Powerful Top 10 Sales Tips For Beginners

Sales podcast ep 35 Beginner Sales Tips - The Slow Pitch
Sales Podcast, The Slow Pitch
The Slow Pitch Sales Podcast
Powerful Top 10 Sales Tips For Beginners


Beginner Salesperson? Sales Tips To Avoid Common Mistakes

Are you a beginner salesperson? If so, you’re probably wondering how to avoid common mistakes. In this episode, we’ll discuss the top 10 sales tips for beginners and how you can avoid making the same mistakes that other salespeople make.

Common Beginner Salesperson Mistakes and Sales Tips

  • Thinking about themselves and their sale. Beginner salespeople often focus on themselves and their own needs, rather than on the needs of their customers. This can lead to a pushy, sales-y approach that customers don’t appreciate.
  • Pressuring themselves. Beginner salespeople often feel pressure to close a sale quickly. This can lead them to rush the sales process or use pressure tactics that alienate customers.
  • Not researching their potential client. Beginner salespeople often don’t take the time to research their potential clients before reaching out to them. This can make it difficult for them to understand the client’s needs and offer them relevant solutions.
  • Not finding their helper. Beginner salespeople often don’t find that person on the inside who can help them maneuver through the red tape or connect to the right decision makers. Having that inside helper can make all the difference in the world.
  • Not digging into pain. Beginner salespeople often don’t take the time to understand their customer’s pain points. This makes it difficult for them to offer solutions that will truly help their customers.
  • Closing the sale. Beginner salespeople often focus on closing the sale, rather than on building a relationship with the customer. This can lead to a short-term sale, but it’s unlikely to lead to a long-term customer relationship.
  • Being a victim of their game. Beginner salespeople often let their customers control the sales process. This can make it difficult for them to lead the sale and close the deal.
  • Not staying equal. Beginner salespeople often try to sell to their customers from a position of “the prospect is the boss.” This is reverse of what it should be. The two parties must be on equal footing to properly make the sale.
  • Not starting right and staying right. Beginner salespeople often don’t set the right expectations from the beginning of the sales process. This can lead to misunderstandings and disappointment on the part of the customer.
  • Not following the money. Beginner salespeople often don’t understand their customer’s budget or where it is coming from and why it’s there. Some salespeople don’t even know how to get the money released, when this could be a big problem later.

How to Avoid Common Beginner Sales Mistakes

Here are some tips on how to avoid the common beginner salesperson mistakes listed above:

  • Focus on your customer’s needs. Take the time to understand your customer’s needs, pain points, and goals. Tailor your sales pitch to address their specific needs.
  • Be patient and persistent. It takes time to build relationships and close sales. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t close a sale right away. Keep following up with your prospects and providing them with value.
  • Do your research. Before you reach out to a potential client, take the time to research their company, their industry, and their needs. This will help you to have a more informed conversation with them and offer them relevant solutions.
  • Find that helper. Find a mentor or coach who can help you to learn the ropes and develop your sales skills. Having a helper can be invaluable in helping you to avoid common mistakes and become a more successful salesperson.

We hope these sales tips help you close more deals.

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Other Related Material: 

Sales Tips to Boost Your Success

Music: "Clydesdale Funk" by Cast of Characters, written by: Dustin Ransom.

The Episode


Rob  00:00

If you’re a beginner in sales, and all you’re tracking are the number of sales, you are tracking the wrong number Hey, welcome back, everybody to The Slow Pitch. And hey, we’re back together, Lane and I, together back together, we’re actually able to record something this time. Welcome back Lane.

Lane  00:27

Thanks, Rob. How you doing?

Rob  00:28

I’m doing well, I know you’ve been busy, I’ve been busy. And we just put coordinate schedules for a little while. So every once in a while, as I’ve said before, I’ll run out a little mini episode. And while they’re not as interactive with two people talking through some stuff, and it does help to give a little something for folks to listen to for the day. So that said, I Rob,

Lane  00:50

And I’m Lane.

Rob  00:51

What are we talking about today?

Lane  00:53

Well, Rob, a while back, you mentioned there are some critical elements for success for a new salesperson. Well, you know, we’re at the beginning of a New Year here. So I thought it might be a good time to to talk about that. Do you have any sales tips for beginners?

Rob  01:04

So, then let’s talk about the top 10 sales tips for beginner salespeople.

V/O  01:10

You’re listening to The Slow Pitch Podcast, a podcast about selling less and closing more.

Lane  01:20

Rob, let’s start off with defining what is a new salesperson? A beginner? Then we’ll get into the sales tips…

Rob  01:24

Yeah, that’s probably the best place to start. I’m a beginner salesperson when I’m in the first year of ever selling anything. Meaning I’ve never sold anything before. This is my first foray into sales. That’s one version of a new salesperson. Another version of a new salesperson could be I’m new to a company, I have some experience. But I’m not fully aware of all the pieces that go on in this company. And I may not have the same sales techniques, or same sales approach that this company has, because I come from another company who has a different type of sales approach. Does that make sense?

Lane  01:59

Yeah, absolutely. I was I was gonna ask if, if someone’s coming into or wanting to learn a new approach, we could, you know, kind of classify that as a beginner salesperson.

Rob  02:07

Yeah. And I think that’s a good way to do it, too. Because if if you are in a sales role, or you’ve been in a sales role, and you listen to us, and you’re like, hey, some of the sales tips are a little bit different, but I kind of like I want to try some of this and what you should, because it really does work. What I would recommend is thinking of yourself as a beginner salesperson, and just being open and thinking about, Hey, what should I be doing? What sales tips work? Versus I already know that.

So anytime somebody approaches sales with the idea of you know, I’ve been in sales for 20 years, I already know everything I need to know, I think you’re doing yourself a disservice. And I hate to say that. So I think you need to think long and hard about what you think you know, and say, Alright, you know, all that great, let’s think about what are some other avenues or other ways that you might be able to get sales or increase your sales.

