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Why Your Sales Team Need To Become Content Creators

Should B2B salespeople be creating their own content? What exactly should sales leaders create in terms of leadership content? Jeffrey Gitomer answers all these questions and more in today’s episode of the Sales Leadership Show.

You'll learn:

Featured on this episode:

Host - Will Barron
Founder of Salesman.org
Guest - Jeffrey Gitomer
Best Selling Sales Author

Resources:

Transcript

Will Barron:

Coming up on today’s episode of the Sales Leadership Show. Should salespeople, B2B salespeople be creating content?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

If you want to create attraction, you have to create content.

 

Will Barron:

If you’re creating content for an organisation, you’re not going to care as much. You’re not going to invest as much into it personally, professionally, if and else. Right?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

You know what? If the company had any kind of ethics, they would offer to buy the content.

 

Will Barron:

Sure. Should sales leaders be curating perhaps leadership content? Is this a pyramid that goes to the very top?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

They should be creating sales content and leadership content.

 

Will Barron:

Is this the hack, Jeffrey? Because everyone’s looking for this hack, this trick.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

To me, a hack indicates either somebody who’s not that good at it, or someone who’s looking for a shortcut.

 

Will Barron:

Hello sales nation, I’m Will Barron, your host and welcome to the Sales Leadership Show. On today’s episode, we have the complete nut of legend, the king of selling. We have Jeffrey Gitomer. It’s a pleasure as always to interview Jeffrey. On today’s episode, Jeffrey answers the question. The most important question post-pandemic in my mind as a sales leader. Should salespeople be creating content? And how should leadership curate and leverage that to drive more revenue? Everything that we talk about is available in the show notes of this episode over at salesleadership.org. And with that said let’s jump right into it. Jeffrey, welcome to the Sales Leadership Show.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

My pleasure. Nice to see you, Will.

 

Should B2B Salespeople be Creating Content? · [01:46] 

 

Will Barron:

It’s nice to see you, Jeffrey. I’m glad to have you on mate. Okay, so on today’s episode, we’re going to get into how we can help our sales teams turn a virtual connections into paying customers. We’re going to dive into your book and a whole lot more, I’m sure as well. But I just want to frame up the conversation. So I think we’re on the same wavelength for some of this. So we might have to force some disagreement just to make the conversation interesting for the audience. But this question, before the pandemic was seemingly controversial. Now, I’m not sure it is. Should salespeople, B2B salespeople be creating content?

 

“If you want to create attraction, you have to create content. So if you’re going to be perceived as a salesperson of any kind of value, then I want to know what you think about how I win. Content has to be prepared in a way where the customer feels they win. And if they do, then you win.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [02:03] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Well, if you want to create attraction, you have to create content. Otherwise, you have a brochure that people will find its way to a shredder. So if you’re going to be perceived as a salesperson of any kind of value, then I want to know what you think about how I win. Content has to be prepared in a way where the customer feels they win. And if they do, then you win. Now there is a controversy. And the controversy is, in the corporate world a lot of people believe that if you create content while you’re working for the company, that the company owns it. My opinion is, if you want… Do you want the G rated version, or the X rated version?

 

Will Barron:

I want the mature, get this banned from iTunes version.

 

“I just don’t understand why people do what they do in the name of sales. When in fact, it has nothing to do with sales. It has everything to do with the customer perceiving that they win in order to be purchased.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [04:13] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Okay. It’s a bunch of bullshit. I don’t want… if Mozart writes a symphony and they play it in a corporate musical, the corporation doesn’t own the symphony. Mozart does. So if you’re a salesperson or a leader and you write content, that’s your content. It doesn’t belong to the company. Let them write their own damn content. They have a marketing team of inept people, let them write something stupid and ridiculous. I’ve never seen marketing information that I want to keep and put into a book. But a lot of blog posts become books. So I think that you… And with the pandemic response, it’s no longer writing it’s video. Where’s your daily, two minute video on… If you’re on a sales team and you’re selling some kind of industrial product, why aren’t you giving me my one minute meeting on safety, or on productivity or on attendance or something that helps my customer. I just don’t understand why people do what they do in the name of sales. When in fact, it has nothing to do with sales. It has everything to do with the customer perceiving that they win in order to be purchased.

 

Is Creating Content the Biggest Advantage Salespeople Have in the Marketplace? · [04:35] 

 

Will Barron:

Is this Jeffrey the biggest, and I’m trying not to call the question too much because this is what I believe, right? Is this the biggest advantage that salespeople have in the marketplace in that they can create content, whether it’s for an individual or whether it’s for a group of individuals that are similar? That says people can do this when marketers can’t. Because we know, we engage with our buyers. We know exactly what they want, when they want it and how we can add value. Marketers typically are making a hypothesis and doing A, B testing and using scientific method to sort of some of this out. Is this the biggest advantage that salespeople have?

