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[EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a replay of the Optimal Sales Mindset Webinar sponsored by the Institute for Excellence in Sales on April 16, 2021. It featured author of Win-Win Selling Doug Brown.]
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DOUG’S TIP FOR EMERGING SALES LEADERS: “People ask me this all the time, how often should I follow up? The answer is until they tell you to stop. As long as you’re following up with relevant, interesting things for them, they’re not going to view that as a day that oh, my gosh, this person is harassing me or something like that. So if, for example, we were talking about a couple of things. Hey, Fred, I was thinking about you today. I was thinking about that comment you said about Vern, and I just saw this quote that Vern put out. I thought you might like it. That’s something relevant that you and I could share.”
THE PODCAST BEGINS HERE
Fred Diamond: Doug, we already have a comment here from a mutual friend of ours, Jane Lehman, who says it’s great to be here. She’s thrilled to have this opportunity.
We’re very excited today. It’s Thursday, so of course it’s our Optimal Sales Mindset Webinar. Doug, prior to the pandemic, we were doing one show a year typically on a Friday in October on mindset. Since the pandemic kicked in, we’ve been doing a show a week on Optimal Sales Mindset.
We’re thrilled to have you here. Of course, you’re the author of Win‑Win Selling. You’re an expert on so many things as it relates to sales. Of course, objection handling.
We also were introduced to you by our good friend, the great Andy Miller, who has been a frequent guest on the Sales Game Changers Podcast, and also has been a speaker at the Institute for Excellence in Sales.
Doug, extreme value. One of the key words and key phrases that has been coming up almost every single day is the notion of extreme value. We’re going to be talking about it with you today. It’s good to see you. Thanks for being here. How are you doing?
Doug Brown: I’m doing great. Thank you, Fred, for having me here. I’m really excited to speak with you, and get some questions from your audience. Maybe help to move the needle.
Fred Diamond: I’m sure you will. So again, sales has always been about value creation. At its core, that’s what you need to be doing for customers all the time.
Since we’re doing the webcast and the podcast every single day, the notion of extreme value has come up because customers don’t have time for you right now and I think moving forward in a lot of ways, if you’re not bringing them, at a minimum, extreme value.
Doug Brown: I would agree with that. The reality is the internet has changed the game. I remember 20 years ago, I was telling people, “Listen, the internet is going to change sales.” They said, “You’re crazy.”
If you think about it 30, 40 years ago before internet was really mainstream, the selling party, let’s say we had an auto dealership, for example. They had all the information, and we wouldn’t know really that much about the vehicle we were going to look at.
Now with a couple clicks of a mouse, we can know more than they know. We know what they paid for it, we know what the features are, and all of that. So it’s changed the information exchange, and it’s really shifted the power to the actual buyer versus the seller, because now there’s nothing that the buyer really can’t figure out prior to getting there.
Fred Diamond: Exactly. We talk about this all the time every day, is how do you become so valuable to the customer that they need you?
One of the interesting things, Doug, that we’ve seen too is that is because of obviously things related to what you just said about the fact that the customer, of course, is in control. Also, all the results of the pandemic and customers being able to get information from multiple sources.
The sales professionals have had to increase their ability to understand the customers’ industries. One of our guests a number of months ago on the Optimal Sales Mindset, the great David Morelli told us that basically, everybody in the world is dealing with the same three challenges. Getting past the pandemic-ish side of what we’ve been going through, getting past the financial side of COVID. Then the third thing, whatever the third thing might be.
That comes up time and time again. Third thing could be specific to your industry or your company, or something that you’re dealing with personally, if you will. That being said, the time that customers are willing to spend with you, it’s shortened, it’s decreased. It has to be helping them immeasurably solve problems that they could use your help in solving.
Doug Brown: Yeah, and that really goes back to value and extreme value. If we think about what the perception of value really is to the buyer, the buyer has something in their mind. They always have a professional objective, and they always have a personal objective. Where a lot of people miss in the building of value or extreme value is they miss the personal side.
