Door-to-door Business Sales - Advice Needed

35 replies
Let me preface my post with... I have no experience in sales and this will be my first real push. My previous clients have come to me through referrals or chance meetings that have turned into new business. I "sold" them on being straightforward, honest and helpful.

I am expanding my business video services however and I want to make a strong push out into the community, meet business owners and introduce my company and services, so in addition to direct mail, LinkedIn, networking events, etc... I've decided to try door-to-door sales.

My process will be something like this: stop into a business cold and ask for a 5 minute meeting with the owner, 5 minute presentation on the benefits of video and why they should be using it, "sell" the next step which is a 30 minute free video marketing strategy session. 30 Minute strategy session is a blend of education and info gathering for me, still no selling, but sell the next step which is a full blown presentation on video, why they need it, how we will do awesome work for them. Ask for the sale then.

Seeing how this is my first time, I wanted to ask any experienced folks here for advice regarding that first cold visit and how to best get the owner to give you 5 minutes. Any mistakes you've made that you learned lessons from?

One specific question:

I have a brochure/flyer that I've created to leave behind with a business, whether I get the 5 minute meeting or not.

I also have a sales letter I've written for direct mail. Do you think it would be a good idea to leave the sales letter and my flyer behind, if I can't get that initial 5 minute meeting?

Thanks all... I appreciate your help.
#advice #business #doortodoor #needed #sales
  • If I had any sort of video talent... here's what I would do:

    1. I would suggest creating a website that is a hub for local business reviews / spotlights / news, etc. You can even personalize and call it something like www.YourNameinCity.com.

    2. Create a Facebook page / Google Plus Page, Twitter account and YouTube channel, Foursquare account.

    3. Make your site a fun blog... add a few posts about restaurants you've been to, businesses you frequent... take pictures and live videos of you and your friends at the business having fun.

    Put all of that online and start to fill out the site a bit.

    Make sure you share everything you do on those other channels you created.

    4. As you're out and about in the city, create a short video with your video. Make it a personal tip regarding that business and upload it to your YouTube Channel. YouTube allows mobile uploads.

    Next, check in with Foursquare and share the link there as a Foursquare Tip. Anyone else using Foursquare will surely check out your video and it will start to get views. At the end of the video and in the title encourage others to leave info about the business. Keep an eye on the comments.

    Spend time on each of your social accounts and ... socialize!!! visit business youtube channels, G+ pages, Facebook pages, Twitter, etc. Like them... comment on them... do everything as your business. Link everything together so any curious business owner will see you everywhere.

    Next...

    Turn it into $$$

    Once you've built the site up a bit and have several videos out there... go to businesses you frequent. Bring a smart phone or iPad and ask to speak with the manager / owner about your blog and how you'd like to do a spotlight video on their business. You can do a fun interview, or ask to take pictures of the store and write a story about them... if the owner is uncomfortable doing video right away, you can just type out the interview. If you can't write, you can always hire someone here on WF to write for you.

    There are all sorts of ways you can then upsell them on something...

    1. More professionally done videos
    2. YouTube channel - offer to share it on your blog and embed some videos on their site... no site?
    3. Custom website - if you can't do this, refer them to a reputable warrior for a cut in profits or outsource if you want to handle the customer service (that would be best).
    4. Facebook page setup - just open a basic page, link it to your own and share with your friends / family. Get them to ask their customers to like the page... there is tons of info on promoting FB for business.
    5. SEO for website, Google Plus Local, Video...

    There is no end to what you can do for them.

    In my opinion, going in for the sale will not work nearly as well as what I've suggested... I know, because I've done both LOL
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  • Profile picture of the author beeswarn
    Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

    Seeing how this is my first time, I wanted to ask any experienced folks here for advice regarding that first cold visit and how to best get the owner to give you 5 minutes.
    1. Work hard.
    2. Make a lot of visits.
    3. Be aggressive

    Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

    Any mistakes you've made that you learned lessons from?
    I learned that when I failed to do any of the three things above I had unsatisfactory results.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Interesting. I don't quite agree. I mean, this stuff'll help you, but if your message isn't right tons of visits won't work.

