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Topics > Marketing Success Stories > ID: 1967

Passing the Test

Posted Date: Jan 8th, 2009 08:54 | Hits: 1589

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  • pplcheryl63
  • SocialRank:  #1
  • Level: Semi-pro (16744)
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Yesterday was a very busy day and not much time to do more than pop on take a quick look and pop back off the site.  But this morning I want to share a bit about a major appointment I had yesterday.  What was an appointment quickly turned into a test!

The gentleman that I met with represents a company with international associations and contacts.  We have been building a relationship with each other for a few months and he has been eager to sit down and have an appointment.   Which finally happened yesterday.

I also was "training" yesterday, I had another associate with me who wanted to see a presentation in order to learn how to do it herself.  My contact was quite happy to her her join us and as we sat down and got started I fell right into my natural presentation mode.  There's a big expectation when you are dealing with business people (executives) that you (A) not waste their time and (B) educate them without a high pressure sales pitch.

That was the most work I've done in a presentation in a long time.  My contact wanted to talk about everything but the information I was presenting, and also to engage the observer in the conversation.  Of course that meant a lot of redirecting on my part. in the end however after what I felt was the most unorganized worst presentation I had ever done he leaned back in his chair and began telling me about a couple of other gentlemen he wants to introduce me to.

As he put it, he's at a point in his life and career where he has what he wants, he' not hurting.  Now his focus is on helping his trusted contacts to succeed.  That horrible presentation was both a test and a class.  It was a test to see how well I could keep my composure since things weren't going according to my plans, and for my collegue a great demonstration on dealing with a difficult contact. 

He complimented us both on our professionalism and labeled it one of the best presentations he has had in his business life.  He even gave me a critique on what really stuck out to him.

1. The observer did just that until the presentation was over and we got down to the small talk, she took notes and when he tried to draw her into the presentation she deferred back to me.

2. There was no high pressure sales pitch simply a presentation of the information and supporting materials at which time I left him with corporate materials on how we could help with the issues.  He was also very impressed with the materials and the way it was neatly presented in a folder with my card attached.

3. I was focused.  When he would turn the talk to something else I redirected it back to our purpose for being there.

So as a result he is introducing me to two heavy hitters.  One in the Insurance industry and one with an international association.   Had I not passed the test he would not have been prepared to  open doors for me on this level, he would still have opened doors with small little local companies but that's it.  He's also looking at opening doors with many of his clients too all because I did things right and maintained a professional demeanor.  He also gave me and my associate a parting tidbit to keep in mind

"Remember executives don't deal with salespeople, they deal with consultants.  Always be a consultant. . Your job is to inform and then educate on the solution, never sell."

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Member's comment

BigRocky99  Jan 10th, 2009
OH I forgot, I closed a $1,000,000 life ins policy w/the doc too. ALL in about 10 min. I had most of the work already done. So all I needed was sigs. OF COURSE he READ the forms and said he would call when the policies arrivied. HE DID call approx 2 weeks later to say THANKS for work well done. BOTH policies were in order EXACTLY as he wanted.

BigRocky99  Jan 10th, 2009
pplcheryl63: While all the systems are great this is not about a "system" This is about understanding that you a
Hi Cheryl,

Yes you are 100% correct. Whenever you are in another 'prospect's' office, home or whatever. You are in THEIR TURF, you follow THEIR cue and YOU put YOUR best foot forward. I've met with VERY BUSY editors, surgeons. attorneys etc. Generally you ONLY have 5-10 min. I met with a heart surgeon, due for surgery in LESS than 30 min. He was Cuban, smoking a huge cigar, puffing the smoke IN MY FACE but I did not let that bother me. He made a point about the surgery and we got right to it. He had one or 2 questions. I answered quickly and to his liking. He signed the paper and included a $250.000 check payable to the insurance company. WITHOUT that form he would NOT have been able to do the surgery as his policy would have expired. When I got back to MY office I had everything OVERNIGHTED to the HOME office. I phoned the underwriter and explained payment was to be received the following. The company said 'fine' and everyone was happy. YES I got a BONUS from my boss which equalled my weekly salary.

pplcheryl63  Jan 9th, 2009
While all the systems are great this is not about a "system" This is about understanding that you are in effect being tested whenever you sit down with someone. No you don't have to go in with both barrels blazing but know when to follow a system and when not to.

A busy CEO will not appreciate a bunch of small talk when they have a book full of appointments. As the gentleman pointed out, I'm a consultant you take your cue from the person you are meeting. If they want to chit chat fine but remember their office their show. I see more people jack themselves up by following some system to the letter than I see jack themselves up by winging it.

JJ  Jan 9th, 2009
BigRocky99: At one point in time I was selling life insurance in addition to medical malpractice insurance to ph
In other words, use the other FORM first :P I had to throw that in there.

BigRocky99  Jan 9th, 2009
JJ: And I would like to add, theres a great way to be able to connect while still respecting your prosp.
At one point in time I was selling life insurance in addition to medical malpractice insurance to physicians in the Loa Angeles area but actually had contacts/clients covering the ENTIRE state. There were times when I HAD to meet in person at a Doc's office and/or home to 'close' the deal and get signed paperwork along witha check. When entering the 'prospect's turf' the F.O.R.M. method is the ONLY way to go. My mentor showed me exactly what to DO and SAY. It's VERY IMPORTANT that YOU show interest IN THEIR lives. Make a compliment on a 'nice house' a 'lovely family photo' etc. In other words 'break the ice'. Don't go in with both barrels blazing and pen in hand with a form to sign and a payment request. Going in like Jesse James will KILL any deal.

JJ  Jan 9th, 2009
Cynthia and James: Great Tips Cheryl Those are the things we all need to know in this business no matter who you are de
And I would like to add, there's a great way to be able to connect while still respecting your prospect's end decision to move forward or not.

Using the F.O.R.M. Method. Family, Occupation, Recreation, Message. I learned this from well-known Network Marketing leader Dani Johnson. And by using the FORM Method you are also creating "open-ended" questions. This approach works. This is what I use for inviting people to my network.

As they say, just Keep It Simple Stupid.

pplcheryl63  Jan 8th, 2009
Doniel: Very well spoken my fellow proffesional associate, I love your story and reminds me of what I do. At
Which reminds me we need to talk, give me a call on say Sunday afternoon

Doniel  Jan 8th, 2009
Very well spoken my fellow proffesional associate, I love your story and reminds me of what I do. At least twice a month I meet with CEO's and owners of company's with the purpose of not selling any thing but myself.

Leave them my business card and keep meeting with them until it's safe to come out,,lol. Great story....

pplcheryl63  Jan 8th, 2009
BigRocky99: Even though I am not focusing on the $$$ thing so much, I have learned that you get better results
One of the things I've noticed with my business is that many people do not understand the difference in approaching their cousin and approaching the CEO of a business. It two different animals and many people do not understand that.

It's a big part of the reason that no one can contact or approach a business about our product without the certifications in place. Professionalism is the main ingredient when you approach a business professional.

BigRocky99  Jan 8th, 2009
Even though I am not focusing on the $$$ thing so much, I have learned that you get better results by HOW you present YOURSELF in presenting a product/service but what is EQUALLY important is to find out what the PROSPECT WANTS/NEEDS and if you approach it CORRECTLY you will usually PASS the test. You CAN do this over the phone too. Talk with a 'smile' on your face and you usually end up with a meeting. If you talk when you are in a 'bad mood' then you CAN and WILL get 'hang ups'. Been there, done that.

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