Stan Billue's Blog

August 12, 2015

Scary Sales Statistics

According to industry stats: The most effective B2B sales firms are 22% more likely (compared to other sales firms) to reinforce training at least once a quarter.

The problem is most sales training that is not reinforced on a daily basis is forgotten within 90 days. The solution is rather simple. Have salespeople go over core sales skills and strategies on a daily basis. Spending 15 minutes three or four times a day on strategic training yields the greatest results.

Why?

Because selling is a skill. Just like learning to play the piano. You can’t become good unless you practice, drill and rehearse the basics on a daily basis.

For more information, go here…

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August 7, 2015

The Massive Failure Of Sales Training

Sales training works.

It’s as simple as that. In fact, a study spanning 24 years (which ended in 2014) tracked 650,000 sales people. The final analysis was that 74% of salespeople fail. The number one reason for failure was… lack of sales training.

Those who received and implemented proper training were at the top of their industry in terms of production and personal income.

Be that as it may, for most, sales training does not provide sustainable results.

Why?

Here’s what Sales Performance International found out:

Companies with good intentions put their people through intense multi-day training events hoping all of the content will “stick.” It doesn’t. The “in and out” nature of such training prevents the most critical aspect of training… reinforcement.

HALF of the content of a sales training event is lost in 5.1 weeks.

84% of sales training content it lost within 90 days.

According to Sales Performance International…

“In the absence of a well thought out, “programmatic” approach to sales training, most expenditures are made with good intentions, but largely wasted. Research indicates that without systematic, ongoing learning and reinforcement, approximately 50% of the learning content is not retained within five weeks, much less applied. Within 90 days, 84% of what was initially learned is lost.”

The Solution…

The Stan Billue Sales Training System.

Which is very simple and aligned with the needs of sales people…

Teach salespeople the basics in bite sized chunks. This helps salespeople to understand and internalize the content. For this to happen properly, the training must span several weeks. If too much is presented too soon (as in the typical multi-day events most companies opt for) sales people get overwhelmed.

Systematic on-going training on a daily basis. “Practice, drill and rehearse” has been the mantra of the Stan Billue System for over 30 years. Salespeople must make training a daily part of their routine. One hour of training broken down into short 15 minute sessions works extremely well.

Reinforcement of core skills. Most salespeople have trouble in two key areas. Namely, handling objections and closing. Objection handling and closing skills must be reinforced on a continuous basis. Stan Billue was adamant about the need to go over every part of the sales process a minimum of 16 to 21 times. This is how you make new skills stick.

By combining these elements of a successful sales training program, salespeople who have used the Stan Billue System report outstanding sustainable results.

Request a Free Phone Sales Strategy Session today.

Go here for details…

July 29, 2015

Scared Salespeople Attract Scared Prospects (Part 5)

You know, it’s funny.

Or maybe not so funny.

But the average sales person is scared stiff of getting sold. If you were to sit down with a typical sales rep and try to sell them something here’s what you’ll discover…

They will come up with the same typical brush offs… objections… and stalls ANY prospect comes up with. In other words, the typical sales person is scared of being sold. As a result, they are scared of selling others.

Since the mind creates our reality… if a sales person has objections about price… or wants to think it over… or whatever they’ll find that their prospects give them those objections.

Stan Billue has a simple remedy to this problem.

You ready for this.

Go out and get sold.

Stan used to spend a few minutes each morning calling up competitor companies advertising their products and services. He would then ask to speak with the top sales rep in the company. And he would “pretend” to be a buyer.

By doing this, Stan was able to get a master-level education in sales form his competition.

He wasn’t afraid of being sold.

He welcomed it!

Thus, he learned how to other top sales reps overcame price objections. How they handled brush offs. How they handled stalls. And, ultimately, how they closed deals.

If you’re scared of being sold, you gotta get over it.

Otherwise, you’ll attract scared prospects who won’t buy.

Wanna get better selling on the phone?