      You really need an excellent 30-second commercial. You have a very short time to make that impression.


      Originally Posted by beeswarn View Post

      1. Work hard.
      2. Make a lot of visits.
      3. Be aggressive



      I learned that when I failed to do any of the three things above I had unsatisfactory results.
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      • Profile picture of the author beeswarn
        Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

        Interesting. I don't quite agree. I mean, this stuff'll help you, but if your message isn't right tons of visits won't work..
        We're not in disagreement, Jason. I thought he had something to say or would develop something. But I like that people are teaching him how to get it together.

        I just wanted to point out that business success requires hard work and I almost never see it mentioned in these posts. Once you have a plan, you need to work hard to make it happen, or you need to pay someone to work hard for you.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
          You got it! Those visits aren't going to make themselves.

          Lots of people want that Easy button. It doesn't exist. Expertise and training can help you shorten your learning curve, but you're still going to have to put in some effort.

          Originally Posted by beeswarn View Post

          We're not in disagreement, Jason. I thought he had something to say or would develop something. But I like that people are teaching him how to get it together.

          I just wanted to point out that business success requires hard work and I almost never see it mentioned in these posts. Once you have a plan, you need to work hard to make it happen, or you need to pay someone to work hard for you.
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          • Profile picture of the author midasman09
            Banned
            I'm sorry folks BUT...."working HARD", for me, is making 100 or more Phone Calls or sending out a few thousand emails or PostCards to people I "THINK" will buy whatever I'm selling!

            "Working EASY" for me is....going into a town of 3,200 people....walking into 16 businesses...."COLD TURKEY"....and getting 12....just 12.... businesses owners to give me....a TOTAL STRANGER....a check for $195!

            Did you notice the words "Walking Into"?

            What I do (and what I've done for over 30 yrs) is....WALK INTO BUSINESSES....FIND THE OWNER....GRAB HIM/HER BY THEIR "GREED GLANDS"....TURN THEM UPSIDE DOWN AND SHAKE THEM UNTIL CASH FALLS OUT OF THEIR POCKETS!

            I had a GREAT Day yesterday....collecting $195 from 12 business owners ($2,340) (With my Pizza Flyer program)

            I believe in....SEEING PROPSECTS IN PERSON....SHOWING them what I have....telling them how their business can profit and getting them to write ME a check.

            Don Alm...."Belly-To-Belly" sales guy
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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Prospecting ails all sales issues.
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    • Profile picture of the author midasman09
      Banned
      Here's what has worked for me.

      1) Go to WalMart and buy a "Portable DVD Player" (I bought a Phillips because it has the largest Screen) and a Digital Camera.

      2) Go to a nice restaurant....tell the owner you are "creating Video Promotions for Restaurants" to put on their website or use as a Promotion.....and you'd like to make a Sample for his restaurant.

      Tell him he has spent lots of TIME, EFFORT and MONEY on his INTERIOR Decorating BUT....people outside don't know how UNTIL they're inside. A Video let's people know what is INSIDE...BEFORE coming in!

      Tell him there is NO Charge and NO Obligation....you'd just like to take some photos, create the Video and show it to him! If he asks "How Much" or any other questions...tell him you don't know until you get the Video made.

      3) Take about 10 photos inside (even a plate of 2 of food) and 1 or 2 outside (sign and bldg) Put together a Video using Windows Movie Maker or Animoto. (Make sure to include some appropriate BackGorund Music)Burn a DVD....put the DVD in the Portable DVD player and go back and show the owner.

      I get $500 PLUS....an extra $300 to put the Video on "Tube Mogul" that puts the Video on 27 "Video Sites".

      Whether or not the 1st guy buys....use your 1st DVD as a Demo to show other restaurant owners. The ONLY way to sell this is to "WALK IN COLD"! No Phoning, No email, No Letters... just "BARGE IN....ASK THE OWNER TO "TAKE A LOOK" AT YOUR SAMPLE VIDEO....TELL HIM YOU'D LIKE TO MAKE UP A SAMPLE FOR HIM....AT NO OBLIGATION...ALL YOU'D LIKE TO DO IS TAKE A FEW PHOTOS AND YOU'D BE BACK IN A DAY OR 2 TO SHOW HIM!

