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Lessons from CTC

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Fusion Sales Tips - Lessons from CTC

I was walking out of Canadian Tire recently and got accosted by a teenager asking for donations. This young man obviously had the disease he was raising money for which made it easy to say yes. I fumbled for some lose change, a toonie, a loonie ... something. Nothing. I reached for the bills hoping to pull out a five – no luck. I feebly said to the guy, "all I have is a twenty". Without missing a beat he looked me square in the eye and with a big smile on his face he said, "That's OK, we take those!" Well, what are you going to do? Say no? I couldn't.

Lessons in Selling

There are a few lessons to be learned here:

A. The most obvious was that this kid had confidence and positive expectations. When I said that all I had was a twenty he didn't even flinch despite the fact I could clearly see in his plastic container of previous donations that it was full of mostly loose change, and a five dollar bill. He hadn't received a 20 yet, but that didn't stop him from thinking I would part with mine.

Too many sales people expect the worst to happen. They assume the client won't be buying today, that they'll have to think about it, or shop for better rates, and they tend to get what they expect. Who cares if the last person didn't buy from you or was a jerk? Why let that affect your attitude about what is about to happen with the next client?

Countless studies have proven that your attitude will affect your communication and in sales, that means your results. Even so, I continually meet sales people that "just know" that their client is not buying today or is going to give them an insurmountable objection. I don't get it. Your best shot at getting a sale happens when you expect it to go well so why not start with the right frame of mind. You can't control what the client will do but you can control your attitude.

B. He was sold on what he was fund raising for. He had the disease and that means he had huge credibility. He believed in the cause and that translated to confidence when he was asking for money. It's like the fund raising ad I saw recently for Children's Hospital. It showed a picture of a newborn in an incubator hooked up to a million tubes with a caption that read, "If it was your child, we wouldn't have to ask". Point made, point taken.

How much credibility do you have? Do you believe in the products you are selling? Do you? Do you use the products yourself or are you "invested elsewhere". Your answer will tell you a lot about your level of belief in where you work and what you sell.

C. He asked everyone … and I mean everyone.  You know how some kids fund raising outside of stores don't ask everyone – just the friendly looking people. Or if they get a donation then they coast for a little while. Not this guy. He talked to every single person that walked by. It makes sense. If he's out there anyway it's just going to be a numbers game. If 50% of the people give him a donation it's going to be 50% of 100 people, or 50% of 10 people. If they are walking by he may as well ask.

Translate that to asking for the sale or asking for referrals. We know we should ask but do we? The same principals apply. If you ask, you are more likely to get. Do you only ask friendly people or ones that you know will say yes? Why not take the same approach and have a plan, know what to say, and ask everyone.

Simple lessons, but as with most things it's in their application that will make a difference.

"As long as you're going to think anyway, think big."
– Donald Trump, real estate executive

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