So they’re working on a corporate agenda. That will work to a certain degree, but you’re right, people will spend less time with people today. The reason behind that is they don’t need to spend the time with people, because they already have the information. A lot of times they can buy without us if they want to, depending on what we’re selling, how complex it is.
People, their perception of value is what they deem it to be. So there’s a difference between buying confidence and fear, really when it comes down to it, or discomfort. The more we can push the buying confidence up with the buyer through creating value creation of what they perceive as this is value, this is service, this means this to me. Then what we do is we push that buying confidence higher.
That’s when they buy quicker, easier and refer a heck of a lot more. It’s expansion of the sale and everything else that happens.
Fred Diamond: All right, I know you have some slides you want to show us, you want to take us through.
Doug Brown: Yeah, what I thought was a lot of people are not understanding how to create value in a conversation. So I thought I would share with the audience today, how do you do that?
I’m going to share my screen here, put it up over here. There’s four quadrants of building value out in communication. The first is what we call active constructive. That’s where you’re going to give specific positive feedback, and I’ll show you how this works just in a moment.
Then from that, you’re going to go to passive constructive. Now, passive constructive means you’re still going to stay in the constructive comments, you give no specific feedback, but you do give a positive compliment or comment to someone.
The third quadrant is passive destructive, and I’ll explain a little more how this plays out just in a moment. That’s where you give zero specific feedback, and you focus the conversation off topic. I’ll give you some examples in just one moment.
Then you have active destructive. Active destructive is you give specific, but it’s negative feedback. As you might imagine, you’re going to want to stay on this side of the quadrant [constructive side].
Let’s take a real live example. Let’s say somebody received a promotion at a company, and it’d be like Joe got promoted. Now Joe is talking to someone else. That person knows Joe got promoted, so how do they do active constructive feedback?
It would be like, “Hey, Joe, good job. You deserve this, because you are always on time. You show up early, you show up late. You’re always leading the team. Good for you. This is well deserved.” That would be active constructive feedback, where you’re giving specific positive feedback.
Let’s go to the passive side where you’re giving no specific feedback, but you’re giving a positive comment to them. Again, Joe gets promoted and they say, “Hey, Joe, congratulations. Nice work. I’m happy for you.”
Now let’s go to the passive destructive. This is where you don’t give specific feedback, and you focus the conversation off topic. So Joe goes, “Hey, I just got promoted.” And the person responds, “Well, Joe, let me tell you about what’s going on with me today.”
They take you completely off topic. Some of you probably, as you’re listening to this, can think about conversations that you have where people have said that type of thing. Now let’s go to the active destructive.
Now the active destructive again, is you give specific negative feedback. Hey, Joe just got promoted. Hey, Joe, you got lucky this time. Didn’t you? You were probably chosen because we needed a specific age bracket, or like me, you have no hair. We needed people without hair, gender or race.
Here’s the thing. If you want to build value for your clients, you want to stay on the left side of this quadrant and at all times stay out of the active or passive destructive. Now, what’s the ratio? People ask me this all the time. You can’t just give active constructive comments, because it’ll sound like you’re making it up and you sound like you’re pandering to them.
You want to alternate. You can give a couple of active feedback, and then go to a passive constructive feedback. Stay in the active twice, go to the passive once.
Fred, I’m going to stop showing the screen for a second here, come back, see if there’s any questions on and around that. If not, I’ll continue on.
Fred Diamond: One of the questions, Doug, that we get a lot especially during the last 9 to 12 months is how often should I be communicating to my customers?
It’s an interesting point, if you think back to the active constructive. Everyone is at home, the customers are still at home for the most part, so everybody is accessible. There’s only so many things you could be saying. So what are some of your thoughts?
I understand the balance between the two on the left side of the equation there, but what are some of your thoughts on frequency of communication as it relates to the left side of the equation?
Doug Brown: The frequency of communication, I have always subscribed to the theory that you can never over-communicate. People ask me this all the time, how often should I follow up? Until they tell you to stop.