I know opposed to thinking if you’ve been around for a long time doing sales forever, that you’re just fine, you probably are just fine. If you’ve getting everything you need out of life, you’ve gotten all your goals accomplished. In fact, you’re probably getting more than you need to then you should just turn this podcast off. You don’t even listen to us anymore. You’ve got it.

Lane  03:06

Ha ha, I think they need to listen, I think they need to listen. Most beginner sales people won’t follow these sales tips and won’t listen enough.

Rob  03:08

Yeah, but, if they’ve approached all this with 20 years of experience and said, Gosh, I really like to get a little bit more. Okay, that’s where I’m at. So that’s, that’s what I think of as a new salesperson.

Lane  03:20

So now that we have that defined, what is the first of these beginner sales tips, Rob?

Rob  03:23

So alright, the first tip, and I think this is really a really difficult one for some people is to stop thinking about you or your sale, and you need to start to think about them and their need. I see a lot of salespeople or I’ve heard a lot of salespeople. I’ve experienced a lot of salespeople who are literally just trying to get their sale, right. They need to get paid, they need to sell something. I hit somebody the other day, I was looking at a vehicle, and when I was there…

Of course, used car salespeople are the best salespeople, right? I mean, they’re the most, they got all the experience in the world. They know what they’re doing. They don’t even need training. So hopefully don’t even listening, right? Because they don’t need it. Because there’s always perfect when you go in there and in the sale. It’s easy, right? I mean, oh, yeah. Well, I mean, you ever feel like you’re getting screwed or anything? Right?

Lane  03:23

There’s never any pressure.

Rob  03:24

No, no, never any pressure. That’s exactly what it was. It was so much pressure. They’re like, listen, we sell this, we do that, and my financing and blah, blah, blah. They told me every reason why I should buy and didn’t ask me one question as to why are you buying this vehicle you would think they would buy asked that question. That would be one of the main reasons you’d want to know why somebody is buying it.

If they don’t ask, why are you buying this vehicle, then they don’t understand what the needed pieces that need to go into this vehicle are so that you have everything you need, and you’re getting what you need. So you’re happy with the vehicle, right? I needed some specific things for this vehicle. They didn’t even ask me Oh, are you going to put anything inside this vehicle that’s going to be heavy that needs to be towed around? No, they didn’t ask me. Is that what I needed it for? Yes. Do you think they got the sale? Probably not. These are sales tips we don’t want to follow.

Lane  04:50

You might think they don’t care.

Rob  04:51

You might think they don’t. That’s the rule number one. Stop thinking about you and your sale and your quotas. Stop, stop, stop. If you’re new in sales, and all you’re tracking are the number of sales, you are tracking the wrong number, you’re never going to get where you want to go by tracking total number of sales. I know that sounds opposite of what you think. But that’s rule number one…the most important of sales tips.

Lane  05:18

So, Rob, I feel like I’m, with some prospects, I feel like I’m really trying to cover what their pain points are and solve their problems. But then I just don’t hear back from them. They don’t you know, they don’t email back. They don’t call back. I can’t get that second meeting.

Rob  05:34

Yeah. So I think one of the questions I would ask you this is this is an initial call or a call back after or a, you’ve had your meeting, and now you’re kind of trying to get back in connection with them.

Lane  05:43

It would be after the after the first meeting and trying to reestablish contact.

Rob  05:48

Gotcha. Let’s get into some of the sales tips… So in that first meeting, what’s probably happening then is, is you’re not getting into the pain part of getting them to explain information that’s affecting them. And so pains would be, you know, I’m not getting enough sales, or I’m not getting enough leads, or I’m not getting XYZ items, whatever they list out. And there’s, there’s dollar amount associated with that. And if you start tracking down the line and saying,

Alright, they said, they haven’t gotten enough leads, if they would have only been able to get 25 leads instead of the two that they got, how would that impact their business? Walk them down the math, if you do that. And it turns out that because of their sales, dollar average sale, and the extra sales, they would have made an extra $10,000 In the month, okay? Well, maybe $10,000 is okay, but maybe it’s not that much.

So you need to understand, is that good for the business or not? Is that what’s the normal sale per month, so you start to get a feel and some value to it. Once you start doing that, they start to understand that you get me you understand my business. And so I don’t know how you left it or how you leave it at the end of that meeting. If the next step isn’t planned, that could be another component.

So I know we’ve talked about it in a couple different episodes. Yeah, before now. So don’t let anybody listening who’s had that issue come up, go back to those episodes, where they’re like, hey, they don’t call me back, or I’m not sure what’s going on with that. That’s where I would get into something like that.

Lane  07:12

Great. How about tip number two of the sales tips?

Rob  07:14

All right. So of the beginner sales tips, this is number two, is stop applying pressure to yourself. And really, what I want you to do is I want you to think to yourself, when you’re in a sales call, when you’re in a sales meeting, or any of those situations where you’re working with the customer, or client who’s a potential customer or a client, what I want you to do is think of it as “Boy, I’d love to have the sale, but I don’t really need it.” And that sounds really weird.

But there’s something psychological, that if you need this sale, in order to make the next payment that you need to make in your business, or need to make payroll, they smell it, they can smell that on you like white on rice, they it is not something you want to walk into a meeting with, right?

You want to be able to walk into that meeting thinking, if I get the sale and great if I don’t, I don’t. In fact, here’s what I will tell you, when I shifted from just working through the process of sales, and trying to work them through it and shifted from that to a position of I’m not for everybody, it doesn’t always work out.

And in the end, I would really prefer for you to tell me, this is not a good fit. If it’s not a good fit. I would rather you tell me that. And are you can you can you commit, commit that to me? And if they do that, they feel a lot more at ease that if they don’t make it, they don’t make it as a sale, that’s totally fine with me, that’s totally fine with them. That’s the position you want to be in. It feels strange.

