Play Your “A” Game

“Intelligence is not enough.  You must create relationships.”Tony Robbins

Proximity is power.

Our success is predicated upon our ability to access our customers.

Access enables influence.

Influence determines relevance.

There are times we need influence in places we have no access:

  • A physician won’t meet with us.
  • A pharmacy director won’t stock our new product.
  • A key administrator won’t buy into our recommendations.

Good times…

What to do?

Get creative!

This is where elite salespeople play their “A” game –

Call in your ADVOCATE.

Think of an advocate as a relationship on steroids.

An advocate is a person inside your customer’s organization that:

  • Believes in you.
  • Believes in your idea.
  • Is passionate about making things better.
  • Is willing to go to bat on your behalf to other members of their team.

Advocates bring your influence to places you are unable to access.

Advocates can facilitate change inside your customer that you can’t accomplish alone.

An advocate could be:

  • An injector.
  • Department administrator.
  • A respected RN.

How can advocates help you?

Glad you asked…

4 Ways Advocates Can 10x Your Influence:

  1. Introduce you to hard to access customers:  
    • “Dr Bill, would you mind walking me down the hall and introducing me to Dr Alison?  I have never met her.  She hasn’t responded to any of my emails.”
  2. Make New Products Available:
    • “Dr Kelly – I need your help.  Would you mind stopping down the hospital pharmacy and asking the pharmacy director to stock the 200 unit vial?  I met with her.  I don’t think I convinced her.”
  3. Get Best Practices Implemented:
    • “Cate, would be able to discuss the flow assessment recommendations with your chairmen?  Dr Andy told me nothing can move forward until they buy in.” 
  4. Create New Customers:  
    • “Dr Mike – Could you connect me with your new resident chiefs over email?  I will work with them on setting up that chronic migraine training we discussed.” 

Our best ideas will not always be embraced.

We will hit obstacles.

We will run into roadblocks.

Average salespeople will respond in average ways.

Don’t be average.

Play your “A” Game…

-Joe Ciccarone

www.SalesVibe.net

 

 

 

Chart Your Course 

“The ability to make that human connection is the key to personal and career success.” – Paul J. Meyer

What’s the first thing a physician does before they walk into an exam room?

They look at the chart.

It doesn’t matter how many times they have seen that patient.

They start at the chart.

Top sales people do the same thing.

One of the best tactics I’ve learned on how to connect is to create a personal “chart” on each customer.

This simple idea is devastatingly effective.

Your chart will help you generate killer dialogue with tough customers on subjects they care about.

You will build trust, expand your time and increase your access.

Consider this….

You already have your customer’s name, email & cell phone in your contacts (You did have the guts to ask for their cell phone, right???).

Now it’s time to complete your customer chart.

The more we call on a customer, the more information we uncover.

We need a system to capture this info that is instantly accessible.

Document the info you uncover in the notes section of your customer’s profile.

After a few conversations, your chart should look something like this:

FullSizeRender.jpg

So how does this create access?

Picture this…

You are walk into your customer’s office.  They are sitting at their desk waiting for you.

Instead of trying to break the ice with an awkward comment about the weather,

  • “How about this crazy weather?”

You start with this:

  • “So how’s Zoey’s freshman year at Cornell going?”

Or you could ask,

  • “What did you think about that 4th down call vs. Ohio State?” 

Or,

  • “So what’s it like trying to eat Paleo during the holidays?”

Questions like these start emotionally engaging conversations.

They lower the customer’s defenses.

They expand your time.

The customer is more inclined to listen to your ideas.

Your job is to find opportunities to ask these type of questions.

When the customer is done speaking, transition into your OPENING…

“That is awesome.  Great to hear.  So the reason I stopped by today is…”.

Access is 90% of the game.

Access is created when hustle, value, & trust come together.

When it does, you can chart your own course.

– Joe

 

 

Be On Alert

“Find out something personal.  Do something memorable.” – Jeffrey Gitomer

No access, no nothing.

It doesn’t matter if it’s your 1st week or 10th year.

Your goal is the same:

  • Get invited in.
  • Get invited back.

The Vibe will jump start 2017 by focusing on strategies & tactics that increase our most valuable asset…

Access.

