The challenge that we face when we put ourselves in the role of sales is we tend to think that we’re taking on that role of the manipulator, the persuader, the person who’s going to be ripping off the people that we are talking to. It paints an ugly picture and we’re finding it hard to sell with ease and integrity. Speaker, writer, marketer and business owner Mark SA Smith says you’ve got to get clear away that ugly vision of sales and detach it from yourself completely. Sales is the first step to loving up your customers because sales allows us to deliver what we do most.
Mark says sales is about helping people change so that they can get what they want and need hopefully from you. When you have somebody come to you and talk about their pains and dreams, they are seeking you to help eliminate their pain and facilitate their dream. If they walk out without that happening, that’s when you’re ripping them off. Mark shares some tips on how you can change your vision and sell with ease and integrity.
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How To Sell With Ease And Integrity with Mark SA Smith
Let me tell you a little bit about my guest. He says, “We all sell something for a living, yet most of us feel a bit dirty when it comes to asking people for money.” I know many feel that way because I hear it all the time. My guest is Mark SA Smith who helps people sell with ease and integrity. He works with technologists, healers and entrepreneurs to figure out how to acquire the right customers fast. He’s the author of thirteen books with two more in the work and he is an idea generator, a problem solver and encourager that speaks, writes, coaches and celebrates life. I’m so excited to have you. Welcome.
Thank you, Terri. It’s such a delight to be with you. Everyone, I want to ask you. I want you to think one thing here. When you think of the word salesperson, what other words come to mind? What do you think of, Terri?
I think of cars. I think of manipulating, I think of forcing.
It’s not pretty, is it?
No. It’s ugly.
That’s the challenge that we face is that when we put ourselves in the role of sales, we tend to think that we’re taking on that role of the manipulator, the persuader, the person who’s going to be ripping off the people that they are talking to. It’s ugly. It really is. We’ve got to get over it. First thing you’ve got to do is get a clear way that ugly vision of sales and detach it from yourself completely. Instead, we need to spin this around. Keep in mind that the root of sales is Sala from old English, which came from old Norse, which came from Germanic and it means to deliver.
Just that simple. As each of us are delivery agents for what we do to our customers and our clients, we have to realize that sales is what allows us to deliver what we do most. The way that I look at my life is I get to sell so that I can do what I love and if I don’t sell, I don’t get to do what I love. Sales is the first step to loving up my customers. Can we take on that vision? Can we take on that role?The root of sales from the Old Norse is “sala” which means to deliver. Click To Tweet
That feels really good because the word Heartrepreneur means that we do love our clients and our customers. This just fits right in.
I want to give you a new vision. A new definition of sales. Sales is about helping people change so that they can get what they want and need hopefully from you. Anything else is narcissistic pathology. That’s it and we literally have to get people to change. When you have somebody that comes into your practice and they say, “The reason why I’m here is because pain, pain, pain, dream, dream, dream.
They are seeking you to help eliminate their pain and facilitate their dream. If they walk out without that happening, you rip them off. They see hope in you and you keep the hope away from them. They go hope someplace else. The process of selling is helping them change so that they feel comfortable and confident with you so that they can get what they came for. You feel the difference.
I not only feel the difference, it resonates. It makes total sense and feels really good by the way.
Selling is supposed to feel good for all parties involved. If it doesn’t feel good, you’re doing it wrong. Let’s just move to how does sales play into the world of what we do? Marketing is everything you do that triggers a relevant conversation. It’s what you do that causes somebody to say, “I think you could help me out. Let’s talk.” The conversation is the sales component. Sales facilitates a mutually profitable transaction. Each of those words is important. It’s about facilitation and for most of us on the show, it’s what we do for a living. Facilitation is part of what we do. It has to be mutually profitable, otherwise somebody is getting robbed, so that they have to benefit and you have to benefit and all of us.
If we can’t benefit, somebody will say, “No, thanks. I’m not the right person for you,” and if you do that even once, if you take somebody’s money even once, then we start to get the dirty sales. Then the third thing is that service is about creating customer loyalty. The thing that’s interesting is that marketing, sales and service are defined by two customer decision events. When customers decide everything before that is marketing. When they decided that sale starts, when they make commitment is when service starts. What’s the difference between deciding and committing? Have you decided to go on vacation this year?
Have you committed to go on vacation this year?
I have plane tickets and hotel reservations.
That’s it. The difference is ticket. When somebody shows up and says, “Can you help me?” They’ve made a decision to make a change in their life, but they have not yet made the commitment until they put out that checkbook or credit card. Sales is everything you do in between their decision and their commitment and that’s it. That’s how I define marketing, sales and customer service.
It’s actually brilliant and it’s easy. It makes sense. It aligns with doing business, heart to heart. It’s interesting because as I was introducing you, I said you help people sell with ease and integrity. I’m sitting here going, that was really easy and it really is just about heart to heart connection and doing the right thing. That’s integrity. It’s a total fit.
Let me share with you your success formula for sales. When it comes to your success as a sales professional, there are three components. 50% of your success is based on your customer’s motivation. Do they want what you offer? Do they find it valuable? Is it something that is right now important to them? I don’t care how good you are, how cheap you are, what kind of deals you can offer. If they’re not motivated to do what you’re offering, you’re not going to make it happen. 40% of your success is the relationship that you generate with that customer.