But literally in my mind, I walk out of those meetings and walk into those meetings with the mindset of man, I’d love to have the sale. But if I don’t have the sale, I get too many other things going on. It’s totally okay. And if you approach it that way they feel that way. They feel that confidence. And they will honestly what my biggest frustration I get into sometimes is I if I say something to somebody, like you know, I don’t think this is a good fit.

They want to buy it’s a really weird dynamic. I don’t know what it is. But every time I’ve tried to push away a potential client that is like, I don’t know, this is not very big of a… or too big of a project or it’s too big of a project. When I push it away, it comes right back and it comes back harder. And it’s a very weird dynamic and it goes to the pressure that you’re applying on yourself to try to close the deal. They can feel that that car dealership that I sat down with, I felt so bad, like, it was like I want it I almost asked the guy.

When was the last time you sold a car because I feel like you haven’t sold a car in like a month. Like, that’s what I feel like I wanted to say to him, and I didn’t because that’s what it felt like and they can they can feel it. That’s why That’s why That’s rule number two.

Lane  09:46

It sounds it sounds easier said than done to just not think about your quota. And your boss breathing down your neck. So I got to be a it’s a big challenge.

Rob  09:57

It is it is not an easy thing to just say out loud, and yet it’s true over time, you have to work at that. And if you have to write it down, write it down before you start your sale, before you start your meeting, before you start your call, write it down, put it right in front, yourself, I’d love to have it, but I don’t need it. And it’s amazing. You just have to picture your bank account, I have a million dollars in my bank account.

That’s what you have to think of like, I have a million bucks. And if your business is a $10 million business, I have $10 million in my bank, whatever it is, whatever your number is, that you think I’m good, I don’t need anything. That’s that’s where you need to come from. You need to come from that place, write it down, ingrain it in your brain as if it’s real. And guess what, when you start doing that, it becomes real. It’s the weirdest thing.

Lane  10:41

It sounds like one of those daily affirmations. You put a little stencil on your mirror. Yes, in the morning. And you’re always you always seem that I don’t need the sale. I don’t need this now.

Rob  10:50

I’m good enough. I’m smart enough. And gosh, darn it, people like me. Yes.

Lane  10:55

So, how about tip number three of these sales tips, Rob.

Rob  10:57

So of the beginner sales tips, here’s number three…this may seem obvious, if you’re new in sales, you may not think this is really obvious. And you may not understand what this means. But the basic way to put it is research your potential client. You may say, oh, yeah, no kidding. I’m supposed to look them up. I’ll learn a little I’ll look at them. Okay. So that’s all yes, do all of that. But what you need to understand is, is not only what their business is, who’s involved in the business, and what their what information is on their website, so that you can use that information and show that you understand who they are.

And by that, I mean, by showing that you know who they are, you’re not asking questions that they’re answering already on their website. So if on their website, like for example, I had to interview somebody not too long ago, and I and they asked me, Well, what is it you guys, you know, what kind of clients do you guys work with? Boy, if you had just looked at my website for like, five seconds, you would see what kind of clients that we work with?

That should have not been a question. And immediately my brain was like, boy, you didn’t do any research. And then as the interview went on, it was even more obvious that they didn’t do any research. And so those types of questions you should be prepared with ahead of time, so that you can get into more of the detail. That’s information that’s not on their website. That’s one piece. The second piece is is know their industry, what are the problems that are inherent in that industry, you can find that information out. If you go to I think it’s Hoover’s they have a section in there about business research, Hoovers.com…

And I think you can do it through the library and so forth. But there’s a way you can look up information about a company and the industry that they’re in. And here’s the top three problems that HR has; the top three problems that the CEO has; the top three problems that a finance area has… in that industry. Boy, wouldn’t that be a nice question to ask if it’s related to your industry, you should have those questions ready to go so that you can you can deal with that.

Ask those questions. Maybe it’s not affecting them, maybe it means you’re finding out pretty quickly in your conversation that there’s no need for them to even do business with you. There may be no no need. So you’ll find that out pretty quickly. And I would rather know that by the way earlier than I would later, right? So but know what their where their leaks are I call them leaks. But where are they losing money? Without knowing it without realizing it? Where are they not getting sales? Where are they? Where are they running into problems internally, externally?

Sometimes it even helps if you sat down and did a SWOT analysis real quick on that business itself on that company. Take 20 minutes before your call, you know the industry a little bit if you’ve already done some research, what is the SWOT analysis for that company? What visually Can you see from the outside, and then in your interview, in your questions and your call in your meetings, you should start to be able to fill out their SWOT their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats…and strengths and weaknesses are internal opportunities and threats are external.

And so when you start to do the research, and you start asking the questions, the strengths and weaknesses are the ones you’re going to ask them about, particularly in their business opportunities and threats, you can start asking questions related to that.

And the more you understand all that stuff before you go in there, the better your chance of getting a sale, or at least getting to the next meeting know the prospect know the potential client better almost than they know themselves. Without the personalities, they have personalities that are going to be different and above and beyond what the business does. But that’s really one of those steps that most people glaze over and they shouldn’t

Lane  14:23

Alright, Rob, so I’m peeking ahead on your list here. And I see number four is find your helper.

Rob  14:28


Lane  14:29

How are you supposed to find a helper and then the company? You’re, you’re trying to

Rob  14:32

Sales Tips … That… Yeah, so that kind of goes hand in hand with the research. So here’s one one way to do it. So what I had for find your helper is find somebody on the inside, who can help you navigate the company. It could be an individual that you’re already connected with on LinkedIn, believe it or not, it could be somebody that you know, who knows somebody in that company.

