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The Old Rules of Selling are Dead

The old rules of selling are dead
by  David McGarry

What does Elvis, vinyl records, and traditional selling techniques have in common? In case you are stumped, you would be correct if you said they are all dead! Okay, I know that there is a small percentage of you who still believe Elvis is alive, use vinyl records, and are still trying the same old techniques when trying to sell your services or products to consumers. However, it is time to put them to rest and move on if you want to succeed in today’s economy. That being said, you must learn a new approach to selling. Let’s explore those new ways by showing you the old methods and then the new methods you need to adopt in your sales approach.

Prospecting – > Positioning

“It is a numbers game!” I know you probably have heard that statement before and to some extent the statement is correct. However, approaching sales through cold calling takes time and energy, which could be better spent on other revenue producing activities like training or ancillary services that you offer.  So, a better approach to increasing sales is to work on positioning yourself in the market.  Simply put, positioning is how your market defines you in relation to your competitors. A good position is established by answering the following questions:

  1. What makes you unique?
  2. What benefit does your customers consider you to provide?
  3. What is your competitive advantage?

It is critical that you answer these questions in order for positioning to work for you. Once you have established yourself in the marketplace as the expert then people will seek you out instead of you cold calling them.


Control -> Trust

More often than not a typical sales situation puts the control in the salesperson’s hands. This puts the client into an apprehensive state of mind and makes the sale more difficult. The reason for the client’s apprehension is because he or she has been burned before, so the lack of trust exists already even before a pitch is made. Now, instead of trying to control the situation begin by building trust with your customer. Listen to their needs and show them that you are here for their benefit, not yours. By building trust you will create a client who will buy over and over and eventually become one of your biggest fans. Remember, the client must trust you before they will buy from you!


Close -> Value

“The Sale is in the Close!” There are tons of books written on sales closing techniques and some of the techniques they write about are effective. However, people will buy because they believe the price you are charging is equal to the value they perceive to get from it. Being short sighted on just the close of the sale will risk the lifetime value of the customer. Create value in your customer’s mind and you will create a life long customer.


David McGarry earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida in Exercise Science and an MBA from UT Dallas. Along with his degrees David is certified through the NSCA as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and is the current owner of www.davemcgarry.com, a fitness consulting company. Previously, he served as the assistant general manager for the Cooper Fitness Center at Craig Ranch. His experience consists of over 13 years as a personal trainer and fitness manager. David is also actively involved with the community as a public speaker and presenter to corporations for health and wellness. His most recent accomplishment is a self-published book for fitness professionals and personal trainers called, “Anatomy of Sales.”  Check it out at www.anatomyofsales.com .

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