Go here to find out how…

July 25, 2015

Shortcut To Sales Mastery (Part 4)

Stan once said:

“I’ve met a ton of Salespeople that have been in Selling for 5 or 10 years however they don’t have 5 or 10 years experience. They only have 1 year’s experience 5 to 10 times over. Unfortunately somewhere around the end of the first year they quit growing and stopped learning and fell into a comfort zone.”

How do you avoid becoming one of those “salty dog” sales reps?

The one whose been around forever but still drive a “beater” cause he can’t afford anything else?

Simple.

Take Stan’s shortcut to sales mastery.

Become a sales audio junkie.

We absorb up to 95% of what we hear 16 to 21 times.

Pick an audio set on how to sell (especially one that is specific to your way of interacting with prospects and customers) and listen to it daily. Take notes. Create scripts and presentations based on what you learn.

Scripts for breaking the ice/approaching.

Scripts for presenting.

Scripts for qualifying.

Scripts for dealing with common objections.

Scripts for closing.

Listen and re-listen to those audios until you wear them out.

Here’s something interesting:

  • 92% of customer contacts happen by phone.
  • 90%  of sales managers admit the phone is the weakest area for reps.
  • 85% of customers are unhappy with their phone interaction with a company.
  • 80% of sales happen after 5 follow-up calls.
  • Phone prospecting is 900% cheaper than in-person prospecting.

What does that mean?

It means the phone is your greatest leverage point for…

  • prospecting
  • follow up
  • customer service
  • increasing business
  • boosting revenue

Which means, you can’t go wrong learning how to sell on the phone.

Request a Free Strategy Session from the Stan Billue Team. You’ll discover how to sharpen your phone sales skills.

And avoid making the costly mistakes so many sales reps make on the phone.

Go here for details…

July 21, 2015

When Sales Training Won’t Work (Part 3)

One of the things Stan Billue is famous for is…

… spending one hour a day for 37 years learning and studying the sales process.

That’s over 13,505 hours focused on mastering and perfecting sales skills. Which is why (at one point in his career) Stan was making $30,000 a week as a phone sales expert.

So one of the big keys to sales success is to…

1. Decide to get the training needed to learn HOW TO SELL.

2. Decide to keep honing your sales skills on an on-going basis.

3. Decide to track and measure progress so you can improve weak areas.

Here’s the thing: Sales training won’t work unless it becomes a Daily Fixture in your schedule.

Sadly, most sales people and business owners have never read a book on sales. Or marketing. Or how to build a successful career. Probably over 90% of the business and sales world is “winging it” and it shows.

A good place to start your training is by taking advantage of a Free Strategy Session from the Stan Billue Team. You’ll discover how to sharpen your sales skills to the point of perfection. And how to avoid making the income-draining mistakes so many people in sales make.

Go here for details…

July 20, 2015

The First Step On The Way To Sales Success (Part 2)

Filed under: Stan Billue's Personal Blog — Tags: , , , , , , — Stan Billue @ 4:47 pm

So what do you think?

Is the first step on the way to sales success learning how to approach… qualify… present… handle objections, etc.?

On the surface, that sure would seem true.

But it’s not.

Here’s what Stan Billue says is the real first step:

“What is your Purpose in Life ?
I love to ask everyone I meet with a question about their Future and then challenge them on
their answer.

“Here’s the question:

“If you were financially independent, what would want to do with the rest of your Life?“
If I asked you that same question, what would your answer be?”

Not what you expected, right?

That’s because Stan believed (and right so) that: “Whatever you’re doing now for a living should be treated as a Means to the End.”

So the first step to sales success is to know what you want out of life. Then use your career or business as a means to get what you want. This gives you the motivation to succeed.

Want to know how to turn your answer to the question above into a plan of action for sales success?

Then read pages 6 – 7 in Stan Billue’s The Sales Expose for all the details.

Check it out here…

———————————————

Strategy Session Call reveals how to sharpen your phone sales skills to the
point of perfection. To apply for consideration, send an email with the
subject line…

Strategy Session Request

… to support @ stanbillue.com

If you qualify, this One-Hour Live Session could be a game-changer for you.

———————————————

July 17, 2015

The Stan Billue School Of Sales (Part 1)

Over the next five posts I’m going to share with you how Stan Billue became a world-class expert at the art and science of selling.