So if you have a second connection, somebody that you know that knows somebody in that company. And he reached out to your connection, somebody that you already know you already do business with, or somebody that you can talk to, that you’ve met, know who you are. And you have a conversation with them, say, Hey, do you know anybody or better yet, I went on LinkedIn. And I see you’re connected to Anita over at ABC Company. And she’s kind of in the right role in the right position. And I’d love to be able to have a couple minutes just to ask her a couple of questions.

Would you be willing to do a quick introduction with me just through the phone or just to an email introduction and see, see if we can have like 10 minutes over conversation, just some specific questions about the business, people will do it, they don’t have a problem with doing the introduction, people don’t have a problem with answering those questions, particularly when they’re not involved in the sale already. That’s one way.

The second way is, in your sales meetings in when you set up your next sales meeting, you need to ask the question before your first, second, third, fourth, however many every meeting, you should ask the question, is there anybody else who should be sitting at our next meeting, just to make sure that we’re all on the same page?

And sometimes what’ll happen is you’ll have somebody go, the person, the one person you’re talking to says, “Yeah, we should probably be bringing in Mary.” Okay. Why? Why should we bring in Mary? What is she? Well, she’s the finance person. Interesting. What does? What does she need to be? What are the some of the questions she might ask? What she’s gonna ask about, you know, how much is it? And how do we pay this off? And what’s the timelines and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, okay? That person you’re talking to has quickly become that inside person, that helper, who’s navigating you through?

Typically the person you’ve started the conversation with, if they push you up, or they push you sideways, or they push you to a different person, they’re gonna help you navigate. I’ve had it where people that I’ve initially had the conversation with, did the introduction, started the process and said, Well, okay, you really need to talk to the VP of this. I’ll be in the next meeting. Okay. Let’s talk about the next meeting. Who else is going to be there? Who else should be there? Can we talk about how to approach that person? What kind of person are they like?

And you start asking those questions, they’ll tell you, they will. They’ll tell you everything. They’ll tell you. They like to go to this particular restaurant down the street for lunch, they like to do this. Like they’ll tell you whatever you ask. So don’t be afraid to ask but find your helper. The inside helper is your Goldmine, they will navigate you through all the process.

Lane  17:17

That totally makes sense. And like, you know, I hadn’t really thought thought of checking LinkedIn to find, find the second and third connections, these are good sales tips for a beginner.

Rob  17:24

There’s always a way, always a way

Lane  17:27

Where there’s a will there’s a way

Rob  17:28

There is a will there’s a way. Yes.

Lane  17:30

So what about beginner sales tips number five, Rob?

Rob  17:32

So number five of these beginner sales tips is a little bit related to the researching the client and pressuring yourself a little bit. So here’s what I mean: what I want you to always walk away with once you get to a certain point, you’re going to know that they have pains. And you’re going to know whether or not your services your product is going to solve that pain or not.

But you need to before you ever get to a point of discussing numbers of your own numbers, how much is going to cost them price-wise, you should always understand what’s going to happen to that potential client, if they don’t get their pain solved, or if they don’t get what they want in the end.

So remember, also, anytime you’re talking about pain, we’re talking about pain that they’re having right now, or pain that they’re having in sometime in the future. So it could be pains up like we’re bleeding cash right now. Or if we don’t solve this problem, right now, we’re not gonna be able to produce, we’re not gonna be able to fill the orders, we might not…  whatever that might be, know what their pain is.

The other thing that could be solvable, which is a different setup, but also a form of pain, it’s kind of the reverse of pain is pleasure. It’s, it’s, it’s the desire to have something, right. So it could be the the pleasure of something now, meaning I want to have this this item now because it’s really something that I want to have. It’s a status thing. It’s a, it’s, it’s an extension of my business, it’s an extension of myself, whatever it is, sometimes it’s notoriety.

So if you’re, I’ve seen seen companies out there who sell like awards, and they sell awards, not like, hey, this is an award you can give this is a hey, we want to recognize you in this magazine. We’re gonna do a story, but you’re gonna pay for it. Basically. They’re out there all the time. Right? So that’s a pleasure in the now thing, right? There’s also pleasure in the future, which is you think about financial planners. That’s what they should be selling out, right? It’s not well, you don’t have enough money right now.

What financial planners have to really get you to understand is, is that if you don’t start saving now, those pennies and dollars that you have now will not add up to the millions and millions, whatever it is number that you want in the future. That’s the pleasure in the future that you’re looking for.

So know what that means to that person, to that client, to the business. If you don’t understand that you need to ask more questions about it. Make them live it and make them feel it to the point of you almost have to feel bad for them because they feel so down in the dirt. They have not been able to solve this problem. You don’t want to give them that far.

But you want to make sure that they understand their problem. And you’re working through that with them so that you can, once you understand those numbers, you’ll be in a much better position to be able to talk about real numbers or what your price of your product or services. Does that make sense?

Lane  20:16

Yeah, absolutely. You’re trying to figure out if they’re having trouble making meeting payroll next week, or if they next year, they won’t want to buy that speed.

Rob  20:24

Yes, if they’re having trouble making payroll this week, then you may need to figure out where the money’s coming from. That’s another reason you do it. Like if they can’t pay payroll, how are they gonna pay you?

Lane  20:35

That’s that’s a great point. Yeah. So what’s the next item of the sales tips Rob?

Rob  20:38

So the next item to me is never, ever never, ever close the sale. And I know you and I have talked about you know, I never really close a sale anymore. We kind of joke about that everyone’s fun. Like I never close anybody. It’s it’s true. Your goal as a new salesperson. It sounds weird. As a new salesperson, I remember thinking, well, you mean I’m not supposed to close? They always what’s about this phrase, what does it always be called ABC always be closing.

