Sales Training 101
“Are you sure we won’t be thrown out?” Sam* asked, looking nervously at me.
Our job that day had been to train Sam, and it had gotten off to a rocky start. I’m about to tell you rule number one of being a salesperson. The rule Sam had accidentally broken. Are you ready?
Never go anywhere without your business card. Don’t believe me? Then let me tell you a little bit more about Sam.
Sam had just spent a ton of money planning a sales event. He had everything you could want from an event like that. Sam had catering. He had a nice and professional venue. It was a nice event for everyone who attended. Sam really outdid himself, except for one small problem:
Hardly anyone showed.
All that money Sam had spent? Sunk cost. I don’t know if Sam made any money from that event, but I know that he didn’t make more money than he spent.
Now, let’s take it back to my surprise sales training with Sam.
Here’s My Card
We took Sam to Barnes and Noble. Our customers were business people, so we told Sam to go to the business section and put one of his cards in the pages of any of the business books. Sam was nervous about the idea.
“Are you sure we won’t be thrown out?”
Here’s another sales tip for you: as long as you’re courteous and professional the whole time, it doesn’t matter if you get kicked out. There’s always another bookstore.
So off goes Sam. He puts a business card in a book. Then he looks around nervously. He didn’t see anyone coming so he put another card in another book. Looked around again. Didn’t see anyone coming again. Another card. Another peek. Once more he puts a card in a book and looks up. Sam sees one of the employees moving and nearly throws the book in fear. The employee got closer, and closer, and then….
…walked right on by without saying anything.
Power of The Business Card
About a day or so later Sam got a call. The guy was ecstatic to have found Sam’s card in Barnes and Noble. Called it a miracle. He was so ecstatic, in fact, that Sam assumed this guy must have been a friend of mine. There was no way a simple business card had a guy this excited. Sam didn’t want to risk a sale if this was real, so he invited the guy to the event he was planning. Remember? The event only a few people attended?
Guess who was one of those people?
Moral of the story: Never leave home without your business card.