Interestingly, you can follow his lead and do the same.

The first thing Stan did was make a decision to become an expert at sales.

His mentor told him that… if he would focus an hour a day studying one subject… in five years he’d be in the Top 1% of his field. Stan took this advice to heart. And he went on a frenzy devouring everything he could get his hands on the subject of selling.

On the contrary, 99% of salespeople have never read a sales book.

How in the world do they expect to make a growing income in sales… without first… learning the skill as well as possible?

Beats me!

So the first thing you must do is convince yourself that becoming your best in sales is important enough to get the right training.

The exciting thing is that the sales profession is very lucrative.

You just have to KNOW how to sell… and then… go out and DO IT.

After making this decision, the next step, is to get the right training.

I’ll fill you in on this in my next post.

———————————————

Strategy Session Call reveals how to sharpen your phone sales skills to the
point of perfection. To apply for consideration, send an email with the
subject line…

Strategy Session Request

… to support @ stanbillue.com

If you qualify, this One-Hour Live Session could be a game-changer for you.

———————————————

July 10, 2015

The Guaranteed Way To Fail In Sales

The sales profession gets a bad rap.

On the one hand, no sales = no business.

On the other hand, the selling process scares sales people stiff.

An article in the Wall Street Journal by Lauren Weber on February 6, 2015 titled, “Why It’s So Hard to Fill Sales Jobs,” highlighted the difficulty in attracting people to the field due to its perception of being high risk and competitive.

The fear of selling stems from a number of factors.

One of which is: The sales person does not know how to sell.

If you know what you’re doing… then… there’s nothing to fear. But when you are confused and untrained anything (including something simple) can seem daunting.

One out of nine people in the U.S. workforce is employed in sales.

Professional selling represents the second-largest employment category.

And yet, most salespeople have minimal, if any, formal training in sales.

Wanna guarantee you fail in sales – or anything? Then don’t get the training needed to know your craft. Wanna guarantee you have a fighting chance of making sales a lucrative profession?

Then… get the sales training you need to succeed.

A good start is to get on Stan Billue’s “Daily Sales Tips E-List.”

Go here…

July 8, 2015

Part 2 – Why People Avoid Sales Reps Like The Plague

Yesterday you discovered an interesting quirk of human nature.

The first thing (usually) that people do BEFORE making a buying decision is…

They get DISSATISFIED with their current situation. Over time, that dissatisfaction festers, grows and becomes a dominant force in their psyche.

Which leads them to Phase 2 (Step 2) of the buying process…

Again, go back to the last purchase you made. If you are a typical consumer, you probably DID NOT get up and just go to a store to buy whatever you wanted.

For instance: You pour yourself a piping hot cup ‘o Joe. You open the fridge to douse the coffee with a little milk. But the gallon is over a week old. (Yuck!)

Now you have a problem.

Dissatisfaction sets in.

You decide to get milk… but… before you go to the store… what do you do?

I’ll let your mind spin a bit on that point and get back to it later.

Phase 2 is the exact best place to engage the prospect… get on their radar… and lead them through the rest of the buying process.

It’s the first time the prospect is going out and making contact with the business world about their problem. However, they don’t want to talk to a sales person. They don’t want to “shop” around at a physical store just yet.

Basically they don’t want to engage any vendor at this point.

Too soon.

They’ll do everything possible to avoid sales people.

In fact, I’d say, the number one reason people avoid sales reps like the plague is because the sales reps are engaging prospects at the wrong time.

The prospect needs something else first.

Before they talk to anyone in a position to sell them.

That’s why 81% of consumers… and… 94% of business buyers go online first. (See links below to articles on this subject.)

Go back to the coffee and milk example.

Before you run out to the store what happens first?

If you’re like most consumers, you pull out the sales papers to see where you can get the best deal. Walgreens sells a gallon for $3.00 but it’s just around the corner.

The supermarket has milk on sales for $2.29 but you have to buy $10 worth of groceries. (Damn! They always get you somehow.)

Sam’s Club has milk for $1.89 a gallon but you have to buy a year’s worth.