Yeah, coffee, coffee’s for closers, all of that. Right? Where does that fit into this? Well, it doesn’t. Honestly, if you’re closing a sale, if you’re forcing a close, you have a higher likelihood of having somebody have buyer’s remorse. They’re gonna think they got closed. They’re gonna feel like they got me. No, they didn’t. But if you’re not closing the sale, and you’re allowing them to buy during the moment where they say, well, so how do we get started?

When they start saying stuff like that? I mean, I always asked the question, What do you mean, what do we get started? And they’re like, Well, how do we? How do we start the service? How do we get going? You mean? You mean right now? And they’re like, Yeah, right. Now when? When do you that’s what we’ve been talking about. I want them to say that out loud. I want them to say something like, yeah, I want to start right now. Because what I’m asking what they’re doing that is asking for the sale, not me. And when they’re asking for the sale, that sale sticks, almost.

Lane  22:03

And they feel good about it.

Rob  22:04

Yeah, they feel good about it. They have made all their decisions in their head. And they’ve made decisions that says, I know, this is how much it is, I know, this is what’s going to solve, I know that I’m gonna be able to do this, I know that this could be a problem. But I’m ready to address that problem. When it happens. Like you’ve done all that work with them.

You’ve worked them through that they’re not, you’re not going to tell them all these things, you are asking all the questions that allow them to come to those conclusions by answering you and explaining to you how you’re doing all that and how they’re going to do all that you are making them ask you? Well, okay, how do we get started, I sat down one time in a meeting one time we got through all the pain, all this information, it was a one-time deal where it was like I sat down, go through all the information. And then here’s the price. And the guy says, okay, what do we do next?

I go, “Well, I don’t know, what do you want to do?” And he goes, “Well, I want to start,” I go, “Start what?” He goes, “Well, what we just talked about what to do this, this, this, and this?” I said, “Okay? But you don’t mean like, right now, when you want to start like, are you talking like next month or…” “No right now?”

So okay. He goes, “Well, how do we how do we start, like, how do I get it scheduled, so that we can start doing this?” Like, well, in the back of my head, I wanted to say, well, I have to write on an estimate. And I have to go through all this documentation, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And something in my brain said, this guy is so ready to go like he’s just it was such a nonevent for him. The price was offset by the pain, and the pain was going to be solved very quickly. And if he did, if he sold one or two items, he was going to make his money back.

And I realized it wasn’t really complicated to my end, wasn’t complicated on his end. So I said to him, I said, Well, there’s a couple different ways. I mean, I mean, are you are you thinking like check or what are you thinking? He’s like, Yeah, I can write a check. He goes, Can I do a credit card? Yeah.

He goes, Well, can you take American Express? I said, Yeah, he goes, Oh, okay. Well, how much is it? Like, we did the division, because it’s 50%, down and 50% upon delivery. And he’s like, Okay, here’s my card. Now, what the world just happened.

It was because I had let him go through all those steps. And then he started asking about how to do this and how to make this next step go forward without having to go through all the rigmarole of writing the estimate, the dollar amount was low enough, it was low enough risk…

I tried it, sometimes it doesn’t really matter, you have to have a written, in which case, I would say when it’s a larger next step would be for me to write down an estimate for you and make that really clear as to what you’re getting what we’re doing all those extra things, and then the dollar amount associated with it. But are you I mean, I can do that…

But I want to make sure you’re comfortable with all the things we just talked about from a deliverable standpoint, but also like, the numbers at the same time, is, yeah, usually when that all happens, they’re like, yeah, that’s all fine. You might ask the other question that follows up with that, which is, so oh, no, no, no, I’m not going to ask that one. I’m going to tell you that one last

V/O  25:04

Do you have a question about sales? Call or text your question at (608) 708-SLOW. That’s (608) 708-7569. Or you can email them to Questions@TheSlowPitch.com. Now, back to the show.

Lane  25:24

So Rob, we’ve got four sales tips left on your list. So, we’ve gotten one through six sales tips already. Obviously, if we have four left, that puts us where we are in the list. Are there any gotcha sales tips that we should watch out for?

Rob  25:35

Well, yeah, so the next item is, what I have is this prevent what I feel like is the the number one pitfall any new salesperson falls into it, because it’s so easy. It’s it’s this you’re ready, Lane, you ready? We’re gonna roleplay it out real quick. Okay, ring. I just called you on this. I’m the potential client. I’m calling you ready? Ring, ring.

Lane  25:59

Hello, this is Lane.

Rob  26:00

Hey, Lane, I’m looking for a new webhost service. Is that something you guys can do?  Yeah, absolutely.  Great. How much is it?  Well, that kind of depends on what your what your needs are, what you’re like, Alright, I have a, I have three websites.

And I have a database that need hosts with some information. Basically, what I’m looking to do is take my database of clients, and the information that’s associated with it, put on the back end of the website, but also have a front facing website so that people can understand what we’re doing. How much is out there like that run.

Lane  26:29

It still gets, it’s a little complicated to go through, we really need to sit down and talk about what the what the problems you’re having are, and in what your

Rob  26:37

Is there anybody else there they can talk to you that can give me that number.

Lane  26:42

I’m the guy.

Rob  26:44

Alright, so the point is, is the biggest pitfall you can fall into is to play the game that they like to play, which is I’m in control. Don’t give me any crap, I just want to know the numbers. And I want to get myself into a position where I can make a decision.

With or without you, I don’t care about your service. You personally, I don’t really care. That is not where you want to be in sales. That’s the number one pitfall is to be the victim of their game, if you are a victim of their game, and you find yourself there. And it’s so easy. I’ve been there, I can still get in that role every once in a while. And when I get to that role, even today, what I do is I stop and I, I basically say to the person, I’m so sorry, I just messed up. And they’re like, what?

Well, I, I messed up, I…Here I am trying to answer your questions. And I’ve just realized, I’m giving you bad information, because I’m assuming certain things and I don’t even know any information. You know, you’re telling me one thing, but I don’t even know if what I’m assuming what you’re saying is accurate? Can I ask you some clarifying questions? And all of a sudden, everything starts to pivot.

