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Sales is a screening process

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Andy Black

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"Find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you sees the value in what you do, or just the cost."
(Blaise Brosnan)

One of the most influential people in my business career is a business consultant based here in Ireland. I could drop a nugget of his every single day, and then expand on it with my own stories.

The line above was a BIG aha moment for me back in 2009.

I was on a Management Development Programme with 20 other business owners and entrepreneurs.

A lawyer asked Blaise how long to spend trying to close a prospect and make a sale.

I paid attention as even back then I was spending a lot of time adding value to each person who came into contact with me.

Blaise told us to find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you saw the value in what you do, or just the cost.

"If they don't see the value then move on. Someone up the road is waiting to bite your hand off and every minute longer you spend trying to convince the person in front of you is a minute wasted."

"Sales is a screening process."
(Blaise Brosnan)

You're a business owner too. Your own time is valuable.

If your service or product adds value and someone doesn't see it, then don't spend too long trying to change their mind.

Of course you could find out what they do see the value in (and consider offering it or pointing them in the right direction), but sometimes the person in front of you has the scarcity mindset and those red flags are a sign they're going to be a problematic client.

Dodge the bullet.

Keep moving.

Abundance mindset.

You're their peer, not their servant.

Go go go.
 

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PhilPhil

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Great information/insight! Do you recommend any sales related resources/books that captures this type of logic/process?

Thanks!
 
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Andy Black

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Great information/insight! Do you recommend any sales related resources/books that captures this type of logic/process?

Thanks!
I don't think I've read any sales books. I've tried to but got bogged down with someone else's system.

Just get out there and chat to people. Find out what they do. Find out what they're stuck with. If they ask what you do then mention it and see if their eyes light up. Take it from there?
 

FastNAwesome

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"If they don't see the value then move on. Someone up the road is waiting to bite your hand off and every minute longer you spend trying to convince the person in front of you is a minute wasted."
So true!

I think this can be applied on other areas of life too.

Like clinging to a partner who doesn't appreciate you enough, or being friends with people who don't respect you and your time.

Trying to change them is like trying to sell to the wrong prospect.

All while there's someone (many someones) who are yearning for your company. Who would love you and add much value to your life, and appreciate that which you bring to theirs.


"Sales is a screening process."
(Blaise Brosnan)
And all of a sudden, selling doesn't sound so scary anymore:)

And introverted guys like me can stop feeling like a beggar when making a pitch, but rather like an equal, at a minimum...
And at some point you may reach the level where customers are knocking your door down, but you're the one choosing who you will work with.

I know business owners who are very picky as to who can be their client. This can especially be important for complex products or long-term contracts.

You're their peer, not their servant.
 
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Andy Black

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So true!

I think this can be applied on other areas of life too.

Like clinging to a partner who doesn't appreciate you enough, or being friends with people who don't respect you and your time.

Trying to change them is like trying to sell to the wrong prospect.

All while there's someone (many someones) who are yearning for your company. Who would love you and add much value to your life, and appreciate that which you bring to theirs.




And all of a sudden, selling doesn't sound so scary anymore:)

And introverted guys like me can stop feeling like a beggar when making a pitch, but rather like an equal, at a minimum...
And at some point you may reach the level where customers are knocking your door down, but you're the one choosing who you will work with.

I know business owners who are very picky as to who can be their client. This can especially be important for complex products or long-term contracts.
"Selling for the introverted."

Nice... maybe I'll do a thread on that.
 

Nicoknowsbest

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"If they don't see the value then move on. Someone up the road is waiting to bite your hand off and every minute longer you spend trying to convince the person in front of you is a minute wasted."

"Sales is a screening process."
(Blaise Brosnan)
I'd try to convert the ones who were skeptical about my offer far too long.

This reminds me of you saying in one of your interviews that we should look for the apples already falling out of the tree - and put baskets underneath. I tried too hard shaking the tree so the green apples would fall out, while the floor was full of red ones.

Great reminder, thanks @Andy Black!
 

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When out on the road selling, I didn't waste time. My call rate was just over double the average achieved by average sales representatives, and that didn't allow time to be wasted on trying to persuade reluctant prospects. Screening gave me time to do those extra calls.

My sales record was a compound doubling of my employer's turnover year after year for more than 3 years, so yes, screening works. Hard work obviously contributed, but my no-nonsense approach was also no doubt a factor.

Walter
 

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"Find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you sees the value in what you do, or just the cost."
(Blaise Brosnan)

[...]

Blaise told us to find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you saw the value in what you do, or just the cost.

"If they don't see the value then move on. Someone up the road is waiting to bite your hand off and every minute longer you spend trying to convince the person in front of you is a minute wasted."

[...]

If your service or product adds value and someone doesn't see it, then don't spend too long trying to change their mind.

...
I know I struggle with this. Many people see accounting as a cost. It's sometimes tricky to find the ones who understand that a good accountant can also be a business adviser, and offer insights and actionable suggestions.

I spend a lot of time trying to justify my cost to potential clients. Instead, I should figure out how to change my approach to find the people looking for financial guidance.
 

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"Find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you sees the value in what you do, or just the cost."
(Blaise Brosnan)

One of the most influential people in my business career is a business consultant based here in Ireland. I could drop a nugget of his every single day, and then expand on it with my own stories.

The line above was a BIG aha moment for me back in 2009.

I was on a Management Development Programme with 20 other business owners and entrepreneurs.

A lawyer asked Blaise how long to spend trying to close a prospect and make a sale.

I paid attention as even back then I was spending a lot of time adding value to each person who came into contact with me.