 

“If they don’t buy it, it’s not the customer’s fault. It’s the fault of the salesperson. If the sale is not made, it’s because the sales guy sucked.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [05:16] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Right. Salespeople just want to make a sale, they don’t want to do a bunch of bullshit in the middle. They want to go to the customer, explain what they have, explain how the customer wins as a result of it. And then the customer decides if they’re either going to buy it or not. If they don’t buy it, it’s not the customers fault. It’s the fault of the salesperson. If the sale is not made, it’s because the sales guy sucked. I don’t know any other way to put it. It’s not the price. It’s not… “Well, maybe it’s the reputation.” Okay. Well, then why isn’t someone building your reputation online? Whatever the reason is, it’s normally a symptom. The problem goes all the way back to somebody that didn’t do something properly.

 

Will Barron:

So I’m agreeing with you here that if a-

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Well, thanks.

 

If Creating Content is so Crucial to Sales Success, How Can Organisations Encourage Salespeople to Create Content? · [05:53] 

 

Will Barron:

… if we’re building, as a sales leader we want to build a team of content creators and we want them to own the content, because we want them to have ownership of it. If you’re creating content for an organisation, you’re not going to care as much, you’re not going to invest as much into it personally, professionally and anything else, right?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

If the company had any kind of ethics, they would offer to buy the content.

 

Will Barron:

Sure. Or some kind of licencing, right? “In that you create all this, while you work with us, we’ll pay you this on top of your commissions.”

 

“To me, when a sales leader hires a new salesperson and says to one of their existing teams, “Hey, can you help train Bobby?” And you don’t pay that guy to help train Bobby, you’re an idiot.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [06:28] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Exactly. Exactly. To me, when a sales leader hires a new salesperson and says to one of their existing teams, “Hey, can you help train Bobby?” And you don’t pay that guy to help train Bobby, you’re an idiot. You’re an absolute idiot. You train Bobby. “Well, I’m busy.” No, you’re not that busy. You’re not busy enough to have somebody leave your sales team for a competitor, if you paid all the money to hire them. 

 

“One of the biggest losses in corporations today is the cost of a lost salesperson. Because you lose their pipeline, you lose their training, you lose their present value of customers.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [06:57] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer :

Well, one of the biggest losses in corporations today is the cost of a lost salesperson. Because you lose their pipeline, you lose their training, you lose their present value of customers. Depending upon where you post you might lose on Glassdoor or some kind of an employee. It’s horrible to lose a salesperson. And it’s not on a profit and loss statement anywhere. But the manager will blame the sales guy, “He wasn’t any good.” No, no, you weren’t any good. Don’t start blaming people for… When a sales guy wants to quit his job, I say, “Look. I have an idea. Become the number one salesperson on the team then quit.”

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Because if you become the number one salesperson, what’s your manager going to say? “I lost the guy who wasn’t any good?” No, no. He’s going to have to say, “I lost my best guy.” “Why did that happen?” “Because probably because I suck as a leader.” Problem. But they don’t want to say that. What they… I want to have the budget to get the training…. You know? Baa baa baa baa baa baa.

 

How Sales Leaders Can Help and Motivate Salespeople Create Content That Drives Attention and Revenue · [08:19]

 

Will Barron:

So then, what do we need to do, Jeffrey, if we’re our sales manager, sales leader, to not necessarily just encourage our team to create content and create content that is effective again, attention and drive revenue, right? What do we need to do to… Do we need to financially incentivize them to do it rather than just a soft, “We would like you to do this?”

 

“If the salesperson feels that he or she is better than the sales manager at selling, they’ll never listen to one word the guy says. Ever.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [09:36]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Well, the big thing that I would recommend is collaborate in order to do it. So the sales leader says to the sales guy, “Hey, you need a little more content. Let me help you. Let’s go visit a couple of customers and find out why they bought. And then let’s make some content around that.” So that you can become a more effective, a more efficient, a more profitable salesperson. Because if you go to 10 people and write about how they bought or why they bought. I can guarantee you the 11th sale will be yours. That I guarantee you. So there can’t be a finger pointing thing. There has to be a joint thing. And I feel like there’s not enough leaders collaborating with their salespeople to figure it out. And keep in mind, and I think this is important, Will. That if the salesperson feels that he or she is better than the sales manager at selling, they’ll never listen to one word the guy says. Ever.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

So I think that it’s incumbent upon the sales leader to be the best salesperson on the team. Then the salesperson would be willing to collaborate with them, would be ecstatic about collaborating with them.

 

Should Sales Leaders Be Creating Sales Leadership Content? And if So, How Can They Leverage Their Content to Push Salespeople to Create Content · [10:03]

 

Will Barron:

Let me ask you this and Jeffrey, should sales leaders be creating perhaps leadership content? Is this a pyramid that goes to the very top?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

They should be creating sales content and leadership content. And should be creating sales content that he sends out those people and say, “Come on. You guys can do better than this, let’s see you make it happen.” There’s no inclusiveness.

