Selling What's Different
Why focus on selling what's different when
you can be the same as everyone else?
Why stand-out when you can blend in?
Why is blending in so much easier?
Why is standing out from the competitive
crowd often viewed
as risky business?
It all starts with your childhood. Now, I'm not a shrink but
I do think it goes all the way back to when we were kids. I
mean most kids - probably not the neighborhood bully. Speaking
of neighborhood bullies, I wonder what they're all doing today?
Never mind that! When I was a kid I wanted to fit in with the
other kids and maybe you did too. I Wanted to belong to a group
of kids. I think that's normal. However, this desire to fit
in and belong, and not make waves doesn't serve us well later
in life - especially when you're selling.
I remember being in junior high school. There was a boy named
Russell. He was tall and lanky. He wore funny glasses. He
didn't seem to be well coordinated. I guess by today's
standards he looked a little nerdy. He was always by himself
because he was different.
Back then, when I was a kid, it was no fun being different
from everyone else.
Fast forward a whole bunch of years. I'll tell you being
different is where the action is especially if you're an
entrepreneur or a professional sales representative.
Unfortunately not everybody understands this - I guess it's
because we've been trying to blend in since we were kids.
Don't focus on the similarities among you and your competitors.
Instead, concentrate on the differences.
It's time for change. Stop blending in and start standing-out Be sure you're
selling what's different.
Being different pays better too. Keep that in mind.
Here are some ideas to get you thinking seriously about the
art of differentiation in your sales territory.
1. Talk different. I'd give anything, almost anything, to
have a genuine/authentic British accent. Nothing makes you
sound more different than a good accent. I was born in
Brooklyn and so I have a slight accent. Okay - it's not slight,
it's Brooklyn. Now get this, for the longest time I tried to
hide my Brooklyn accent. When I moved to Chicago not a single
day went by without someone pointing out the fact that I had
a Brooklyn accent.
So instead of accepting my different accent I try to avoid
it, until one day I realized my accent made me different.
Botta bing, botta boom!
2. Look different. In one of my sales training classes last
week a woman told me her shoes make her different. Apparently
she has quite a collection and her customers recognize this
as a point of difference. It could be a very unique/handmade
briefcase. It could be bow ties for men. It could be a very
unique and eye-catching fountain pen. It could be you always
favor one color. It could be anything you want it to be.
3. Do different. Do things in a different way. You have
developed a signature way to end every sales call. Many years
ago NBC had an evening news program starring Chet Huntley
and David Brinkley. Every night they ended their program
with "Goodnight Chet. Goodnight David. And goodnight for
NBC News." It was their signature.
It worked for them and it can certainly work for you.
4. Prepare different. Being prepared doesn't take the fun
out of being spontaneous. In fact being prepared makes your
spontaneity more appreciated. Prepare written sales call
objectives. Prepare and practice the benefits of your products
and services. Prepare and practice how you will handle the
dreaded price objection. You can also prepare "Knock your
socks off" sales proposals.
5. Ask different questions. Try asking questions that don't
include "Ahs" and "Ums." This is almost impossible
to do when
your questions aren't prepared prior to the sales call. When
you ask a question and the customer responds "What do you mean"
that's a clear indication it wasn't a very good question. FYI -
the whole concept of asking fabulous open-ended questions is
the centerpiece for all my sales training programs.
Ask this question and see what kind of response you get. "What
would it take to win your supplier of the year award?" And
remember the better the question, the better the response will
6. A.B.T.D.T. Always be
trying different things.
Look for the
differences in people and things. Note what works and what
doesn't work. Try taking small chances on a daily basis. Try
doing things a little different on a daily basis. Be sure you're
selling what's different.
Be sure you're selling different . . .
=> Send 3-5 handwritten notes to internal and
=> Thank everyone personally who helps you
make a sale.
=> Use a fountain pen with blue ink to write
=> Send birthday cards with the sound of music.
=> Do one good deed everyday.
=> Order personalized M&Ms.
=> Say yes I can!
=> Be positive!
If you dare to be different and start selling what's
different, the road to success is right around the corner.
The Dow's Down . . .
As I'm writing this newsletter the Dow Jones industrial
average was down as much as 777 points. This is not a pretty
picture. It's also not a great way to start your day. Skip
the news in the morning and focus on thinking positive thoughts
about your expectations for your selling day.
This is still the best country in the world so don't let this
bump in the road get you down. In fact what goes up goes down
and to be sure what goes down eventually goes back up.
Just the way things are.
Make everyday a masterpiece . . .
Jim, just got a chance to read your "Becoming
machine," ten steps. WOW that has got to be the most
I have ever read.
Brain Snacks . . .
I just added a new page to my website featuring e-books.
this link to take a look.
Links To Previous Newsletters
To Prejudge Is To Misjudge
And Going For The Gold
Selling - It's Time For A Tune-up
The secret of success is to start from scratch and keep
20 years . . .
513 customers . . .
83.3% repeat business
still have (7) sets of my CD-six packs.
My customer say these CDs are without a doubt
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Why am I selling these for less than half price?
I'm doing this to make it easier for professional
salespeople, like you, to sharpen your selling
It's impossible to listen to these CDs and not
take away practical ideas you can use to grow your
CD-sixpack includes these titles:
> Are You Complete To Compete
> How To Avoid Sounding Pathetic During A Sales Call
> 35 Ways To Differentiate Yourself
> Closing The Sale
> How To Sell Anything For List Price - Really
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This stuff really works. Don't think so - you can
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That should make it a no-brainer you!
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