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Whats the best type of sales job for SaaS entrepreneurs to learn sales?

GRIT

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Whats the best type of sales job for SaaS entrepreneurs to learn sales? My end goal is to have a startup in SaaS. Not sure if that'll be B2B or something everyone across the world can use though.

Here is some of my research, interested in what others have to say.

Reasons for entrepreneur to learn sales:
  • learn persuasion -> required for funding, convincing companies you're better than competitors in B2B, scaling business by selling
  • understanding human psychology and what humans want (even if they don't explicitly say)
  • good social & networking skills - connections and relationships in business are key in getting referrals, introductions, product sales, etc
  • some psychological benefits like meeting targets/goals, having thick skin and a persevering attitude

Sales jobs can require high product knowledge with less focus on persuasion (eg tech sales), others are high persuasion skills with less focus on product. Best kinds of jobs are high persuasion/ low product knowledge for entrepreneurs.

What are some high persuasion/low product jobs? I'm thinking:
  • Call centre - Good for understanding how to SPEAK to ppl
  • Door to door - Face to face part teaches you body language
  • Bartending - Social skills and human psychology as people can have dynamic emotional states whilst drinking
  • Waiter/waitressing? - Not sure about this, teaches you social skills and how to keep a conversation going though not really much focus on persuasion
  • Retail sales? - Not sure of this, this is kinda passive as you wait for people to come to store and they buy what they wanted to buy, not a high focus on persuasion or human psychology
  • Selling sim cards? - not sure
 

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Kevin88660

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Sales is slowly changing from supply driven to demand driven nowadays and will continue to do so.

While what you say and how you say remain critically important, the difference between top producers and the rest is largely on business strategy and client engagement nowadays.

In other words most of the times clients made up their minds whether they want to buy before they ever speak to you. That is trend now. This means that people need to learn new skills instead of being fixated on “psychology” and “what to say” and “how to persuade”.

1) For someone new in the business, how do I obtain a decent book of business/ build up a small base quickly.

2) How do I engage with this base?

3) What are the some tested value proposition in my space and industry?

4) How do I prioritize my time from 10am to 9pm in a day?

If you go to the sales meeting these days many of the top performer are not the typical “persuader” these days.
 

Creep

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I reccommend not doing high pressure sales. It will demolish your credibility.

I read The way of the wolf, which talks about overcoming objections, but only if they are genuinly interested in the product. I think this is a good middle-ground.

If you want a sales job, grab a phone book (lmao) and work for yoursef. You can choose the item and do drop-shipping over phone
 

Ing

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Make a test!:

1. part : Look for Example for bikes near you on craiglist or so.
Buy cheap, than sell expensive.

2. read: „ how to get friends and influence people „ an old book, that very inspiring and useful for me 35 years ago. Still one of the best!

3. repeat part 1!
Than analyse the differences and write it down!


You dont have to take bikes. It doesnt depend if you know about the goods!
 
OP
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GRIT

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I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Jun 5, 2018
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Sales is slowly changing from supply driven to demand driven nowadays and will continue to do so.

While what you say and how you say remain critically important, the difference between top producers and the rest is largely on business strategy and client engagement nowadays.

In other words most of the times clients made up their minds whether they want to buy before they ever speak to you. That is trend now. This means that people need to learn new skills instead of being fixated on “psychology” and “what to say” and “how to persuade”.
Interesting insight, thanks for sharing. This applies a lot to B2C companies a lot like amazon, there is a strong focus on customer service and product. Due to the internet and increased accessibility, people have access to a range of options and information and can make an intelligent decision, rather than be persuaded.
For B2B companies like Salesforce, I believe sales skills are still valuable, so I'd still like to gain some experience.
 
OP
OP
G

GRIT

New Contributor
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Jun 5, 2018
7
5
11
I reccommend not doing high pressure sales. It will demolish your credibility.

I read The way of the wolf, which talks about overcoming objections, but only if they are genuinly interested in the product. I think this is a good middle-ground.

If you want a sales job, grab a phone book (lmao) and work for yoursef. You can choose the item and do drop-shipping over phone
What is high pressure sales?
So drop ship to suppliers or random individuals from a phone book?
 
OP
OP
G

GRIT

New Contributor
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Jun 5, 2018
7
5
11
Make a test!:

1. part : Look for Example for bikes near you on craiglist or so.
Buy cheap, than sell expensive.

2. read: „ how to get friends and influence people „ an old book, that very inspiring and useful for me 35 years ago. Still one of the best!

3. repeat part 1!
Than analyse the differences and write it down!


You dont have to take bikes. It doesnt depend if you know about the goods!
"How to get friends and influence people" is about social skills like how to maintain a conversation, listen to people, make them feel better etc. Persuasion in sales is different as it focuses on overcoming their objections, convincing them etc
 

Zarathustra

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Am I the only one who feels like "learning sales" is such a fluffy, vague endeavor?

I'm not saying you shouldn't learn sales and even try practicing.

But it can be pretty vague whether or not you're making progress in your "sales skill". A large contrast when compared to progress in coding and many other concrete skills.
 

Ing

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Jun 8, 2019
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"How to get friends and influence people" is about social skills like how to maintain a conversation, listen to people, make them feel better etc. Persuasion in sales is different as it focuses on overcoming their objections, convincing them etc
edit: no. Overcoming ones objection is something what follows the social skills far afterwards.
Learning that selling skills is a very small part of what the social skills teach you.
But of course one can restrict your learning on the small area of „ selling skills of persuasion and overcoming „

Love and peace!
 
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babyballer

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Am I the only one who feels like "learning sales" is such a fluffy, vague endeavor?

I'm not saying you shouldn't learn sales and even try practicing.

But it can be pretty vague whether or not you're making progress in your "sales skill". A large contrast when compared to progress in coding and many other concrete skills.
Sales skill is anything but vague. You know that you're good if you outperform your peers of the same company selling the same products. The numbers are there to see. Nothing to hide.
 

babyballer

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Interesting insight, thanks for sharing. This applies a lot to B2C companies a lot like amazon, there is a strong focus on customer service and product. Due to the internet and increased accessibility, people have access to a range of options and information and can make an intelligent decision, rather than be persuaded.
For B2B companies like Salesforce, I believe sales skills are still valuable, so I'd still like to gain some experience.
Most of the great sales people I know are really good at qualification. Think of BANT methodology and the like. The big idea is to stop wasting their time on leads that are going nowhere or low value leads and turn their focus on qualified leads.
 

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Zarathustra

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Sales skill is anything but vague. You know that you're good if you outperform your peers of the same company selling the same products. The numbers are there to see. Nothing to hide.
Ah okay, I see. In a company, it definitely becomes more measurable and not vague (since you have other salespeople to compare against). But as a business owner being the only one selling your product/s, I've always found measuring overall sales ability quite vague.
 

Kevin88660

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There are two types of sales people inbound and outbounds. That makes a hell of difference.

Inbounds sales people focuses on conversion only as qualified prospects call them or walk to them in an office.

Outbounds sales people need to do everything. Prospecting-Qualifying-Converting-Engagement to grow the business book. But the key thing is prospecting. It is a much more difficult game due to the need to constantly prospect to grow the book of business.
 
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GRIT

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Jun 5, 2018
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Most of the great sales people I know are really good at qualification. Think of BANT methodology and the like. The big idea is to stop wasting their time on leads that are going nowhere or low value leads and turn their focus on qualified leads.
Where can I find/learn things like BANT methodology etc?
 

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