 

Will Barron:

So Jeffrey then, let’s get practical about this. There’s one thing to say it right. And it’s another thing too, if we were coaching a sales leader to get them to implement it in front of the team. Something that I’ve said, if I could go back in time I would have done when I went to medical devices. Well, obviously in hindsight, it’s easy to say this. I would have created a podcast. I would have created, say like I had 27 urologists on my sales territory that I was doing deals with. I would have just interviewed 15 of them on a podcast on a rotation, and the rest of them would have tuned into it. It would have been an absolute no brainer. And for an hour every week, I would have engaged with these individuals. I’m sure they would’ve been comments and things going back and forth. I wouldn’t even have to put it on iTunes. I could have just emailed it out to 27 people once a week. So when we’re talking about creating content, Jeffrey-

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Exactly. Wait, wait. What would the subject of the podcast be?

 

Will Barron:

So I was selling endoscopy camera systems, imaging systems to urologists. So it could be anything. I mean, if you want to dive into [inaudible [00:11:24] a little bit more.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I would have titled my podcast. “What do you do if you run into a prick?”

 

Will Barron:

I knew there was some Willie joke coming there, Jeffrey.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah, exactly.

 

Will Barron:

But do you-

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Okay. But keep in mind, though, that that humour is what attracts.

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

You can’t be British, you have to be Monty Python. And you have to do it and you can’t be proper. This is not the Queen of England, this is making a sale. And you have put this in perspective of, what is going to make that customer feel attractive enough to me to want to buy from me? Can I engage this person where they will want to, want to connect with me?

 

Jeffrey Describes How He Would Start Creating Content Online and How He Would Attract Potential Customers in The First Few Days · [12:33]

 

Will Barron:

So to dive into, I just got started down this thread now but with that urology, we call it the salesperson in the prick or something along those lines. All you have to stroke their ego, one person’s ego for half an hour, once a week and you’ve got this incredibly valuable piece of content that where you [crosstalk [00:12:29] share it would be incredibly useful for those as individuals in that space as well. Right? So how is there a framework that we can roll out for, all I’m asking Jeffrey is what’s the starting point? Should sales people creating podcasts? Should they be doing YouTube live videos? Should they be blogging? How do we know where we should start with all this if we’re going to encourage our team to create content?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

If it were me, I would start a podcast and every week I would interview one of my customers.

 

Will Barron:

Yep.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

And instruct them about how great they are, how they got started, what they did. And they’re going to share with everybody. And I can promise you that one urologist knows another one. And at the end, I’ll say if you’re a urologist and you want to be on my show there’s my email. Now I’m going to get new people, new prospects, new customers for free. It just takes a little bit of time. Or I can go on LinkedIn, and I can troll for people. I can look for urologists, look at my zip code, look at my thing, introduce myself and go through a bunch of bullshit. Or I could simply pick one guy who’s very well known, do a podcast with him or her and I win. I win tremendously.

 

How to Get Over Your Fear of The Time it Takes to Achieve Thought Leadership Status · [13:53]

 

Will Barron:

I think a lot of people are nervous about the lag time, right? Of, we get people to start and people assume it’s going to be seven years down the line before they get a lead from this.

 

“But if you’re only doing it to get business, you’re doing the wrong thing. You’ll have the wrong motive. What you’re looking for is content that values other people and builds them up.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [14:22]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I would recommend, we’ve been doing our podcast called Sell or Die for about four years now. We have a two and a half million downloads so it’s not like we don’t know what we’re doing. But you start to get business pretty much right away. But if you’re only doing it to get business, you’re doing the wrong thing. You’ll have the wrong motive. What you’re looking for is content that values other people and builds them up. And it’s your reputation. You can actually make a cold call to a urologist and say, “Hey, you’re a very well known urologist. You may not have seen my podcast but I specialise in urology. Would you like to be a guest?” Not, “Do you want to hear my sales pitch about my product?” Big difference.

 

Creating Content is Building Trust at Distance · [14:50] 

 

Will Barron:

Sure. And your personal brand is so strong that you will, you’ve probably forgotten the days that that wasn’t a influence within phone calls and sales meetings. But it’s something that I experienced perhaps, maybe two, three years ago. I would start to call people or email people to get sponsors on the show or to sell our corporate training programme. And now, it’s actually quite difficult to do that without at least someone within the chain, recognising who I am. Someone’s consumed some of our content at some point. And so when I’m trying to create anecdotes and create blog posts and do experiments, everything’s totally skewed. So it’s massively beneficial, just from a personal branding perspective, right? To I guess, I just want to coin this I don’t know who did. It’ll probably you, one of your books, Jeffrey. So you’re building trust at distance aren’t you? And that’s like one of the main benefits of all this.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Right, exactly. And the challenge of most salespeople, because it doesn’t bring an immediate sale they don’t think it has immediate value. When in fact, it has long term value and short term response. You’ll get response right away, if you do it right. Go look at the five most popular podcasts, look at how they elicit response from an audience or bring somebody on as a guest in the audience or answer from the audience. And if you’re dealing in your specific niche, it’s so much easier.

