In my consulting business, I work with a lot of real estate professionals. That’s probably not too much of a surprise, because Dangerous Tactics is about how to make more sales, and Realtors definitely are in a sales-based business, correct? One of the biggest concerns I hear from new agents is the concern of income. Basically, “how long is it going to take before I start making money?”
We all need an income of some sort, so this seems like a reasonable question. But as I argue so often, I think this is the wrong question to ask. Don’t ask how long it will be before you start making money, because if that’s your question it means your focus is on making a sale. That’s the wrong focus.
The right focus
If your focus isn’t supposed to be on making sales, then where the heck is it supposed to be? Is that question on your mind? I hope so, because THAT is the right question 🙂
The best place to focus is on the client. What do THEY need? How can you best help them? What’s in THEIR best interest? If your focus is not on them, then you are not serving them, and if you’re not serving them, do you know what path you’re on? You’re on the path to becoming a high pressure salesperson…or a broke salesperson. I’d wager neither one appeals to you, right? So let’s work to correct that.
The best salespeople and highest-producing business owners don’t care if they make the sale. This might sound counter-intuitive, so if you’re inclined to argue with me, then I encourage you to spend a while talking with top producers and successful business owners like I have for many years. I’m confident that after a short while you’ll see exactly what I mean.
So if you legitimately need to make a sale, how the heck are you supposed to not care if you make the sale?
This is the big secret to high production and a lot of success in your business. Of course you need to pay bills, and that will always be the case. So this means that you need to get good at what you do. Education, training and coaching are the constant companions of every successful business owner and sales professional. This is no coincidence.
You need to get good at making more sales, but as you already know people don’t like high pressure salespeople, and they rarely buy from them. So if you legitimately need to make a sale, how the heck are you supposed to not care if you make the sale? This is an issue a lot of people struggle with, so I want you to stick with me. If you read this post and apply it to your business (this is completely applicable to anyone who wants to sell more of their stuff, not just Realtors), then you will be on the road to making a lot more sales. I guarantee it.
How to not care about money
You know how a bank will only give money to people who don’t really need it? It’s a funny situation, but the same principle applies to making more sales in your business. If you are desperate for a sale, it quickly becomes very difficult to make a sale, because customers know your focus is on yourself, not them. See the trouble? It really is essential to not care about money if you want to truly grow your business and start making more sales. So how do you do it?
There are two ways:
- Have money in the bank
- Spend some time in the trenches and learn that not having money really isn’t something to be afraid of
Clearly this may seem like a difficult choice, and for many people it is. That’s why top producing business owners and salespeople earn a high income…they don’t really need the money.
Points to be argued
Of course this is an easy thing to argue. You can cite the existence of self-interested and corrupt business owners. You could point out that this is an easy thing for me to say, because I’m so uber-successful, etc. I understand 🙂 But here’s the thing…it’s not my rule. The world gives money to people who don’t really need it, just like banks give money to people who don’t really need it.
Why is this the case? Because if you’re trying to make sales, your motivation is going to shine through every time, and people’s bullshit detectors are on high alert. Importantly, it doesn’t matter if you’re in a business like real estate where you’re working face to face with clients or if you’re in a marketing-based business where you rarely see your customers face-to-face.
Many business owners think they can hide behind their sales copy. Because they’re not physically face-to-face with their buyers, they convince themselves they’re not in sales. We like to call ourselves “marketers”, because we don’t want to think of ourselves as sleazy high pressure salespeople. But the fact is everyone is in sales, and your motivation is what matters, not your method of delivery of your sales messages.
You can do personal one-on-one sales demos, webinars, or you can write sales copy that will be read by thousands of people at a time…it’s all the same. If your motivation is to truly and earnestly help the customer, the customer will know it, and trust will begin to form. You will be on the path to earning some serious business if you stick with it. If on the other hand your motivation is to make money, pay your bills and get your balance sheet straightened out…the customer will know that too.
Which one do YOU think will earn you more sales?
The benefit of starting with nothing
When I first began my sales career 12 years or so back, I had nothing. I had a part time job at a restaurant and was making about $5k per year. Yeah, I was pimpin 🙂 My wife and I had basically nothing but each other, and I learned something really important during that time. It wasn’t a dark time. It was awesome. It was simple. No it wasn’t a rich lifestyle. I drove a Geo Metro, man! But we had everything we needed, and we got by.
…as soon as I took that attitude, my sales started coming in as fast as I could handle them.
The essential lesson was that even if I lost everything today, I know for a fact I would be OK. I also know for a fact that I could rebuild things very quickly, because I know what to do now to get results. How do I know that NOT making the sale is OK? Because I’ve done it. I’ve been totally, completely broke, and while it’s not my ideal situation, it’s really not that bad.
That’s the benefit of starting with nothing. You can focus on your clients without worrying about whether you make a sale or not, because you know that the absolute worst thing that can happen is that you won’t make money, and if that happens…so what? Ironically…and this is the killer point of this whole post…as soon as I took that attitude, my sales started coming in as fast as I could handle them. I started winning awards, all-expense-paid vacations and earning more money than I’d ever made before.
Do I recommend starting with nothing? Not necessarily. You can always do option 1. Have money in the bank. At least that way you have something to fall back on, and it allows you to maintain focus on what matters…the client. But if you can’t do that, you always have option 2, and it might be the best way to go. With money in the bank, you can still lose it and might eventually have to face being broke.
But if you start with nothing, you have the opportunity to learn that being broke and being poor are two completely different things, and if you learn that lesson then nobody can take that from you, and nothing…nothing can stop you.