How to Successfully Deal with the Gatekeeper

Many sales reps don’t know how to deal successfully with the gatekeeper. If things like: “Will he know what this call is regarding?” keep you up at night, then you need to watch this video and use the proven techniques in it.

And if you’re a sales manager, you need to send this out to all of the reps on your team!

Entrepreneurs: 3 Best Practices for Building an Inside Sales Team

If you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner and you want to sell your product or service over the phone successfully, then there are 3 things you need to know before you begin. Watch this short video, and I’ll tell you exactly what they are:

Avoid these 3 Mistakes when Dealing with the Gatekeeper

Are you still getting screened out by the gatekeeper?

Are you still getting interrogated with questions like:

“Will he know what this call is about?”

“Is she expecting your call?”

If you are, then chances are you’re still making one of three fundamental mistakes listed below. In fact, just last week I was reviewing a client’s sales team’s calls, and I repeatedly heard many of the reps making these common mistakes.

And unfortunately, these mistakes lead directly to the kind of screening questions you see above.

The good news is that you can avoid all this by simply not doing what you’re going to read below. So, let’s dive in:

1) When the gatekeeper asks who is calling, don’t just give your name, and especially don’t just give your first name (hoping that the gatekeeper will think the decision maker knows you!).

Just giving your name and then stopping invites the gatekeeper to keep screening you. In fact, when you just give your name and pause, it telegraphs to the gatekeeper that you are a sales rep and that you should be screened out. And they proceed to do that.

2) Never answer a question (like “What company are you with?”) without giving an instructional statement. This is huge. Many sales reps answer the gatekeeper’s question and they just remain silent….

This again triggers the gatekeeper to ask you more questions, which then annoys them, and they figure that putting someone as annoying as you through will only get them into trouble. So—they screen you out instead.

3) Use some manners. Again, it’s amazing how rude some sales reps can be. They barely explain who they are, or what company they’re with (see #2), and they rarely are polite. And guess what? You get what you give. If you are rude or not kind with the gatekeeper, you’ll get that exact attitude back—and then some!

Little words like “please” and Thank you” go a long way when dealing with anyone—especially the gatekeeper.

Avoid these three blunders when dealing with the gatekeeper, and you’ll go a lot further in getting through to your prospect.

For more scripts and techniques on how to deal effectively with the gatekeeper, click here.

Closing Sales is Like First and Goal

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Hope you’re enjoying the NFL playoffs. A client and I were talking about that Bear/Eagles game a week ago, and (besides the Bear’s kicker—I do feel bad for him), we were talking about that last scoring drive of the Eagles. How they went for it on 4th down with 56 seconds left—and scored the winning touchdown.

That reminded me of what I was taught when I was new on the phone: that the sale doesn’t start until the fourth or fifth no. My manager used to tell me that it’s a like football:

He said that driving the ball down to the red zone was the same as giving your presentation. And that as soon as you asked for the sale at the end, you were now in the red zone.

He told me that if the client said “no,” then it was up to me to use a close and ask for the sale again. This was like running the first play in the red zone.

If the prospect was still willing to engage with me but still said no, then all that meant was that I didn’t get into the end zone on that play, but I had three more tries. So, I’d read another close and ask for the sale again.

If I got another no, then it was just third down. Time to deliver yet another close and ask for the sale again.

Same thing on fourth down: Run another play and try to get into the endzone.

Same thing in sales: If you’ve received three or four no’s, it’s time to try for it again, to read another close.

Think about the Eagles game. Did they give up after they ran first down and didn’t get into the endzone? Of course not.

What they did was they ran two more plays and then they went for it on fourth down. And they scored and won.

Now a couple of quick lessons:

1) You’re not always going to score on the first or second or even third closing attempt, but you must keep running plays—ask for the sale all four times.

2) Sometimes you get a penalty on the defense and get another set of downs—more times to ask for the sale!

3) Sometimes you can kick a field goal (drop close) and still come away with some points—or a partial sale.

The bottom line is that you don’t give up when the prospect says no—instead, just look at it like a fresh set of downs in the red zone—four new attempts to deliver a close, overcome an objection, and keep asking for the sale.

That’s how I dealt with objections (I kept running plays—using closes), and that’s how I made hundreds of thousands of dollars every year selling over the phone.

And it’s how you will, too, IF you keep closing and running plays in the red zone.