 

The Dos and Don’ts of Niching Down When Creating Content as a Beginner · [16:18]

 

Will Barron:

So let’s just touch on niche here. Because I feel like this is something that, it’s something I got wrong with our first podcast, the Salesman Podcast. It was just too broad, B2B sales people. In hindsight, if I were to go back again I would have done it a lot more kind of a narrow focus. For an individual salesperson, should the focus be their ideal customer? Or should we go slightly wider than that as we kind of plan out our initial content?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

You can go slightly wide. You ca go slightly wider because you don’t know. For example, it could be your ideal customer and their vendors.

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

And that way, you’re more inclusive in who you’re trying to broadcast to. But believe me, if you’re looking for 25 new customers, and there’s 100 people that are your targets, shoot there. Rather than try to find out who’s in charge of this and make a cold call and try to get an appointment and send literature and they don’t show up for the appointment. Too much. Those days are over. They’re over.

 

The New Era of Professional Digital Selling · [17:20]

 

Will Barron:

Do you think those days are over, Jeffrey, from a perspective of digital automated now? If you want a brochure, you go online and get it right? You don’t need some schmuck in a suit knocking on your door to handle it one over. Do you think those days are over just full stop.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

They may not be full stop but they’re approaching full stop. And COVID has exacerbated that. Because up until a year ago, video, virtual were an option. Now, they’re not an option anymore. They’re an imperative. And so when you go from one thing to the other that quickly, it changes the whole culture and changes the whole terrain of sales. And sales people don’t realise that the terrain is sales, because they’re thinking about it from their own perspective and what they used to do. And what they used to do is no longer valid. I mean, you have a nice background, I have a nice background. But have you seen most people’s backgrounds when they’re on the air? I don’t want to see your unmade bed, I don’t want to see your closet. I don’t want to see the door to your bathroom. I want to see something that sparks, that tells me you’re a professional. That’s what I want to see. And most salespeople don’t even think about that. And that’s part of the new… We’re ushering in a whole new era of sales, that has time travel, literally.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Because it might have taken 10 years for us to get to the point where we are right now. It just took us six months. And if you can’t… You’re in England, you’re basically locked down. How the hell do you make a sales call? And the answer is virtually. Correct?

 

Will Barron:

Correct. And let me ask this, Jeffrey, from the-

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I mean, if you go outside, if you’re a sales guy, they catch you? The police catch you? What do they do?

 

Will Barron:

Do you know what? We could touch on this for a second because this is interesting. I’ve had this multiple times on multiple podcasts recently, of people outside of the UK/EU having this weird assumption that people in the UK are like, there’s coppers, there’s bobbies we call them in the UK. With hard hats and Trojans running around chasing after people. And I’m not sure where this is coming from. It’s clearly media is kind of portraying different pictures in different places.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Really? Are you telling me the media is skewed?

 

Will Barron:

I’m telling you the media is full of more shit than what people care to admit.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah. Exactly. I heard that they actually catch salespeople and recircumcised. So it makes much more difficult.

 

Will Barron:

In UK you don’t need to recircumcise anyone because nobody’s circumcised.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I gotcha. Okay, cool.

 

Why You Should Have Professional But Comfortable Backgrounds During Virtual Sales Meetings · [20:37]

 

Will Barron:

And now I’m going to pull, I’m going to pull it probably back into the leadership conversation here, Jeffrey, before we go to it to a skew on this, right. From a sales leaders perspective, right? Everyone’s on board. We’ve listened to this show, we’ve listened to the king of sales, everyone’s creating content, some of it is shit, some of it is great. Perhaps we can communicate within the team, we can improve things over time, because of better the scientific method to go back and forth and help everyone kind of rising tide raises all ships, that kind of thing. Now, you mentioned backgrounds here. Something as simple as this, right? Should our backgrounds, even when we are on Zoom calls, Skype calls, whatever it is. Should we be as leaders, I mean, struggling to have a way to say this quietly but forcing our team to have our brand in the background and things like that. Or does that just not matter anymore? Have we given up on all that shit?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I think that branding can help. Especially if your brand needs to be better known, I think that’s important. But professional is the best way or inviting, would be a best way to make it feel like I’m home. My background is inviting. I’m at the beach, there’s palm trees in the background. Don’t you want to know where I am and what the temperature is? It’s the middle of the winter. But I’m walking on the beach every day, and most people are not. But I want to be able to be myself. I want to be able to be at ease. Don’t force me to do things that make me feel uncomfortable. And that challenge me not to be myself. Leave me alone. Put me in front of my library, which is… I have two residences. One here at the beach and one in Charlotte, North Carolina. But I broadcast from my library in Charlotte. And it’s just, first of all, it makes me look more intelligent. And second of all, it’s a very comfortable scene. Art, books. It’s relaxing.