As long as you’re following up with relevant, interesting things for them, they’re not going to view that as a day that oh, my gosh, this person is harassing me or something like that. So if, for example, we were talking about a couple of things. Hey, Fred, I was thinking about you today. I was thinking about that comment you said about Vern, and I just saw this quote that Vern put out. I thought you might like it.
That’s something relevant that you and I could share. I don’t think you would send me back an email or a voicemail saying, “Don’t contact me anymore, Doug. I don’t want to hear about this.”
I live in a cold climate, you live in a better climate. If I saw the weather one day being really nice and sunny and all that good stuff, I might reach out and go, “Hey, Fred. I noticed in your area today the sun is out. It’s 22 degrees here. I hope you’re warm. I hope everything is going well. Just thinking of you.” Something like that, right?
A lot of times people think with the active constructive, which I’m giving in these, that the active constructive has to be on the corporate agenda. “Hey, Fred, I was thinking about what I can do for your company. I want to tell you how great my company is. I want to tell you what we’re going to do for you, et cetera.”
If we send that type of active constructive out, then what will happen is people will perceive this as we’re just trying to sell something to them at any cost. That’s the relevancy.
Fred Diamond: We got a comment here from Jesse. Jesse is based in the D.C. area. He said, “I want to make sure that I seem as authentic as possible when I’m providing the active constructive comments.”
That’s actually an interesting point, too. One thing that a lot of professionals and even those who are relatively senior, you’re looking for reasons to talk. One thing that we’ve been talking about, Doug Brown, over the last eight to nine months is searching for something to say for a reason to connect.
Do you connect on, like you just mentioned before, on something totally nonrelated to the business agenda? Again, like right now I see your huge whiteboard, and I see the art in the back. People see a drum in the back and a bunch of books.
The ability just to make a comment, is that an opening to further the relationship? Talk for a second about authenticity in the context of constructive and active constructive.
Doug Brown: Authenticity is the only way to play. If you’re going to go win-win selling, which is why I titled the book Win-Win Selling, it’s about they win, you win.
If we’re not being honest, let’s say if we’re not being truthful, not subjective, but objectively authentic, then we’re not playing win-win. Anyone can find anything of interest that somebody can bond on.
For example, if you don’t know something about your potential buyer, for example, there’s all kinds of references out there. Go to Facebook, go to LinkedIn, go to Google, look up their affiliations. Like you have drums in the back. You have bongos, and I don’t know if that’s called the timbale or what it’s called.
Fred Diamond: It is. Very good. Yeah.
Doug Brown: So I have a music background. I went to Berklee College of Music in Boston. That would be a good bonding point to say, “Hey, Fred, are you still playing the bongos and the timbales actively? I was thinking about you the other day, because there was a percussion email that came through from Berklee College of Music and it just made me think of you.”
That is being authentic as long as that was truthful. So it doesn’t have to be just about the business. 100% you don’t want to just about the personal either. So there’s a balance between the two. You could tie in timbales and bongos into the offer, if you really wanted to get creative.
The challenge with most people when it comes to follow up, Fred, is they’re not taking enough time to actually make it personalized and relevant. Therefore, that’s when people think that they’re being intrusive.
Fred Diamond: We got a comment here from Marsha. Marsha says, “This is great. I’m learning a lot here about how to effectively speak to my prospect.” So we want to hear more.
Doug Brown: Sure. This also works if you have children, or significant others, or parents, or whatever. The more you can stay in that active constructive feedback loop, in the passive and active constructive, the more your conversations will be elevated.
I’ll share my screen right now, Fred. Let’s see how we can escalate value through using this type of active constructive, passive constructive. So let me go here, and I will change the slide. Fred, can you see my slide change?
Fred Diamond: I can. You must be able to demonstrate and increase a buyer’s value perception.
Doug Brown: Yes, and this is the key. You can have active communication, you can have passive communication. Again, stay out of the destructive communication side. You want to stay on the constructive side.
