One of the skills that I believe everyone should have is the ability to sell.
We don’t know what the economic future holds.
But even if we did, the best way to be in control of your own personal finances is to have the ability to take a product or a service and sell it to people that need it.
If you are a business owner, or you’re looking to start a consulting or coaching business, you need to learn how to sell.
If you’re an artist who wants to sell your artwork, music or paintings, you must learn how to sell.
Vincent Van Gogh was a brilliant painter. In fact, he’s one of the most renowned painters of all time. However, he only sold one painting in his lifetime.
Had he been able to sell, his life would’ve looked very different.
So what is the quickest way to learn how to sell?
The quickest way to learn how to sell anything (that you believe in) is to start selling. As Nike says, “Just do it”.
But there are some skills that you can follow to become good at sales quicker.
We’ll get into those in a minute but before we do, I want to explain a couple of reasons everyone needs to have the skills to sell.
Why Everyone Must Learn How To Sell
Selling is a skill that everyone should be set on learning. Here are a couple of reasons for this:
1. Take control of your financial destiny
When you learn how to sell, you are not dependent upon a paycheck every month.It is almost impossible to increase your income as somebody working a 9-5 job.
Unless, of course, you’re working off of commissions.
But when you know how to sell, you are in charge of how much money you make and when you make it.
It’s very difficult to get a raise at a normal job. First of all, it takes a few years before you get an increase in salary and second of all the raise is minimal, only by a few percentages.
People get laid off all the time from jobs they think were stable. The reality is, there is no job security. The greatest security you can give yourself and your family is the ability to control how much money you make.
We live in uncertain times. If you take a few weeks and months to learn how to sell anything (that you believe in, obviously), you’ll be ten times better off than everyone around you.
2. The ability to start a successful business
I’ve literally mentored and trained hundreds and hundreds of people. Most of these people were either in sales, or they were starting their own business. One of the things that many consultants and coaches don’t think about when they’re starting their business, is the need to sell their services.
I’ve seen it over and over again.
Talented people that have good intentions fail at business because they are not selling their services.
Every business owner must take the time to learn how to sell their product or service.
It will save you much time and money in the long run and make you much more successful down the road.
The 10 Rules of Learning How To Sell
Rule #1: Understand what people want
The first and foremost rule to follow when learning how to sell is to research what people really want.
Not what YOU think they want. But rather what they think they want.
One of the things that a lot of people fail at is understanding what people are searching for before creating a product or a service.
I’ve worked with many consultants and coaches who were starting their business. More often than not, these new business owners were trying to sell things that not a lot of people were looking for. On the contrary, they were selling things that THEY thought people needed.
Give people what they want, not what you think they need.
The best way to understand what people want is through doing surveys and researching trends on Google.
Becoming a part of forums, such as Reddit and Quora, will also give you a good idea what people are truly searching for.
In many cases, you’ll come to find that what you THINK people want, is not actually what they want. Even though it might be what they need.
As a matter of fact, you could very well have information that you believe to be super important and that everyone should have. However, if your prospect is not searching for it, you’ll be wasting your time.
So the first rule of learning how to sell is to ensure that you have something that people actually want.
Rule #2: Create a product or service that solves a problem for your ideal target niche
Once you’ve figured out exactly what it is that people want, you can go about creating an epic service or product that will provide a solution to the problem.
In most cases, this product or service will be in your area of expertise and knowledge.
So it will be something that will flow naturally for you.
However, you could also come up with a product or service that is not related to the field that you’re currently working in. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you provide a legit solution to a problem that your ideal target niche is having.
The best way to find out how your target niche is, is to actively help people. Sometimes new entrepreneurs spend so much time trying to get the niche right that they miss out on a lot of business.
My advice here is to just start helping people. You’ll learn exactly what people want to know, what questions they have and how you can help them by helping them.
Also keep in mind that you want to believe in your product or service 100%. You want to be confident that it’s the best thing out there.
Because if you lack confidence in what you’re wanting to sell, you’re not going to be excited about selling it.
Rule #3: Actively search for people to help
Being helpful and looking for ways and places to add value is going to help you sell faster than anything else.
Why? Because money follows attention.
And when you’re helpful, you’re going to start to get noticed. Additionally, people are going to begin to see you as an expert in whatever area you are in.
Selling is a service. It’s something you do for people and not to them.
Learning how to sell greatly depends on your willingness to get out of your comfort zone and go where there are people to help. You also have the option of using social media groups to get involved with.
