14 Jan Let’s Talk About… Sales Calls
If even the mention of the term “sales call” gives you heartburn, you’re not alone. Especially if you had some hard-driving manager who monitored your phone time or gave you a call sheet every day to robo-dial people. 🙄
✔️ If you’re shaming people, you’re doing it wrong.
✔️ If most of the calls you’re getting on are with the wrong types of prospects, there are 3 key things you need to check.
✔️ Being the Rolls Royce of your industry is cool. But getting on the phone with people who are looking to buy a bicycle is a waste of everyone’s time.
✔️ When is “I can’t afford it” a candid statement versus a blow-off excuse? And how do you handle it either way?
Need more? Email me: https://causeyconsultingllc.com/contact-causey/
Transcription by Otter.ai:
Hello, hello and welcome to today’s episode of the Causey Consulting Podcast. I’m your host, Sara Causey and I’m also the owner of Causey Consulting, which you can find online anytime at CauseyConsultingLLC.com. Today I want to talk about sales calls. And if the very idea of that gives you some heartburn, I totally understand, and you’re definitely not alone. I read an email recently that really inspired me to record this episode. I’m on Alyssa Dillon’s email list, I just want to be really transparent here, I have not ever taken any of her courses, bought any products from her, I’m just on our email list. So I can’t give an endorsement or a non-endorsement either one. I want to read this passage to you because I think it’s important. And this is from an email that Alyssa sent out on January 5th, and it’s titled, I can’t afford it. Here’s the passage. So you get to the part of your call where you’re explaining your offer, you have confidence around exactly what you were selling. And the price point, they asked how much? Because they know it sounds like a luxury service or program? And can they really afford this? You tell them with confidence. I want to do this, but I can’t afford it. This is the part of the call where a sales tactic would tell you to do some sort of guilting you were telling me you can’t afford it. But can you afford not to make this investment in yourself, and Can’t you take a loan or get a credit card or ask someone for money. And in the rest of the email, she talks about not shaming people, for not being able to afford your program, your service, your product, etc. And I will reiterate the same thing. If you are getting on a sales call with a potential client, and you feel the need to shame them for legit not being able to afford your product or service, you’re doing sales wrong. And if you needed someone to tell you that out loud, I’m really not even sure what else to say you’re doing sales wrong. Now you may have noticed and hopefully you did that I preface that statement by saying legit can’t afford it. You may recall that I’ve talked before about a personal trainer that I’d worked with who was getting a lot of the I can’t afford it objections to his program. He’d get on phone calls, or Skype or whatever with potential clients and they give them the same old schtick. Oh, my health is the most important thing I need to get in shape. And you know, like a lot of them had had some kind of scary medical diagnosis, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and had been told by a medical professional that they needed to exercise more, lose some weight and get into better physical shape. So they were seeking my client out for his services. But then it was like some part of them expected that working with him was going to be like the same price point is one of the big box gyms like $10 down and $10 a month. And when he told them, no, this is a completely different situation. I’m going to be really invested in one on one with you. We’re going to come up with personal nutrition, there’s going to be health coaching, there’s going to be personalized workouts and accountability. And the price point is really different than $10 down $10 a month. It was always Oh yeah, I can’t afford that. You know, I’ll just I’ll find a plan online, I’ll do something that’s free or low cost. I can make it work, but thanks anyway. And then he would see on Facebook that some of those same people that had griped about his price, were buying 4k TVs and iPads and new cars and going on vacations. And it’s like, well, it’s not a matter if you really couldn’t afford a personal training package. It wasn’t a priority. Or maybe you didn’t see the value that he was bringing. But to say that you you Oh, I couldn’t afford it. It’s just financially I can’t do it. And that was BS. And I want you to really have your antenna up for that. Because Oh no, I can’t afford it. I can’t do it. That’s like going into a store and the salesperson asks, Is there anything I can help you find today? Well, the automatic response especially for someone like me who’s an introvert is Nope, just browsing or Nope, I already know what I need nowhere to find it. You just want them out of your physical space. You don’t want to be hassled. And you can have that same automatic response on sales calls of Oh yeah, this is more than I thought it was gonna be so I can’t afford it. But then if the person is on Facebook, buying brand new TVs and getting new cars like obviously you could it just wasn’t a priority. So in that situation, what do you do? shaming them is not the answer either way, whether they are being really honest with you and vulnerable and saying I would love to do this But financially, I seriously cannot. Or they’re just giving you a flimsy excuse because they don’t feel like spending the money on that. They’d rather spend the money on the TV or the new car or whatever, then to give it to you. And it’s a free country, it’s their prerogative to do with their money exactly what