Jeb has some great old school sales advice. It would benefit anyone to hear what he has to say. He can give you a good foundation for the basics of sales.
Big Idea #1: Your Pipeline is Your Lifeline.
This is the first and most important idea in this book. Jeb talks about filling your pipeline with good, quality prospects, and your follow up calls should be focused on gathering more information on your prospect and moving them through your sales pipeline. 80 percent of prospecting is qualifying prospects. You need to find out when their buying window is open. Personally, I think you should be careful on how you look at this. I know many realtors that take December off because “no one buys houses in December.” Bullshit. If you’re a realtor, you should be jumping with joy when December comes. Your competition isn’t working and there are plenty of serious buyers looking to purchase a home in December. Jeb talks about a few “laws” and “rules.” Here are a couple of my favorites. “The Law of Replacement”: Replace the prospects in your pipeline at a rate that is equal to or greater than your closing rate. “The 30 Day Rule”: The prospecting that you do in any given 30 day period has a tendency to pay off over the next 90 days.
Big Idea #2: Telephone = Power Tool
Making phone calls gives you an edge because most people reach out via email. I disagree. Email and the phone are both archaic ways of reaching out to cold prospects. I’ve had more success with Facebook messages and other forms of social selling. Text messages always get read as well. Of course, the effectiveness of these methods vary by industry. Here’s a good one; make a “Prospecting Pyramid.” Arrange your list with high-yield prospects on top and low-yield prospects on the bottom. Start by calling from the top of the pyramid. Jeb says leaving a voicemail is an opportunity to leave a short commercial and build familiarity. Personally, I don’t leave voicemails unless it’s a landline. I’ll just send a text if I don’t get them on the phone.
Big Idea #3: Vulnerability and Rejection
Jeb talks about how you need to grab someone’s attention quickly and give them a compelling reason to listen to you. He said to keep the “Three B’s” at the front of your mind: be brief, be bright, be gone. You could be selling free money, but if you show up on a sales call with a big frown on your face and say “Uh, well, uh, I have a bunch of, like, free money, if you want it,” you won’t be making any sales. The prospects you want are BUSY and have very short attention spans. This is pretty basic and all sales people know this, but sometimes I think we need to be reminded and it’s good to have something like the “Three B’s” to remind us what to focus on before a sales call. He goes on to talk about how you need to be thick-skinned and let rejection roll off your back. Don’t take it personally and keep control of your emotions. Well, thanks Jeb, I figured that out my first week in sales. Jeb talks about a “ledge” on a sales call. This is an anchor statement that gives you a few moments to collect your thoughts and respond. An example would be “that’s exactly why I called.” Here is some context: “I’m busy, I can’t talk right now” and then you say, “that’s exactly why I called!” Stephan Schiffman goes into more detail about using a “ledge” in his book “Cold Calling Techniques.” Jeb says to have a canned response for every objection so it becomes habit. I can vouch for this. You can double your sales if you have a rebuttal for every objection that is thrown at you.
Big Idea #4: Using a “Bridge” and the Word “Because”
People are more likely to comply with your requests if you give them a reason. Ask your prospect to do something and follow it with “because” and then a reason why; it’s going to help them.
Big Idea #5: Use your CRM like a CEO.
Stay organized. This is crucial for follow up. There are a lot of options out there and a few good options that are free like “hubspot.” The best CRM on the market is the one that you will actually use.
Big Idea #6: Social Selling & Diversifying
Look, I’m not even going to tell you what’s in this chapter. Jeb is a really great old school sales guy with a lot of good advice, but he doesn’t understand social selling at all. If you want to get good at using social media to make sales, go follow Gary Vaynerchuk on Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Linkedin, subscribe to his YouTube channel, and read his books. Gary teaches and demonstrates how to implement social selling better than almost anyone out there.
Big Idea #7: Know your numbers.
If you make cold calls, you need to track how many dials are needed to make a contact, and how many contacts are needed to make a sale. That way you don’t go in the office and say “I’m gonna make four sales today.” Go in the office and commit to making however many dials it takes to make four sales. Focus on actions, not results. You can apply this formula to any kind of sales job.
Big Idea #8: Gatekeepers and Access
I’ll sum it up for you; make friends with the gatekeeper. They are people and if they like you, they will let you through. Send them flowers and donuts with a nice card if you have to.
*Kyle’s Tip: If you reach out to your prospect through Facebook or another social media platform, you can bypass the gatekeeper easily… because there usually isn’t one. The exception to this is prospects with a high status often have people manage their social media for them.
Big Idea #9: The 3 P’s Holding You Back
Man, did I relate to this one! “Perfectionism, procrastination, and paralysis from analysis.” Over-analyzing and making sure everything is perfect will ultimately prevent you from getting anything done. I’ve noticed that a lot of top-performing salespeople take “imperfect action.” Dropping the perfectionist school of thought has dramatically increased my production. I still fall back into over-analyzing sometimes, but the more I let go of trying to be perfect, the more productive I become.
Big Idea #10: One More Call
At the end of the day, when you are pooped out and ready to go home, make just one more call. One call can be the difference between the biggest commission check you’ve ever received and a big fat goose egg.
The most value I got out of this book is big idea #1. A lot of it is good stuff but I’ve heard a lot of it before and some of the advice given is dated. Sorry, Jeb. I’m sure you’re a really nice guy.
I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.