Category Archives: Performance

How to perform – reliably

3 Things You MUST Know About the “Gatekeepers”

As many of you know, I despise using the word Gatekeeper when it comes to calling on the assistants of the people I am hoping to reach. Why use language that puts you at war from the start?

But, many of you have asked for more insights about how to deal with this role in your sales efforts, so I will share with you what I have learned and the approaches that have been successful for me.

Here are the top three things I think about when calling on executives who have assistants.

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#1 Thing to Know about The Executive Assistant – They have an enormous amount of power!

They are in tune with the entire company and they wield an incredible amount of power. When it comes to knowing what their boss does and doesn’t care about, they are the expert. When it comes to navigating the company, there is no one better. Often, a request from the executive assistant is taken as if the executive made the request themselves!

Continue reading 3 Things You MUST Know About the “Gatekeepers”

My Three Favorite Articles (So Far) About Sales Gatekeepers

Dear Tom Tenseth (@smgamesafari)

This week’s for you!

A couple of weeks ago – you asked for more information in dealing with Gatekeepers – you said it is your biggest challenge and struggle.

While I have a lot of opinions about working with gatekeepers – which I will share in Wednesday and Thursday’s blog articles, I thought I’d do a bit of research before I weighed in.

DISCLAIMER: If you’re familiar with my stuff, you know I hate the word “gatekeeper”! Why put yourself in an adversarial position from the get-go? That said, I promised a week of articles related to the topic, so here we go!

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

In my research, I found some articles I really liked:

  1. Interview with a Gatekeeper

This interview with “Alice the Gatekeeper” is quite informative. She is brutally honest about what she does and doesn’t like about dealing with salespeople on the phone. My favorite observations include:

“I like helping people, I really do.”  and “…I am a warm soul-filled person. Let’s have a real conversation and then be done.”

Want to get into the “gatekeepers” head? Read this one.

http://www.cobizmag.com/Articles/An-interview-with-Alice-the-gatekeeper/

Continue reading My Three Favorite Articles (So Far) About Sales Gatekeepers

B2B is a BUMMER!

I’ve been having a think on this lately.

What is it that bugs me so much about this whole concept of B2B and B2C selling? Something really irks me, but I can’t quite get my arms around it, until today when I realized…

These terrible shorthand terms take the humans right out of the mix! Businesses don’t  sell to businesses. Businesses don’t sell to consumers. PEOPLE sell to PEOPLE – some of them are buyers because their job description makes them buyers. Some of them are buyers because they have a wallet.

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

But, they are people nonetheless. Would you argue that in a B2B sale, you have 5 decision makers? Making it complex?

Didja ever try to sell a Porsche to a guy with a wife who has three kids under the age of 5? Talk about a complex sale!

Point is. If you continue to remember that there is another HUMAN on the other side of the conversation – with their own needs and values and worries and hopes and expectations – and people to take care of and people to please, you will start to look at your sales in a completely new way.

And you will get farther in all of the work you do.

There will never be a “gatekeeper” on the other end of the phone. There will be someone who knows the way the CEO likes to do business and what they are trying to accomplish in their business right now.

You won’t be calling on a “Suspect”. You will be talking to another human who has hopes, dreams, problems, and concerns. Imagine if you got interested in those hopes, dreams, problems and concerns? All of a sudden you are developing relationships that are much more likely to turn into business.

Do you know I walked into a meeting with a person I was selling to at a Fortune 50 company and she actually gave me a hug?!?! We got business with them year-over-year – it was a huge win!

How about some P2P selling instead?

Don’t forget they’re people and don’t forget to…

Love ‘em ALL UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

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Four Cold Calls Called Me Back!

How fun is that?

Maybe you’re way better than I am, but I find that it’s pretty tricky to get people to call you back from leaving a cold voice mail. Right?

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Now! That does NOT mean that voice messages aren’t important. They are!

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

Voice messages are an opportunity to share your style. Your voice. Make a connection. Demonstrate who you are and that you care.