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

“Look professional, act friendly.” – Jeffry Gitomer · [22:26]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

And I think that the sales leader should not be so demanding. But rather should be encouraging them to do what’s comfortable for them, but looks professional. Look professional, act friendly. Look professional, act friendly. Not that hard to do.

 

Jefferey Describes How Being “Professional” in Sales Has Evolved Over the Past 10 years · [23:12]

 

Will Barron:

Do you think this idea of being professional has changed over the past… Clearly it’s accelerated the change. Has changed over the past five, 10 years or so. So I remember, and some of your content as well when I was in sales. I’d google it and it was very much, and I guess less so you but some people around that time, that period it was people in suits, and it was white board and it was this and that. And I feel like a lot of sales content now, a lot of content in general, because of YouTube as you’re blowing up and having way more attention than people who even have massive TV shows, that has kind of… You can be professional in a shirt and a jumper as opposed to a suit. As we’re all working from home do you think the cultural elements of what is professional for sales and what isn’t has changed?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I think what you have to do is be aware of the time. What time is it in our lives? Because 10 years ago, a suit might have been the norm.

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

“I believe in going to a sales call and your content is what rules not your dress. But the bottom line is, you need to look the part in today’s world. Sometimes if you walk in with a suit, it’s almost shocking today.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [23:24] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Now the suit is no longer than norm. And my statement has always been, “Neckties strangle clear thinking.” But that’s just me. I believe in going to a sales call and your content is what rules not your dress. You can’t go sloppy, you have to look casual but smart. So smart casual is the dress of the day. It can be even branded outerwear as the message of the day. But the bottom line is, you need to look the part in today’s world. Sometimes if you walk in with a suit, it’s almost shocking today. Unless you’re a banker, in which case you sleep in your suit and all you have to do is get up and steam yourself off a little bit.

 

Will Barron:

Sure. Okay. Well, before we wrap up here, Jeffrey. Is there anything… Because clearly it’s a massive subject, right?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Wait, we’re wrapping up. I’m starting to have fun [crosstalk [00:24:26]. Wait, I don’t want to wrap up yet. I’m having fun here.

 

What Sales Leaders Must do to Help Their Team Win in Creating Better and Attractive Content · [24:30]

 

Will Barron:

I’ve got a few more questions to ask you at the end of the conversation about the content of go live. Right? I just want to ask you now before we get into that, is there anything that we’ve missed here? Is there any massive pillars of the book, which we’ll touch on in a second, that we need to cover that sales leaders need to know that we haven’t touched on?

 

“If you want your salespeople to win, you train them yourself.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [24:50] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah. I just want to reiterate a couple of things. Number one, if you want your salespeople to win, you train them yourself. You go with them, you make sales calls with them, you become their mentor, their leader, you earn the physician. Don’t delegate that. That’s number one. Number two, make sure that your sales people get training that’s real world. I don’t need to memorise somebody else’s system. I don’t need to find the pain. I don’t need to look at the bullshit of somebody else’s idea. 

 

“Train at your customer’s place of business. Find out why they bought, find out how they use, find out what they do, find out what they think. Find out what happens when they have a service call. These are the elements that are so overlooked in today’s society.” – Jefferey Gitomer · [25:29]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer: 

I want to go to customers and train there. Train at your customer’s place of business. Find out why they bought, find out how they use, find out what they do, find out what they think. Find out what happens when they have a service call. These are the elements that are so overlooked in today’s society, that too structured bunch of crap about the five points to do this. No. It’s not working anymore.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

And to me realistically, you post content that creates attraction that creates leads. Show me the difference between one person that calls me, or you calling a hundred of people? Would you rather do have one incoming call or 10 outgoing calls?

 

Is Having a Strong Personal Brand The Secret Source to Creating Content That Drives Sales? · [26:15]

 

Will Barron:

Is this the hack, Jeffrey? Because everyone’s looking for this hack, this trick, this way of… Perhaps 10 years ago, it was a closing technique. Now it’s as you mentioned, then some kind of secret structure that someone who has it sells a course has that, “You’re going to get access to, if you buy into it.” Is the real hack, just having such a strong personal brand. That for example, Warren Buffett rings either of us up, offers us investing advice, and immediately I’m remortgaging my house to go run into it. Right.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

A thousand [crosstalk [00:26:43]. Okay. But let me throw this, Will because I think this is very important.

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

“To me, a hack indicates either somebody who’s not that good at it. Or someone who’s looking for a shortcut.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [26:49] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

To me, a hack indicates either somebody who’s not that good at it. Or someone who’s looking for a shortcut.

 

Will Barron:

Yep.

