Persistence: firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition.
I have to believe that persistence might be one of the attributes of top sales performers that won’t be questioned on this list. It’s real simple. You must have the ability to push conversations and stay on top of people to be successful because when working with humans there are a lot of commonalities that take place no matter which type of potential clients you are working with.
I could mention a ton fo them but will settle on a few of the major ones:
When They Say “No” Right Away:
This one took me a little while longer to figure out but when you understand the human psyche it actually makes perfect sense. People have been sold to in every which way throughout their lives so unless they are 100% actively searching for exactly what you say you offer then sometimes the early “no” or “not interested” is a reflex reaction that they don’t want to be bothered right now for a numerous amount of reasons you may not know about. This is where having persistence coupled with the fact that you believe you can really help the client based on the information you have can come in handy.
I had this situation come up on many occasions and one, in particular, was back in 2015 when I received a message back from an email that the person was not interested in what I was offering. Fair enough but I had some notes from conversations with this company in the past and really felt that we could help them make a difference with their business. I wrote a very professionally persistent email back explaining why a meeting for 30-minutes would be well worth his time and explained what I thought we could discuss. Long story short, he replied back and took the meeting and two months later they came in as a partner of ours. It was a great fit for their needs at the time and was a great partner and “logo” for our growing company. It turned out to be a win-win all around.
When They Say “Call Me Back In 6 Months”:
This type of conversation happens all the time and is very understandable if you are in the shoes of the potential client. This particular problem you solve is not a top priority at this time and they tell you to contact them back in 6 months or so. Happens a lot, right? Partly, this comes down to good documentation and organization of your accounts but it also mixes nice with a little persistence. Sure, you can wait 6 months and nobody would fault you for it. In fact, you’d be doing better than most sales reps who never call them back at all. However, if you know this should be a higher priority for them based on knowing their business then make a point to reach out 2-3 times over the next 6 months. Not to “check-in” but add them tremendous value. This could be an invite to a webinar that’d fit well for their business case, asking if they are attending a conference in their area, or anything similar to this. It shouldn’t resemble anything other than purely caring for them to improve and trying to help how you can. The reason this approach is helpful is most likely even though the problem you solve is not a high priority it still may be talked about internally and you should be seen as an advisor in their eyes, which makes it fitting on why you would be sending over additional information.
The Potential Client “Ghosts” You:
This should never happen if you have built a trusting relationship early on centered around respect and candor. However, in the case this does happen, use patience to first assess the situation and come up with the various scenarios as to why you haven’t heard from them. After that, persistence tempered by patience will be the winning formula.
You don’t need to “check-in” regularly
You don’t need to say “Hope you’re okay, haven’t heard from you”
You don’t need to tell them you’ve left several emails/voicemails and are following up.
They received them. They aren’t returning them for several reasons:
There is no new news
The timeline has been pushed back
They are swamped with other pressing matters at the moment
They are having some personal life challenges
And so on…
I tend to lean toward the side of logic in most cases and it’s probably that they are really busy with their actual day job that they get paid to perform at or they have had some challenging personal life things come up. Either way, if you come off as a pest from too many follow-ups you will seem desperate and that will lower your stock value. Continue to provide value in the ways we mentioned above but instead of every other month maybe it’s every couple of weeks especially given the timeline you might be aware of from past discussions. Keep them conversational and continue to back up the points you’ve agreed upon are important for them. Remember, if someone wants to buy something they will. If they don’t, they won’t. The need to remind them you’re there doesn’t help your case at all and can only put you in a worse position once you do get back in touch with them.
There are so many facets to persistence in personal and professional life and I firmly believe that continuing to push through when the times feel tough because you believe in what you are doing will end up paying huge dividends in the future by strengthening your relationships and adding new partners to the mix that didn’t seem possible before.
Was really cool to have Dale Dupree of The Sales Rebellion stop by for episode 60 of the Podcast. I’ve been following Dale for a couple years and since we had so many mutual connections and I always enjoy reading his thoughts on sales, I had to have him on to share his journey and knowledge. This was a really interesting interview where we go all over the place talking about his new company, what he learned from his Dad, when he was touring in a band, and much more. Definitely think you all will enjoy some of Dale’s thoughts and his perspective on not only sales but life.
Dale also talks about two former Podcast guests on this episode that i’ll link up below:
To understand my Sales Rebellion, first you need to hear and acknowledge the role my Father played in my life. His legacy is one of integrity, perseverance, and service to others. I spent my life in the shadow of one of the greatest men to ever walk this earth and I am eternally grateful for his amazing example. I realized my calling in the Technology world through his business and also just how much fun I had being in a sales role. Copiers and Printers are pretty boring and usually not top of mind, they are also the most important piece of hardware in the office when they break, am I right? I enjoyed the challenge behind making them a fun piece of your business puzzle.
in 2017 I moved on from the company I had represented most of my career, after my Dad’s passing (see my shared articles for the saddest story I have ever told). I stayed in the copier industry for 2 more years before creating my Sales Rebellion. I have gone into sales training and develop for both individual contributors and entire sales organizations.
In 2019, The Sales Rebellion was born. My conquest of changing the game has expanded beyond my role as an individual contributor in the sales world, as The Copier Warrior. Now I am teaching the masses how to choose legendary for their sales career. No longer will the mediocre rule throughout our profession. It is time for a Sales Rebellion to rise.
I believe in Radically Educating your prospects on a first touch. I believe in Responses, good or bad, but never indifferent. I believe your Territory is your Community, we enable Sales Wanderers. I believe your Pipeline is Alive. I believe people are more than just a signature for your deal. I believe in fellowship over negotiations.