Because then they realize, oh, yeah, I’m just giving you some answers or giving you some information. And they may still try to pivot back into in control. But the key is, is at any point in time. When that happens, you just pivot it back again and say, Yeah, you know, we’re not there yet. Like, I wish I could get that far. It’s like we’re watching a movie. And you’re telling me the result of the movie, and I haven’t even watched the first 20 minutes. Like how, yeah, how why do you just tell me the end of the movie?

That’s kind of what I feel like, you know what I mean? So can we work through the plot and all the different things that go on in the movie, before we get to the last gotcha thing that all of a sudden shows up, like, oh, my goodness, they died. What so when you start doing stuff like that to them, they’re not expecting a conversation like that.

And but they also realize you’re going to need some information before you can give them all the information, right? My goal in this is to prevent the top pitfall for any new salesperson really is. Don’t give them the information that’s going to solve their problem, at any time in the process, at any time in the process, until you make the sale. So, I’ve seen people who do consulting work, or do PR work, or do advertising work, or do all kinds of different things.

Who will say well, why don’t you just do this? Or we could just put you on Instagram, and we can and then like, why are you telling them what to do? They can go figure that on themselves. They came to you because you’re the expert. Don’t tell them. You want my problem. You want me to solve your problem? Let’s talk if you don’t want me to solve the problem. How about you?

I don’t, I don’t need another client. It goes back to that other which is I have a million dollars in my pocket, I don’t need to solve your problem until you’re a client. That’s kind of the attitude, the mentality, right? Don’t try to don’t try to show off is really what it comes down to. If you’re trying to show off to a client how good you are by giving them advice and sales tips. You’re actually not doing yourself a service you think you are but that’s more about your own headspace than it is about what’s reality. I don’t know if that makes any sense or not.

Lane  29:50

Yeah, I think it does. I was when you’re talking there. I was thinking of someone in marketing, like digital marketing where hey, you know, I understand your problem is x. And, you know, this is what we can do to to solve that problem. But I guess, really what you’re saying is don’t tell them how you’re going to solve the problem. You need to convince them why you’re the best person to solve that problem.

Rob  30:12

No, I wouldn’t convince them at all.

Lane  30:14

No, that’s right. I’m using I’m using the wrong words, they they need to, okay.

Rob  30:19

They need to come to that their own conclusion. So by asking all the questions, and them having to answer it, they know you understand the business, because if they’ve talked to anybody else, if you’re going, you’re the social media out there, and they start asking questions of other people that are in social media, and then they get to you and you start asking all these questions, you should hear the question, or the statement back, you should hear this back.

Nobody else has asked me that question before. And when you hear that statement, come back to you of you know, nobody else has asked me that question. That’s when you know you’re doing it right. If you don’t get that question coming back, or that statement coming back, you might be missing some things, they need to come to their own conclusion. And sometimes, honestly, their own conclusion is I can do this myself.

Their own conclusion can be, you’re not the best fit for me. They’ll lose me. I’ll have somebody else do this. I can get a college kid to do this. Fine. Go ahead. Have a college kid do it. You get what you pay for. And they’ll come back. Yeah. And if they say that, they’re gonna have a go college, good deal, do it. Okay, great. No problem. I really hope you know, I wish you guys well, listen here. Here’s the thing. People have said that to me before and I’m totally comfortable with it.

I would rather you go try that, well, here’s what could happen. One of two things can happen. One is they knock it out of the park. And I hope they do. And I hope you hire them. And like, you just take them in, and you develop them.

But the other thing that can happen is they mess things up. And they don’t do things right, and they don’t get the results you want. And that’s okay to listen, they’re college kids, they they’re learning as they go, and that’s okay, let me know, if you ever need any more help, or you need any sales tips or advice, I might be able to help that person. And what you’ve just done is I I’m not I’m here to help you in Yeah, we’re not gonna spill any beans, they’re gonna tell you what to do.

When they call us and want your help, now you’re in a real conversation. Now there’s pain, I’ve spent money, I’ve hired this person, I don’t feel like I want to get rid of them. I need some help. And maybe, maybe there’s a way that you can use that person to get through all of the different things that you need to do for your service, but also add on some services of your own. So, there’s a whole bunch of different things you can do with that. But now you know they’re in pain.

And that when you use that conversation, to say, okay, what’s our next step after that, you might find yourself in the same boat where you go, alright, they’re not going to go anywhere, but you may find out that they could use your extra hands.

Lane  32:31

Okay, still difficult mentally to wrap my head around how not to get that information. But I guess that’s, I know, we’ve talked about that before. But I that’s still one of those things that I in my head, I’m like, how do you how do you not do that, but…

Rob  32:44

That is your own head getting your own way. We should talk about that sometime in the future. Here’s what I mean. By that, though, basically, what it comes down to is, is there is some sort of a need that you’re trying to solve your own. And that’s why there’s a need to do it.

Lane  32:59

Okay. Well, we’ll talk about talking about that another day. Sounds good. So, sales tips number eight, where we where we’re headed here, all right, where we

Rob  33:07

So tip number eight is stay equal. So, I always think of the Dos Equis commercial, where they like, you know say, Stay thirsty my friends, same idea, stay equal, my friends. So, here’s what I would think is you always want to be an equal of the person you’re speaking to on the other end of the phone. So that conversation we had or we just did a little fun little run through with, they’re kind of trying to be in charge, they’re the ones driving things, they’re the ones that are going to be telling you what to do.

That’s, it’s gonna go into the next point here, too. But that’s not where you want to be, where you want to be, you don’t want to be a subordinate. And you don’t want to be a vendor, you are a partner, a coach, a consultant, you’re somebody that’s of equal stature, if you will, right.