 

“There are no shortcuts in sales. If you want to win in sales, you take the long cut. You invest your time, and you do what’s necessary so that you can win in the short term and more importantly, in the long term.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [27:01] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

There are no shortcuts in sales. If you want to win in sales, you take the long cut. You invest your time, and you do what’s necessary so that you can win in the short term. More importantly, in the long term. The hack will never work. Because it teaches you to cut out some steps. And those are the steps that actually teach you why it happened in the first place. And I’m against hackers, of every form. Whether it’s a computer hacker or whatever. And I’m in favour of building your brand over an extended period of time so that eventually people call you. I don’t want to make a sales call. They’re a pain in the ass. “Well, hi. You don’t know me, my name is Jeffrey. But I’m really good at this. I swear to God, my customers love me. And I was wondering, if I could just have five minutes of your time so I can pour the shit out of you, with some slides that my marketing department is making me show. Hello! That I recommend to all salespeople.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

If you have a slideshow, email it the night before. Because anything you’re going to tell that person in your slideshow is Googleable. Anything. Who you are, where you came from, what you did. Anything. And if you need to do a little bit of a video voiceover you can do that too. So that when you arrive at the customer’s place, you say, “Listen, I have a couple of ideas that I want to share with you. And all I’m asking is, if you like them you run with them. Fair enough?” “Yeah, that’s fair enough.” It’s pretty novel approach. Why do I need to boil the crap out of somebody? So, if you’re a sales leader, you have a responsibility to stop boring your sales people’s customers? Stop it.

 

Jeffrey Reveals The Moment He Understood the Power of Creating Valuable Content and Why Content is More Effective Than Cold Calling · [29:13]

 

Will Barron:

How long have you had this, I guess not it’s opinion because I agree. It’s somewhat fact. This is measurable, right? How long have you thought that… Or how long have you believed? Again, I’m using these words that are not quite appropriate. How long have you known that personal brand, creating content, or this sort of thing is perhaps, depending on how well you are, how good you are at doing it, is as effective if not more effective than just traditional pick up the phone and cold call people? This is a long standing opinion.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I’m going to give you the date that it happened for me.

 

Will Barron:

Okay.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

March 23rd, 1992. That’s the day that my first column appeared in print, in the Charlotte, North Carolina Business Journal. It had my phone number in the bio. And a guy called me up and says, “Do you do business consulting?” And I said, “Yes, I do.” And he said, “What kind do you do?” And I said, Well, I specialise in hands on no bullshit.” And he said, “Well, how quick can you get here?” And I said, “I can probably be there in about an hour.” And I walked out of that call with a check for $1,000. I think that’s like 5000 pounds now. I walked out of there with $1,000 check, I brought it back to the Business Journal, to the publisher. And I said, “You see this? I’m never going to make a sales call again, as long as I’m alive. Ever.” Now since that time, I’ve done 2500 speeches, keynotes, trainings, whatever. Not made one sales call. So if you want to talk to me about the value of content, and the value of attraction, and the value of calling versus dialling. Anyone who does it is an idiot. And they hate their job.

 

Will Barron:

Yeah, yeah. Okay, that’s-

 

“Cold calling is a lousy place to make a sale. But it happens to be a great place to learn how to sell.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [31:11]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Hang on one second. Let me say one more thing before somebody jumps all over me. Cold calling is a lousy place to make a sale. But it happens to be a great place to learn how to sell. Because you have about five seconds to get through to that person. And then you have to set a meeting. And what do you say when you get to the meeting? Most people, when the guy on the other end of a cold call is agreeable, the sales guy hardly knows what to do. He’s used to fighting or she’s used to fighting. So I’m not saying, don’t do what I’m saying. Do it until you don’t have to do it anymore. Do it till you learn it. And then go into something that creates attraction. So attract, engage, connect. Attract, engage, connect. Those are the three elements that will get a salesperson way past their quota.

 

Why is it Taking The Market Place So Long To See The Benefits of Creating Content? · [32:03]

 

Will Barron:

So final thing on this then. And this might be a four hour conversation in its own right, Jeffrey. Why is it? You found this out in 1992, firsthand. I found this out from starting the Salesman Podcast and the other show that we do. And within weeks had thousands of downloads, just by fluke more than anything else. And very quickly realising that that attention has more value than just me, going round to hospitals and speaking to surgeons. Has more value to the marketplace and so there’s more opportunity to drive revenue from it right? Why has it taken… It took me until I was what 25 or so to suss that out. You’d sussed this out, was that? We’re going to 30 years ago. Why is it taking the marketplace so long to catch up?

 

“You have to stay sober if you want to make money.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [33:48]

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I’m going to tell you, I can say it in two or three words. Number one, stupid leadership. And number two, pints. People will go to a pub at four or five o’clock at night and say, “Oh I’ll just have a pint or two.” That box people up. You can’t think clearly at the end of a pint. And your game plan for the next day is a little muddy. And by the time you get home, you have no incentive to plan. You’re tired, you’re sleepy, and you’re stupid. And you fall over yourself, you drive into a tree. Luckily they have a great underground system in most of Europe. Especially in England, especially in London. Where you can take the tube someplace and get out in three stops and you don’t have to worry about driving your car. And now they have Uber so you don’t have to worry about anything. But the bottom line is, you have to stay sober if you want to make money. And the people that are out there partying or watching something stupid on Netflix or whatever. Those people lose.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

They’re not serious enough about their business to be able to be innovative. The reason I came up with the concept was because I was paying attention. That’s it. I was paying attention, going to sleep sober, waking up full of energy. We have so many diversions right now. You can’t walk down the street without looking at your phone. You’re walking down the street, and your phone goes off in your back pocket and you pull that sucker out to look at it. I see people walking off of planes, Will. And they walk into a wall looking at their phone. And they go, “Oh shit. I just walked into a wall.” And they keep going like nothing bad happen. We are too diverted from our real responsibility. And in this day and age, it’s a three word. Help customers win. Help customers win. Do that and when it’s time to buy, they’ll buy.

