Sales Tip: Good Story Close
Strategy: Use the One Good Story Close.
Everyone loves a good story, especially one with a happy ending. What is interesting is that we, as human beings, actually learn best through stories. It sinks directly into our subconscious minds. Stories sell! Develop some great stories to deal with objections (price, value, procrastination or taking action). Here is my story about commitment and desire.
I was a fledgling sales representative working as a headhunter. The first week I did not think I was going to make it. It was a lot of telephone calling, a lot of rejection. After four days on the job I went to my manager Ken and said, “I don’t think this job is for me.” He proceeded to tell me why I would succeed, all the skills I had, my support and personal skills, but he said he knew the one thing I lacked. He mentioned he would give that to me tomorrow at 1pm. “Oh by the way, do you have any credit cards?” he asked. “Yes,” I said, “two.” At 1pm the next day he came to my desk and said, “wrap it up, we will be gone for the afternoon.”
He then took to me to a major shopping center. On the way, we talked about my goals in life, and that we had to make them come alive. He also talked about my need to become a successful sales person. I had to look, act, talk, and feel the part. He said, “here is where we are going to start.” We went in to a suit shop. He headed for the $500 suits (I had two jackets that cost me $75…for both). Before I could say anything he had six or seven suits out and was telling me to pick a couple. Out came the plastic -‐ my plastic. Then I needed ties to go with the suits. Fifty bucks each! Out came the plastic. Shoes to go with the suit, a new belt, a tie clip. Out came the plastic.
Then it was onto goals. He told me I needed, and we bought, an expensive personal organizer. Also, a visual representation of my goals -‐ I bought a little brass Porsche model car, and for other goals, other items. After three hours of shopping, we were finally done.
On Monday I looked good. I had all my goals laid out in my Day-‐timer. I put the brass Porsche on my desk (a side note -‐ I still have that brass Porsche, and a real one in my garage). He called me into the office. I was still kind of skeptical about it all. He said, “Jim, now you have all the tools you need to succeed in this businesses. You have goals, you look the part, and you have now what you lacked last week. ”I said, “What is it?” “Well tell me, Can you really afford all those things we bought on Friday?” “No.” “Well, you better get to work or the collectors will be calling. You see, you needed a reason to succeed. Some intense motivation to succeed…and now you have it.” I worked my butt off. I made more phone calls, talked to more people, took less crap from everyone, pushed harder, and stayed later than anybody, because I needed too. That second week I made $3600.
The lesson I learned was that some people are motivated by inspiration, and some people are motivated by desperation. And if you are going to make it you have to give your all, not part, not half, give it 110% and go for it. I use that personal story to discuss giving 110% and turning wants, and desires, into MUST-‐ HAVE items. Get inspired or get desperate, but get to the emotional level of I MUST do this and do it NOW. It has proven a useful story. What’s a story you can use to demonstrate: taking action, taking a risk, making a commitment.