100 Sales Tips for Fitness Professionals, Part 2

sales

For those still looking for more information from my original post, I present to you another 100 tips.

I have expanded these tips to be inclusive of my time as a sales manager, for those whom may find that relevant. Again, some may seem obvious, some ridiculous, and some may even be irrelevant to your specific industry, but I believe they were all effective.

  1. The “Action Threshold” is perhaps the most important concept to influencing people.
  2. For personal trainers: Let’s just get this out of the way. I know you can train everyone. But you need to find a niche. Pick something and be an expert. Be known for it and be better than anyone else.
  3. “If you can’t explain it to a 6-year-old, you don’t know it yourself.” —Albert Einstein.
  4. Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect.
  5. Your competition is everything else your prospect could conceivably spend their money on.
  6. Before disagreeing with someone, first point out the ways in which they’re right. To effectively persuade someone to change their mind, lead them to discover a counterpoint of their own accord.
  7. Sales folk are motivated in achieving their personal goals, not yours.
  8. Fail early and often. Experience is a cruel teacher. It gives the exam first, then the lesson.
  9. There is great value in making an enemy. Apple vs PC; etc.
  10. Most people speak at 125 to 150 words per minute, while people can listen and comprehend at a rate of 500 to 600 words per minute.
  11. Say the price first. That’s especially true when pricing is not transparent. It gives the seller more power when you throw out the number first. It also frames the discussion and puts the prices in a higher range. It is better to make an ambitious pitch and give yourself room to concede.
  12. Know who you are selling to.
  13. The difference between a successful salesperson and a mediocre one often lies in the nuances of social behavior and the skills for building relationships and controlling another person’s perception. So, while you may be adept at sharing your in-depth knowledge of your product, if you stand too close and invade your client’s personal space, you may be perceived as pushy or creepy. Fail to listen empathetically to clients, and you could be perceived as egotistical. Lack enthusiasm in your voice and you’re lazy.
  14. The higher you make the price the smaller the total population of people you are selling to. Additionally, the cost value proposition begins to tip. Perceived value must increase as price increases.
  15. As humans we will do much more to avoid pain than we will to increase pleasure. Good sales people will show both.
  16. Opportunity costs subtract from the satisfaction of prospect’s choices.
  17. Facts tell, stories sell.
  18. Here are the four stages to learning any skillset, including sales:
    1. Unconscious Incompetence: You don’t know what you don’t know.
    2. Conscious Incompetence: You know you suck and need work.
    3. Conscious Competence: You are effective, but using a lot of mind share.
    4. Unconscious Competence: You unconsciously can be quick and effective.
  19. Use Future Pacing: The right decision today creates a better tomorrow.
  20. “We are not won by arguments that we can analyze, but by the tone and temper, by the manner which is the man himself.” —Samuel Butler.
  21. There are four archetypes of buyers: Ready, curious, shopping, and not interested.
  22. Every single word out of your mouth should be deliberate.
  23. Nothing replaces experience. You can read all the books about swinging a baseball bat, you will likely be better than if you hadn’t. But eventually you have to swing.
  24. Be firm on vision and flexible on the journey.
  25. Opportunities don’t happen. You create them.
  26. Thousands of salespeople are pounding the pavements today, tired, discouraged and underpaid. Why? Because they are always thinking only of what they want.
  27. The Rule of Three: People can hold onto only three pieces of information at a time. Anymore and they get information overload. Examples are CPR, Run Hide Fight, ABC of selling.
  28. “Prime” staff early in the morning. Celebrate yesterday’s successes and build energy for today.
  29. The past is a thought. The future is anticipated. All we really own is our actions now.
  30. “The strong do what they can, and the weak bare what they must.” —Armenians.
  31. Success isn’t a happy accident. Hold your team accountable to measurables daily. Dials, pitches, emails, etc.
  32. High salaries, low bonuses encourage the status quo. The reverse encourages growing their business.
  33. Complete a “Specific Edge Pyramid” to define your uniqueness.
  34. Leaders lead by either dominance or prestige. Good leaders use both.
  35. The value of roleplaying isn’t just tactical. It instills comfort/consistency through frequency.
  36. Make sure all leads go into the CRM by NOT focusing on high close rates as a key metric.
  37. Shut up after you pitch. Just shut up. Shut. Up.
  38. People have primarily three communication styles: Visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Identify and pivot your approach for each.
  39. Small differences in your abilities can translate to huge differences in your results.
  40. Sales as a business is the pursuit of developing a more perfect and effective communication style coupled with the intent to persuade others to act upon that intent.
  41. Do not mistake arrogance with ability.
  42. Nod when you want someone to say yes.
  43. Use a guarantee. Very few will hold your feet to the fire if they do not reach their goal, but most consumers feel less risk if there is a guarantee associated.
  44. When possible use testimonials.
  45. A successful promotion has to do four things in this order. Create attention, interest, desire then action.
  46. Understand perceived value. Which has more value, a coupon for $5 off or a $5 gift card.
  47. “Your brand is what others say about you when you are not in the room,” —Jeff Bezos.
  48. Inception: People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they have themselves discovered than by those which have come into the mind of others.
