Messages from the Masters
Sales Is a Game of Numbers by Art Sobszak

It also has been often said that sales is just a numbers game. And I've often refuted that saying.

It's not just a numbers game.

It's a quality game, in the sense that you can't just crank out calls and expect success if you're doing the wrong things.

But, sales is a game OF numbers. We use numbers to describe degrees of pain, pleasure, profits, losses, income, and time. And there are smart ways to use numbers on the phone in your sales. Let's look at them.


This old technique refers to minimizing the price or difference in cost between you and a competitor. "Ridiculous" refers to how insignificant the amount really is when you put it in daily terms. "Pat, we're really only talking about a difference of two dollars a day to have the souped-up model." (Or, ridiculous could mean how crazy someone could get with this technique: "Chad, it's only 30 cents per hour difference over the 10-year life of the machine.")


Conversely, this is taking a savings and extrapolating it over a longer period. It's useful in pointing out how much someone will save, over a greater period of time, by buying from you. "You'll save the shipping cost on every order. On two orders per month at an average of $15 per, we're looking at $360 for the year."


When you want to maximize the perception of a number, say the word "dollars."

"With us, your savings will be over three-thousand

Conversely, to minimize it, just say the number:

"To upgrade will only be an extra one-fifty."


Stating exact numbers adds more credibility to your statements than using rounded numbers. For example,

"Our program is in place at 358 dealerships," sounds authoritative.

"Our program is in about 400 dealerships," leaves a feeling that the number might be fudged a bit.

Likewise, if you want to minimize the importance of a number, you could use a rounded figure.

"We're only looking at a figure for customization somewhere in the 200 range."


You probably can recall those hair-pulling situations where you've established the savings or additional profits you could help someone realize, but yet, they don't act on it. It's normally because they don't see the number as being significant enough. So put it in terms they can understand. "Paul, you're right, we're only talking about $400 a month savings here. But I bet that would make the monthly payment on one of your delivery vans."

Or, "The $200 cost reduction might not seem like a lot, but let's look at it a different way. You said your profit margin is about 10%. You'd need to do another $2,000 in sales per month just to make the $200 I'm basically offering you for free."

Art Sobczak is President of Business By Phone Inc. and Editor and Publisher of "TelE-Sales Hot Tips of the Week." To subscribe, free, visit or call 800-326-7721.

Provided courtesy of  Jim Rohn International

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