As Anthony Iannarino says, calling on a person and hanging up if they don’t answer is a bit like ringing someone’s doorbell and running away. Why wouldn’t you take the opportunity to give them a flavor of who you are – so that they remember you when you email them or get them on the phone?

At any rate, I was curious about this success.  What was new? What worked so well?

Continue reading Four Cold Calls Called Me Back!

#TBT – A Surprising Trick to Bringing in 4th Quarter Quota

career-215528As our minds turn to finishing the year strong, I am bringing out this powerful tool to clear your sales pipeline of clogs and move powerfully to crushing your quota!

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

From October of 2014

3 COMPELLING REASONS TO BREAK UP – NOW!

The song says “Breaking up is hard to do!” And, it certainly can be.

But, here is how breaking up will free you up!

A very dear friend of mine. A tippy-top producer who has earned a penthouse overlooking one of the most famous (and expensive) avenues in America, shared this recent story with me.

Her pipeline has been a teensy bit stagnant of late. So, she took a BOLD ACTION. She carefully crafted a gracious break-up script and shared it with her prospects who were just not getting back to her.

Generously, she has agreed to let me share her message and her results.  Here is the message she left for her prospects with whom she had met, but received no activity:

Continue reading #TBT – A Surprising Trick to Bringing in 4th Quarter Quota

Remember this magical teenage moment?

Once upon a time, a boy and a girl (probably you) shared a favorite song.

Remember when she came to your house, with a new discovery of a new band, and together you fell in love with a new song? With a new band?

Maybe she even shared an ear-bud with you as you listened together (a la an 90’s Walkman moment).

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

Do you have ANY idea how long it took for your favorite song to register for you?

With the exception of your favorite crush plugging the song directly into your brain, it probably took awhile (and a bunch of social reinforcement) for you to even KNOW the song, much less like it.

What does this have to do with sales?

WHY ARE YOU NOT INSISTING THAT YOU BE NOTICED?

CEOs, CMO’s, Your customer… They are waaaaaaaay busier than teenagers.

If you have something that you know will make their business better, it is your job to get the “song” into their ears.

And it will probably take at least 12 times of hearing you or seeing your name before you even start to register.

Just because you called them once and left a message, doesn’t mean anything got through.

Remember, they are counting on YOU to find THEM.

Go sing your song, over and over again, and don’t forget to…

Love ‘em ALL UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Should YOU be a salesperson? Take the 100% Reliable Mostly Foolproof “Should I Be A Salesperson” QUIZ here:  http://www.isalesgirl.com/thequiz.aspx

Five Ways We Fool Ourselves Into Failure

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Didja ever notice how some people are reliable to produce results while others simply can’t seem to get what they want?

I see it all the time in sales. MY sales.

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

I have DEVOTED myself to studying and learning to be reliable to produce results. And, it’s not by lowering the bar. It is by being on a MISSION to find the ways that I have fooled myself into failure. Hopefully, you can just learn these from me and you don’t have to make all these mistakes yourself.

#1 Way We Fool Ourselves Into Failure:

Thinking that email is the same as having a conversation or making a real request.

Email is an excellent vehicle for transmitting data, getting information, and exchanging ideas. Sometimes you can get people to agree to act through email, especially if it is a personal email.

But, if you think that you are going to fill your seminar, or get a babysitter for your children, or set a meeting with a prospect simply by sending out a blanket email, you are fooling yourself.

When the stakes are high, you’ve got to make SURE that you reach the other person, get their buy-in, and that they are willing and able to act on your request.

Many salespeople think that because they sent out 500 emails that they have accomplished something.

Not until someone responds to you with the favorable outcome you were hoping for have you achieved anything. Counting that email as a true sales activity is fooling yourself into failure.

 #2 Way We Fool Ourselves Into Failure:

Continue reading Five Ways We Fool Ourselves Into Failure

How The Dog Collar Mechanism Makes You Better in Sales

dog-987936Most of you probably already know that I LOVE dogs!