That’s what you really are after, you want them to understand that you’re a professional, they’re a professional, and you guys are on the same plane. The fact that they want to do business with you should be enough for them to be able to stay on the same playing field and you have to force that sometimes where you have to position yourself and not accept anything less than that make them act as if you guys are equals so that you stay equal later on too

Lane  34:22

Okay, that I think that makes sense.

Rob  34:24

Well, then that kind of goes to the to the next item too, which to me is number nine is start right stay right in he guesses as to what that means without reading it.

Lane  34:37

Start right stay right, based on what we’ve kind of talked about, I would say start the process the the right way and don’t let your process get derailed. Stay on the right call, right.

Rob  34:48

Yes. Yeah, very close. Have you ever heard of the phrase? Once a cheater always a cheater? Yes, absolutely. There’s an inherent nature with some people to behave a certain way and I don’t mean the cheating piece that can be some other, really, other things that are happening there.

But if you start off the conversation, it kind of goes back to the last point, which is, if you start off the conversation in your meetings where you are on a level playing field with them, and you’re equal, if you will, then you should be able to stay in an equal stature, if you will. And what you don’t want to do is be a vendor what you want to be as a partner.

And so that’s the word I was just thinking of. Yeah, yeah, partner advisor, any of those types of those, those that terminology is where you want to stay. And so if you started out that way, that’s the way it should start. Right? If you started out, right, you should stay right.

The inverse of this is true. If you start wrong, it stays wrong. There have been times where I’ve taken on a client, and they act like in the sales process, they act like they want to treat you that way. But every so often, there’s like this little nuance thing. You’re like, huh, that didn’t sound right. You didn’t think of me as an equal there.

And when that happens, a little bell goes off in my head. At this time, I thought it was dinner, so I ignored it. So here’s what happened. These little bells kept going off every so often. Well, we ended up getting hired for it. We start the process, we get going, we went into the first meeting, the first meeting was like disaster, the guy was all over the place. He was unorganized. He was a little unorganized in the sales process. But more importantly, when we got to that meeting, he was unorganized.

He wanted to tell us what to do. He insisted that nobody understood what he was looking for. Even though we’d already gone through all what he wanted to do. Before we all had that on paper. We all knew what it was. He was all over the place. And honestly, at that point, I was like, wow, this is starting off this way after he hired us. It was a little bit that way when we were in the sales process. But it’s getting worse now that we’re in person in the sale or in the in the process here of actually working together.

Now what do we do? And we ended up terminating, sorry, we made him a potential client, again, that we made. We made a potential customer. And we said, be on your merry way. And we gave him his money back. Because you know what? There’s no sense in arguing.

We spent a lot. Yes, we lost time. Did it spend too. It was too much that we couldn’t recover. No. Was it? We had output in dollars. No, it was just time. And we were like, okay, this is one we markup is an experience that this didn’t start out right in the sale. It was subtle. But it was subtle enough that was like that ping something.

But when the first meeting happened, it was so outrageous. We’re like, nope, that’s not we’re not we’re not doing this, because we’re not equals, and that’s not acceptable. And it shouldn’t be acceptable for anybody else as well.

Lane  37:35

So, before the break, you were you’re about to trip into one of the other items on your list. And you said we will we’ll get to that at the very end. So, I think we’ve reached the end of our list. This is sales tips number 10. So drumroll, please.

Rob  37:52

Here we go. drumroll, please. The last item that I almost spilled the beans on. So we were talking about never closing the sale. And you know, making them ask for the sale. And all the things we were talking about. And then all of a sudden, we talked about payroll I think we talked about right when there was a piece of the payroll piece.

Lane  38:11

But they weren’t. Yeah, if they can’t pay their payroll, how are they going to pay you?

Rob  38:16

How are they going to pay you, which then led to my next thought, which is actually the last one on my list, which is follow the money. So as a newbie, if you get the sale, and you are all excited, because they’re getting ready to sign that that estimate for you. And or the proposal, whatever you want to call it, they’re getting ready to sign it. And just as they sign it, now they want to talk about terms.

In terms, depending on your business, your style, your process, can kill you. So never talk about terms after you’re agreed, always talk about terms early. So, when I say follow the money, here’s what I would say, know where the money is going to be coming from, you kind of have to think about it as if you’re a reporter, you have to ask all these questions. So, who’s going to be involved with making sure that we have the deposit?

Or who’s going to make sure that the monthly payments are going to be who’s going to be my point of contact? Is that that that this person is that? If you don’t know the answer already, if they haven’t already told you, I’m saying these things, you should know the answer to these questions. You don’t have to ask him if they tell you this in your process. But who is what what’s the process? What’s the what are the terms?

What are the… what are the anything has to do with a what’s then when well, when? When is it? If I submit an invoice, when is it going to get come back and be paid? Is it 30 days? 60 days? Is it 10 days? What is it? Yep. Where is it coming from? Is it coming from the marketing budget? Or is it coming from the HR budget? Or is it coming from the sales?

Where is this coming from? What part of the budget? Is it coming from? And how how do you guys’ plan to make the payments? Is this a direct deposit? Is this an E check? Is this a visa? Those are the questions you should really start to get to know before

For you close the sale, follow the money all the way to the end. So you know where things are coming from and how they’re going to get there. Make them explain who needs to approve, what needs to happen, when or how fast is going to happen, where it’s going to come from, in all of those questions, really, you need to have answers to, before you sign the agreement. If you don’t have those answers, hold off before you let them sign.

Because you got to know this before you accept the sale. If you’re not comfortable with any of the payments, or any of the terms, then you need to be able to free yourself up and just say, I’m not comfortable with that. How do we fix that? If you have somebody that says our terms are 90 days, but you’re going to be out cash in 30 days, every time they do the work? In other words, your expenses, we have no, now you’re going to be inverted.