      Here's a link to one of my 1st Videos;


      Don Alm
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  • Profile picture of the author beeswarn
    Hey midasman, I have good news: You're winning your argument.

    The bad news is that you're arguing with yourself. No one told him not to make in-person visits. Quite the opposite.

    No one told him not respond to your advice and stroke your ego, either. Maybe he's just out working now and will do it later.
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  • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
    Thanks for the replies all. Just to be clear, as far as what I'm selling, I have that covered. I have a truly unique product offering and many years experience in film/tv/video production.

    This is going to be hard work for me, I know it. I know the rejection will get to me some days, but I'm also ready for that and prepared to persevere.

    I am getting hung up on small details though, overthinking things, worried that I'm not going to say the exact right thing and will lose opportunities that way. I gotta stop that.

    I did get some advice that I shouldn't leave anything behind if I can't get that initial 5 minute meeting, that it would just be thrown out.

    I'd love to hear all the ways I can optimize this. How do I get the receptionist to get me to the person I want to see?

    I do have a 30 second commercial, but if I never get past the receptionist, then what? Next business and try another day?

    What about a phone call the night before, leave a message saying I'm going to drop something by, and when I talk to the receptionist, let her know that I told John Doe that I was going to drop something off for him? Then leave my brochure and sales letter?

    I feel like even if I don't get the meeting that getting my sales letter into their hands is a big win.

    But I have no experience with how this works in the real world. Ugh.

    Anyone set me straight?

    Thanks all, for your help.
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    grrr...

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    • Profile picture of the author mrjosco
      Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

      Thanks for the replies all. Just to be clear, as far as what I'm selling, I have that covered. I have a truly unique product offering and many years experience in film/tv/video production.

      This is going to be hard work for me, I know it. I know the rejection will get to me some days, but I'm also ready for that and prepared to persevere.

      I am getting hung up on small details though, overthinking things, worried that I'm not going to say the exact right thing and will lose opportunities that way. I gotta stop that.

      I did get some advice that I shouldn't leave anything behind if I can't get that initial 5 minute meeting, that it would just be thrown out.

      I'd love to hear all the ways I can optimize this. How do I get the receptionist to get me to the person I want to see?

      I do have a 30 second commercial, but if I never get past the receptionist, then what? Next business and try another day?

      What about a phone call the night before, leave a message saying I'm going to drop something by, and when I talk to the receptionist, let her know that I told John Doe that I was going to drop something off for him? Then leave my brochure and sales letter?

      I feel like even if I don't get the meeting that getting my sales letter into their hands is a big win.

      But I have no experience with how this works in the real world. Ugh.

      Anyone set me straight?

      Thanks all, for your help.
      There are different views on this. Some say don't leave anything behind because it will just be thrown out, but I don't stick to that mindset.

      Here is why: Sometimes a sale takes more than one contact. Sometimes someone who is not interested at all right now is a real prospect in 1,2 or 6 months.

      Part of sales is getting the right people, AT THE RIGHT TIME. Sometimes you will talk to the right people at the wrong time. Leaving something behind, even if they throw it away, is an interaction that makes you a little more familiar the next time you drop in.

      You can also use it as an excuse to follow up. "Hi sir. I just wanted to drop in and see if you had an opportunity to review our information. Did you have any questions?"

      No matter how they respond, you have a conversation. Of course, don't waste too much time with someone who isn't interested - but not every sale is a one encounter experience!

      I have a major client now who, six months ago, essentially told me to "drop dead" when I cold called them. Even though they were cold, and a little rude, when I spoke to them six months ago I was able to ask a few questions about their current situation. When we were done talking, I sent a little postcard to thank them for their time (second contact) and ask them to keep our information on file in case their situation changed. Finally, six months later I called (third contact) and they were much less hostile, but still kind of neutral. I asked if I could resend the information and got a commitment that they would review the information and their current provider. (third contact). I called two weeks later (fourth contact) to follow up and make sure they had reviewed the information as they had agreed. Finally, I was able to set up an appointment to talk about using our services (fifth contact). And they bought!

