They say sales is a numbers game.
Make enough dials, hear enough “No’s” and eventually…you’ll make a sale.
Well, yes, but that old school approach to selling is like a hunter going out in the woods and shooting randomly into the trees, hoping he’ll hit a deer.
Can this work? Maybe.
Is it effective? Hardly.
How to be successful in sales
So you want to be highly successful in sales?
Or perhaps you might aspire to be one of the highest earning salespeople in your industry?
Do you want to build yourself a career that will provide the uncapped income and financial freedom to support your family?
Have you hit a slump recently and missed your monthly quota for sales?
If any of these apply to you, then keep reading. I wrote this article just for you.
I am about to reveal to you the secrets I learned about sales success from studying the lessons taught to me by many of the world’s best salespeople.
These are strategies that I’ve implemented into my own sales career that are proven to help you succeed, not just in sales, but in every area of your life.
These valuable lessons have worked for me and countless other salespeople to support our families and keep us employed in this rewarding profession called sales.
But first, I want to reveal to you a cold, hard truth about working in sales that even many of us in the selling trade are afraid to admit.
The truth about working in sales
Let’s face the facts.
Making 100 cold calls a day and squeaking out a sale every blue moon is not a good long-term, sustainable solution for a highly successful and financially rewarding career in sales.
The truth is, to be successful in sales, then you’re going to need to know when to ask for help.
And that’s why I’m here.
I want to share with you my knowledge to help you increase your sales and achieve success.
But how do I know these things will work and help you become one of the highest earning salespeople in your industry?
Simple: I tried them myself and I’ve seen them work, both for myself and others.
If you follow what I am about to reveal to you and apply them daily in your sales career, then I have no doubt that you will become one of the highest earning salespeople in your industry.
I believe in you. I think you have the goods to bring it and not let me down.
But the only question is: do you believe in yourself?
If you believe you can do it, then may I present to you the:
Secrets of the Highest Earning Salespeople:
5 Essential Tactics for Successful Selling
5. Act “as if”
Who would you rather do business with?
Somebody who was relaxed, happy, helpful, pleasant, and cheerful?
Or somebody stressed out, nervous, miserable, grouchy, and angry at the world?
It’s a no-brainer. You’d probably want to associate yourself with the nicer person, right?
The same applies to sales interactions.
As a sales professional, you must project to your prospects and clients an attitude of confidence, friendliness, professionalism, and courtesy at all times.
And what’s the best and easiest way to do this?
You act “as if”.
Act “as if” you’ve already won the sale.
And not just any sale. We’re talking a million dollar sale with a stratospheric commission check made out to you.
By acting as if you’ve already made your quota and are operating on house money, then an amazing trickle-down effect will happen.
All the negative energy and stress of worrying about making a sale will be transformed into the positive energy of “acting as if”.
Almost instantaneously, you will see dramatic changes in all of your day-to-day interactions.
You’ll be happier.
You’ll be so much more effective in building rapport, offering value at each step of the sales process, and of course, closing the sale.
The stress and anxiety that can arise from working in sales will no longer be the insurmountable obstacles blocking your path to success.
That’s because, if you act as if you’ve already made the sale…then you WILL make the sale.
Don’t believe me?
Then go ahead and continue to be stressed out and anxious on all of your calls.
I guarantee your prospects will smell your fear through the phone and automatically dismiss you as “just another desperate, pushy, and annoying sales rep trying to sell me something”.
Change your mindset by taking all the pressure off, and you will INSTANTLY be calmer, more relaxed, and energized–all traits of a successful and professional salesperson that prospects want to do business with.
4. Love thy product
When you stand behind your product 100% and believe in the benefits it provides for your clients, then you will want all of your prospects to use it, too.
Imagine jumping out of bed each and every morning, super excited to get to work and make calls. Picture yourself eagerly anticipating your next meeting. Visualize yourself showing off all your wares and helping your prospects solve a problem with your solution.
