hottest day of summer and pizza on a Friday afternoon.
As I understood and learned their business I saw opportunities to help. As I helped I became trusted, needed and valued. I became part of their businesses and they wanted to deal with me. They looked for opportunities to give me more business because dealing with me was easier than dealing with anyone else.
That is working smarter!
What does it take to work smarter? It takes hard work. It means taking your work home with you. Sometimes it requires the support of management who can see the value in what is being done. Strangely there are companies that want all their salespeople to make the same amount and will cut commissions to those who sell more than their quota.
Working smarter needs to be supported by management but first the salespeople need to be inspired to be different, to think differently and to walk in the face of traditional sales processes.
Make a list of your current customers and rank them by sales volume and profit. Pick the top twenty percent and begin to connect with those customers once more per week. It can be a visit, a telephone call or just a friendly email. At the end of the month monitor your opportunities and see if things haven’t changed -just a little? Sell deeper, not widerif you want to make more money. Guess what else? Your customers will love the First Class treatment! Next, again with your top twenty percent make a list of the opportunities to get closer and more involved with their business – find opportunities to expand and deepen your relationships.
The Power of Social Media
First, Social Media is marketing and not selling so Social Media activity should NEVER replace sales activity but Social Media is a tool in the Rainmaker’s toolbox and there is power there. Twitter, is a particularly powerful means to connect with our prospects and customers. Every salesperson should have their own professional Twitter account where they post relevant (business only) posts, thoughts and ideas to position themselves as industry experts and insiders. Follow your customers and prospects and add your Twitter to your email signature. Respond to the Tweets of your prospects and customers to engage and connect! You may get leads from Twitter but think of it more a marketing – positioning you as a leader and an expert!
If you don’t already have a Twitter account then open one for professional purposes only. Check with your company to make sure does not run against policy. Take a few moments to find a sales leader from another industry and emulate their activity – model them. Once you have been at it for a few weeks then start to follow prospects and customers. This is a long-term process but the payoffs in professional positioning can be powerful. Never post anything you wouldn’t want on the front page of the newspaper.
The Power Of Social Proof
LinkedIn is very powerful and you should be connected to every customer and player in your industry. Make certain you have a professional photo (invest a little), write your profile in the first person “Bill is a visionary” simply sounds stupid and who is saying that – your mother? Get your profile complete and be very professional. It is not a CV so just cover the high-points of your career. Once your profile is perfect than start to connect with everyone in your industry. If you don’t have at least five hundred connections then you better be working harder as a salesperson! Important note: under LinkedIn settings keep your connections private – don’t share your contacts with anyone! There is a lot more to LinkedIn that we will cover later.
How To Get 10,000 LinkedIn Connections Within Days
Once you have your LinkedIn profile complete (please double check spelling and grammar) with a professional photo it is time to start building contacts. There are different ways to look at a LinkedIn profile – one way is a list of the personal business connection you have that you know and trust. If you are in an established, well-connected job then that is fine – you don’t need thousands of connections. The other way to look at LinkedIn is an audience. The more connections you have on LinkedIn the more people will see your updates, the more people will view your profile and the higher your ranking will be when keywords are searched. People who actively seek contacts of all sorts on LinkedIn are called “open-networkers” or “Lions”.
To rapidly increase the number of your connections on LinkedIn follow the following steps. But first two important warnings.
** In your account settings adjust your email setting so that you don’t receive email notifications of new connections. This will prevent your in book filling up with LinkedIn messages. The new connections will still be listed under the notifications tab on your LinkedIn profile but you will not receive a separate email.
** LinkedIn normally allows you to invite any other person with a LinkedIn profile without providing their email address. If, however, too many people decline your invitation LinkedIn may put a restriction on your account requiring you to provide email addresses. If this does happen you can have this removed by simply contacting LinkedIn customer service and telling them that you uploaded your address book with some old contacts in it that may have forgotten you. They will remove this restriction.
Get a list of Open-Networkers. You should add, discreetly, to your LinkedIn profile that your are a ‘Lion’ and are an ‘Open-Networker’ and that you accept all invites. Also, list your email address to make it easy for people to connect. This information does not need to be at the top of your profile (this looks tacky) instead add it to your contact details – it will still come up in searches.
