Sales Lesson from my Mom - There's Two Types of Salespeople

by Kurt 14 replies
Many years ago when I was young my Mom and Step Father owned a door to door sales company. My Mom gave me a piece of advice that has stuck with me all this time.

She told me that there were two types of good salesmen. One is the kind of salesman that could sell ice to an eskimo. It was all about the pitch and sales techniques.

But she also brought up another type of salesperson, and this was the person that "bought the pitch" themselves. An example of this is a vacuum cleaner salesman I met later in life, and no it wasn't Claude.

This guy loved the vacs he was selling so much, he actually bought 3 of them for himself. I never quite understood why anyone would want 3 vacs, but he did buy 3 of them with his own money. He bought his own sales pitch.

She taught me that the salesperson that buys the pitch themselves is the absolutely the best sales person. And this guy was a very good salesman as his honest enthusiasm was picked up on by his prospects.

You can read all sorts of advice about how to sell things, but instead of just becoming able to sell ice to eskimos, you may want to also try selling things that you love and would buy yourself. It's probably a lot easier for you to sell something you'd buy yourself.
#offline marketing #lesson #mom #sales #salespeople #types
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    Apparently there's an air of authenticity and the innate ability to speak as only an owner of the goods/services could, which gets transmitted to the potential buyer. Kind of like members of the same club speaking to each other of inner experiences.
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  • Your Mom sounds like a smart woman.

    Yup, the believers will almost always outsell the most experienced salespeople.
    Do you know why? (I'll bet you do)

    Because they are certain...and that certainty shows through to the prospect in a thousand different ways. It may not even register consciously, but their body language, voice inflection, tempo, and expressions convey a sincerity that can't be faked.

    And buying your product for personal use is not only a sign of belief in the product, but it's smart selling.

    I had a great life insurance salesman once tell me that he could tell me how much life insurance I sold that year, based on how much I owned myself. And he was close.

    Great post. Not as good as mine, but great enough.


    By the way, if someone asks you if you own the product you sell (as long as it makes sense....fighter jets are an exception)...and you admit that you don't...no reason you give is convincing. And if you don't own it, why should they?
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Lessard
    This is one of the main reasons that consultants/marketers that have achieved great results for clients can easily outsell people just starting out. They know and believe that the prospect is nuts for not buying from them and that comes across.

    That is why so many people taking courses/coaching on charging high ticket prices fail miserably on sales calls. They have all the scripts and pitches and funnels down but deep down inside they have not done it yet and do not really believe that what they are selling will have the impact that they are pitching.

    I know for example that Claude that just commented has sold a marketing system for offline businesses. He has done it many times including for himself and knows the impact it has on a business. He does not need to "sell" anything when talking about it. He is simply recounting previous experience of something he believes in and knows to be true. He knows the price he is charging is more than fair based on the results it has delivered in the past. The "sale" conversation at that point is simply about if he has time to do it, if the prospect is a good fit and has the cash. There is not really any question about the end result.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    This can be taken online too. A common question over the years in the Main WF is "what should I sell?". The recommendations are often based on things like the commission, etc. I would suggest that people considering selling things they bought themselves and like.

    A good technique for online sales pages is to include a graphic of your receipt showing that you actually bought the product yourself. In most cases I'd bet that this more than pays for itself, unless you're selling fighter jets.

    BTW Claude, be careful with the life insurance. You don't want to get the payout too high as I'm sure Cheryl already has more than enough motivation to "take action".
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  • Maybe a small wrinkle on this whole idea.

    Some salespeople who are completely sold on their offer know everything about it. It is that knowledge that makes them sure it's a great offer.

    But I've seen several beginner salespeople outsell the pros, because they know so little that their belief in the product/service is just sheer unbridled enthusiasm....based on very limited knowledge.

    My friend Julius Toth sold a vacuum cleaner that he demonstrated better than anyone I know, including me. He was a force of nature. He didn't have customers...he had followers.

    If you believed him, you bought. And most people believed.

    But his presentation included several explanations that were nonsensical. I even asked him once if he knew that some of what he says simply wasn't true....and he said "No, and I don't want to know".

    He got it. If he really thought about everything he said, it may create doubt. And doubt is the enemy in sales.

    And he hired and trained a woman to sell air purifiers out of his store. She sold more than every else combined (in the store). Part of it was an unwavering belief. But that belief was based on claims that she heard...that were simply not true. She wasn't lying. She was convinced that the air purifiers cured diseases and created Oxygen out of the air....and so were her customers.

    What I'm saying is, an unwavering belief in what you sell can move mountains. But it's that certainty that gives it power, not whether it's based on reality or not.

    And for the rank beginner, it's often based on incomplete information.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kurt
      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      Maybe a small wrinkle on this whole idea.

      Some salespeople who are completely sold on their offer know everything about it. It is that knowledge that makes them sure it's a great offer.

      But I've seen several beginner salespeople outsell the pros, because they know so little that their belief in the product/service is just sheer unbridled enthusiasm....based on very limited knowledge.

      My friend Julius Toth sold a vacuum cleaner that he demonstrated better than anyone I know, including me. He was a force of nature. He didn't have customers...he had followers.

      If you believed him, you bought. And most people believed.

      But his presentation included several explanations that were nonsensical. I even asked him once if he knew that some of what he says simply wasn't true....and he said "No, and I don't want to know".

      He got it. If he really thought about everything he said, it may create doubt. And doubt is the enemy in sales.