 

Will Barron:

I guess this is a, other than it’s wider culturally right that people waste too much time on the phones. I know for me personally, I don’t have the Gmail app on my phone. So to open my actual email is a pain in the ass of logging in and all that kind of stuff. I don’t have anything on the homescreen. I have to talk, to talk about what’s on my phone. I have to hack the process of opening something because I’m not dumb that I’ll do it subconsciously otherwise. But, so that’s one element. And that’s a larger more difficult thing to solve for the teams underneath the sales leaders or listen to the show. But culturally within an organisation, we’ve got a lot of opportunity to reprogram our team’s brains, right? Metaphorically, and I almost physically the way that our brains work. What is the starting point, and this will lead on to another conversation another time I’m sure.

 

How to Start Creating Content That Helps Solve Customer Problems · [36:04]

 

Will Barron:

What’s the starting point, Jeffrey to start to get our teams to focus, on helping the customer. Is there anything… Just, is there any bang for buck, most important thing we should be doing? Is it customer interviews or something like that?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Stop preaching and start talking. Have a dialogue rather than a monologue. If I lead a sales team, I would have the meeting start out by saying, “Okay guys, tell me what’s up. Each individual person tell me what’s up. What are you doing? What did you do that was great yesterday? What was the best thing you did yesterday? How did you make a deal yesterday?” And well, I do these seminars and before I do the seminar, they’re all customised. I have to talk to leadership and sales people, so I know how to customise my information. You go to a doctor’s office and he doesn’t say, “Looks like your leg is hurting you, Will.” “No, it’s my arm.” “Arm, I was going to say that next.” No, they say where does it hurt? They ask the question. And the sales leader has to be more collaborative by asking. Has to be more dialogue by asking, “Hey, how’d it go yesterday? What was your biggest obstacle? Oh, wow, that’s my favourite objection. Let me share with you how I do it.” It’s up to the leader.

 

Jeffrey’s Advise to New Sales Leaders ·  [37:26]

 

Will Barron:

And one final question, Jeffrey is what I ask everyone that comes on the show. If you could offer, and it might be the same advice. If you could offer one piece of advice to a sales leader who’s 30, 60, 90 days into their role. They’re brand new, they just come up from a sales individual contributor role. What would that one piece of advice be?

 

“If you don’t love the product, the company and the people that you’re working for, get out.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [37:44] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

If you don’t love the product, the company and the people that you’re working for, get out. Because you’re not going to be happy, you’re going to be angry, you’re going to be dictatorial, you’re going to think of your position as somewhat powerful. And you’re going to fail at it. 

 

“The object of any leadership position is to be followed in a way that people respect you, agree with you, like you, and are willing to take your teachings out and turn them into money.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [38:01] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer: 

The object of any leadership position is to be followed in a way that people respect you, agree with you, like you and are willing to take your teachings out and turn them into money.

 

Will Barron:

I love it. That’s powerful stuff. That word, Geoffrey. Follow. I think that sums up a lot of what we talked about today, right?

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah, totally. “Follow me guys.” “No, no, I really don’t want to.

 

Jeffrey’s New Book: Go Live! · [38:36]

 

Will Barron:

Well look, Jeffrey with that I mean if everyone who does want to follow you, tell us about the new book, Go Live! Where we can find it and I think it’s out on Kindle but it’s coming out on hardback shortly. Right?

 

“If you don’t have virtual connections, something’s drastically wrong with who you are as a salesperson at this moment.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [39:00] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah. It out in the US already. You can probably go to Amazon. It’s called Go Live! It’s all about, and the subtitle of the book tells you everything. “Turn virtual connections into paying customers.” And if you don’t have virtual connections, something’s drastically wrong with who you are as a salesperson at this moment. Because virtual is not the new black. It’s the new green. Money. And the people that are mastering it right now are the ones that are going to win long term. It’s new. For most people, it’s a year old. Some people didn’t even know what Zoom or Skype was a year ago. And now they use it every day. You’re familiar with Zoom, right, Will? It’s like Skype except it works. And anybody can get on any… Microsoft has a platform. Everybody has a platform now. Google has a platform, Microsoft… If you want to know a video works, go look at YouTube. Go look at Facebook Live. And try your best to understand how you might be able to do something that takes advantage of this. Because the three kinds of people are going to emerge from the pandemic. Winners, watchers, and whiners.