they want. There’s no law that says that, if they get on a sales call with you that you have to close them, or that they have to turn over their money to you, they get to do whatever they want. So do you, you need to think about the level of motivation that that person has the level of commitment that that person has, depending on what type of product or service that you’re selling, how intimate the relationship between you and this client might become, are you going to be working in tandem with them one on one, are you going to be asking them to put a lot of hard work and investment into themselves? If so, they’re showing you where they’re at emotionally, or potentially just what their character is built out of, when you’re on that sales call? Are they going to be the type of person that decides to cut and run, when it gets tough? Are they going to become a thorn in your side, they’re not going to do their homework and are going to take things seriously, they’re gonna get halfway through the program and turn into a gripe or an excuse maker, say, I don’t want to do this anymore. Just give me a prorated refund and eff off. Like, you don’t need that energy in your life. Not all money out, there is good money. I’ve said it before. And y’all know, on money motivated. Not all money is good money. And you don’t want to get into this mentality of close the deal by any means necessary. Not everybody that comes into your space is really going to be a good solid, pre qualified, ready to roll prospect. And that’s okay. I don’t know, unfortunately, of any way to eliminate the occasional blip on the radar. And the occasional person that slides into your DMs or books a slot on your calendar, they get on a sales call with you. And you realize that this is not a match at all at all at all. Occasionally, that’s going to happen. But if you find that you’re getting on sales calls, and it seems to be a repetitive, consistent problem, that most of these people are not a good fit they it just did didn’t make sense from from the jump, why they were even booking time with you. You need to look at your marketing, your branding, and your messaging. Again, it’s not about shaming that person. How dare you waste your time, my time and yours? What, what what led you here? Why would you book this time? If you knew you couldn’t afford it? Why are we doing this, you don’t want to fly off the handle and shame that person. You need to be introspective and figure out what have I done wrong, where has my messaging, not hit the mark with the right people, but somehow hit the mark with the wrong audience of people. Let’s say that you are the Rolls Royce of your industry. You have a premium product or service and you charge a premium price for it and rightfully so, if you find that the people booking sales calls and taking up time with you are people in the market for a bicycle. That should be a red flag to you that something has gone awry with your marketing, your branding your messaging. And it doesn’t make sense for you to spend all of that time trying to prequalify and vet out people that are looking to buy a bicycle, when you’re selling a luxury automobile. You’re not shaming them and saying, Well why in the hell Can’t you afford to buy a luxury car today? Why are you selling yourself short by looking for a bicycle, you need to figure out what’s going on, you are attracting bicycle shoppers, when you have a luxury car to sell. There is a word of caution that I want to interject at this point. There are highly extroverted and social people who just like getting on the phone. they genuinely like talking to people. They like meeting new folks they like pitching their product or service to any human being on the planet that will listen. Whether it’s an actual pre qualified, sensible prospect or it’s not. And people who are of that, you know, really social talkative flavor may try to convince you that it’s in your best interest to talk to anyone who will get on the phone with you. I remember when I was still in the staffing world, and I weathered several economic downturns in that industry. And there were times you know, when the economy would falter and you would be told any prospect is a good prospect. Any client is an A+ client. Any search is a good search. Don’t turn any business down any hiring manager that’s willing to get on the phone with you Listen to your spiel is worth your time. And I always would just sit there and cringe. I mean, I’m so glad that I like broke out of that and when in my own direction because it’s it’s super cringe to me, super cringe… just because somebody is willing to get on the phone with you and shoot the breeze for 20 minutes in some type of intro call doesn’t mean that the phone call should even be taking place. It doesn’t mean that they’re a good prospect. And yes, the more extroverted people will make the argument, well, it’s always good practice. You never know you could be planting a seed for the future, that person might come back and be a loyal customer in five years, or they might mention to their brother in law that you were really nice to them on the phone and the brother in law might become a customer because of that. Yeah, about that gang. I’m gonna put on my Greg Behrendt hat here. Yeah, maybe you remember his book, he’s just not that into you. You, you have to remember, while you may be an exceptional person, and you may have an exceptional service, or an exceptional product that really is a better mousetrap You’re not the exception to every rule in life. Yes, okay, maybe. So maybe that somebody that potentially wasted your time for 20 minutes on the phone will recommend you to an in-law or a buddy that becomes a client. Or maybe they’ll come back to you in five years and pay you some money then. You cannot run a