The way people think about value is, I have this in four quadrants. There’s the professional side, and then they have tangible and intangible goals on the professional side. Then we have the personal side, and they also have tangible and intangible goals on the personal side of life.
What’s the difference? Well, the professional side is what we would call the logic side. This is on both sides of this fence. This is where the justification is going to be intellectual or rational.
They’re observable things in the business. So when you’re talking about the business, you’re talking about the professional side of the business. This is important to talk about, because this is where they look for things like clear return on their investment. It’s a justification of the actual decision.
How do they do that? Well, if you can demonstrate, for example, they could get higher sales, higher profit, reduced cost, reduced attrition, greater market share, higher retention. Then those are all a clear attributable ROI to the actual buyer.
Those are tangible. These are things that are quantifiable, that can be measured and observed in the business. Environmental also can be measured in the business, but differently. You’re not going to get a clearer ROI out of those.
These could be things like this is better for the people, or the people we serve. There’s some value to it, but it’s not a clear ROI to it. It happens over time, like what’s a better quality of life worth, or greater safety and more innovation, or better aesthetics in the business?
Now it’s really important to keep in mind, you’ve got to toggle between the two of these on the professional and the personal side. Let’s go to the personal side, and let’s go to the tangible. These are emotional moves.
In other words, they’re propellant. These emotions are what make people act. This you’ve always probably heard, people buy emotionally first and then they justify it with logic. What we want to do is we want to have these emotional propellants moving forward so that people are clear about, all right, I’ve got that clear logic side, but let’s move the emotional side too.
These are observable to the person. Think of it as if they see it in the environment, but personally observable to me means personally observable to the person you’re speaking with. So behavior change, for example.
If you can create some tangible behavioral change that gets someone to say, “Hey, this is personally observable. I can see how this works.” For example, I can get higher influence in my job,. I can have greater speed to what I do, which is now going to give me more free time. I can do this with less labor on my side, so I’m less stressed out. I have less hours so I can spend more quality time with my family. These are tangible behavioral changes that are propelling somebody to take action.
Now if we go to the intangible, this is where you get immediate and personal gratification. What does that mean? By the way, you want to look at, if you would, on the personal side it serves a human need. In the case I put up here on the right, it will serve significance.
Make somebody feel like “I’m important.” All human needs. Maybe people have different needs, so certainty, love. There’s all kinds of different needs, but the reality is this one here when they’re intangible, that will give them some immediate and personal gratification like greater repute.
In other words, I am so well revered around my company or my office or my industry right now. But you can’t quantify that as a clear ROI, it would be quantified as a gratification. This is making me a better coach, or this is making me more empathetic. Again, these are all observable to the individual.
The benefits of the personal side are they’re going to feel happier, more secure. They’re going to feel good about the credit they’re receiving from others. The accolades that are coming in. You must toggle in between both of these.
But if you’re going to fair on one side or the other, you want to stay on the professional and personal side on the tangible side of the fence. The reason behind this is they always are going to look at a clear ROI, and they’re always going to look at the behavior change or what leads to that personal professional benefit.
In some cases, that might be like I keep my job, I get a raise. I get all of these things that are tangible to them. On the professional side, hey, I got higher sales so I’m getting more profit, or I’m getting more revenue coming out of the company.
You want to stay on the absolutely mandatory side, and use active constructive and passive constructive communication. The intangibles, you can still sprinkle them in and I would recommend that you do so, but those are added value.
When you’re thinking about your conversations, if you construct them in the tangible side and then sprinkle in the added value side and the intangible, as well as using the active constructive or passive constructive model, then what ends up happening is you will be able to demonstrate and increase the value perception of your product, your service offering, and you as the person that they want to do business with.
Fred Diamond: This slide basically summarizes almost every webinar that we’ve done since the beginning of the pandemic. For that matter, all of the live programs that we had done at the Institute for Excellence in Sales.
Basically, what we’re talking about here is what you need to be talking about to customers, and essentially when, to increase their value perception. We talk about this all the time. There are so many things that you just mentioned on this one particular slide.
