Why I Nearly Gave Up, And How I Bounced Back

18 replies
So I haven't made a post in a long time. Well, a constructive post that helped readers, anyway. I have dropped the odd question in this forum, or another, but I wanted to give anyone who knows my history a bit of an update.

So here goes...

Around September last year, I hit a snag. I was coming off a great month in my new business (web design/seo/online marketing for local businesses) that I started in March and looking back, I realised why I entered this slump.

Now, I make ALOT of cold calls. This is how I got 90% of sales and was averaging around $3-$5k turnover per month doing so, more or less. But I learnt a lesson the hard way doing so, which I will share...

I started a week in September calling a few businesses, and all at once, had 3 super hot prospects at once! I was really excited : I had set new goals to break the 5K barrier and was really aiming to hit $10k for that month. I wanted to double sales and with these new clients, it was looking like I was taking my business to the next level.

But, the bright-looking future started to come undone. I would send the invoice, but no word. I would call them back, only to hear empty promises. "I'll call you back, we are just organising things right now", only to never hear back of course. I would email back and forth, but the prospect just wouldn't take action.

Those 3 super hot prospects fizzled out. Now, when you go from maybe 2-3 clients per month if you are lucky, to 3 super hot potentials in a WEEK, you think...Hold on, my business is making REAL PROGRESS! I really must be a big shot! You don't think its a lucky streak. Can you see the problem yet? You attach YOUR EGO to SHORT TERM RESULTS. I was attaching my ego to something I couldn't control!

So these 3 super hot prospects fizzled out, and I had no sales for that month. I was super bummed. I figured it was a problem with ME, with who I was. See how I completely did a 180? I thought I was the hotshot, when in reality, it was a lucky streak of interested prospects. Now, when they fell through, I blamed myself equally, even though it was BAD LUCK!

You know what the real solution was? And still is? And forever will be? PERSISTENCE. Client bails? Get on the damn phone and find a new one. No sales? Get on the damn phone, or email, or create a new service for your existing client base (did this), or setup a recurring service to cover the tight times. APPLY a STRATEGY and PERSIST! Don't blame yourself and wallow in self-pity. I was guilty of this for a LONG time. I wasted probably 3 months wallowing.

Now, it's 2013, and I am back. My sales are up, I'm back up to my usual sales per month, but on top of that, my recurring clients are building. I am starting to actually make some decent profit. I was THIS close to quitting.

My parents were begging me to get a job. My friends were recommending positions to me. I almost convinced myself that working a job would actually be the smart thing to do. But then I thought about the big picture.

So ask yourself...Can you do this? If you have even the slightest, nagging, little feeling that you can...Apply a strategy, apply YOURSELF and take action, and when things get hard, PERSIST!!!

OH and to re-iterate the big lesson : DON'T ATTACH YOUR EGO TO SHORT TERM, UNCONTROLLABLE RESULTS. So you made a few extra sales? DONT GET COMPLACENT! So your sales fell through? DON'T WHINE, OR CRY ABOUT IT, GET BACK ON THE PHONE!

Hope this helped someone out there. I wish I had taken my own advice back then, would have avoided wasting alot of time!
#back #bounced #gave
  • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
    I wish you contacted me. .. really I do.
    I would have helped you get over yourself.

    That ego thing. EVERY sales person you will EVER meet goes thru the same thing eventually
    the good ones sooner then later.

    the fact you made it through the worm hole so quickly.. is a testament to you.

    Most take months, some take years.

    but we have all hit that snag and wallow. It is part of growing.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Stevens
    Originally Posted by payoman View Post

    My parents were begging me to get a job. My friends were recommending positions to me. I almost convinced myself that working a job would actually be the smart thing to do. But then I thought about the big picture.
    This really resonated with me. Actually, my parents and family as a whole are cheering me on from the sidelines, generally. Although my Dad has showed me a couple of jobs in the paper now and then, which made me feel like he didn't think I could make it. Others have forwarded jobs to me, though. I just want to get past the stage where they stop doing that, and instead ask me if I have any jobs in my company for THEM :-)

    Great post. I actually read a post of yours today, where you posted your success and what you were doing to sell websites. Very inspiring.

    I am struggling selling mobile sites to people, and am considering focussing on desktop websites for the meantime using a similar strategy to yours, and upselling mobile later.
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    Yours in prosperity,
    Skochy - The Musical Salesman

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    • Profile picture of the author RyanLester
      Originally Posted by Scotty Stevens View Post

      This really resonated with me. Actually, my parents and family as a whole are cheering me on from the sidelines, generally. Although my Dad has showed me a couple of jobs in the paper now and then, which made me feel like he didn't think I could make it. Others have forwarded jobs to me, though. I just want to get past the stage where they stop doing that, and instead ask me if I have any jobs in my company for THEM :-)

      Great post. I actually read a post of yours today, where you posted your success and what you were doing to sell websites. Very inspiring.

      I am struggling selling mobile sites to people, and am considering focussing on desktop websites for the meantime using a similar strategy to yours, and upselling mobile later.
      Scotty & payoman, can you point me/us to this thread please?
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      • Profile picture of the author Scott Stevens
        Originally Posted by RyanLester View Post

        Scotty & payoman, can you point me/us to this thread please?
        Hi Ryan,

        This is the post I was referring to:

        http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...how-i-did.html

        I have been struggling to sell mobile for a while, and I am thinking of spending mote time selling desktop websites in the front end, with a strategy similar to Luke/payoman's.