      And he hired and trained a woman to sell air purifiers out of his store. She sold more than every else combined (in the store). Part of it was an unwavering belief. But that belief was based on claims that she heard...that were simply not true. She wasn't lying. She was convinced that the air purifiers cured diseases and created Oxygen out of the air....and so were her customers.

      What I'm saying is, an unwavering belief in what you sell can move mountains. But it's that certainty that gives it power, not whether it's based on reality or not.

      And for the rank beginner, it's often based on incomplete information.
      There's another wrinkle to this...my Mom left out a third type of sales person that I "discovered" on my own. My step Dad was this type and he actually make the most money out of any of their crew of 12-15 people.

      He didn't know any special sales techniques and he didn't buy the pitch himself, other than knowing he was selling quality stuff, but everyone else on the crew were selling the same things. His "secret" was that he simply knocked on the most doors.

      But my Mom made the most, even though technically she wasn't a sales person. As the business owner she organized everyone and everything and made a percentage of every sale each member of the crew made. That was another lesson she taught me, it's best to be at the top of the pyramid.
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  • Profile picture of the author ryanbiddulph
    Yeah Kurt, this is pretty much it.

    Follow your fun. Or, sell your fun. Or, sell something you feel passionate about. Then you are not selling. You are sharing. People get onboard - quickly if they vibe with your passion - if you are super duper authentic empassioned over some product or service.

    Energy deal; you feel excited and folks with some interest get swept up too. Look at Tony Robbins. I have met folks who sat at his live events. They always go back. Buying in again and again, feasting on his passion. They all highly recommend I go myself. His passion sells passively. Or his passion inspires customers to sell on his behalf. Amazing.

    Then you have slick folks who master manipulation. The lack passion. But master persuasion. Nothing wrong with that. We are all adults here. BUT....this person never feels fulfilled because they lack passion. They develop the skill of manipulating people to see numbers on a screen - aka money - but feel empty as those numbers rise. Because you cannot be genuinely happy if you are trying to manipulate people into giving your stuff. Poor exchange. No exchange, really. Since people are buying not on passion but on being manipulated to buy. Crappy way to earn a living.

    I sell what I feel passionate about. I pass on everything else. No better way to sleep at night. And no better way to generate more sales too, because your passion both detaches you largely from selling actions while acting like a selling agent.

    Here's how: your love of what you do/sell invites people to buy without any heavy selling on your part. It is sharing. Nothing more. People love when you share with them. People often pay up fast when they are not sold to like objects, but when sales people share neat products or services with them, as human beings.

    Passion also inspires happy customers to sell almost like informal affiliates. Note the Tony example above. But let's get more specific....

    3 years ago I spent 4 months in Savusavu, Fiji. I lived in a home with breath-taking views, overlooking Savasavu Bay and the Pacific Ocean. One of the most beautiful islands in the world.

    Tony Robbins' Namale Resort sits in Sauvsavu. He hosts retreats regularly for big ticket clients or attendees who drop serious coin to either see Tony speak live, in person, or via simulcast, all while enjoying a stunning location.

    As my wife Kelli and I flew home - in an airport no bigger than a bathroom at JFK Airport in New York (I am being dead serious!) we met 2 women who were flying home from Tony's recent retreat. One modestly shared how she was the top broker for a prestigious financial firm. The other was a wealthy house wife.

    Both women could not stop raving about TR, the event, snorkeling with all types of wildlife, the resort, spending time in Tony's house. Endless marketing, endless selling, all but goading me to go the next time I spent time in Fiji.

    This is passion, manifest. This is the amazing power of a guy who believes so much in his craft and loves his craft and people so much that all they do is rave about the guy and sell his courses and live events and retreats and books and everything that the guy puts out there.

    I genuinely believe he's one of the ultimate examples of how a sales person can build a stunning empire from a passionate, heart-centered space, all while starting from a dead broke, down and out, space.

    Ryan
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    • Profile picture of the author socialentry
      Originally Posted by ryanbiddulph View Post

      Then you have slick folks who master manipulation. The lack passion.
      But what if you are passionate about manipulating people?
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Originally Posted by Kurt View Post

    Many years ago when I was young my Mom and Step Father owned a door to door sales company. My Mom gave me a piece of advice that has stuck with me all this time.

    She told me that there were two types of good salesmen. One is the kind of salesman that could sell ice to an eskimo. It was all about the pitch and sales techniques.

    But she also brought up another type of salesperson, and this was the person that "bought the pitch" themselves. An example of this is a vacuum cleaner salesman I met later in life, and no it wasn't Claude.

    This guy loved the vacs he was selling so much, he actually bought 3 of them for himself. I never quite understood why anyone would want 3 vacs, but he did buy 3 of them with his own money. He bought his own sales pitch.

    She taught me that the salesperson that buys the pitch themselves is the absolutely the best sales person. And this guy was a very good salesman as his honest enthusiasm was picked up on by his prospects.

    You can read all sorts of advice about how to sell things, but instead of just becoming able to sell ice to eskimos, you may want to also try selling things that you love and would buy yourself. It's probably a lot easier for you to sell something you'd buy yourself.


    So the question is did the vacuum salesman tell other people he bought his own product or did people know this from seeing the vacuum cleaners in his house?

    My point is, this is a sales pitch, AKA, I'm not only the Hair Club President, but I'm also a client.

    I do agree that knowing what to sell from your own buying habits is the easiest way to sell.




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  • Profile picture of the author brookeharper08
    It's a battle between doing what can earn you an income and pursuing something that you're passionate about and selling it as a product.
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