To have access to our top customers, we must be perceived as having the 6 B’s dialed in:

  • Be engaging
  • Be valuable
  • Be prepared
  • Be trustable
  • Be brief
  • Be gone

The best way to ENGAGE a hard to access customer is to focus on their interests.

You have to do your homework.

  • What’s new in your customer’s world?
  • What has their attention?
  • What do they do in their free time?

Enter Google Alerts.

Google alerts can be your secret weapon for new customer information.

Google Alerts scans the web.

It delivers a report to your inbox each week about anything new that hit the web about your customer.

  • Did your customer just win an award from some obscure society?
  • Did an alumni newsletter just do a feature story on your customer?
  • Was your customer just interviewed on a podcast?
  • Did your customer just complete their 1st Iron Man?

If it hit the web, Google Alerts keeps you in the know.

So how does this increase your access?

Glad you asked.

Imagine writing your customer a hand written note congratulating them on finishing their 1st Iron Man.

Then you follow up a few days later with an email asking them to meet to discuss a new idea that may help streamline their reimbursement processes?

You just tripled your chances of meeting a previously non-responsive customer.

Or combine this with “Before we get started…” for a killer way to expand your time with a transactional customer:

  • “Dr Meredith – I have a new idea for that resident training we discussed. But before we get started… I listened to that podcast you were on.  How did that come about?”

Find ways to create and expand access.

Or lose to someone who does.

-Joe Ciccarone

The Big 3

“There are 3 things every successful salesperson needs: the right mindset, a refined skillset, and an effective tool kit.” – The Only Sales Guide You’ll Ever Need

Mindset is everything.

We must dial in the right mindset before we go anywhere near a customer.

Below are 3 questions that will help you create a killer pre-call mindset.

These 3 questions are applicable to any selling situation.

Below each question is a micro question related to our customers.

Mentally rehearse these before your next appointment:

  • 1) What can I LEARN?
    • What’s been their experience?
    • What do they perceive?
    • What outcomes do they see?
    • What’s most important to them?
    • Where are they apathetic?
  • 2) What VALUE can I bring?  
    • How comfortable are they with dosing?
    • When do they hold off injecting?
    • What muscles are they afraid to inject?
    • How strong is their reimbursement?
    • How efficient is their schedule?
    • What are they working on in the new year?
  • 3) What ACTIONS can we take?  
    • What idea can we agree upon?
    • What 1 patient can we identify?
    • Who can I connect this customer to?
    • Who can this customer introduce me to?
    • What project can we work on together?

LEARN what’s going on inside your customer’s head.

Bring VALUE to every interaction.

Facilitate ACTION.

Do these 3 consistently, take your access and influence to the next level.

#TheBig3

-Joe Ciccarone

Don’t Be Sorry

“When customers yell at you, or blame you, don’t say, “I’m sorry.” Just say, “Thank you!” Jeffrey Gitomer 

It’s inevitable…

Something is going to go wrong with your product or service.

You’re going to walk into one of your busiest offices and run face first into an angry customer.

Your fault or not, the customer is going to take their frustration out on you.

The interaction usually begins like this:

  • Your customer looks at you and says ,“I need to talk to you. Come in here.”
  • You get hustled into an empty exam room.
  • The door is shut a bit too energetically.

Game on…

When this happens, no matter how upset your customer is, DO NOT say “I’m sorry.”

Thank them!

They just gave you an amazing opportunity to connect & prove the type of value you can bring them.

When you respond:

  • Take full responsibility for fixing their situation.
  • Substitute the words, “I’m sorry,” with the words, “Thank you!”

The situation may be about finances.  It may be a misunderstanding.  It may be real or perceived.

Whatever it is, thank them:

  • “Dr Matt – Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I really appreciate you letting me know your perspective.  I will work on this immediately and fix this for you.”

The advantages of “Thank You!” vs. “I’m Sorry.”:

  • Creates an opening to partner with your customer.
  • Turns an obstacle into an opportunity.
  • Shows your desire to take action.
  • Exhibits a ton of self-confidence.

If you feel personally responsible for what happened, add:

  • “I apologize this happened.  You got my word I will fix this.”

Being confronted by a customer is not fun, but it’s an awesome opportunity to take your relationship to the next level.

It’s not what happens, it’s how you respond.

Respond by empathizing, engaging, & serving.

#Mindset

-Joe