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Favorite Quotes 2012 pt.9

  • Product pride breeds arrogance, irrelevance, customer annoyance and carbon copy selling. Sales people are too proud to give customers what they really want—silence, empathy understanding.
  • Dysfunctional buying practices are a defense mechanism against dysfunctional sales strategies. Fix the latter and the former is neutralized.
  • The biggest advantage you have in selling is probing the disadvantages of your customer's problems.
  • "The longer one speaks to someone who has not said yes to your offering the less likely they will get a yes. The first salesperson who first educates the customer is the least likely to get the business," says Jacques Werth.
  • You can't teach (sell) a man anything. You can only help him discover it (thru questions) within himself—Galileo
  • "Blessed is the man (sales person) who having nothing to say abstains from giving us the evidence of the fact," said George Eliot.
  • All traditional sales people know that communication is the hallmark of effective selling. But that means more communication from the customer and less from the sales person.
  • The less you talk the more time you have to sell because the customer who is listening is not in a good position to be sold.
  • Traditional sales people beat their heads against the wall trying to change all customers, as opposed to just changing who they are going to try to sell.
  • Too many sales are lost when you are selling, and many sales are won when you are not.
  • Most sales people's strategies are for the greater glory of their product and company, and have little street value for customers.
  • Most traditional sales people are in feature and benefit hell and fighting to stay there.
  • Strategic selling is a means to an end to understand not influence.
  • In sales a good scare (uncovering of a latent problem) is worth more than good advice.
  • It is not a crime to lose a piece of business, but it is a crime against all parties to lose a piece of business in the form of Chinese water torture (long drawn out dead deals).
  • The harder you try to sell the harder it will be for you to be believable and trustworthy.
  • The time to win an objection is before it starts. No different than the time to win a fight is before it starts.
  • Customers ultimately do not care about your custom solutions, what they want is unique and custom understanding of their not so unique problems.
  • "Ignorant of which prospects are good, you try to sell everyone. Ignorant of which prospects are bad, you are discouraged from selling anyone," says Gary Gagliardi.
  • You are not in Kansas anymore. The days of entitlement are gone for product pitchers; captive audience, information demand and receptivity, information monopoly.
  • Information pushing is going the way of traditional media. More and more customers are bypassing sales people and getting their information in cyberspace
  • What you work so hard to prevent (commoditization) you are creating. Most sellers look and sound like they sell out of a warehouse where they are desperate to flip slow moving commodities.
  • Customers forget 90% of what you say about your product 3 days later, but keep in mind, 90% of how they felt about the experience they will remember 30 days later. Therefore, you need to sell to their feeling mind, not their thinking mind.
  • Strategic sales people need to know, so they ask a lot of questions. Product pitchers do not need to know, because they already know, so they don't bother to ask any questions.
  • It is the fate of feature and benefit sellers to outsmart themselves.
  • The quest of truth and knowledge in sales should not be focused on spreading it, but on eliciting it. One projects apathy, the other communicates empathy.
  • Shorter selling cycles, higher margins and stronger relationships are in problem creation, more so than problem resolution.
  • Feature and benefit sellers are so busy translating their product's features into benefits, instead of strategically translating their client's problems into threatening disadvantages.
  • In the sales war between emotion and logic, emotion always wins out. Position your service with emotion, and only assess your customer's intent and commitment with logic.
  • Your product is only as unique as the prospect's problem.
  • You are the product. Customers are more often than not more discerning as to whom they will buy from, than what they will buy.
  • Sales wisdom is the reward you get for listening when you would have preferred to have been selling, and talking about your favorite subject...yourself.
  • Cheesy sales people sell the cheese, instead of letting customers fill in the black holes themselves.
  • Instead of focusing on closing for a "yes," focus on closing for the truth.
Richard Farrell is President of Tangent Knowledge Systems, a national sales development and training firm based in Chicago. He is the author of the upcoming book Selling has Nothing to do with Selling. He trains and speaks around the world and has authored many articles on his unique non-selling sales posture.

Phone: 773-404-7915
EMail: rfarrell@tangentknowledge.com
Web: http://www.tangentknowledge.com