 

“Three kinds of people are going to emerge from the pandemic. Winners, watchers, and whiners.” – Jeffrey Gitomer · [40:03] 

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

I want to be a winner. And if you want to be a winner, then virtual and video are the new points of mastery in sales. Can you imagine? You live in Leeds, but you have a sales call in Edinburgh. So you’re going to fly to Edinburgh, you’re going to meet somebody for an hour and a half, you’re going to have your, maybe go to the Masters or St Andrews or something or go to a museum. Then you’re going to get back on a plane and go home. Why wouldn’t you send that customer a pound of coffee, or K-Cups and a mug? And say, “Hey, let’s meet online for our first meeting and see what our compatibility factor is. And then if you need me to fly to Denver, I’ll gladly do it. But maybe you should fly to Leeds.” And maybe, corporate travel is going to be cut by at least 50%. Maybe more.

 

Will Barron:

Way more. It’s got to be more.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah. So that part… And the airlines are already shaking in their boots about that. But how are you taking advantage of this? The same guy I wanted to talk to at 10 o’clock in the morning in Edinburgh. I can meet with somebody eight o’clock, nine o’clock, 10 o’clock, 11 o’clock. 12 o’clock, online and be in my pyjama bottoms. You have to have a good top. Because I can’t tell if you’re wearing pants or not.

 

Will Barron:

Well, I won’t stand up Jeffrey. If I want to embarrass the both of us.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Okay. William, I’m trying to apologise. No trousers. I don’t want to…

 

Will Barron:

No, so here’s one for you. People in the north of the UK call pants, pants. Don’t know why. It’s an Americanism. Right? But yeah, people in the south call it trousers.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Yeah. Well, Mick Jagger must be from the south because when he did that live thing he said, “You wouldn’t want my trousers to fall off.” And to me, England, they’re not pants or trousers. I don’t care where you live. You guys have words for things that are just wonderful.

 

Will Barron:

Well, don’t forget. It’s called English, Jeffrey. We did invent it.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

Oh yeah. That’s a revelation. It is called English. So I want to challenge the salesperson. You don’t need anybody’s permission to make a virtual sales call. You don’t need anybody’s permission to go to a video source and there are several of them now. The one I use is Hippo Video. You can put in the notes if you want to. Use hippovideo.com. And that will take you to a free seven day trial. And you make a video instead of sending an email. It immediately separates you. Immediately. Wouldn’t it be cool if you had sent a proposal to somebody and put a video with it? Instead of just, “Well, thanks very much for this opportunity. And again, thanks. Enclosed is your proposal, please turn to the price page and not read anything else like everyone else does.” Come on. It’s unbelievable how salespeople will not take advantage of technology for their own benefit? Think about it.

 

Will Explains The First-Mover Advantage and Its Impact in Creating Content and Driving Sales · [43:42]

 

Will Barron:

And I’ll wrap things over this, Jeffrey. In that, I’m sure you agree there’s a real first mover advantage to a lot of this. Whether it’s a new platform, whether it was, they then have kind of calm down right now where it was long text posts on LinkedIn. Up to a couple of years or a couple months ago, we’re getting tonnes of attention and traffic, and the first few people to kind of pull the knots on the line and to do it, have now built massive audiences are doing really well. Video is going to be the same if you put yourself forward, if you’re willing to go out of your comfort zone and just get it done. You’re going to have that first mover advantage and that will then stick with you throughout the rest of your career.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

And you just practise it if you don’t think you’re that good at it, just do it. The cool part about Hippo Video, is you get to look at your own video. And you can literally coach yourself, Will. The best coach is you. Of you. You look at your podcasts, you look at your lives, whatever you do. And you see yourself and you go, “Shit. I got to… I can’t do that. I got to set up straighter or I actually need a better background.” Something, has to change well. Well Hippo, you get to see what your message is. Not just hear it. And you can correct yourself in a heartbeat for the next one. And then get better, get better, get better. And eventually people go, “Wow. This guy is really good.” That’s where you want to be. Really good.

 

Will Barron:

For sure. Well, I will actually link to, now that you’ve mentioned it. I’ll link to a couple of our first videos that are still on YouTube. They’ve had thousands of views, but they are embarrassing. It’s cringey to go back and watch them. But just, I’m not saying I’m incredible right now. Far from it. But to look from that to where we are now in just a few years, that is just repetition. It’s just doing it over again. It’s watching the videos back. It’s feeling like an idiot, for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time. Stammering, stuttering and all kinds. Kind of, it’s a humbling experience for everyone. And with that Jeffrey, I will have to wrap up now mate. I’ll be back on to talk about this in the future. The cameras, I tend to a pumpkin on the hour mate because with all the memory cards I’ll wrap up so we will have to finish it. And with that I want to thank you for joining us again on the Sales Leadership Show.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer:

It’s my pleasure, Will. It’s my total pleasure. Be healthy, stay healthy and good New Year.

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