Do they trust you? Do they believe you? Do they think that you are acting in their best interest? Or are you just trying to collect your rent payment, your mortgage payment, your car payment for this month? I don’t care how much they want you. If they don’t feel comfortable and confident with you as a person, they’re not going to buy. Then 10% of your success is your product, your service is. Let’s be honest, your customers can solve their problems a lot of different ways other than you. Yet the salespeople, what do we tend to put all of our efforts?
The products, the services, talking about that.
Stop it. The heart of sales, Terri, is the 90%. When you can understand your customer’s motivation, when you can develop a relationship, you can sell him anything that meets their needs but not until.
10% is the products and services, is that right?
That’s it. Just 10%. There’s a lot of bad products out there. I’ve seen a lot of good products out there that don’t because the emphasis is on the wrong thing. Most of us have been taught selling by default and traditional selling is talking about a product or services’ features which create advantages, which generate benefits. Talking about features, advantages and benefits is about attempting to map the product to the customer’s motivation.
In fact, it’s even upside down. We should start talking about benefits then talk about advantages then talk about features if we’re going to do that, but still mapping it to the customer’s motivation and that is always a challenge. Stop that. That’s old school methodology. It’s 120-year-old technology. Stop it. What we need to talk about instead is what is the customer’s objectives that’s driving their motivations? What are their priorities that’s driving their motivation? What are their criteria? Criteria is what they find valuable. That’s what drives those motivations.
When you talk about it, what do you want to do? What do you want accomplish? What did you decide that made you come and see me now? What a really killer question to ask from sales? What did you decide that caused you to come see me? Then the next question is how important is this to you? Let’s check your priorities. Is this something that you’re looking at doing right now? Next month? You’re just shopping? That’s fine because priorities are going to indicate where they are in a motivational stack. Then criteria, how will you decide who to choose? How will you know who to choose? What’s going to create value for you? Once you understand those three things, then we can take those objectives, priorities and criteria and we can map it with the product so we can help them get what they walked in for.
When we talk, we have to seek to disqualify. Bernie Siegel, the master healer of cancer only chose people who could heal and rejected everybody else. We need to take that same concept. You don’t want everybody to be your customer, only those who value what you do or willing to pay for it, who want to repeat the experience, find that you are unique and want to tell others about you. If you can’t do those things, based on what you’ve told me so far, “I don’t think I can help you right now. What should we do next?” That’s what we do.What people find valuable is what drives their motivations. Click To Tweet
I’ve never heard anybody language it that way.
It’s just that simple. Tell them no before they tell you no.
I have a page of notes. Will you come back? There’s so much more I want to dig into and I also know that you can help our audience really do a good job for their customers and keep them long-term. I’m going to have to have you back. Mark, how can people get in touch with you?
You come from heart. What you just taught us about asking people for money and doing it with this process is going to make a difference for everyone. I know I have some notes of my own and I thought I was pretty good at this so thank you. It’s really phenomenal. Thanks for being with us.
Everyone, do make a connection. Mark SA Smith clearly understands how to make asking people for money much easier. It allows you to do it from a Heartrepreneur’s place and it’s really going to be a benefit. I hope you’ve enjoyed to our show. Make sure that you subscribe. It’s so much easier. You’ll never miss an episode. Just think if you didn’t subscribe, you might have missed Mark SA Smith. You’d be upset about that and please share. Make sure you share Heartrepreneur. Pass everything forward. Share this episode. Let’s help other people who are entrepreneurs, business owners, let them have the privilege and opportunity of selling and serving more people with these. Thanks again for tuning into this episode of Heartrepreneur Radio. I’ll see you next time.
About Mark SA Smith
Mark S A Smith leads the Executive Strategy Skills Summit. A 36-year veteran of the business world, running his own company for 26 years, he works with companies large and small to achieve their sales and marketing goals.
Mark designs and implements leadership, sales, marketing, customer acquisition and client conversion systems that find and recruit willing buyers for products and services ranging from common every-day to high-end unique and disruptive.
He is often invited to speak at entrepreneurial and corporate events because Mark delivers unique, valuable, and pragmatic ideas to grow and succeed. With a deep understanding of international business, he worked in Europe for three years and has delivered events in 54 countries.
Mark is the author of 13 popular books and sales guides and has authored more than 400 magazine articles. He is a genuine Guerrilla Marketing guru, co-authoring three books with Jay Conrad Levinson, and is a certified Guerrilla Marketing Coach.
A renaissance man with many talents, Mark is passionate about leadership, team building, teamwork, sales, and marketing.
For over twenty years Mark has served as a strategic advisor to corporate leaders and executives all over the world who must develop the best way to bring in the right strategies for successful growth and sustainability. What makes him different is he brings a holistic view of the business instead of solely focusing on one aspect and ignoring the impact of decisions on the rest of the organization.
Working with companies of all sizes, clients include BEA, Arrow, CDW, ConnectWise, Commvault, Dell, ePlus, HP, Hitachi Data Systems, Microsoft, IBM, Ingram Micro, Agilysis, Tech Data, Oracle, Raytheon, NetApp, Synnex, Lexmark, Society of Government Meeting Planners, National Speakers Association, and Meeting Professionals International.
With his engineering, sales, and business background, he delivers systems, processes, and ideas in a way that customers, salespeople, and management understand so that they can clearly communicate with their customers.
A musician, avid reader, walking enthusiast, and father of five, he and his wife, Molly live in Las Vegas enjoying the finer things the city has to offer.