The Best Goal Setting Technique

Happy New Year!

If you’re like most people, then you’ve got a lot of goals in a lot of areas, don’t you?

If you are feeling overwhelmed with all you’re going to accomplish, you may be wondering where you’re going to get the time to do them all.

I’ve been goal setting for years, and while I (and the rest of the world) may get pumped up by all the wonderful things I’m going to accomplish and all the changes I’m going to make, what I’ve learned is that there is only so much time.

It’s still true that if you want to know how much goal accomplishment gets done, just drive by your local gym’s parking lot during the first week of January and then compare it to the first week in March.

I once heard Brian Tracy talk about setting goals, and he recommended a technique that not only made a lot of sense, but that turns out to be so powerful, it is life changing…

He said the way to get the most out of your goals is to make a list of your top ten goals for the year. Think about what’s most important to you in the different areas of your life and write down ten things.

Next, prioritize that list so that the most important goal is number one. The way to determine which goal is number one is to ask yourself which of the ten things you’ve listed would have the most impact on your life if you actually accomplished it.

Once you have your list prioritized, throw away the other nine goals and make a commitment to making that number one goal a reality in the next twelve months.

And once you’ve made that commitment, ask yourself what one action you can take today, right now, to begin reaching that goal. And once you have identified that, do it.

Before you go to sleep tonight, identify the one action you’re going to take tomorrow, and then commit to taking it.

And then do this each and every day until you have accomplished that one most important goal.

When I heard this, my first thought was, “Yeah, but what about the other nine goals? What about balance and all that?”

And that’s when he explained that despite our best intentions, most goal setting starts strong, but by March slows down, and by the summer most—if not all—have been abandoned.

That’s why identifying one goal, the most important and most impactful goal, is a better way to go.

In thinking about this one goal, think about how much your life will change (and the lives of your family members) if you reach this number one, most important goal.

If your goal is to become a top producer in your industry and double or triple your income, think about the impact that will have on your family. Think about buying that new home, or providing for your parents, or allowing your wife or spouse to stay home.

If your goal is to finally write that novel, think about how your life will change when you finally accomplish that this year! Think about the weight off your shoulders now that it is a reality rather than just another dream.

If your goal is to lose weight, get in shape, and get off your medication and live a longer, healthier life for yourself and your family, think about the long-term rewards achieving that goal will bring you! (And think of the consequence if you don’t.)

Whether or not you agree with Brian, I’m here to tell you that it’s more impactful for you to hit the most important goal in your life than it is to set ten and not hit many of them…

And, hey, if you reach your number one goal by July, you can get to goal number two!

If you’ve set goals for years and not been very successful at following through, then why not take the pressure off yourself and try this method?

How good would it be if you actually reached your most important goal in 2019?

Most Popular Article of the Last Two Years!

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As a sales rep, you need solutions to the problems you face when selling over the phone. You don’t need theory, you need actual word-for-word responses that aren’t salesy.

Responses that work.

And that’s why my blog has thousands of subscribers and why more and more sales teams are added daily.

I thought you’d benefit from my most popular article I’ve published over the last two years. It’s no surprise it deals with objections you get while prospecting.

Study these and adapt them to your product or service and then use them to overcome the objection: “We’re all set.”

And happy Holidays!

BTW: A variation of this objection is anything along the lines of:

“We are okay with our present system.”

OR

“We’ve already got a company that handles that.”

OR

“We’re fine for right now.”

Here’s how to handle it:

“We’re all set”

Response One:

“That’s great, and I’d just like to see if we could get on your vendor list for the next time you’re in the market. Let me ask you…” 

Now get into your qualifying questions…

Response Two:

“Most companies I speak with are ‘all set’ and that’s why I’m reaching out to you now—I want to give you an option for the next time you’re in need of this. Let me ask you…”

Back to qualifying…

Response Three:

“No problem. Let me ask you: the next time you’re in need of this, what’s number one on your wish list?”

Response Four:

“I understand – I didn’t expect to catch you in the market right now. Instead, let me get an idea of your perfect profile, and then I’ll send you some information you can keep on file next time you need this…”

Now re-engage by asking a qualifying question.

Response Five:

“Got it. Let me ask you: the next time you are in need of this, are you the right person to speak to about it?”

If yes, then qualify them for that next time—especially asking about timeframe, budget, etc.