Now, there is a downside to being so well connected. You will get people contacting you trying to sell you stuff and involve you in there businesses. The best approach to this is to decide that it won’t bother you. Ignore the messages you want to ignore, block members you don’t want to see and unsubscribe to any email newsletters you might receive. Receiving Spam is all part of a higher profile and it is best not to get upset by it but simply ignore it. It takes a second to delete an unwanted email.
Leveraging the power of your LinkedIn and Social Media network
Now here is the magic of having a large audience. When you post something in your LinkedIn update it has the potential to be seen by all of your connections and all of their connection. If you have 30,000 connections (the limited allowed by LinkedIn) the potential exists for 100,000,000 people to see your updates. I use Hootsuite to automatically schedule updates (mostly my blog articles) to Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Google + automatically. It takes a bit of time to set up but once done takes seconds a day. The regular updates to my LinkedIn and Twitter feed generate hundreds of visits a day to my website and have resulted in ten of thousands in new business.
How to really network
Networking is very powerful but can easily be the biggest waste of time and money! Do not believe people that will tell you that you need to join some random networking group and that it is not about the people in the room but the people they know. Look, if I want to meet a woman to date I will find a woman who appeals to me, approach her and ask her for a date. I would not find married women with single friends and ask to be set-up! Networking within an industry should be done at industry events. If you are focusing on an industry join the industry association and start to attend trade shows and conferences – that is the place to network and nowhere else. The exception is certain clubs where the truly connected and powerful meet but that is the only real exception.
The Power of Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
If you are not using some sort of CRM system then you need to start. That which is measured get managed and if you are not keeping track of your leads, prospects and sales activity it is not getting done. Your very first activity every morning should be to look at your CRM and gauge the health of your sales pipeline. It is very easy to get off track and stop prospecting for a few weeks and the price to be paid can be harsh. Three weeks of no prospecting and you can bet the farm that ninety days later you will be in a sales slump. Stop prospecting for two months and in five months you might be out of work or out of business! If you don’t have a CRM system start with a simple free online program such a http://www.capsulecrm.comthat will provide you with an instant snapshot of your sales activity.
How To Cold Call Successfully
Do you struggle to pick up the telephone and book a meeting? Do your salespeople avoid cold calling? Would your business benefit by more face-to-face meetings with prospects?
For years I absolutely hated cold calling. Even though I thrived in face-to-face sales environments the telephone filled me with dread! No more! I learned a better way!
My personal record for booking face-to-face business appointments, using absolute cold calls, is 22 in one day.That is 22 confirmed appointments with business decision makers in a 7-hour day. My normal conversion rate is 50% – that is I generally book 1 out of every 2 calls made – on a good day the conversion rate has been as high as 100%.
How do I do this?
Well, I will tell you that the first thing you need to do is forget everything that anyone has ever taught you about cold calling. I spent years doing what other people did and my results were poor and I learned to hate cold calling! I then invested an entire month trying different approaches until I got it right! The change was amazing!
Here are the cold facts about cold calling.
- Scripts don’t work!
- Smooth banter doesn’t work!
- Tricking the gatekeeper doesn’t work!
- Gimmicks never work!
The ‘accepted’ method of cold calling is mechanically making call after call, reading from a script, which drives prospects away and is soul-destroying for the salespeople. When managers see this doesn’t work then push for more calls – calling sales a ‘numbers game.’Doing more of what doesn’t work is simply moronic!
Here is what works!
1) Start with your list – calling the entire telephone book is rarely a good idea.Unless you are certain that every business can realistically use your product you are wasting your time. A bit of research can result in a good, current list of businesses in your target sector and geographic location. The City of London Business Library at Guildhall provides public access to some very expensive business databases and it is 100% free. Most cities will have a similar service.
2) Get the direct line of the person you are calling.This doubles your chances of the person answering the telephone.
3) Separate cold calling activities:prospecting to find the right person, and call blitzing to get that person on the telephone are two activities. These should be done at separate times. Do not research then call, research and then call. Cold calling benefits from developing a rhythm and being in an ideal state of mind – better to maintain focus on one activity.
