Messages from the Masters
The Two Most Important Words in Selling by Jeffrey Gitomer

Can you guess what they are? Make money, customer service, close sales, follow up. No. They're words about sales -- I'm talking about two words that lead to sales. Hint: The words are separate. 

Give up? The first word is you.

Many sales people believe that customers buy their products and services first. Incorrect. The first thing prospect's buy is the salesperson. The first sale made is you.

In order to affect any direct sale the customer must first believe in the person conveying the message. This is unfortunately most evident when "you" is bad. Ever walk out of a car dealership because the salesperson was too pushy, or worse, insulted you? Then drove somewhere else and bought the same product because they were "nice" to you. You bought the salesperson -- then you bought the product.

Ever had a rude salesperson or server, and walked away without purchasing? Not only did you walk away, you told friends and associates the horror story. The person couldn't sell themselves, therefore couldn't complete a sale that the customer was anxious to make. Amazing isn't it? 

It all begins with you. Prospects must first believe in (and like) the messenger, or the message has no credibility. 

How's your personal product? How's your you? Is it salable -- or does it need some work?

Rate your you. Here are 10.5 things that make "you" strong enough to make a sale. Rate yourself in each category from one (poor) to ten (the greatest) -- and see how great "you" are. Put your rating in the box.

____1. Your image. How you look affects the way you are perceived. How do you look?

____2. Your ability to speak. Your ability to convey the message. Are you a member of toastmasters?

____3. Your ability to establish rapport. Making the prospect feel at ease, and developing some common ground as a basis to move forward. Do you make the scene warm?

____4. Your attitude. Your enthusiasm combined with your state of internal happiness. Not what you say, but how you say it. Are you positive plus?

____5. Your product knowledge. Your convincebility. Do you know it cold? 

____ 6. Your desire to help. Desire to help shows through, so does greed. Does your help side outweigh your greed side?

____7. Your preparedness. A confidence builder if you are, or destroyer if you aren't. Do you prepare for every call?

____8. Your humor. Nothing builds good feelings like good humor and a good laugh. Can you make others laugh?

____9. Your sincerity. Shows through either way. Are you genuine?

____10. Your reputation (or the reputation that precedes you). If you are well known in the community, or in your field, you may walk in with a slight advantage. How's your reputation?

____10.5 Your glue. The way you handle your total package. Your Stature. The way you carry yourself. The way you put it all together. The character of you is what leads to the credibility of what you sell. How well are you "put together"?

How'd you score? Perfect score is 110.

If you scored from 100-110 you are a great you with a great success story to tell, and are setting a great example for others.

90-99 Pretty darn good you. Climbing the ladder, and making daily progress.

70-89 You ain't as hot as you think. You're in need of a 20 minute personal daily workout.

50-69 You're mediocre at sales, and so is your success to date. You have a decision to make. Stay and get better every day, or get out before you're fired, and blame someone else for all that's wrong with you.

30-49 You stink. Go to the nearest bookstore, buy Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People. Don't leave home until you read it.

Making you great is fun. And it will make more sales than 1,000 sales techniques. Oh, and for those of you who have a long way to go, here's the best advice I've ever heard to start (and stay) on the path to being the best -- You are the greatest, if you think you are.

The second most important in sales is...(out of space -- see you tomorrow)

Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, Knock Your Socks Off Selling and Customer Satisfaction is Worthless; Customer Loyalty is Priceless. To order Jeffrey's many books and/or audios and videos, go to  (c) 1999 All Rights Reserved.

Provided courtesy of  Jim Rohn International