Ep 129: The Nuts and Bolts of closing a deal

I recently hosted a live workshop with Jerimiah Lancaster, who is a founding partner with me of hubermethod.com, our new sales coaching business. Hundreds of people joined as we discussed sales, how to close, how to gain trust, and our six step sales method. If you have any questions or want to learn more you can reach out to Jerimiah at hubermethod.com.

Speed wins deals. This sounds obvious, but if you wait 20 hours to contact a lead your close rate will be a fraction of what it would be if you were getting on a call that day or that hour. Timing is everything, so you need to catch the person when they’re motivated and ready to make a decision fast. Most people will give their business to the first person who contacts them. You do not have time to waste.

Continue to follow up. Professionally follow up a lot. If an important person ignores your email it doesn’t mean they aren’t interested. Jeremiah and I have both been in contact with leads for months or years before they were ready to pull the trigger. People are busy, they have competing priorities, you need to stay top of mind for them. Try to add small bits of value when you follow up too, showing that you’re willing to put in the work to get the business.

Absolutely put in work on customer discovery before jumping on the call. Too many sales reps do zero research before a call. You have all the tools you need at your disposal through Google, LinkedIn, and other sources. You should know the customer’s location, what their business does, their headcount, their market, and other key details. You need to be naturally curious. Discovery happens through every interaction as you think about how you can really add value to a customer’s operations, not just sell them a product.

Cold leads are a confidence game and a numbers game. If cold LinkedIn messages are your most effective way to get clients then send 2,000. If you keep following up and don’t get responses, you’re at least putting yourself in position to be top of mind when they’re ready to pull the trigger.

An outside salesperson shouldn’t be on you radar until you’ve grown sufficiently. Every owner can sell their business better than anybody else, you’ll never find somebody that cares as much as you. If you can’t close the business yourself, you shouldn’t hire a sales rep yet. Even if sales isn’t your background, you need to learn to speak with customers and step up to the plate. Lean into sales. The more frequently you speak to prospects and customers, the better you’ll get at sales but also the better you’ll know how to shape your product or service. Only hire outside sales help when things are moving so fast that you can’t keep up with hiring and training your staff.

Once you grow, a huge part of your success will be how well you coach your sales team. A friend of mine in Athens, GA owns Movement Mortgage, and they hire folks fresh out of college and develop them into mortgage loan officers. They have a great coaching program to develop their staff. Every loan officer has an accountability coach and a meeting breakdown coach. They get coached on biweekly meetings, set goals, and get held accountable.

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About Me

I started the Sweaty Startup in December of 2018 because I believe the Shark Tank and Tech Crunch culture is ruining the real spirit of low-risk entrepreneurship.