Selling to Millennials
Selling to Millennials can make you a better sales person. There I said it. And I want you to read it as the compliment it is intended to be. It is a generation that has often been maligned by Boomers and Gen X. I have to confess to some of that criticism myself.
I think every generation thinks they are better than the generations that follow. That plus a lack of understanding can attribute to cross-generational jabs. Now as a sales trainer and coach many of my clients are Boomers and Gen Xers. These same Boomers and Gen Xers are now encountering more and more Millennials in the workforce and as customers. According to the Pew Research Center, Millennials became the largest generation in the US Labor Force in 2016.
Why Financial Advisors Should Ask for Referrals
Why Financial Advisors should ask for referrals? Very simply – if you are a good financial advisor you have earned it. Financial Advisors have a great advantage over other sales people when it comes to asking for referrals. Sales people who are selling other products or services typically don’t have the opportunity to positively impact the lives of their clients and their client’s families the way that financial advisors do.
Building a larger client base should be a goal of every professional. Across every industry, referrals are the easiest and most cost-effective way to generate new business. However, if you are like many individuals, you may feel awkward asking your current clients for referrals. Figuring out the right way to request a referral will help you increase your reach.
Are you asking for referrals? If the answer is “no,” then you need to start asking yourself, “why not?”
Practice Closes Sales
Practice Closes Sales. While you have no doubt heard practice makes perfect – perfection doesn’t close deals. Sales is one of the few professions where your performance is measured every day on every deal. So wouldn’t it make sense to practice?
The idea of practicing came from an unlikely source. My son’s basketball league put out an email with a desperate request for coaches. Since I never coached basketball before I politely ignored the 1st request. Then came the 2nd request and I figured I would offer to help.
This was my 1st ever endeavor into coaching a sports team. So being a new coach I did what all dads with no experience would do. I went to YouTube to look up drills for youth basketball. Then after our 2nd practice I realized how important drills and repetition are in learning and mastering a skill. While practice is certainly not a new idea, a light went off.
Financial Advisor’s Greatest Asset
Financial Advisors may argue the point, but it is their Book of Business that is every Financial Advisor’s Greatest Asset. What is a Book of Business? In its most basic form a Book of Business is your client list.
One of the 1st and most common mistakes a Financial Advisor can make is not segmenting their book into A, B, and C clients. Meaning your most valuable clients are your A’s, than down to your B’s and C’s. It sounds pretty simple, right? Well it is. While the definition is simple the value can be priceless if you do it right.
The Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat
If you are over the age of 40, you can appreciate the following quote made famous by Jim McKay from ABC’s Wide World of Sports, “The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.”
Those powerful words from Jim McKay were used to describe the human drama of athletic competition. Whether you are a big sports fan or not, you can appreciate the real life drama of: Ali vs. Liston, the Olympics and Game 7 of the World Series. The Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat also beautifully describes what it means to be a sales-professional.
A recent shoe shine in Manhattan taught me a powerful lesson on how YOU can BOOST YOUR SALES. It was a great example of Walt Disney’s quote – “If you are going to do something, do it right”.
When I am in Manhattan for a meeting I always treat myself to a shoe shine. I have been getting shoe shines as long as I have had shoes worth shining. I have gotten countless shoe shines in NYC, several airports around the country, hotels and even an occasional mall.
Recently I found myself in the leather chair of a very special shoe shine in NYC. The shoe shine’s name was Cecilia and she worked at Sole Man – a shoe repair shop in Penn Station.
You might be thinking a shoe shine is just a shoe shine. A shoe shine is more than just waxing and buffing shoes. When done right it can be a very enjoyable experience.
A great shoe shine is an experience.
It starts as you step up into the leather chair and place your shoes in the brass footrests. Next the shoe shine turns up the cuffs of your pants, hands you a newspaper and for five minutes you are the center of attention. It is all about you. You can get lost while listening to music, reading or enjoying a cup of coffee. There is the rhythmic buffing, shining and massaging of the wax into your shoes.
I can’t count how many shoe shines I have gotten over the years. None have compared to Cecilia. A typical shoe shines last about 5 minutes. Cecilia’s lasted almost 15 minutes. The other shoe shines would serve 2 or even 3 customers to her one. I was amazed!!! She kept buffing, shining and waxing, over and over again. I lost count as to how many coats of wax she applied. She was relentless and was smiling the whole time. She was so good I felt guilty.
They couldn’t shine her shoes!
I started to compare her methods and efforts to her co-workers. None came close. They couldn’t shine her shoes! They were complete amateurs. The 1st time she shined my shoes I was shocked as to how detailed she was. She actually pulled out a lighter to burn off a loose thread from my wingtip. Cecilia is someone who cares and has a genuine passion for shining shoes!
She is the only shoe shine I will go to. On my last visit to the city Cecilia was off. I didn’t even bother having someone else shine my shoes – I didn’t want to be disappointed.
Imagine for a moment the impact you could have on your work if you SOLD the way Cecilia shined shoes? Just think of how many more sales you could close. What if you reminded yourself every day – If I am going to do something- anything, I should do it right.
That means doing each and every cold call, meeting and presentation right. No matter what the task, do it right!!!
If you are feeling stuck on any of your day to day sales tasks maybe I can help – let’s talk.
As a sales coach I have always been super focused on giving my clients a specific system on how to take a deal from 1st Point of Contact to Close! Why are sales systems so important? Because sales can be a dynamic, fast paced and tricky dance and if you don’t have a system it can be like roller skates on ice.
I have always been a huge fan of the hand written note. I have sent them to prospects, clients, associates, and friends whenever I want to stand out and send a special message.
A hand written note sends more than just the actual message you have written in the card. Writing the note, addressing and stamping the envelope and dropping it in the mail takes time and effort. So when you send one you are telling the person that you care enough to make the effort.