      This client might bring in up to $10,000 in revenue. And that is just because I kept getting them 'touches' that allowed me to catch them at the right time. Sure, some will say it isn't worth 5 attempts - but each attempt took me 5 minutes or less, on average. Do you think 25 minutes is worth $10,000 in revenue?

      Just be smart about what you leave. Track your costs. Track your conversion rate and don't spend more than you can afford on materials.
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      • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
        Yes, my product is a complex and potentially a big investment for them. I hold no illusions that anyone is going to buy on the first meeting and I have designed "touches" into my process as described in my first post.

        I'm going to forgo the sales letter for now, but perhaps I'll leave my flyer behind and test that.

        Thanks again everyone.

        Originally Posted by mrjosco View Post

        There are different views on this. Some say don't leave anything behind because it will just be thrown out, but I don't stick to that mindset.

        Here is why: Sometimes a sale takes more than one contact. Sometimes someone who is not interested at all right now is a real prospect in 1,2 or 6 months.

        Part of sales is getting the right people, AT THE RIGHT TIME. Sometimes you will talk to the right people at the wrong time. Leaving something behind, even if they throw it away, is an interaction that makes you a little more familiar the next time you drop in.

        You can also use it as an excuse to follow up. "Hi sir. I just wanted to drop in and see if you had an opportunity to review our information. Did you have any questions?"

        No matter how they respond, you have a conversation. Of course, don't waste too much time with someone who isn't interested - but not every sale is a one encounter experience!

        I have a major client now who, six months ago, essentially told me to "drop dead" when I cold called them. Even though they were cold, and a little rude, when I spoke to them six months ago I was able to ask a few questions about their current situation. When we were done talking, I sent a little postcard to thank them for their time (second contact) and ask them to keep our information on file in case their situation changed. Finally, six months later I called (third contact) and they were much less hostile, but still kind of neutral. I asked if I could resend the information and got a commitment that they would review the information and their current provider. (third contact). I called two weeks later (fourth contact) to follow up and make sure they had reviewed the information as they had agreed. Finally, I was able to set up an appointment to talk about using our services (fifth contact). And they bought!

        This client might bring in up to $10,000 in revenue. And that is just because I kept getting them 'touches' that allowed me to catch them at the right time. Sure, some will say it isn't worth 5 attempts - but each attempt took me 5 minutes or less, on average. Do you think 25 minutes is worth $10,000 in revenue?

        Just be smart about what you leave. Track your costs. Track your conversion rate and don't spend more than you can afford on materials.
        Signature

        grrr...

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    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post


      I feel like even if I don't get the meeting that getting my sales letter into their hands is a big win.

      But I have no experience with how this works in the real world. Ugh.

      Anyone set me straight?

      Thanks all, for your help.
      Either just mail the sales letter or forget the sales letter. Make your sales letter into a short presentation you can give. Going in to see a business owner just to hand him a sales letter is not going to get you anywhere.

      Ask a few questions about their business, and how they view marketing online. This will at least get them into the conversation. You'll be surprised how many business owners are actually looking for someone to show them what to do online. Usually, the first one there, wins.
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      • Profile picture of the author sandalwood
        beeswarm,

        In part you said:

        I just wanted to point out that business success requires hard work and I almost never see it mentioned in these posts. Once you have a plan, you need to work hard to make it happen, or you need to pay someone to work hard for you.

        You are so correct. Like Jason pointed out, the visits don't just happen. You have to take:

        ACTION

        which is really an acronym for working to get it done, whether you do it or pay someone to do it. That pretty much tells the story.

        Next batter...

        Tom
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      • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
        I think you misunderstood. I am not there to give them the salesletter. I am there to get the 5 minute meeting where I do have a 5 minute presentation to give them. The letter is only to leave behind if I can't get the initial 5 minute meeting.

