In every area of sales there are things that would amaze the general public – if they only knew. Or more to the point – if someone would only go to the trouble of letting them know about it. Most elements of amazement are ‘as plain as the nose on your face, but are usually so close to those most central to the business, most don’t readily recognise them. Those closest to the people concerned can brush it off as being part of the character; something expected of that person; or because that’s the way they are. Others simply take these things for granted.
So let me give you some ideas of what to look out for.
Are there any record holders on the premises, champions of unusual community events, has anyone ever published a book or is capable of writing a book, has anyone attempted and completed an unusual task or event, and so on?
What about unusual features, anyone with six toes on each foot, an unusual birth mark, etc? Does anyone drive an unusual car, have an unusual or weird hobby, or even parts their hair the wrong way?
I once went on a call with one of my salesmen in Melbourne, all was well until he overtook a tram on the right hand side. Now if that doesn’t sound weird to you, understand it’s illegal for a start, and you need to understand that trams run on fixed train lines, and to overtake a tram on the right hand side means you could be driving at another tram head on. At the time it was not only highly unusual, but frightening as well.
In most places, if you dig deeply enough, you’ll probably find one or two. When you do, be sure all your promotional efforts include one or two elements of amazement. This will not only attract attention, but may even help you obtain free publicity. If you can’t find any unusual stories, you could always manufacture one or two.
A retailer I know dressed up his part time staff in animal costumes on weekends to stand out on the main road and wave at passers by. It worked well despite the problems he had with his local council.
In his early days, entrepreneur Dick Smith created a “hoax” publicity stunt that gave him exposure on every major television and radio station and newspaper in Australia. Then when the hoax was ‘uncovered’ (by the media), he received an equal or perhaps even greater amount of publicity. What did he do. He hired a tug boat to ‘tow an iceberg from the Antarctic’, the media followed for days until he got it through Sydney Heads, where it was then found to be a giant barge covered in plastic and made to look like an iceberg.
Want Another “CRAZY IDEA” That Works
So many of us have trouble getting a specific project under way or just completing an important project. Well if that is what you are going through I may have an idea you can use thanks to a friend of mine than found something interesting on line. How it works is that you simply throw an out of place reminder of the project on the floor.
Let’s say that you’ve decided to set a new goal to sell 20% more business next month than you have written this month. Then write it on a piece of A4 paper and place it on the floor in a hallway or any place where you have to constantly step over it. The idea is that you will not rest until you finish that project.
I like the idea, but maybe you should use something like the cardboard side of a case of beer, and when you accomplish the goal, decree you will reward yourself with I or more cases of the brew and also take your partner out to a special dinner.
Do the things that Defy Conventional Wisdom
In fact, do the things that oppose conventional wisdom 180 degrees. This is the basis upon which so many of our newer tools of trade were developed. The computer not only defied conventional wisdom, but is still defying it today – and will probably do so for years to come. Mobile phones are another. Most call this technology, yet it’s the same technology that keeps on defying conventional wisdom.
In the late 1970’s when I was a State Manager for the Yellow Pages, I was first told (in confidence) by a senior executive of the then Telecom Australia that, “In the not too distant future we would be making calls on portable telephones that would fit into the shirt pocket”, I marvelled and wondered if it would come true. I really wanted to see it as a reality in my lifetime. How little faith I had in the development of technology.
Then in the mid 80’s I bought a technological marvel, a portable telephone so compact it would fit into a large, wider than usual briefcase. That phone at that time defied conventional wisdom. I even made a call or two from it on the Sydney Harbour ferry and felt like “James Bond” at the time – much to the other passengers amazement, but a pocket phone, that would require great technological advancement – or so I thought.
A year or so later my friends were using technology which again defied logic – at least in my mind – they bought a portable phone the size of a very large house brick. Not only did it weigh the same weight of a house brick, it was actually called a “brick”. We all know what portable phones look like and function as in today’s world. What then will be the next product, service or idea that will catch the imagination of so many – while it too defies conventional wisdom?
Always Sell with the Prospect’s Permission
Allow me to explain something to you. Any one of us can make our prospecting and presenting more attractive if we will indirectly ask permission to go to the next step of your presentation. I guess it is best referred to asking for permission and getting it. And that’s the way the majority of the top supersellers make their mark and do their selling. There are also a whole bunch of other ways other phrases show the same level of respect and courtesy.
Instead of saying, “I want to show you my program.”
You could say, “May I recommend you look at my program?”
Instead of saying, “I want to tell you a few things about my company.”
You could say, “If it’s OK with you, I’d like to tell you about my company.”
Instead of saying, “Let me show you my products.”
You could say, “If it’s alright with you, I’ll show you my products.”
Instead of saying, “You’re really going to love this.”
You could say, “If you’re impressed with this, we can go to the next step.”
Instead of saying, “I’ll explain the basis of the contract to you.”
You could say, “If it’s OK with you, I’ll now go over the paperwork.”
Here is some more Selling by Permission Language:
- “If it’s alright with you…”
- “If that is acceptable to you…”
- “Provided this totally meets with your approval…”
- “If it’s alright with you…”
This Article is by Peter Collins – In a sales career spanning more than 50 years, Peter Collins has focused on helping and bringing out the best in others – whether it involves training or mentoring salespeople, managers, business consulting to SME’s. Since the 1970’s Peter has built a reputation as a Nationally and Internationally Published author, and has 65 books to his credit, but he is mainly known for one book based on the Audio Tape series of the same name, Over 50 Ways of Closing the Sale. In his personal life, Peter has been sought after as an encourager and motivator that has given of his time and talents freely despite his busy schedule. Subsequently, he has assisted churches, pastors, community and charity groups, as well as individuals through his teaching, training, development and on-going mentoring.
Peter can be contacted through his website – profitmakersales.com