        It's a good thread.
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        Yours in prosperity,
        Skochy - The Musical Salesman

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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Originally Posted by payoman View Post

    You attach YOUR EGO to SHORT TERM RESULTS. I was attaching my ego to something I couldn't control!
    ...
    OH and to re-iterate the big lesson : DON'T ATTACH YOUR EGO TO SHORT TERM, UNCONTROLLABLE RESULTS. So you made a few extra sales? DONT GET COMPLACENT! So your sales fell through? DON'T WHINE, OR CRY ABOUT IT, GET BACK ON THE PHONE!

    Hope this helped someone out there. I wish I had taken my own advice back then, would have avoided wasting alot of time!
    Yes. You make a sale? Don't get excited. You don't make a sale? Don't get excited. Keep putting prospects into your sales funnel, so that if you do lose 3 prospects in a week, who cares? You have 17 others.

    You can't control very much at all in selling.

    You can't control what happened at your prospect's place of business just before you called (argument, fire, flood, whatever).

    You can't control whether they pick up the phone or not.

    You can't control whether they can talk to you or not.

    You can't control whether they're interested in what you have to offer or not. (Yes, you can run a consistent sales process and see what comes out the other side, but you cannot control their interest level.)

    You can't control whether they buy or not. (Same as above: you can run a consistent sales process, but you can't force them to buy.)

    So take all that incorrect need to control, and throw it aside. Concentrate on the two things you CAN control:

    Do I make the calls?

    How do I make them (do I follow a consistent sales process, or wing it?).
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    • Profile picture of the author Scott Stevens
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      Yes. You make a sale? Don't get excited. You don't make a sale? Don't get excited. Keep putting prospects into your sales funnel, so that if you do lose 3 prospects in a week, who cares? You have 17 others.

      You can't control very much at all in selling.

      You can't control what happened at your prospect's place of business just before you called (argument, fire, flood, whatever).

      You can't control whether they pick up the phone or not.

      You can't control whether they can talk to you or not.

      You can't control whether they're interested in what you have to offer or not. (Yes, you can run a consistent sales process and see what comes out the other side, but you cannot control their interest level.)

      You can't control whether they buy or not. (Same as above: you can run a consistent sales process, but you can't force them to buy.)

      So take all that incorrect need to control, and throw it aside. Concentrate on the two things you CAN control:

      Do I make the calls?

      How do I make them (do I follow a consistent sales process, or wing it?).
      I love this. Working like this, consistently, kind of takes the pressure off trying to make the perfect pitch/presentation, sweating on every lead, etc., and instead puts the focus on consistent activity, letting the results take care of themselves.
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      Yours in prosperity,
      Skochy - The Musical Salesman

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  • Profile picture of the author Eddie Spangler
    The paymeister is back on the attack.

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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Rivers
    Hey Payoman,

    Glad to see you're back.

    Jason is spot on. As entrepreneurs we have to bring it every day or we get burned bad when things slow down.

    When I was younger it seemed that I was more of a machine and didn't really pay too much attention to my mindset. I just did it. The reality is that I was going through ups and downs then, but I wasn't as self-aware as I am now.

    However, as I get older I spend a ton of time protecting and nurturing my mindset because I now know that true success is always a mindset away.

    It's awesome that you were able to bounce back before you lost it all or gave up on your dream.

    Chris
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  • Profile picture of the author freeabs
    From my past sales and marketing experience, business is always cyclical. Some months do better than others. Factors such as budgets, overspending, over capacity are some of problems faced by businesses from time to time. If you catch them at that particular time, they may not take you up on your proposal. But that does not mean that they will not in the future. So it is always good to KIV and keep those customers updated with your offers from time to time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Robert Domino
    Originally Posted by payoman View Post

    My parents were begging me to get a job. My friends were recommending positions to me. I almost convinced myself that working a job would actually be the smart thing to do. But then I thought about the big picture.
    You were making 3-5k per month and they were begging you to get a job?

    :/

    Damn, jobs must pay a lot in Australia!
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    • Profile picture of the author fandbworld
      Originally Posted by Robert Domino View Post

      You were making 3-5k per month and they were begging you to get a job?

      :/

      Damn, jobs must pay a lot in Australia!
      I am making more than that and still get people to say I should get a "real job" lol it is pretty comical to me that people think you NEED to work for someone and that you have so much more security. Even though you can get laid off pretty easily.

      People are scared to try things on their own because they may fail. In turn I believe they think in their head that you may fail as well. So they try to "help" out. It is quite annoying but just ignore it because if you do it right you have the ability to make much much more money than you would working for someone else.
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    • Profile picture of the author payoman
      Originally Posted by Robert Domino View Post

      You were making 3-5k per month and they were begging you to get a job?

      :/

      Damn, jobs must pay a lot in Australia!
      This was when I was in my slump and couldn't bring myself to hit the phones, so things got pretty tight for a few months.
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      • Profile picture of the author Scott Stevens
        Originally Posted by payoman View Post

        This was when I was in my slump and couldn't bring myself to hit the phones, so things got pretty tight for a few months.
        But you had the strength of character to turn it around. Fair play to you.
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        Yours in prosperity,
        Skochy - The Musical Salesman

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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Yep.

    Went through the slump this time last year.

    I still have ups and downs.

    Just closed $4200 in business over the last two days -- I had closed that much, maybe, back in March.

    Now you know why I evangelize for prospecting.
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  • Profile picture of the author mark healy
    i agree, you must persist even when you want to quit over and over.You got back on track, well done
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