I’ve learned a lot about life and love from my own dogs – as many of us have.

A couple of years ago, though, I also learned an incredibly successful sales tool from my dogs. If you’ve ever been around ‘em yourself, I bet you’ll see what I mean.

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

So, I’m training my 12-week-old lab. Well, actually, my trainer is training ME to get him to cooperate. Which is a little bit crazy with a goofy, needle-sharp teeth, highly distractible, getting-stronger-by-the-day puppy.

She laid a nugget of wisdom on me. She told me about the dog-collar-mechanism. Which, in its most fundamental form, says – “If you pull on your dog’s collar – the dog will immediately pull in the opposite direction”. Huh!

Didja ever notice how that’s true in sales, too?

You make an assertion. And the first thing they do is tell you why you’re wrong.

How do you fix this problem with a sale? Same way you fix the problem with the dog.

Reduce the tension. Make where you want him to go more appealing than where he is now. Have HIM think he came up with the idea of going where you wanted him to go.

With dogs we use cues like treats, or distracting activity, or intriguing noises.

In sales, we use language!

Here are a few of my favorite approaches to working with a prospective client to get his buy-in. Instead of acting like I know everything to solve his problem, I will use phrases like:

“You know your business far better than I do, but it seems to me that….” (Whether they agree with you or they tell you it’s different for them, they are now talking and giving you valuable information!)

OR, I’ll say…

“This probably isn’t true for you, but I find that most of my clients seem to be dealing with this kind of trouble…”(Again, if it is true for them, they are in the same boat with other similar professionals. If it isn’t true, you’ve made them look smart and they will tell you how you can help them solve their unique business need).

OR, I’ll say…

“I doubt this has ever happened in your business, but one of my clients hired me to fix this situation…” (You are probing for information, and you are reducing the tension!)

The hilarious thing about my dogs…I take mine to the beach all the time to chase sticks and balls in the waves. People tell me how well-behaved they are. When, in reality, 99% of the time I am only asking them to do things that I know they are going to want to do anyway!

Remember the dog collar mechanism in your sales conversations and be sure to…

Love ‘em ALL UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

P.S. Want the REALLY good stuff? Subscribe here to my Totally Irreverent Tuesday newsletter where I share the best stuff that I never publish anywhere else! http://bit.ly/IrreverentTuesday.

#TBT – GEEZ, OH PEET! WHAT A PANIC!

I wrote this article over three years ago, but I still remember this epiphany! Hopefully, it will be good for you, too!

“ I had a GREAT BIG call today with one of the Elephants I am tracking.

We seem to be getting so close, yet we are HEAD-TO-HEAD with a fierce and competent competitor.

It’s all I’ve been able to think about lately.

I’ve been getting ATTACHED. 

I realized this during my workout today. Here I am enjoying a nice peaceful morning on the Elliptical and all I can think about is this PANIC I am having about landing this elephant.

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Ridiculous.

And then, I thought, “What Would the Irreverent Sales Girl Do?”

And, it came to me. She would

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

Continue reading #TBT – GEEZ, OH PEET! WHAT A PANIC!

One magical question that gives you control of the sales meeting!

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I was reading Whale Hunting by the brilliant Dr. Barbara Weaver-Smith and when I ran across this paragraph, I whooped – YES!

I have actually used this idea one time in my career. The meeting was critical to me. The company I was presenting to had already decided to work with my competitor. They had the (unsigned) contract sitting on the decision-maker’s desk.

It was my Hail Mary meeting!

Each person in the room had a different reason to use my product. I’d never met any of them before. They were busy people. And, as I mentioned, they’d already decided to work with someone else. By sheer determination, I had been able to plant enough doubt about their decision in my customer’s mind – so much that they called me in. The whole gang was there.

And I’d better be good!

Wondering how to go from 5 to 6 figures in sales? Check out this Free eBook: http://ebook.solidsixblueprint.com/solid-six-ebook/

Continue reading One magical question that gives you control of the sales meeting!