So that’s not going to work? How are you going to do that? You can’t. So the realistic question needs to be, guys, you have a 90 day, but as you can see that there’s some things that we do in the meantime, and there are some hard, hard numbers that come involved early on. I don’t know how I’m going to how I’m going to be able to accept the terms of that. What other options do we have? How do we do this? Like I want to work with you guys.

But how do we do this? Make it their problem? Not yours? And yeah, well, yeah. And what will happen is their goal, what if we just did a larger deposit? So, we have a six month agreement, the total is $100,000. But we weren’t going to pay you the first, you know, sixth, or whatever that number is for 90 days, well, okay.

But instead of doing now we’re gonna What if they said, Alright, let’s just do a 40% deposit to start. And then we’ll pay the rest out every over the course of 90 days, you start invoicing, as soon as we get it, the last invoice is payable. With 90 days after the end of the six months, that may be acceptable, because now you can count accordingly. Right?

The numbers don’t work out. Yeah, the numbers won’t work, you have to figure that out. And make sure that all the way that you do it works for you works for them. Neither side should be unhappy, I know compromises where both sides are unhappy. But that shouldn’t be the case of this. Both of you should be happy with what we’re doing, what we’re going for, how the terms are going to be what the numbers are going to be. So always follow the money by asking all the reporter questions. Does that make sense?

Lane  42:09

Completely. At the end of the day, you don’t want to sign an order or accept an order if you don’t know how you’re going to get paid. And that really needs to be part of those terms, really need to be part of that order that estimate, the contract, whatever you want to call it. You’ve got to have those answers before you can really complete that document.

Rob  42:26

Yeah, and I’m always a little surprised when people don’t have that information. It’s a little bit to me, how did you not ask the question? And there’s another head issue going on with that, by the way, if somebody doesn’t want to ask that question about money, there’s a problem in the salesperson, you the beginner out there. If you have a hard time asking questions about money, don’t get into sales too fast, what you need to do is work on that piece first.

Because if you’re not able to ask money questions and get into the dollar part, you’re never going to be able to really feel comfortable charging enough working on terms dealing with oh, you know, the numbers don’t quite work here. How do we work through this? Those are hard questions, I get it. But by asking those questions, you’re going to get resolution rather than, well, we’re just gonna take it, and we got the sale.

But yeah, numbers aren’t gonna you know, the timing isn’t working, we’re gonna be underwater, we need to find another client just to make sure that we can pay all the bills. That’s not good. You can’t work that way. Don’t accept that.

Lane  43:22

Yeah, I’ve seen instances where you mentioned a 90 day and the instance I’m thinking of was a 90 day, and we ended up raising the margin before we gave the price to the client so that we knew we could handle that 90 day. Yeah. So you know, yeah, they don’t know I’m charging them more. But in order to hit their accounting rules for 90 days, that’s the only way it was gonna.

Rob  43:43

Yeah, that’s the other way to do it. I mean, sometimes that conversation comes up in the middle of, okay, we’re getting ready to sign here. Well, if you haven’t talked about numbers, it’s too late, then, you know, you need to deal with that before they sign right. Yeah, all of these things.

To me, every single one of these, these, these top, I feel like our sales tips, issues, things that could go wrong for a new salesperson, to me, or are somewhat basic. But I also feel like they make you a better salesperson. If you nail or get all these down and understand all these and think about these things before you get too far into a sale.

Because if you can do that, you’ll end up with, in my opinion, you’ll end up with a bigger check at the end, you’ll make more money, you’ll be happier, you’ll understand where things are, what’s going on, and why they’re going the way they are. And things will be just easier for you.

So, if you’re new to sales, and you need some help go through this list, we’ll put it up on the on the website, TheSlowPitch.com Just so you can look at it. I’ll put these little bullet points up there so you can understand what they are a little bit. But really what I want you to do is think about which one or two or maybe top three that you need to work on and start to work on figuring out how to make those things not an issue for you anymore.

And if you find that one or two of these items are an issue for you and you don’t find another episode that’s about this. I want you to email us, I want you to email say, Hey, I have a problem with whichever one it is and can you guys talk about that? Happy to do it?

Lane  45:14

Alright, Rob, well, I think from, from what we’ve talked about, for at least for me, the best sales tips that I that I’m going to walk away with is find your helper because, you know, I never really thought of looking at LinkedIn to go try to find those, you know, who might know who inside I’ve used LinkedIn as a as a research tool. But we had to try to find that helper through LinkedIn. I think that’s a that’s a great one.

Rob  45:34

It’s gotten me through a few things. So, I can imagine it’ll be helpful for others as well, because I nothing better than somebody that’s on the inside can tell you. Oh, by the way, here’s how you need to do this. Or don’t worry. It’s just same way as you have a prospect or potential client who has worked with another company before. At that other company says to you, I wouldn’t do business with them. They never pay their bills on time.

That’s valuable information. And same ideas this right, this person is going to make things happen. This person’s they’re never going to get anything done for you. Okay, now I know, right? Yep. super valuable. Yeah. All right. Well, with that, let’s, let’s call it a show. And if you found this helpful, please follow us and subscribe and all that good stuff. But until next time, we’ll see you later late.

Lane  46:19

See you later, Rob.

V/O  46:23

Thank you for listening to The Slow Pitch. Do you have a question about sales? Call or text your question at (608) 708-SLOW, that’s 608-788-7569 or you can email them to Questions@TheSLowPitch.com. Slow down and close more.

Rob  47:13

Thanks, as always, for listening today. If you like this podcast, please subscribe and leave us a review. We really appreciate it. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at The Slow Pitch. We were mixed today as always by Johnny Polakis. And we were produced by High Gravity Studios, music credits and other notes are in the show notes section on TheSlowPitch.com And we’ll be back with another episode soon.

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