        Would you leave a sales letter behind if you couldn't get that inital 5 minute meeting?

        Would the receptionist just throw it out?

        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

        Either just mail the sales letter or forget the sales letter. Make your sales letter into a short presentation you can give. Going in to see a business owner just to hand him a sales letter is not going to get you anywhere.

        Ask a few questions about their business, and how they view marketing online. This will at least get them into the conversation. You'll be surprised how many business owners are actually looking for someone to show them what to do online. Usually, the first one there, wins.
        Signature

        grrr...

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        • Profile picture of the author midasman09
          Banned
          I'm assuming by "Door-To-Door" your prospects are Small Businesses.

          What I do is;
          1) Walk in and ask if the Owner is in (If I'm asked, "what is this about?" or "Who are you"?...I say, "I'd like to show him a "New Idea That can bring him more customers"!....)
          2) When owner arrives I HAND HIM MY SAMPLE....or I open my Pitch Book and point to 1st page....tell him what it's about and how it can benefit his biz.
          3) When it come to "How Much?"....I quote a price with a Set Up Fee and, before he can respond....I say, "And....if you give me your decision TODAY....I'll drop the setup!

          Don Alm
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        • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
          Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

          I think you misunderstood. I am not there to give them the salesletter. I am there to get the 5 minute meeting where I do have a 5 minute presentation to give them. The letter is only to leave behind if I can't get the initial 5 minute meeting.

          Would you leave a sales letter behind if you couldn't get that inital 5 minute meeting?

          Would the receptionist just throw it out?
          I wouldn't leave a sales letter. Brochures, sales letters, and other promo materials just get thrown out, and it makes it too easy to leave behind thinking you have a chance. It's highly likely this would be thrown out before the owner sees it. It's even more likely that ...in the 1% chance the owner sees it...they will throw it away.

          The reason you never want to leave a sales letter with the receptionist is that the owner will read it (highly unlikely) and feel he has enough information to make a buying decision without talking to you. And the answer will always be No. This is after 25 years of direct, talking to the owner of a business selling.

          It also acts like a crutch so you leave having the feeling you did something, when you really didn't. Sorry.

          You want the absolute most powerful way to get into see the boss? Buy The Power To Get In. It's a $1 book on Ebay or Amazon. Read it and follow it. I wish I had that book 2 years ago. There is no better system that I'm aware of.


          And you have the right attitude. I can tell you from personal experience that going to 20 businesses a day, just to see what they are thinking, and asking a few questions will get a good client at least once a week. Believe me, there are people out there that are looking for you while you are looking for them. The first one that sees them...wins.
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          • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
            Claude,

            Awesome info. Thank you so much for your advice. I did leave my flyer behind at a few places and you're right. I sure did feel like I did something, but true enough, what did it accomplish? Nothing.

            I went to 20 businesses of all different sizes yesterday and talked to a human at maybe 14 of them. Some weren't there at all, others had no one at the front desk. (Cost cutting measures?) Spoke to two owners. One totally brushed me off.

            I spoke to the other owner and he was short staffed and busy, but nice. I told him I was a neighbor and just wanted to introduce myself and left a flyer. Today I followed up with him via email thanking him for his time and wanted to set something up for next week. Tomorrow I'll call him.

            Let me ask you this... at larger companies with a receptionist and a CEO/President back in the corner office, will I ever get a meeting with one of them, cold calling at the door? Seems impossible.

            How do you get a brief meeting with the CEO?


            Thanks!



            Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

            I wouldn't leave a sales letter. Brochures, sales letters, and other promo materials just get thrown out, and it makes it too easy to leave behind thinking you have a chance. It's highly likely this would be thrown out before the owner sees it. It's even more likely that ...in the 1% chance the owner sees it...they will throw it away.

            The reason you never want to leave a sales letter with the receptionist is that the owner will read it (highly unlikely) and feel he has enough information to make a buying decision without talking to you. And the answer will always be No. This is after 25 years of direct, talking to the owner of a business selling.

            It also acts like a crutch so you leave having the feeling you did something, when you really didn't. Sorry.