These groups are great to answer questions and add valuable information to people that are already there to learn more about specific topics.
So if you’re trying to learn how to sell, remember to be helpful and let people see your knowledge and expertise.
Rule #4: Ask great questions
If you consider yourself to be more of an introvert than an extrovert, you might believe that you’re not good at sales. However, this is not true. Some of the best salespeople are introverts.
Because introverts are often better listeners. The best salespeople are not the best talkers, they are the best at asking great questions.
To learn how to sell, you must also learn how to ask good questions. In particular, I’m talking about questions that uncover a prospects pain.
Asking great questions is important because it’s the only way to know how to truly help someone. There is no way you can know if what you are trying to sell is going to help someone or not, unless you ask good questions.
Rule #5: Get people on the phone
The reason I say to get people on the phone is because you want to be able to have a 20-30 minute conversation with a prospect to find out what exactly they are struggling with.
But it doesn’t matter if it’s on the phone or in person.
The point I am trying to make here is that you set up appointments to talk to people.
If you are learning how to sell a high-ticket product or service, you’re going to need to get comfortable with setting appointments with people.
These appointments are often called, strategy or clarity calls. This is especially true if you are in the consulting or coaching industry.
Conducting phone or face to face appointments are really powerful because they allow you to connect with a person in a way that allows for my time to build trust.
So I highly suggest setting up a sales process that your propsects will love. Having a great sales process is part of learning how to sell in a appropriate way.
Now, if you are new to sales and you’re really just wanting to learn how to sell quickly, you’re probably wondering how to set up the call. I have an in depth article on that here. However, I want to briefly go through the main aspects of the call in the next point.
Rule #6: The Call
So now that you have someone on the phone, how do you get them to give you money for your product or service?
Well, first of all you need to build rapport with the other person on the other side of the line.
It is not true that someone has to know, like and trust you in order to buy from you.
However, it is true that someone must trust you.
In order to sell something, you must have the trust of the client that your product or service will deliver the results they are looking for.
So, 1. Build rapport and do small talk for a few minutes. Then, 2. You establish the frame. This just means you let the prospect know how the call is going to go. You put yourself in a position to be in leadership.
Next, 3. you dive into the prospect’s situation. This is where you ask a lot of questions. Because you want to find out what exactly they are dealing with and how you can help them. 4. You present a solution to the prospect, providing them with the answers to their problem. But only if you have the answers, of course. 5. Close the sale and get paid.
Rule #7: Handle Objections
Another thing you must become good at when you learn how to sell is overcoming stalls and objections. Oftentimes this means getting to the bottom of an objection or a complaint. Again, asking good questions is key.
While we’d all love to get to the end of the call with no complaints, this is not always the case. Sometimes you’re going to need to provide certainty, objectivity and confidence to the prospect in order for them to make a purchase from you.
Rule #8: Spend more time closing, less time selling
You want to learn how to sell but you’ll probably be surprised when I say that it’s more important to spend more time on closing than on selling.
Most people are good at selling something.
All you need to do is be excited about something and talk about it. This makes you a salesperson!
But there are few people that are good at closing a sale and actually getting paid on the call.
If you really want to be good at selling, you need to get good at closing. Because if someone has not given you money, you have not made a sale. (Obviously.)
This means being persistent and not giving up on your prospect.
Very often when a prospect is in situation where they want to buy something, they are also afraid. Because it involves money.
So they need reassurance and leadership from you, given that you are ethical in your sales and believe that what you are selling is exactly what they need.
Rule #9: Get paid on the call
If you make a sale and get paid on the call, you are well on your to learning how to sell. In the case that the prospect wants to let you know about their decision later on, or the next day, know that in most cases they are not going to buy from you. Some will come back, most won’t.
If you have a full pipeline and you’re good at prospecting, this is not a problem. Just talk to the next person.
Rule #10: Rinse & Repeat
As I said at the start, the best way to learn how to sell is to just do it.
The fastest way you’re going to become great at sales is to do it over and over again.
There is no magic to selling. There is however, a skill-set involved. But the more you do it, the better you will become.
Selling requires you to be present and use your people skills. It also requires you to be quick and intuitive to your prospect. Some people are naturally better at sales than others because they understand people very well. However, I believe that everyone can learn how to sell. And everyone MUST learn how to sell.
It’s the only way to truly be in charge of your financial future.