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Treating Prospects Like Children - Bad Sales Advice

In my career, I've been fed phrases like "the squeaky wheel gets the cheese" or "be the freshest face in the pile" by sales managers/owners of companies I've worked for.


I agree with these sentiments but I think there's a misinterpretation of these that sets apart good reps from bad reps.


Good reps follow up in a way that treats buyers like they are a trusted partner. Cutting through objections by being concise and disarming but still providing guidance to the buyer that ultimately gets them what they want.


Bad reps think that follow up consists of "Have you done this yet?". I see so much bad advice on LinkedIn and in comments that provide a quick pathway for prospects to feel steamrolled/ like you're an egotistical prick who knows more about their internal processes than they do.


Best advice I have ever been given as a sales pro is treat your prospects how you want them to treat you. Getting in the door is only part of the deal. Don't make the tone of the relationship shifty and condescending by asking questions just to get a response. Be a confidante for your clients and be a strategic extension of their reputation that they can trust to represent them in their company.

๐Ÿ”Ž Prospecting
๐Ÿ‘‘ Sales Strategy
๐Ÿ“ˆ Closing
29
Beans
Politicker
+8
Account Executive
You don't build rapport by being condescending and you can't properly demonstrate the value of your product without understanding their pains either.

Sales is a two way street, unless you're in used cars or insurance - then fuck off.ย 
UrAssIsSaaS
Politicker
+8
SaaS Eater
@funcouponsย care to share your thoughts on the latter here?ย 
InQ5WeTrust
Arsonist
+9
Sales Savages, what is our profession? Trauma!
@Incognitoย might have some hot takes
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Diablo
Politicker
+7
AE
Absolutely, for our product line pain points are something that we try to build our conversation around.
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
big facts.ย 
InQ5WeTrust
Arsonist
+9
Sales Savages, what is our profession? Trauma!
To add to this don't just paint by numbers it's super obvious to the person on the other side.

Even if it's your 25th call of the try and engage and don't be robotic.ย 

Especially if it's a more transactional sale, always a competitor out there.ย 
CuriousFox
WR Officer
+13
Senior Account Executive
I do enjoy an occasional paint by numbers with my Claw.
InQ5WeTrust
Arsonist
+9
Sales Savages, what is our profession? Trauma!
Bear or white?ย 
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GrizzleMcThornBody
Politicker
+10
EVP - RevOps
most the people I sell to are 50 years old, the people servicing the contract are 25. it's tough. Neither age group knows anything and both need to be educated in different fashions. it's why i'm going grey.
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
Hah. Thatโ€™s the grind right there. Just herding cats 24/7
jefe
Politicker
+8
Sales Director
Definitely awful advice. I always try and be very consultative and position myself as a trusted advisor.

That involves respect, and actually listening the prospect. Not being a doormat, but being realistic.
UrAssIsSaaS
Politicker
+8
SaaS Eater
And you wonder why sales gets a bad wrap.

Well said
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
1000% because when I was a new rep my sales manager was all I had. Now I'm older and wiser and this place exists.ย 

mitts2
Politicker
+8
Account Executive
I've said it before and I'll say it a million more times. Make yourself a consultant to the business (obvi, easier said than done). Gotta do your research on how the business works, how they make money, what challenges they are trying to fix, where they want to go next quarter / year. if you can become an extension of their business conversations there is not limit to what you can sell them (hyperbolic but you get the point).
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
Consume every ounce of content you can get on your top prospects and you will never be blind sided
Kinonez
Celebrated Contributor
+9
WR Enthusiast
ย "Have you done this yet?" Soooooo true! you got me with this!
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
What pisses me off is that sales reps do this to other sales reps... Like we don't know the infancy of what you are trying to accomplish!
Kinonez
Celebrated Contributor
+9
WR Enthusiast
That hurts even more! I'm with you there.ย 
thebishop
Catalyst
+6
Sr. Sales Executive
Definitely - position yourself as their ally and good things will happen. Also it allows you to be real when shit isn't getting done.ย 
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
yes! Nothing is better than being able to speak freely with a client/soon to be client.ย 
Th
TheValueProps
Sales Leader
Always position as an advisor. Steam rolling and peppering follow up never works.
Jbeans
Praised Answer
+3
Director of Sales
Actually caring helps. People can sense when you actually give a f .. and when you donโ€™t. No one wants to be a quota.ย 
ultraman
Tycoon
+9
Shepherd
Squeaky wheel gets the cheese? You need to circle back with that dude and tell them itโ€™s grease, not cheese. Solid takes here tho ๐Ÿ‘Š LinkedIn is ๐Ÿ—‘
Biznasty
Opinionated
+5
Lead Business Development Manager
๐Ÿ˜‚ just wondering if Iโ€™ve been saying this wrong to myself after mishearing it. Because cheese really doesnโ€™t make any sense
6
So, most people I know did not plan on becoming a sales person initially, it just happened. So, curious to know how my fellow warriors here ended up in sales anyway ? The more interesting stories the better..!!
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