Stan Billue's Blog

August 28, 2015

Why The Phone Is Your Secret Sales Weapon

Nearly 100 years ago, the “Father of Direct Response Marketing” (Claude Hopkins) did a massive test.

He placed these “sells” in newspapers and tracked hundreds of thousands of inquiries.

Sell One: Call to place the order.

Sell Two: Fill out and mail in the order form.

Sell Three: Either call to order or fill out the order form and mail it in.

By far, Sell One (the call ONLY option), out-pulled the others by a margin of 3-to-1.

Various marketing tests since them have proven that consumers prefer the phone to any other way of contacting a business. Consumers would rather call…

… than write in.

… than stop by the store.

… than go to a web page.

… than fill out an online form.

… than anything.

Case in point: An article on Autonews.com stated, “Today, most car buyers carry smartphones. And it’s easier to use a click-to-call phone link in a dealership ad than fill out a Web site information form or send an e-mail, said Holian, whose stores sold 304 new and used vehicles in May. ”

It’s always easier for a consumer to call.

Nowadays, with smartphone use through the roof… and… the trend for smartphone use to rise continue well into the future… the PHONE is the go-to medium for consumers to interact with one another and with businesses.

The problem is, phone sales training is almost non-existent.

A recent study of the inside sales industry showed that “training” was the fifth priority on sales managers’ agenda. Inside sales reps didn’t even mention training as a priority.

Which is odd when considering that their success is squarely dependent on their ability to handle both out-bound and in-bound calls.

Here’s the point: More people today are connected to their phones than at any other time in history.  This trend is growing as new and better smartphones are developed.

Every marketing test ever done shows that consumers prefer the phone to any and every other form of communicating with a business.

And about 90% of all interactions between a business and consumer happen over the phone.

Therefore, it simply makes sense to get to know how to use the phone to handle leads… follow up with prospects… close sales… and build goodwill with existing customers.

Join The Stan Billue Phone Sales Tips E-List and discover…

How To Ease Prospects Into Buying Without A Fight.

Find out more here…

August 19, 2015

Why They WON’T Take Your Call

There’s a simple reason why prospects won’t take your call.
If you overcome this issue… then… the right prospects will almost ALWAYS be happy to speak with you. Otherwise, even those who could benefit from your product or service will never give you the time of day.
Want to know what it is?
Well consider this saying: “People like doing business with people they know, like and trust.”
Everyone in sales says this and agrees with it.
But hardly anyone knows how to get others to KNOW… LIKE and TRUST them.
And that’s why “they” won’t take your call. Because they don’t know you. Therefore there’s no way for them to like you. And, since you’re a stranger, they can’t possibly be expected to trust you, either.
Get it?
So then, how do you get prospects to know, like and trust you… so that… they’ll gladly (or at least less reluctantly) take your call.
I’ll explain that little “secret” in the next post.
Mean time, if cranking up your effectiveness on the phone is important to you… then… you just might benefit from this…
Free Phone Prospecting Strategy Session

August 13, 2015

Do You Make This Cold Calling Mistake?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — Stan Billue @ 5:09 pm

A recent study I saw showed that a group of Realtors called something like 6,500 prospects.

The Realtors either asked for an appointment or a referral.

The end result was:

  • 19 appointments set
  • 11 referrals

These figures indicate a very low percentage of conversion.

Why so low?

In my opinion, it’s because the cold call was asking for too much too soon. Think about it: When you cold call, the people you’re calling do not know you. They are not expecting your call. They may or may not be interested in what you are selling.

Asking for an appointment or a referral is simply too big of a request.

Better: Offer valuable free info to establish a relationship first. Then follow up to move the relationship to the next level. But be careful. Because far too often people will accept a free report (or some other free info) just to get you off the phone.

So qualify.

Find out when they’ll be in the market for the product or service your free brochure or report discusses. See if the person is even considering making a purchase at some point. Otherwise, you’ll be sending out info to people who are not interested and don’t need what you offer.

Is your cold calling and inbound phone process up to snuff?

Find out how to improve it by going here…

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 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 15, 2015

Closing Commando Sales Training Call

Closing Commando Sales Training Call
Thursday, July 23, 2015
10 am Pacific / 12 pm Central / 1 pm Eastern
Based on our recent survey, most of the folks on our list want to know
how to close more sales. On Thursday, July 23 we will hold a special
LIVE TRAINING CALL on how to seal more deals.

Call in details will be sent the week of the event. The call will be
about 45 minutes long. No recordings. No replays. Only 100
spots available. Mark your calendar to attend this live event.

July 14, 2015

Cold Calling Backlash

Fact is, consumers hate (with a capital “H”) getting cold called.

On one of my first such calls, the guy on the other end of the line got so angry he said things my “virgin” ears couldn’t handle. Which is why it’s critical to understand the steps someone takes before making a buying decision. Otherwise, you’re just intruding and creating a stressful situation for no good reason.

In the email series — How To Ease Prospects Into Buying Without A Fight — we reveal how to position yourself and your product/service as a logical choice… rather than… as an intrusion.

When you join Stan Billue’s “Daily Sales Tips” E-List you get the entire series for free.

Take a look.

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 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…

June 29, 2015

Who Else Hates Cold Calling But Gots To Do It?

Cold calling sucks!

There… I said it. I’m sure some of you on Stan’s list will
agree. Others won’t. For the most part, after speaking with
a lot of salespeople the consensus is clear.

If given a chance… most sales reps would rather have their
finger nails torn out than pick up a phone and contact a
stranger.

The fact is (when done right) cold calling works.

Heck, even knocking on doors works.

Way back when, during my first sales stint, I literally
walked neighborhoods and banged on doors.

No one was really a jerk.

People were certainly wary… but… most were willing to
engage me in some friendly banter.

And, in a few cases, I got sales.

Cold calling is no different… except… when done right
you can boost your chances of success.

The key is (drumroll…) THE LIST!

Who you call is the most important element in phone sales
success. Call people who have no interest in what you offer
and you’re dead in the water.

Call people who are a good fit and you’re half way there.

If you have to cold call… then… you should spend a good
portion of your time ferreting out the very best list of
prospects.

Then put your energy into Practicing, Rehearsing and Drilling
so you perfect your phone pitch… BEFORE… picking up the
receiver.

Stan Billue shows you how he did it (and doubled his income
for 5 years straight) in his classic audio course…

Double Your Income Selling On The Phone!

For a limited time, this course is available for a “steal.”

But not for long.

We plan on hiking the price by 250% in the coming weeks.

Go here before you miss out on this deal.

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