Blaise told us to find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you saw the value in what you do, or just the cost.

"If they don't see the value then move on. Someone up the road is waiting to bite your hand off and every minute longer you spend trying to convince the person in front of you is a minute wasted."

"Sales is a screening process."
(Blaise Brosnan)

You're a business owner too. Your own time is valuable.

If your service or product adds value and someone doesn't see it, then don't spend too long trying to change their mind.

Of course you could find out what they do see the value in (and consider offering it or pointing them in the right direction), but sometimes the person in front of you has the scarcity mindset and those red flags are a sign they're going to be a problematic client.

Dodge the bullet.

Keep moving.

Abundance mindset.

You're their peer, not their servant.

Go go go.
I saw this years and I never forgot it: START AT 1 minute 42 seconds

To be honest it takes away all the pressure if you think about it.
if I ever got a chance to be andy blacks protégé lol, i'd just try to learn how to effectively connect people and collect payment as a middle man haha
View: https://youtu.be/72_tkbnY3Sg?t=1m42s
 

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Andy Black

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I know I struggle with this. Many people see accounting as a cost. It's sometimes tricky to find the ones who understand that a good accountant can also be a business adviser, and offer insights and actionable suggestions.

I spend a lot of time trying to justify my cost to potential clients. Instead, I should figure out how to change my approach to find the people looking for financial guidance.
My accountant has the same problem. She's a pet project of mine. I'll let you know if we crack it.
 
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Andy Black

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Andy Black

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yes, gold plated diamond cap tiger blood ink pens only. Do you sell such pens sir?
Of course we do. How many do you want?
 

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I saw this years and I never forgot it: START AT 1 minute 42 seconds

To be honest it takes away all the pressure if you think about it.
if I ever got a chance to be andy blacks protégé lol, i'd just try to learn how to effectively connect people and collect payment as a middle man haha
View: https://youtu.be/72_tkbnY3Sg?t=1m42s
Talented guy... shame his ethics did not match
 

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I took a door to door job recently because I was curious to the process.
The managers gave us a list of "clinchers" that were poorly written and clunky means to deflect objections at the door and get in.
I soon learned that trying to deflect and persuade a person to let you in, do paperwork, and go through a bunch of hoops to get their credit score approved was a waste of time. They didn't want it in the first place. They didn't value the product and didn't value your time and their own by sitting through all the signing up.
As your mentor said there were people just down the street who were contemplating buying the very product I as selling and gladly let me in to chat.
They were also more likely to follow through and finalize the deal.
Doing door to door was grueling enough I didn't see the point in playing mind games just so I could get a pending sale on the board when I could help someone who actually wanted my help.
 
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Andy Black

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I took a door to door job recently because I was curious to the process.
The managers gave us a list of "clinchers" that were poorly written and clunky means to deflect objections at the door and get in.
I soon learned that trying to deflect and persuade a person to let you in, do paperwork, and go through a bunch of hoops to get their credit score approved was a waste of time. They didn't want it in the first place. They didn't value the product and didn't value your time and their own by sitting through all the signing up.
As your mentor said there were people just down the street who were contemplating buying the very product I as selling and gladly let me in to chat.
They were also more likely to follow through and finalize the deal.
Doing door to door was grueling enough I didn't see the point in playing mind games just so I could get a pending sale on the board when I could help someone who actually wanted my help.
Exactly.

I don't like the phrase "Always Be Closing".

I take phrases like that to mean keep moving on until you find someone who'll bite your hand off.
 

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ZF Lee

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Exactly.

I don't like the phrase "Always Be Closing".

I take phrases like that to mean keep moving on until you find someone who'll bite your hand off.
Next to finance and money books, sales books are a big no-no for me now unless they are about salespeople recruitment systems or SPIN selling.

That was the big reason why I stopped reading and watching Grant Cardone material.
The ABC has become like a frankenphrase...Cardone trumpeted it a lot. And most sales gurus.
Although Grant is pretty successful, I think 'Always Be Closing' needs a more better explanation that is based on providing value.
While sales revenue is important, I would rather have 20 repeating customers who keep buying my stuff because they need it and I came to help them, rather than having to chase 100 people at a time over and over again for a measely sale.
Not much different from money chasing.

I think that very phrase is the bane of so many decent salespeople or entrepreneurs. That kind of forceful attitude in selling gives salesmanship a bad name, even today.
 

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"Find out as soon as possible whether the person in front of you sees the value in what you do, or just the cost."
(Blaise Brosnan)

"Sales is a screening process."
(Blaise Brosnan)
wow @Andy Black . I know you just linked this in another thread but these 2 points really made me think about it. I run a few trials at the moment (its all very fresh) but the most likely first sale is going to come from the client that sees the MOST VALUE. Client never really asked about price. No discounts or fancy buy 2 for 1 deals. Or volume discounting. Or cheaper options. He asked for a sample, was impressed and asked for this specific higher quality.
How do I get my potential clients to see the value of my product in my copy? So far, I have just been telling them! Maybe thats all I can do.

As a comparison. I get a lot of interest and half of it boils down to price. At the moment, I negotiate each one individually but so far it has rather been difficult to convert, even with a 50% discount.
 
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Andy Black

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How do I get my potential clients to see the value of my product in my copy? So far, I have just been telling them! Maybe thats all I can do.
1) “Landing pages don’t convert, people do.”

Get the right person to your offer and gtf out of their way.

Personally, I prefer to keep improving the targeting and/or the offer until it sells itself.

The biggest landing page mistake


2) My preference is “Show, don’t tell.”

Show, don't tell


3) How can you find more of that “hyper-responsive” buyer?
 

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