            You want the absolute most powerful way to get into see the boss? Buy The Power To Get In. It's a $1 book on Ebay or Amazon. Read it and follow it. I wish I had that book 2 years ago. There is no better system that I'm aware of.


            And you have the right attitude. I can tell you from personal experience that going to 20 businesses a day, just to see what they are thinking, and asking a few questions will get a good client at least once a week. Believe me, there are people out there that are looking for you while you are looking for them. The first one that sees them...wins.
            Signature

            grrr...

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            • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
              Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

              Claude,

              Awesome info. Thank you so much for your advice. I did leave my flyer behind at a few places and you're right. I sure did feel like I did something, but true enough, what did it accomplish? Nothing.

              I went to 20 businesses of all different sizes yesterday and talked to a human at maybe 14 of them. Some weren't there at all, others had no one at the front desk. (Cost cutting measures?) Spoke to two owners. One totally brushed me off.

              I spoke to the other owner and he was short staffed and busy, but nice. I told him I was a neighbor and just wanted to introduce myself and left a flyer. Today I followed up with him via email thanking him for his time and wanted to set something up for next week. Tomorrow I'll call him.

              Let me ask you this... at larger companies with a receptionist and a CEO/President back in the corner office, will I ever get a meeting with one of them, cold calling at the door? Seems impossible.

              How do you get a brief meeting with the CEO?


              Thanks!
              Thank you. Get the Book The Power To Get In. It will completely map out everything you need to do to see CEOs . I was shocked at how well this method worked. This is if you want to see a specific company CEO. If you have a hit list of 100 companies you want to talk to, or are more looking at a specific industry, this is the way. The book is about a buck on Amazon.

              Here's what I did for more than 20 years when cold calling. I stopped trying to sell. I was doing it to see if this was a person I wanted to talk to. I was sorting, not selling. All the pressure was off me. What was my goal? One person to present to a day (of which most bought). So I was just sorting until I found the right guy. Believe me, while you are looking for them...some are looking for you. You just need to find them.

              Personal story.
              I was thinking about buying a large life insurance policy for a long time. When I got married I told my wife "Believe me, someone will call. The first agent that calls gets the business". Nobody called.

              I started a company in my small town. It was in the newspaper. I told my wife "Don't worry, an agent will call. The first one that does, gets the business". Nobody called.

              We had a son. Nobody called. Why didn't I call an agent? Because I wanted someone to get off their ass and work. I wanted that agent.

              I opened a retail store 11 years ago. Nobody called.

              About 5 years ago, I was in my store...online...about to buy a Million dollar policy on myself. The premium was over $4,000 a year.

              At that moment a guy walks into my store, asks to see me, and I shook his hand. He said "I'm with New York Life. May I ask Who you have your life insurance with?"

              I said "YOU!".

              He later told me it was the single biggest sale he ever made. Sometimes you just have to be there.

              Never give up.

              All the mistakes you make will be at the beginning of learning how to cold call. If you read a few books on it, write down what you said that works, do it every day....and in a month, you'll be comfortable doing it. In a year you'll be great at it. And in 5 years you'll never have to do it again, because you'll have new clients calling you.

              Why did I keep cold calling after so many years? Because It unearthed new business I would never find in any other way. And after a few years, it was painless and easy.

              I'm pulling for you. Good luck.

              Added later; I just read your post saying you are selling a more expensive service to businesses with a million in sales or more. Yup, the book The Power To Get In is what you need. Buy it today.
              In a month, you'll have CEOs welcoming you because you are the obvious one to talk to. I've never seen a better idea to see CEOs. Selling is up to you, but this will sure get you in front of them.
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              • Profile picture of the author Rearden
                ALSO:

                You should DEFINITELY leave a flyer with your business card attached, AS WELL AS collecting a business card of some type.

                Will you get a FLOOD of business that way? Probably not. But something is better than nothing. Like the other poster said, something that costs a few pennies to increase your chances of familiarizing you with the owner or even getting them to call you, is worth the gain.