This will become your reality. But only if you truly love the product you sell.
I love my product, and this is why
It should come as no surprise that I love the product I sell. Why?
It’s simple. I love our product because I use it for my own sales. And I know firsthand how beneficial it can be for other salespeople.
Since this is my attitude, then it’s only natural that I want others to use our product so it can help them, too.
And because my love for our product is so strong, then this enthusiasm, passion, and relentless drive to tell as many people about Seamless Contacts and help as many B2B salespeople and companies as I can is my new mission in life.
Love is the fuel for your sales fire
If you love the product you sell, then it will feed your fire to go out every day, pound the phones, knock on doors, and book those meetings.
Being passionate about what you sell energizes you to achieve all the little things that add up to the big successes, such as:
- Making that extra call to a prospect at the end of a long day.
- Sending that followup email to the prospect you’ve been trying to reach for months.
- Checking in with current clients to see how they are liking the service and if there’s anything extra you can do for them.
If you have that love for your product and your clients, then you will do the things that successful, highest earning salespeople do day in and day out to stay on top of their game.
What if you don’t truly love the product you’re selling?
Ask yourself why you don’t truly love and believe in your product.
Be honest, since this will help you to address the issues holding you back from being a great salesperson.
Here are the three important questions you must address if you don’t truly love your product:
- Is your product inferior to your competitors in terms of value and quality?
- Can there be improvements made to your product in terms of service?
- Are prospects flocking to your competitor because of definite reasons that you can justify?
Once you establish the answer to these questions, it will be essential to address them with your manager or colleagues. Afterall, they want you to succeed since sales is pivotal to the health of any company.
Begin by asking them how they feel about the product and if they truly love it.
And if you can’t find a consensus or the answers you need…then perhaps it really is time to move on.
But before you do that, try to find the answers to why you don’t love your product, and what can be done to change your opinion.
The answer may be hiding in plain sight.
3. Stop selling. Start helping.
Fact: nobody in the history of the world truly loves to be “sold” anything.
We’ve all had experiences where we forked over our hard-earned money for something that did not lead to a return of equal or greater value.
In other words, we’ve all been ripped off. And we don’t want it to happen again.
That’s why, when you are in sales, you need to quit this mindset that you are “selling”.
That’s because you aren’t selling. You are helping.
Helping people solve problems and removing the obstacles blocking their path to success in exchange for a fair amount of compensation.
For example, a car salesman is not selling a car. He is helping a family safely and economically get to work, school, or Grandma’s.
A suit salesman is not selling a suit. He is helping to create a certain look and positive impression for the wearer so they can receive a certain reaction.
When I sell Seamless Contacts, I am not selling software. I am helping salespeople to spend more time selling and less time Googling for contact information for their next cold call, or trying to gather every piece of data they need to have a relevant conversation with prospects.
You must take this same attitude with you to your job in sales.
You are not selling anything to anybody. You are simply helping them achieve a goal.
And since everybody wants to achieve a goal, and are willing to accept help to do it, then you will be useful and valuable to their process.
Your only challenge is to have them understand your role and value in helping them achieve their goal.
As one of the greatest sales experts of all time, Zig Ziglar, often liked to say:
“You can have everything you want in life, if you just help enough other people get what they want.”
This is the true essence of sales.
Stop selling. And start helping.
2. Be relentless in following up
Occasionally, I’ll receive a cold call or an email from a fellow salesperson offering a product that might be useful for my business.
At times, I’m actually willing to listen to these pitches. I enjoy learning from other salespeople and I am always on the lookout for something useful to help me solve a problem.
However, more times than not, after the initial call, the seller fails to follow up.
They never call back and see if I’m ready to buy. And sure enough, I’ll forget about the product and move on with my status quo.
Had the seller followed up to see if I was interested, then I possibly would’ve purchased their product.
This is why following up with your prospects is so important to making sales.
Very few, if any, prospects will buy or even respond to your offer on the first contact.