I’m getting some feedback here from some of our attendees. Stephanie just said, “This summarized everything that we’ve been listening to for the last year.” Thank you, Stephanie.
Basically, how are you making yourself critical to customers so that they view you as a critical partner? One thing we talk a lot about is subject matter expertise. Basically, showing your customer the specific ROI.
The other thing too, Doug, I want to talk about for a little bit, one of the other keywords that comes up a lot during the Sales Game Changers webinars and podcasts is the concept of preparation. The concept of really spending and developing the time to answer these questions for a specific customer that you’re talking to. How will the investment in your technology or services lead to more profits, reduce costs?
Reduce cost may not be the most critical thing right now, but how is it going to help your customer get beyond the three things we talked about before? The issues related to the COVID. Secondly, the financial challenges. Third, whatever that might be.
Doug, talk a little bit about the preparation necessary to really be astute to answer these questions for this specific customer.
Doug Brown: That depends on the complexity of what you’re selling and who you’re selling to. However, it doesn’t take long to prepare. If you’re making calls and you’re trying to sell something of value and increase value, which some people would consider even, I don’t really like this word, but high-ticket sales.
Something of complexity or of substantial investment should be taking and preparing three to one. The preparation is everything. Imagine us going in, Fred. I love hockey, so I’m going to watch the Boston Bruins game tonight. Sorry, for those of you who don’t like the Bruins.
If you think about it, they’re on the ice for 60 minutes. But how many hours did they train before, and how many videos did they watch on the competition? On what the goalie does, does the goalie shift right when you go to the left, or does the goalie stay straight?
All of that is preparation, getting in on the clear ROI side. Then also, okay, what’s the background of the goalie? What kind of family does he have? What kind of thought processes does this person have, he or she?
When we’re looking at a CEO, a CEO is going to think differently and act differently than, say, somebody who’s in procurement, where procurement is just about getting the orders through and they’re rewarded on that.
If the CEO did that at an elevated or the lowest cost that procurement can get it for, that’s how they’ll be rewarded. If the CEO would think, “Okay, I could get this at the lowest cost. However, these things here justify a higher value to me than just getting the lower price.”
If we don’t prepare prior to understand what that person is thinking or wanting, or desiring, or fears, or is frustrated with, then we’re not going to know how to create questions that will convey that active constructive, passive constructive in the clear ROI and behavioral change, tangible professional, and personal quadrant.
Fred Diamond: We have another question here that comes in from Andrea. Andrea has a great question. Andrea is not too far from you. She’s up in Connecticut.
She says, “Should I know how to answer these questions, or do I need to ask the customer?” That’s an interesting question, and I’ll tell you why. One thing that we’ve been talking a lot about with our guests over the last couple of months is the concept that we as sales professionals should understand the challenges that our customers are going through.
One of the interesting things, Doug, is prior to the pandemic you had to almost be a sleuth. You had to get to champion, all those things that we know about to understand really what’s going on inside, what might be coming down the pike, who are the decision makers.
Now if we’re astute and we’re students of the process, we should have a pretty good idea what everyone is dealing with. So what are your opinions on that? Should we be asking the customers to understand this? It’s not really like an attitudinal type thing. Like, oh I know better than you, but it’s more along the lines of should I be knowledgeable about what my customer is going through without having to waste their time and ask them?
Doug Brown: Well, the answer is both. The positioning that we want is we want to be positioned as the expert. You don’t want to be differentiated today, you want to be different. So we want to be an expert, and perceived as an expert.
The way to get perceived as an expert, in addition to what we’re talking about is asking quality questions that make the eyebrows go up. Make people go, “I want to know a little bit more about that or a lot more about that” versus, “So what?”
So when we’re telling somebody about that, if we’re saying something and they’re not actively engaged – remember active communication – if they’re not engaged and we’re just giving them the answer, the eyebrows may not go up.
However, if you ask an expertly designed question that induces a little bit of maybe even pain into the process or even pleasure, the eyebrows typically will go up. So the old adage, if we say something, they think maybe it could be true. If they say something, the same answer, they think it’s definitely true.