Response Six:

“Understand, and let me ask you: When is your next buying season for this?”

Then keep the conversation going by asking additional qualifying questions.

Response Seven:

“That’s fine; I totally understand. And let me ask you—the next time you are in the market for this, how many companies are you going to reach out to?” 

And then ask how you can become one of them, what their budget is, who the decision makers are, etc.

Response Eight:

“No problem. What you might find helpful is to know about our special pricing and the additional services we provide. Did you know that….”

Then pitch one or two things you do that others don’t – and use a tie down!

Response Nine:

“I’m glad you said that. What I’ve found is that those companies who are already using a vendor for this are surprised to learn that….”

Give them a shocking statement about how you’ve just been rated number one, or that you give free delivery, etc. Something that will peak their interest…

Response Ten:

“No problem. Could I be the “next in line” company you call the next time you’re in the market for this?”

If yes,

“Great, let me get your email and send you my info…”

Then:

“And just out ofcuriosity, what would have to change for you to even begin looking at someoneelse?”

Look for an in here…

So there you have it: ten ways of handling this age old blow off.  Just remember, your goal isn’t to try to overcome this—rather, it’s to sidestep this resistance statement and get information you can use to create value and continue the conversation.

Now, it’s not too late to give yourself the best gift you’ll get this holiday season: Over 500 more word-for-word scripts, questions, and phrases that will help you make 2019 your Best Year Yet!

Order Power Phone Scripts here.

Note: There will not be a blog article next week on Christmas Day. Our next blog will come out on Wednesday, January 2nd.

The One Gift You Need to Give Yourself This Season

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What’s the ONE thing you all wish for this season?

More money, right?

If you’re in sales, then the way to make more money is to close more sales. It’s that simple, isn’t it?

And if you’d like to make more sales, then you need to upgrade your selling skills.

Would you be willing to spend just $18.30 on yourself to do just that?

If so, then the easiest way to do that is to gift yourself the bestselling book inside sales guide that has over 500 Word-For-Word Scripts, Phrases and Questions that will help you open and close MORE sales. Period.

Why Power PhoneScripts?

  • Endorsed by the Top Sales Trainers in the world:

Jeffrey Gitomer, Jeb Blount, Mark Hunter, Jill Konrath, Steve Richard, Trish Bertuzzi, and many others endorse Power Phone Scripts as the best tool for selling over the phone.

  • 5-Star Rating on Amazon.com

Power Phone Scripts has a solid 5-Star rating by 47 users to date!

  • Scripts to help you handle ALL the selling situations you face over the phone:

In Power Phone Scripts, you’ll learn how to:

  • Cold call and Prospect over the phone better and with more confidence.
  • Learn how to qualify prospects without interrogating them.
  • Build real rapport so people will actually talk to you.
  • Present your product or service better and close more effectively.
  • Overcome the objections that are frustrating you now.
  • Close more sales and make more money, period.

As you spend money on gifts for other people this season,don’t forget about yourself! You can get Power PhoneScripts in book form, on Kindle, or on Audible.com

Give yourself the One Gift that will pay you dividends in 2019. Gift yourself the new sales skills that will make your job easier, give you more confidence, and that will make you more money.

Who wouldn’t want a gift like that??

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Why Aren’t You Using More Tie Downs & Trial Closes?

sales technique best practice tie downs and trial closes

I don’t know why tie downs aren’t used more by sales reps selling over the phone. I was listening to an experienced rep the other day just pitch and ad-lib to a good prospect, and at the end of the call, she had no idea about the prospect’s level of interest, nor did she qualify the prospect.

Tie downs (and trial closes) serve several important functions, including:

Getting confirmation that the point you just made was understood and accepted by your prospect.  This is especially important when selling over the phone because you don’t have the physical clues to tell you how your presentation is going.

Using tie downs is also instrumental in building a yes momentum. If the prospect is agreeing with you, then you can feel confident at the end in asking for the sale.

Tie downs also give your prospect a chance to engage with you—when you use one, you actually have to wait for them to respond.

Trial closes are crucially important as well. If all is going well with the tie down responses you’re getting, then as you head toward asking for the sale, you can use a few well-placed trial closes to make asking the deal even easier.

