by Jacques Werth
In my first sales job, I visited over 100 potential customers a week. Every time I walked into a company and asked to see the person who could make a decision to buy the kind of product I was selling, I did so with trepidation. Each time, it became harder and more nerve wracking.
When I occasionally got to talk to decision makers, I was uncomfortable just trying to build a little rapport with them. After 4 months, I had sold nothing, I was thoroughly discouraged, and I was ready to quit.
Then I got lucky. The top salesperson in the huge company that employed me agreed to let me go on sales calls with him. I learned a new way of selling by carefully observing how he worked. I also learned that his truly relaxed way of communicating set him apart from other salespeople.
He did not do any of the typical rapport building techniques that salespeople are taught. He knew how to control the conversation confidently without controlling the prospect. After watching him for a couple of days, I learned how to do that by practicing his way of communicating with everyone I met.
Five years later, I was a highly successful salesperson and managed my first sales force. Since that time, I have hired, trained, and managed hundreds of salespeople. Most of them exhibited the same kind of anxiety that I did as a neophyte salesperson, even after they had been in sales for years. I taught many of them how to be relaxed and confident, and they became much more successful.
Just as I did, people can learn to talk to almost anyone with confidence in their competence if they get the right kind of training and practice.
by Jacques Werth
It was 1995 when business owner Jerry Rubin became a student of High Probability Prospecting. He immediately valued the course and it’s teaching, but admits to never quite working the program like he was taught.
“I would make prospecting calls,” Rubin shares. “But leads were scarce and hard to come by for my annuities business so I had a very hard time asking for a commitment. I had a solid fear that I would burn the lead if I asked for one.”
Little by little he “diluted” his opening introduction, moving further and further away from what he was taught. He started asking “is that something you’re willing to take a look at?” instead of asking “is that something you want?” Rubin admits that there were many times he drove hours to talk to a lead that was “willing to look at” his material and product, only to drive home empty handed and frustrated.
“Everyone is ‘willing to take a look’”, Rubin adds. “But there’s no commitment in that statement and all I was doing was wasting time and tapping dancing for low probability prospects.”
Rubin’s “ah-HA” moment came years later, and came in the form of a new employee. As he trained his new hire he remembered the High Probability Selling system and realized the error of his ways. This new realization was sharpened by the fact he was now paying someone else whether he was making a sale or not. Rubin witnessed his new hire working HPS the way it should be, asking for commitments from prospects and getting them.
“Getting a commitment took on whole new meaning, and the light bulb came on,” Rubin adds. He took over the reins and started using High Probability Prospecting the way it was designed; asking for the commitment from the leads that were being generated. He immediately saw results and reports he is getting a commitment from 80% of the prospecting calls he makes.
“My ah-ha moment helped me line up my internal parts and thoughts and enabled me to do what I should have been doing all along; asking for a commitment,” Rubin shares with pride in his voice. “There’s no way I am going back to my old ways.”
by Jacques Werth
I got my first college degree in 1955, with a major in Industrial Sales. They were calling it Scientific Selling back then, which is just another form of needs based selling. The “science” was from a real scientific study of how most people make buying decisions. The result of that study was a simple buying decision model, showing how a buyer goes through these 5 stages: Attention, Interest, Desire, Conviction, and Action (AIDCA).
The original scientific study did not include anything about how to use the AIDCA buying decision model to create a selling process. Nor did it suggest that this model could be used as a basis for manipulating people’s minds. However, that is exactly how most salespeople began using it.
The Information Age and the Internet have made the alternative to needs based selling much more attractive. Today, most top sales producers use some form of wants based selling.