business based on that! It’s a high degree of hopes and dreams and hot air. It’s like the old rhyme if ‘ifs and buts’ were candy and nuts, we’d all have a wonderful Christmas. If you’re trying to build a business and have good stable cash flow based on maybe some guy will come back in five years, or maybe he’ll tell his buddies about me, you’re screwed. It’s not about shaming them or being rude. You don’t want to get to the end of a sales call and be like, Wow, dude, you really wasted 20 minutes of my life that I’ll never get back. And I’m not going to have any money to show for this, I really appreciate you. You don’t want to do that. That’s bad energy. And it’s certainly not professional. The point that I’m making is, you don’t want to waste your time, and your mental and physical stamina on a wheel, some perpetual motion machine of sales calls that go nowhere, or just booking sales calls to talk to random people. It’s okay to have a social life. You know, call your friends get on a zoom call with Grandma, I mean, do something to exercise that kind of extroverted, highly sociable, talkative muscle if you have it. But when you’re in your business, you need to be focused on profits, you need to be focused on how you’re going to make money. You don’t need to be focused on well, who am I going to talk to today just so I won’t feel lonely. There are other ways to ease isolation and loneliness and make new friends. Your business is not, pardon me, but I’m being real here, the appropriate vehicle for that. So if you had some, you know, highly extroverted sales coach at some time, and I literally just rolled my eyes back into my head, like Tony Stark in The Avengers, when I said that some highly extroverted sales coach, you know, or some highly extroverted sales manager that track your metrics by your phone time. Well, you only had 30 minutes of phone time this morning. Was your phone broken? No, but I just brought in, you know, 20 grand in profits this morning. So what did you do? You know how many times I’ve felt like saying that. Anyway, your focus is supposed to be on having a profitable business. It’s not supposed to be on how many people can I make random chitchat with today? And I feel like one of the other things that’s not talked about enough, is the psychological component. You know, just a second ago, I mentioned mental and physical stamina. There is a psychological component to being on this wheel of never ending sales calls, especially if you’re not having a high success rate. It takes something out of you to have to like okay, I’ve got to be on again, not yet. It’s different for introverts and extroverts. extroverts have that longer social battery life, typically they don’t have to sort of juice themselves up as much. But again, it’s like you’re just getting pummeled and pummeled and pummeled and you’re not closing deals, and you’re talking to these people and why isn’t working, it wears you down. It really does. And then you find that you have less to give to your family, your spouse, your children, your friends, your church, whatever. It starts to steal a part of your soul. Like, I’m a big believer that we need some wins in life. It’s good for the soul. It’s good for you psychologically. If you’re just putting up Ls all the time and you feel like you’re never getting ahead, you’re never getting anything closed, there’s no money coming into the business, you’re just losing and losing and losing, it wears you down, it does something to your mental health, it’s not good in my opinion. So you want to be conscientious that you’re not wasting your time on nonsense activities, nonsense phone calls that aren’t going to go anywhere. And you want to do the best that you can to try to filter out people that are just kicking tires that they don’t know what they want, or they really truly are not financially qualified, to be able to use your product or your service. To go back to the analogy, if you’re talking to people that are in the market for bicycles, when you’re selling a luxury automobile that’s $100K+ is going to be a waste of time for everybody involved. And it’s also going to wear your stamina down, it’s not going to make you feel very good, you’re going to get frustrated, and you’re not going to have enough of yourself, to give to the people in your life that are close to you. So to crystallize it down. If you find that you are getting on too many sales calls with the wrong types of people, individuals that are just not good prospects for your business, the very first thing I would recommend is to look at your marketing, your branding and your messaging. What’s going on that your marketing is a beacon for the wrong people instead of for the right people. The second thing I would recommend that you do is take a look at your mindset. Now I know there are plenty of people out there that poopoo the law of attraction, they don’t think it’s a real thing. What we focus on expands and what we expect to have happen so often is a self fulfilling prophecy. So if you’re getting on calls and in the back of your mind, you’re psyching yourself out going, I suck, I’m not good at these calls, I’m probably going to screw this whole thing up and it’s not going to go anywhere. That often becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. You’re not going to really be there in that space, putting your best foot forward and sounding confident and self assured and really in love with what you do. If you’ve got all that negative self talk going on in the back of your mind. So the way that you show up to the space with your mindset and your mentality really does matter. If you enjoyed today’s episode, please share it. If you haven’t already, take a quick second to subscribe to this podcast and leave a review for us on iTunes. Bye for now.