Get it?

Usually, people do a little research before deciding WHAT they’ll buy… and… from WHOM.

The bigger the purchase the more time and effort is spent in…

Phase 2: The Exploration/Fact Finding/Info Gathering/Research Phase

Think I’m blowing smoke?

Fine.

This article from Adweek should set you straight.

Oh… you sell B2B and you think these sophistimicated execs KNOW what they want before doing any research?

Puhleeeze!

This article’ll gives you the scoop on how business buyers shop.

Here’s the good news: If you know what you’re doing… then… you can position yourself as a source of valuable information. How? By providing prospects with critical research “done-for-them” that they can get from you. You become their trusted source of info they need before making a buying decision.

I’ll tell you how in tomorrow’s email.

BTW… I did this selling real estate and created a marketing and sales system that generated over $25,000,000. (The average house back them only sold for $100K in my area so the gross figure is pretty good.)

Keep your eyes peeled for the next email in the series…

July 7, 2015

Cussin’ Prospect Slams Phone On Scared Sales Rep

If this hasn’t happened to you yet…. it’s cooooming…

I’m sitting down at my cubicle.

My sales manager handed me this giant book with all sorts of addresses and phone numbers. The book is called the Haines Criss-Cross Directory. According to my manager, my financial future was somehow tied to this book.

(In no time flat I found out he was full of it.)

He told me to pick a page — any page — start at the top and dial number after number until I got to the bottom of the page.

About 30 or 40 calls in, a rather gruff voice answers.

I excitedly tell him who I am (as if he should’ve cared), my company name and what the call was all about. Then all of a sudden he screams an expletive that was so nasty I turned red in the face. Then he slams the phone in my ear.

Instantly, I knew my financial future had nothing to do with the Haines Directory.

It took me over a year to finally figure out what the problem was.

You see, people make buying decisions in a certain step-by-step fashion.

There are five specific steps to the buying process. Unfortunately, most companies and sales reps don’t even know what they are. So they often approach prospects at the exact wrong time.

The first step is usually… DISSATISFACTION.

In other words, the person becomes dissatisfied with what they have. Say it’s a car. Maybe it’s older. Doesn’t have modern techno doodads. Is starting to need too many costly repairs.

Or maybe the neighbor just got a brand new car… and… the person wants to keep up with the Joneses.

Whatever it is, something creates a sense of dissatisfaction.

Read the definition of dissatisfaction from Reference.com here.

And the product must be replaced with something new or better.

Think about your own situation: Do you just get out of bed one day and decide to buy a new car or whatever? No! Usually something happens that makes you unhappy with what you have. Then… and only then… do you start churning over in your mind the need to replace what you have with something better.

This phase could take days, weeks, months or even years to fester. It all depends on the product and it’s cost.

You may become dissatisfied with a coffee maker today… and… buy a new one this weekend.

On the other hand, it could take months to move from an apartment into a house. Or to list and sell an existing house and find one that is just right for your family.

This phase — the Dissatisfaction Phase — is exactly the wrong time to reach out to prospects. For one, it’s impossible (unless you’re a mind reader) to know when someone is in this phase. People generally don’t advertise it.

Although, they will talk to friends and family about how unhappy they are.

Here’s an interesting quote that proves the point:

————————– Beginning of Quote —————————
“How the customer thinks out a decision to buy has nothing to do with any selling system or approach. That is an artificially constructed process to give sales people something to follow and help them remember what they are supposed to do. The truth is that all selling approaches are a collection of techniques and methods assembled into some type of organized process. Salespeople do need all those skills, techniques and methods. That’s the good news. The bad news is that they usually are following a guidance system or selling approach that is not flexible enough to keep them aligned with where the customer is at.”
————————– End of Quote —————————

Read the article here.

In tomorrow’s email we’ll talk about the next step in the buying process.

Believe it or not, by the time a prospect gets to Step Two they are still not ready to buy… or… even talk to a sales person or patronize a business.

But Step Two is the exact best place to engage the prospect… get on their radar… and lead them through the rest of the buying process.

Stay tuned…

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