I have read countless books, guides, articles, blog posts, etc. on increasing sales, sales strategies, closing techniques, and everything else to do with trading your product or service with someone else for money. Here’s the thing about most of these books and online content, their main goal is to attract readers. Readers to buy books and click on banner ads. What better way to attract readers than to offer them what they want to read? Think about what title is going to attract more readers; “You Can Sell More and Never Have to Do Things You Don’t Like”, or “If You Want To Sell More You Have To Do More Of The Stuff You Hate”. The book or article about getting what you want without much effort can be full of bullshit, and probably is, but it’s going to attract the readers. There’s no money in telling people what they don’t want to hear. There’s one sure way to improve sales, but it’s not just a clever pitch or simple trick.
Do you want to sell more? Talk to more people. There you go, I could just end this post here but I’ll elaborate. Are there sales techniques that can help you close a higher percentage of sales? Absolutely. Most of it boils down to being a genuine person and actually giving a shit about your customer and what they want or need, but you’re going to close more sales by talking to more people than you will by just improving your closing rate by 20%. While this may not be the easiest way to increase sales, it is the simplest and most effective.
I’ve had the opportunity to get to know some hugely successful salespeople. Salespeople that are the top in their company and industry. There is one common difference between each one of them and their colleagues and competition. The ones that sell the most are the ones that pitch the most. Most of these people don’t have the highest closing ratio, they just talk to that many more people.
One of my earliest sales jobs was for a roofing, siding and windows company. I wasn’t even an actual salesperson, I was just one of the guys knocking on doors to set appointments for the real salespeople. Most of us on the canvassing crew would walk by most houses so we could focus on the houses that had an obvious need for a new roof or Windows. We would then come in hot with all of the hard close lines in the book, “should I schedule you for this time, or this time?”, “what time will you and your spouse both be home on Tuesday?” One canvasser, however, knocked on every single door we walked past and just simply told them who he was and asked if they wanted to talk to somebody about a new roof, windows or siding. We all scoffed at his complete lack of skill and for wasting so much time knocking on every door. Now, one canvasser on our crew set three times as many appointments and earned way more than anyone else on the crew. Can you guess who it was? No, not me. That guy that didn’t know how to sell and wasted time knocking on every door. That guy was the top earner.
Obviously, you have to be talking to people that could benefit from your product or service. While that top canvasser was knocking on every door he walked by, he was only walking by houses, not apartments or mobile homes. Be honest with yourself, you can get your hands on a large list of people or businesses that could buy your product or service. It might not be scrubbed clean and narrowed down to “hot prospects”, but if you spend your time talking to everyone on that list instead of worrying about who the very best leads on that list are, I’m willing to bet you’ll sell more.
I know, calling more people isn’t the rule you were hoping for. It is, however, the one that will make you a lot more money. A piece of advice I give myself every day is this; If you want to be in the top 1%, you have to do what the other 99% won’t.