I would err far more on the asking side and have the knowledge that when they come back and ask you a question, then on the knowing side you could either ask another question and get the answer, or you can give them a direct answer. That will perceive, Andrea, you as the expert in that situation.
Fred Diamond: That’s a great answer. Andrea says thank you so much, and she says she’s a Rangers fan, by the way.
Doug Brown: All right, we’re going at it now [laughs].
Fred Diamond: Nonetheless, the Bruins have had a couple good years. Doug, in the remaining minutes, I know you have a couple other salient points that you want to bring up here. The key thing here is, the thing that you just said a second ago, we talk all the time that customers appreciate more of what they say versus what they’re told. I believe it’s called system one or system two, I forget.
That’s a brilliant point there is we’re going on the presumption that we should be telling them here’s what you need. The reality is if they tell us something different, we can push back, but you want to service the customer from where they are.
Doug Brown: Yeah, without question. Get them to come to the understanding of this is what they must have, because as a buyer is going along – Andrea, I was just kidding about the Rangers. As we’re going along, in their head they’re weighing fear-buying confidence, fear-buying confidence.
So if they don’t know the answer to something and you don’t ask the question to elicit the answer, then fear will go up. If you just give them knowledge but they don’t understand it, but they’re not going to ask the question, fear will go up.
So our job is really to be the investigator. Our job is to really spend as much time as we absolutely need in the discovery side of the conversation. The more we do that, the bigger the rapport that we’ll be pulling towards someone. As long as we’re using the right communication and asking the right questions.
Fred Diamond: Absolutely. There’s a couple other things you want to get to before we wrap up here, so let’s get to them.
Doug Brown: Let me go on to the next. The third thing that people absolutely have to have in this game of adding and demonstrating value is what we call save yourself some time, energy, and more by creating a follow-up system that will increase your sales performance, profitability and your positioning.
So what do I mean by that? You want to be diagnostic in everything, so we’re going to try that here. On a scale of zero to 10, everybody think about right now how would you rate your current follow up system? I’ll show you why this is important in a minute.
Zero, it’s not really that good. 10, I am outstanding. I’m in contact with them at least 10 times a year. Whatever it might be, because sales don’t always happen on the first or second try. So how would you rate how systematized it is?
I ask that question because some people have good follow up ideas, but they don’t have a system on and around it. As you’ll see, when you increase your follow up, you stay in touch, you are getting compounded interest in wealth over time in the form of the relationship capital that you’re looking to build out.
Follow up will increase your sales, hands down. It is a common courtesy. If we have conversations without follow up, some people take it offensively. They’re expecting you to follow up. It shows that you care. It differentiates you. It shows you’re trustworthy.
It makes you different than your competitors, because quite frankly, most of them are not going to follow up. It keeps your relationship strong.
I was on a call just the other day, Fred, and a consultant came on the call and she said, “I just lost a sale because I didn’t follow up with my client, and they bought from a competitor.”
Crazy part was it was $350,000 that that sale was, and this company tends to stay in a multiyear contract with their consultants. So you want to keep and have top of mind awareness, because we all get busy.
What’s top of mind awareness? That is when they’re thinking of a problem or something or whatever, they’re thinking of you, not all the other people that may be trying to prospect them. You do this through creating follow-up.
Why is this so important? Well, you can see a screen here right now. It’s 74 kilometers per hour. Let’s say 60 is the speed limit. You’re driving down in your car, you having a good time and all of a sudden you go down the street and then you see this. What do you do?
Fred Diamond: Hit the brakes.
Doug Brown: Of course, you tap the brakes. Pain, I do not want a ticket. Now here’s the crazy thing about humans. Once we pass this car, how long do you think on average it takes the average human to speed back up to exactly the same they were going before?
I’ll give you the answer. 60 seconds. It takes under 60 seconds for them to forget about the police officer might come after them and give them a ticket. So why do we, and as a selling party think, “Oh yeah, you know what? I did great demonstration. I presented all my value. We had a great conversation so I don’t have to follow up.” Because in 60 seconds, they’re on to the next agenda.