4) Throw away your script!Just a moment, firstyou write a script that is short, tight and has a highly compelling reason your prospect should meet with you. Spend some time on your script – get it polished, read it aloud until it sounds great – then throw it away! The moment you start reading anything the person on the other end of the line will know it and will shut you down. NEVERread anything but be so clear on your prepared and compelling message that it exactly like normal conversation.
5) Be present!Listen, you’re not stupid and so please don’t expect stupidity in others. Think about telephone conversations you have with friends. You’re chatting away with your friend and they start to watch television, work on the computer, use the toilet – whatever – we ALWAYSknow when we are not the main focus of the conversation. Don’t you always know?Once we move from giving 100% attention to the person at the other end of the telephone to doing something else, or thinking about something else the other person knows instantly and will begin to shut you down. Be absolutely 100% focused on the person on the other end of the telephone or don’t bother making the call. Effective cold calling takes intense focus.
6) Get engagement!Now this might well be a 2-minute conversation and so I am not talking about making a deep, personal connection I am talking about being completely real and completely in the moment so that you know the other person is also present and involved in the conversation. The best way to set up engagement is get 100% focused on the other person, be humble, be friendly and smile. Think about someone you really respect and enjoy speaking with (hold that feeling) and then make the call.
7) Gatekeeper won’t let you through?Well, 90% of the time engaging with the gatekeeper will get you through. My favorite phrase here is ‘I wonder if you could help me?’ Think humility! If the gatekeeper is stonewalling you then you need to get creative. Using LinkedIn to find names, or try calling unrelated departments and ask for your target. Sometimes calling just after the switchboard closes is a way to get through to somebody. A Google search will often produce a direct number or mobile number – make it a game and be relentless if the prospect is worthwhile.
8) Know what you want.Most cold calls are not about selling, they are about getting a confirmed meeting (in person or on the telephone). Cold calling is almost NEVER the time to sell the product or service – leave that for the presentation. The cold call is to get an appointment – only talk about that!Keep your mind focused on getting an appointment – only. And, only talk about that. If the person asks for more detail tell them that the information can only effectively presented in-person.Be strong.
9) Ask for the meeting then shut up.Selling is always about controlling the customer conversation. As humans we are trained from a young age to say yes and silence after the request puts stress on the other person to say yes to you! Once you get a yes confirm any required information and get off the telephone as quickly as possible. The longer you talk the better the chance you will talk yourself out of a yes.
10) Ignore all requests to email detail.Virtually 100% of these requests are a strategy to get rid of you – don’t do it! Instead say, ‘I do have literature, however, a 10 minute meeting is all it takes to present the offering and answer any questions. At the end of 10 minutes we will know whether we can help you and you will know if we can deliver any value.’The same is true for most requests to call back later – don’t get diverted!
11) Never leave messages!A message puts you in a corner and leaves you nowhere to go. When you leave a message you are chasing the prospect – desperate. Unless you have an incredibly powerful message that will make sure your prospect picks up the telephone to call you leaving a message only has a downside.
12) Know the difference between persistence and annoyance.Some leads might take days, weeks or even years to develop. Don’t burn a good quality lead by pushing too hard or calling too often. Remember that most customers will have a telephone that shows call history. Don’t hide your telephone number either – it looks deceptive and many people will not answer calls that don’t show a number.
Cold calling is essential to business.Even if your business is well established eventually you will need to pick up the telephone and get a meeting with someone. A bit of effort and you can develop the skill to book a meeting with anyone that might help your business move forward.
A last note for those who thing that cold calling is about numbers and that if you need to make 1000 calls to get one appointment – that is what you should do. Wrong!Why would you waste time, energy and investment making low-grade cold calls that give very little return on investment?
Learn to do it right!
Make a list of ten friends – ten people you know well. Call them up as ask to meet with them for coffee. Tell them that you need fifteen minutes of their time to explain an opportunity. Tell them you cannot explain on the telephone but you can guarantee there is absolutely no risk on their part. All you need is a few minutes of their time and that you will buy the coffee. Don’t tell them that this is an exercise or experiment just get them to commit and get of the phone as quickly as possible. The point of this exercise is to stay focused on task, to speak without a script and to get the meeting without selling the service. Give it a try. Once you have hung up having successfully arranged the meeting you can call them back to explain – try it!
That’s it for this module! You have a lot of material here and a lot of work to cover. Until next Module!