                Plus, now you have an excuse to call the owner back the next day.
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  • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
    Not necessarily "small" businesses. I am targeting companies over $1mil/yr in sales. They may be small regarding of # of employees, but I have a great product and it's not cheap.

    I am not expecting or even trying to sell the product on the first visit. I just want to start making contact.

    I need to get out there. Today. And I'm psyching myself out.
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    grrr...

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  • Profile picture of the author jakebvs85
    I agree! sales letter only work if people sign up for them.
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  • Profile picture of the author SydMichael
    In SALES there is no reason to ever NOT be straightforward, honest and helpful.
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    `Syd Michael
    "The Real Deal"

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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    There's a heavy-hitting life insurance vet that almost strictly sells by door-knocking cold on businesses.

    The advice he bestows his agents is to "knock on 30 doors MINIMUM each day" and that when you do that, you "won't be anything BUT rich."
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    David Duford -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    My health insurance agent door-knocked me cold about 3-4 years ago; perfect timing as my wife was going off her insurance and we needed coverage.

    He's probably made 3000 to 4000 in commission combined.
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    David Duford -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
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  • Profile picture of the author gg282
    I think everyone who walks into businesses are hoping to hit it off with the owner and either get an appointment or sale each time. However not realizing that several doors will need to be knocked or walked through (for businesses) in order to find someone interested in an offer or presentation. I think the problem with offliners is that they are great at online marketing and comfortable at their computers. However leaving the house to hit up local businesses might be a tough task... but when you park your car in front of the business, opening the door to get out of the car may be the hardest thing for some offline gurus may have to do.

    I used to do local seo, but not anymore more. I don't have time to figure out google. Figuring out google makes me tired. I sell life insurance in Texas now to both residential neighborhoods and recently local businesses. It's easier, plus after the sale I do not have to build links. As far as local businesses goes... I'm preparing my pitch, got a couple of ideas to try out (test). We'll see how it goes. Most importantly, this is all about being an effective communicator and salesperson. Find a problem and offer a wonderful solution.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Great thread.

    For all the negatives that cold calling and cold knocking gets, that fact is there's almost nobody doing it anymore.

    Everyone's convinced direct mail, email, or some type of tangental marketing method is the way to do it.

    And those fields are crowded with competition.

    My challenge to anyone frustrated with their results and looking to get the ball rolling on bringing in new business is:

    -Set a goal to introduce yourself to 150 new businesses a week for two weeks, defined as meeting the decision-maker, telling him what you do, and attempting to set an appointment, or:
    -Set a goal to call on 1000 businesses within two weeks, defined as simply dialing the number.

    As Claude pointed out, focus on sorting, not selling -- so understand you're not hustling and out to aggravate people. See who's interested in hearing more. Whatever it is you're selling, you'll eventually run across someone who says, "Hey, I AM interested. Tell me more."
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    David Duford -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
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  • Profile picture of the author s62731
    (Sorry if this has already been said, didn't read all the responses)

    If you're going to be doing door to door sales (or any type of sales in fact), try not to "shove" your service down their throat.

    Instead of going into "here's what i've got".... Try and get them to admit they need it.

    Once you get the owner:

    "Hey Tom, I was just looking at your (website, advertisement, marketing piece whatever) and realised how you could be getting a heap more customers with it. Is getting more customers something that would interest you?"

    Then just ask them questions about their business, actively listen to them, and repeat it back to them.

    me - "So what your saying is (repeat back) is that right?"

    Them - "Yeh exactly"

    me - "We'll i've got something that would......" and then introduce your product and start to sell.

    Cheers,

    s62731
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  • Profile picture of the author Brant
    Originally Posted by FormerWageSlave View Post

    One specific question:

    I have a brochure/flyer that I've created to leave behind with a business, whether I get the 5 minute meeting or not.

    I also have a sales letter I've written for direct mail. Do you think it would be a good idea to leave the sales letter and my flyer behind, if I can't get that initial 5 minute meeting?