There are many other value reasons for using tie downs, but let’s look at some of the most effective, and go over in what situations they work best:

#1: Whenever your prospect asks you a buying question (and any question a prospect asks you is a buying question), after you answer it you must use a tie-down.  Examples:

If a prospect asks you how much something is, after you give them the price—or the range of prices—you can use any of these tie downs:

“How does that price sound?”

OR

“Is that what you were looking to spend today?”

OR

“How does that compare with what you are paying now?”

OR

“Is that within the budget you have for this?”

OR (If selling a commodity)

“That’s a great value today, and I’d take as many as I could at that price—how many can I ship you today?”  (O.K., that’s a close, but I couldn’t help myself!  Do you see how tie-downs can lead to a close?)

If a prospect asks a question about a feature or a benefit, use any of the following: 

“Does that make sense?”

OR, better:

“How would you use that?”

OR

“Do you understand how that works?”

OR

“I think that’s a great benefit – how about you?”

If a prospect makes a statement that seems negative, use:

“How did you come to that?”

OR

“Compared to what?”

OR

“What do you mean exactly?”

OR

“How does your current vendor handle that?”

#2 Use tie downs throughout your presentation. Most sales reps power through their presentations and use far too few tie downs or check-ins (as the rep I listened to demonstrated last week). And when they do, they are usually closed ended which lead their prospect to reveal little. Use these more open-ended tie downs to engage AND learn crucial buying motives:

“That’s how we drive the leads…. now tell me about how you would get the most out of them?”

OR

“That’s one of our biggest selling points…. tell me: how would this impact how you’re currently doing things?”

OR

“Do you see how this works?”—And then: “How might this work for you?”

OR

“Are you with me there?”—And then: “What questions do you have?”

OR

“That’s a nice feature, don’t you think?”—And then: “How would that work for you?”

OR

“Is this sounding like it might work for you?”  (Now we’re branching into trial closes—did you notice that?)

#3: Tie downs can easily become trial closes. Customize from any of these to fit your product/service:

“What do you think of this so far?”

OR

“Would this location work for you?”

OR

“How many locations would this work for?”

OR

“How many departments would want one of these as well?”

OR

“That’s pretty special, isn’t it?”

OR

“Do you see why this is so popular?”

OR

“Tell me, would that fit into your budget?”

OR

“Most people like this—how does it sound to you?”

OR

“Will that work?”
OR

“What else do you need to know?”

OR

“What other areas are you interested in?”

OR

“Would that be enough for you to move forward with this?”

OR

“Tell me: how close are you to wanting to move forward with this?” (A great trial close!)

Let me reiterate that using tie downs & trial closes gives you the information you don’t have because you can’t see your prospect’s reaction (because you’re selling over the phone). Therefore, it’s critical for you to begin using more of the above tie downs & trial closes during every conversation.

Remember, the more you can get your prospect talking, the more you’ll learn what it will take to close them…

Want more solid scripts you can begin using today to make more money? Buy yourself the best Holiday Present you’ll ever gift yourself (or your sales team!): Power Phone Scripts: 500 Word-For-Word Questions, Phrases, And Conversations To Open And Close More Sales

Four Proven Responses to: “We’re all set”

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Many sales reps still have trouble handling the initial resistance statement: “We’re all set,” or “We already have a dealer/supplier/vendor for that.”

If you struggle, too, then you’ll love the proven response below. Adapt them to your style and product or service, and start getting past this common objection.

“We’re all set”

Response One:

“That’s great, and I’d just like to see if we could get on your vendor list for the next time you’re in the market. Let me ask you…”

Now get into your qualifying questions…

Response Two:

“Most companies I speak with are ‘all set’ and that’s why I’m reaching out to you now—I want to give you an option for the next time you’re in need of this. Let me ask you…”

Back to qualifying…

Response Three:

“I understand—I didn’t expect to catch you in the market right now. Instead, let me get an idea of your perfect profile, and then I’ll send you some information you can keep on file next time you need this…”

Now re-engage by asking a qualifying question.

Response Four:

“Got it.  Let me ask you: the next time you are in need of this, are you the right person to speak to about it?”

If yes, then qualify them for that next time – especially asking about time frame, budget, etc.

As with all selling situations, it’s easy to handle objections and stalls if you’re prepared with a good response.

If you’d like over 500 more responses to the common objections and stalls you face, then invest in my bestselling book on phone scripts: Power Phone Scripts.

You don’t have to keep struggling!