It is our job to keep the relationship strong. If you think about what you do for a personal relationship with somebody else, you show them they’re important. You show them they’re special. You’ll send them cards, you’ll call them on the phone all the time.
But when it comes to business, here’s the sad statistics. Many of you might have heard this. 50% of people selling never follow up once. So all you have to do is be better than your competitors. Only 13% of the people ever follow up more than four times.
When you look statistically, especially on a lead that we would consider cold, it takes between the fifth and 12th contact 80% of the time in order to close that business. 2% on the first, 3%, 5%, 10%, 80%. So is follow up really important? Yeah, it matters. It’s extremely important.
What we want to do is we want to not have something make or break our sale. Creating and demonstrating extreme value in the form of the three things that we just talked about will absolutely help make your sale. You’ll want to demonstrate your positioning by creating and demonstrating the extreme value.
You want to go from a buyer’s positioning of when they’re thinking, “Well, what can you do for me, kid?” To the buyers positioning on, “How can I work with you?” That’s what we want to get in their heads. That’s why we want the eyebrow raises. That’s why we want to use the active communication. That’s why we want to push them up the value ladder.
Fred Diamond: Doug Brown, thank you so much. We have a couple of comments coming in here. Jane, one of your former students, has given us a couple of comments. She goes, “Thank you so much for all this information.”
Andrea, the Rangers fan says, “Thank you, Doug. Lol.” Let’s see. So Martin who logs in pretty frequently says, “This has been great.”
Doug, I want to thank you so much. You’ve given us such great value here. Again, extreme value, man. There are so many things, so many words that we’ve heard and so many themes over the daily Sales Game Changers webinars that we do at the Institute for Excellence in Sales.
We talked about preparation. We didn’t really talk too much about empathy, but that’s always been a big one. Extreme value, man, that’s one that’s continued to raise and raise, and rise and rise. You’ve given us so many great ways to think about it.
I want to acknowledge you for the tens of thousands of sales professionals that you have impacted with your teaching, and your consulting, and your training, and your book over the years. So congratulations to you for all the extreme value that you’re bringing to sales professionals around the globe.
Doug, if you can give us one final action step. You’ve given us so many great ideas. Just give us one final action step people watching today’s webinar, or listening to the podcast must to do to take their sales career to the next level.
Doug Brown: That’s a good question. As you were asking, I’m thinking, “What is the number one thing that people have to do now in 2021?”
Fred Diamond: Right now.
Doug Brown: Right now. Massive prospecting. Massive prospecting. Not little bits of prospecting, massive prospecting. Here’s the reason why, because of what’s happened over the last say year. Whether it’s the pandemic or economic shifts, or change of command in the presidential election, or whatever.
The interest rates going up, going down, you’re staying there. All of these things have created a huge amount of uncertainty. I always recommend this to my clients, Fred. It’s when your competition is pulling back, and that’s what people do in downtimes, in times where they go, “Oh, I’m a little uncertain.”
They get afraid and they pull back. What do they pull back on? Marketing and sales. That’s what they pull back on initially, which is crazy because you’re cutting the front end of the whole process off. However, if you look at this as okay, my competitors are pulling back and you go forward and put the pedal to the floor, you’re just out there putting your name out there. You’re promoting, you’re out in the public square. You’re saying everything you can, and getting in touch with as many people as you can.
Maybe they’re not ready to buy right now, but guess who they’re going to call if you stay follow up top of mind aware when the economic situation changes, when things the pandemic starts easing?
They’re going to be buying again during that time. So you’ll pick up sales now, and you’ll pick up the sales later and you’ll preempt your competitors from ever getting that sale.
Fred Diamond: One more time, Doug Brown, thank you so much for being on today’s Sales Game Changers Podcast.
Doug Brown: Fred, thank you for having me. It’s been a lot of fun. I really appreciate it.
Fred Diamond: You’re welcome.
Transcribed by Mariana Badillo