In fact, according to FollowupSuccess.com:
- 2% of sales are made on the first contact
- 3% of sales are made on the second contact
- 5% of sales are made on the third contact
- 10% of sales are made on the fourth contact
- 80% of sales are made on the fifth to twelfth contact
But even more surprising is the number of sales professionals who actually do follow up:
- 48% of sales people never follow up with a prospect
- 25% of sales people make a second contact and stop
- 12% of sales people make more than three contacts
If these shocking numbers are correct, then a majority of salespeople are leaving huge piles of money on the table for someone else to grab.
All because they failed at the easiest thing in sales to do: follow up!
But if you never follow up and never try to open the lines of communication with your prospect, then they will eventually forget about you, not buy, or worse yet…buy from someone else who DID follow up.
The essential keys to good follow up
Keep detailed notes in your CRM after every conversation and interaction with a prospect, things like:
- What did you discuss?
- What is the next course of action?
- What needs to happen and by when?
After every communication, make sure there’s a well-defined and agreed-upon course of action that must happen next in the sales process.
And the more you are in control of this and dictate the situation, the more likely you can steer the process into a favorable result for both of you.
Remember, when you make a sale, you help your customer to acquire a solution which helps them solve a problem. It’s a win-win situation!
But when no sale is made, your prospect will not benefit from your solution and you will not benefit from your commission. It’s a lose-lose.
Avoid these lose-lose situations by relentlessly following up and doing everything you can to get your product in your customer’s hands.
1. Commit to being in the top 10%
By committing to being in the top 10% of salespeople in an organization, you are making a commitment to being truly great.
Not less than average.
And by making this commitment to being in the top 10% (even if you’re not quite up there…yet), then you will do all the things it takes to reach the top, (and stay there).
Committing to being in the top 10% of salespeople means being a “student” of sales.
It means being an adult and taking responsibility for your livelihood and the benefit of your family.
It means learning everything you can about sales to not only keep your skills sharp, but keep you motivated to being your very best each and every day.
Being a student of sales means doing things like:
- Listening to motivational recordings and sales training seminars
- Reading sales books
- Subscribing to sales blogs and email newsletters
- Attending sales training events
Here are a few of the sales books, blogs, and other sales educational resources I use to educate myself on how to sell and maintain my skills so I can continue to perform at my peak:
Sales books every sales professional must read:
Sales blogs that will help you close more sales:
Sales training seminars that are worthwhile to attend annually:
Why aspire to be in the top 10%?
By committing yourself to being in the top 10% of salespeople at your company, you take the necessary steps to being great at what you do. As you read more books, attend more seminars, and gain more useful knowledge, you will not only feel better about yourself, but will naturally become more positive and excited about your future.
And since you feel good doing all these things, then you will naturally want to keep doing them.
You will continue to seek out these positive changes, which will continue to drive you to the top 10% of all sales professionals in your company, industry, and the world.
But it all begins right now, with your commitment to being in the top 10% of salespeople in your organization.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
Are you ready to take it?
I am convinced that anyone in the world can become one of the highest earning salespeople in their industry.
They just have to be willing to learn.
But you can’t learn anything if you don’t first have the correct attitude.
And these 5 secrets of the highest earning salespeople will create the right attitude for you to achieve success.
As a salesperson, you are in control of your own destiny (more so than any other job on the planet). That’s because only you can dictate your path to financial freedom and how much you will earn.
By using these 5 keys to sales success, you will overcome all doubt and remove the obstacles in your path to becoming one of the highest earning salespeople in your industry.
What are you doing to stay on your path to success in sales?
How do you achieve your goals?
What are some of the challenges you face in selling?
Leave a comment below and let’s keep the discussion going!
James K. Kim
James "Jim" Kim is a commercial real estate agent with Cushman & Wakefield / Pyramid Brokerage Company in the Capital Region of New York, specializing in retail, office, and industrial tenant and landlord representation.