  49. Create maximum impact with minimal word count.
  50. Your job is to meet the right people and read the right books.
  51. Nobody wants to pay anything. It’s nothing personal.
  52. Ideas are cheap. Execution is everything.
  53. “Men are moved by two levers only: fear and self-interest.” —Napoleon Bonaparte.
  54. Become an avid note taker. Even the faintest ink is stronger than your best memory.
  55. Powerful salespeople and music conductors can tell if people are engaged by the cadence of both sound and movement. The timings of movement between two are in harmony. Conversational harmony. Speech rate equalizes. Even latency. Two people may arrive at a conversation with different patterns but almost instantly they equal up. Some are more powerful at dictating the terms of the interaction.
  56. People do not want to be sold. They want to be inspired.
  57. Give visuals to inspire action. Martin Luther king talked about a vision of all children holding hands. A tangible realization of a goal.
  58. You don’t win the World Series batting a 1000. You do it batting 300.
  59. “Why do you wake up? And why does anyone care?” – Simon Sinek.
  60. Create one sentence that separates you. The great presidents can be defined by one sentence. Led us out of slavery. Brought us out of depression and through a war that ravaged the world. What’s your sentence?
  61. “Any incentive is generally a tradeoff. The trick is to balance the extremes.” – Freakonomics.
  62. Incentives essentially are ways to encourage people to do more of a good thing or less of a bad thing.
  63. From a purely mathematical standpoint, a field sales rep can physically make six to eight calls a day. In comparison, a telemarketing rep can make 10 to 12 calls an hour. When used in tandem they can form an extremely effective team that build on the relative strengths of each method.
  64. Break things into monthly payments. People budget monthly.
  65. If you want people to “just do it” and buy your brand, you’d better be able to distill its essence down to two to five words. If you can’t, you’re guilty of committing the most common and detrimental branding mistake.
  66. What is the worst thing that can happen? Just ask.
  67. “What’s the point in knowing true north if you move heedless in that direction with reckless abandon?” —Lincoln.
  68. Sell something bigger than a pen, a state of mind.
  69. Use presence and tonality to establish that you are a person worth listening to.
  70. Enjoy what you do, and you never work a day of your life.
  71. Social proof is that nudge that helps people decide what they should do — especially when they’re unsure. It invokes the, “If others are doing it, I should be too” mentality.
  72. The value of a lead box isn’t just the leads you get. What they do is create a free marketing opportunity for you to market to other businesses’ clients. This keeps you in their mind share at no cost and allows you to make contacts with local businesses to make strategic partnerships.
  73. You can trade hours for dollars or ideas for millions.
  74. Fear is the destroyer of dreams and the killer of ambitions.
  75. Charles Revson, founder of Revlon, always used to say he sold hope, not makeup. Some airlines sell friendly service, while others sell on-time service. Neiman Marcus sells luxury, while Wal-Mart sells bargains.
  76. “Studies show it takes 30 days to change an ideology with concentrated persuasion.” —Ori Brafman.
  77. Not every relationship needs to be direct revenue bearing to be fruitful.
  78. Exclusivity means you can charge the highest premium.
  79. The fewer criterions we put between us and the sale the better.
  80. Give them strategies they can implement immediately.
  81. Does anyone here not know McDonalds? So why is there a McDonalds commercial every commercial break? Mind share for when they feel hungry.
  82. You need to speak with a vision. People want to believe.
  83. Offer opt-out models as opposed to opt-in models.
  84. What you don’t say can be as loud as what you do.
  85. People are very impressionable even in a short amount of time, especially when interjected with emotion. A good example is road rage and crying.
  86. “Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out.” — Robert Collier.
  87. Be likeable and look for common ground to help establish emotional bonds and shared objectives.
  88. People tend to misunderstand the true cost/value of something. When buying food at a restaurant they feel they are paying for the food, when it is equally important that the restaurant does not smell like sewage.
  89. Selling and sharing are synonymous. When a friend tells you how great a restaurant is, what they are doing is selling you on why you should go there.
  90. Read “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell.
  91. “What happens if you train them and they leave? Even worse, what if you do not train them and they stay?”
  92. Look forward to objections. They give you an additional opportunity for value building and points of separation.
  93. Try to learn one new thing a day. It doesn’t sound like much, but I can tell you after two decades it adds up.
  94. Incentives for securing referrals generates referrals.
  95. Cold calling a prospect is much the same as asking for a dinner date. Success or failure comes down to perception and presentation.
  96. Like in poker, you always push all your chips in to make your client feel the pressure and make the decision.
  97. None of us are as smart as all of us.
  98. “Every sale has five basic obstacles: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, no trust.” —Zig Ziglar.
  99. Keep your mouth shut and your ears open.
  100. Don’t bad mouth the competition. Identify points of separation.

 

Jason R. Stowell is the division director of fitness and wellness for JCC of Greater Pittsburgh. He is an award-winning fitness leader with over 20 years of successful experience providing strategic planning, talent management, and expert-level sales training in the health and fitness industry. Connect with him on Linkedin here

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