    Thanks all... I appreciate your help.
    I would only leave the sales letter behind. Mail the flyer to them. This gives you a second opportunity to contact the business owner, and you never know why he didn't want to see you in the first place. You should also create a postcard mailer to send out as a follow up after one week after you have mailed out the mailer if you still have not received a reply.

    It may also help to cold call the businesses first and book an appointment with the Decision Maker. This is more professional in the eyes of many business owners and marketing Decision Makers. I was an Inside Sales V.P. for a b-to-b multimedia marketing company (we made videos and DVDs and other business marketing and communications media) and I was the guy who made all those calls. I can tell you that it really works. Your message is not urgent enough in the immediate moment to get a lot of people to agree to a "knock-in" meeting during their busy business day.

    It's more professional-seeming if you have someone else book these Intro appointments for you, if you can afford that. Have them call for four hours per day, five days per week. Pay them a decent base salary by the hour, and give them some kind of bonus incentive if you successfully hold a meeting. (No bonus for a canceled meeting or a no-show.)

    I hope this helps you.
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    Visit me at "A New Domain" digital magazine here!

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    • Profile picture of the author AgileWarrior
      Thanks everyone for sharing your practical experience. It just proves the point that no one approach works 100% for every business and 100% of the time.

      In other words:

      1. Most important rule is our attitude to be a problem solver, not a salesperson. So our responsibility is to unearth the (unrealized) problem(s), and offer alternatives. Businesses may think they just want to get more customers. The reality is that they also don't know how to maximize the sales from existing customers.

      2. Door knocking is only one of the many channels for connecting with our prospects. But the devil is in the details: our demeanor, approach (e.g., offering free 1st month service), articulation, sequencing of contacts may differ.

      3. The way we get the leads and how much we know about their problem may help the success of connecting. E.g., if we know they just failed in a Groupon-like program, we could discuss a more effective/less expensive couponing system, or complementary techniques to achieve the original objectives. If we give a talk in a group setting and they "raise their hand" to connect with us, it would be an easier door-knock.

      4. Having something to show them (e.g., an example web site for a similar business, testimonials, etc.) may help them to open doors. E.g., if you were the business owner, would you more readily open your door to someone trying to sell you their stuff, or to someone who shows a successful fellow entrepreneur and explains how you may "become like" them.

      5. The only way we can be "successful" at it is by picking up a method, doing it, and learning from it. The good news is that there are practical experience already posted above.

      AW
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    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      Read this:

      48 Hours with the King of Cold Calls, Market Research and Strategy Article | Inc.com

      Yes, it's from awhile back, but you know the fundamentals don't change.
      Wow! I just read it, and it makes me want to go out and cold call...right now!
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      One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

      Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
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  • Profile picture of the author marketwarrior06
    Banned
    Increase your social visibility then start thinking about others.
    I think sending the people only one page flyer is cool. Becasue most of them don't turn the page and read the other side. So why waste money by sending them 2/3 pages brochures?
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  • Profile picture of the author urbaniser22
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
      Originally Posted by urbaniser22 View Post

      Everyone shops online. What the hell that door to door thing? Useless.
      I'll tell you what's useless, your stupid post.
      What the hell is with you coming and bashing a Proven method?

      It may not be the fastest way to get a sale, but it works and works consistently.

      Okay, Mr. All Knowing Urbaniser, how can we get a lot of business owners to pay us each $5,000 a month just by having them shop online.

      Let's see what the Best Methods really are.
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      Life Begins At The End Of Your Comfort Zone
      - Neale Donald Wilson -
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      • Profile picture of the author ownergolan
        Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

        I'll tell you what's useless, your stupid post.
        What the hell is with you coming and bashing a Proven method?

        It may not be the fastest way to get a sale, but it works and works consistently.

        Okay, Mr. All Knowing Urbaniser, how can we get a lot of business owners to pay us each $5,000 a month just by having them shop online.

        Let's see what the Best Methods really are.
        Cant reinforce you enough. Except the fact that it is probably one of the fastest ways to getting a sale.
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        "Aiyyo I'm gonna be on ti-dop, that's all my eyes can see..
        Ill put in work, and watch my status escalate"
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