3 Compelling Biopics to Redefine Your Sales Persistence

“CHANGE THE CONDITIONS and you will cross that line. The line that you said you wouldn’t cross”  -Joe Hunt, Billionaire Boys Club (1987)

Christopher Gardner, Joseph Henry Gamsky, Bill Porter – Real to life closers who know no hindrance to close a sale. May it be sleeping overnight in the subway toilet with a 5 year old son, selling door to door in a 7-mile neighborhood daily with a stiff-knee gait or even killing not just once. Watch and you will never know how to listen to your excuses. Not anymore.

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3. Pursuit of HappYness (2006), played by Will Smith

The only theatrical film on this list, you might have watched this and you will agree with me that replaying it would still be a tear jerker. From losing the trust of your wife to queuing for a shelter room every after your sales shift with your 5 year old child, your luggage and that bulky bone scanner. Really inspiring sob.

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2. Billionaire Boys Club (1987), played by Judd Nelson

Made as a television movie in 1987, you will find yourself checking your sanity every time Joe speaks a word. Scenes perfectly manifest his tenacity to be second to no one. From a nerd debater in high school to a splendid brain washer founding the BBC. This definitely is a movie that triggers Morality Check of a closer’s sales persistence. When does persistence decoy a sinful greediness? Lot of closing skills to learn. I had a long list while watching. Did he really kill for an immense wealth? As to my verdict? Well, there are no absolutes. There are no black and no white. Just shades.Watch it Now.

“You won power over a person through the knowledge of two things, Joe explained: One was what they wanted, the other was what they feared.”

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1. Door to Door (2002), played by William H. Macy

That line from Bill’s acceptance speech being Watkin’s Salesman of the Year in 1989 may be too simple, but when you reach that scene while watching, you find your tears like dewdrop per second. Both this TV movie and the array of documentaries featuring Bill really make me extremely inspired. Bill Porter indeed is the only of his sales persistence caliber. He has Cerebral Palsy. He is a top Salesman. Legendary.

These are compressed version of the circumstances these closers encountered. A reel from the real struggles for the sake of the art of motion picture. You might have been once like Chris, Bill or Joe. You may be like any of them in the future, or yet your kind of persistence is even stronger than theirs which the world have not known yet.

Would you do the same choices they did? Same dose of optimism? Same dosage of resilience? How challenging you are facing now compared to theirs?

Crossing the line is all in the mind.


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COMING SOON: Billionaire Boys Club would have a theatrical film version this 2016 which will be starred by Ansel Elgort as Joe Hunt. Judd Nelson, who was Hunt in the 1987 TV movie will be the father of Joe. Kevin Spacey will be Ron Levin while Emma Roberts as Sydney, Hunt’s love interest. “As we were writing this, I thought, ‘What if ‘Wall Street (1987)’ became ‘Alpha Dog (2006)’ halfway through?” James Cox, director said.

I hope the 2016 version would not neglect the sales skills every salesman could learn from Hunt’s real-life closing prowess. I will be watching this. You too, right?

HOW TO: Strategize Handshake to get a Genuine Sales Commitment

The impact is strategically deafening.  An impact which prospect essentially feels what something isn’t told since the message is meant to be uttered simply the way you hold.

“The impact is strategically deafening.  An impact which prospect essentially feels what something isn’t told since the message is meant to be uttered simply the way you hold.”

Nostalgic from my kindergarten years in a parochial school, a handshake would spare us from the rod of visiting the principal’s office every time a quarrel erupts with a fellow brat (I am not that notorious though. My seatmates are). During my high school years’ debate championships, a handshake described as “traditional” is always requested every before the adjudication is exposed. Both depicts the same essence of handshake from an archaeological remnants of the ancient Greece. It suggested that handshakes are originated as a remark of peace to prove that both soldiers’ hands aren’t any more in possession of any war weapon.

In the sales world, handshakes generally signal a done deal. Exhibit that both parties have no objections to raise any more, just like weapons – Metaphorical. Thus, both ends are at peace for the consensual choice. Nice to imagine right? I guess all sales people would love to end every pitch with a closed deal handshake, but as they said everyday isn’t Christmas and not all prospects are Santa Clause -Real.

Handshake is actually an intra-pitch sales tool. Not just a pitch ender gesture. Not just a done-deal ritual. It is a tactile commitment thermometer. It has variants. A sort of calibrations which should be fortified with deliberate sensations of timely, compelling emotions. Here are some.

1. Handshake of Warmth : (fully grasped, snappy gentle press that moves briefly up then warmly down)

The default handshake during the meet and greet. Yes. Contrary to the conventional too constricted grasp on the first meeting, a snappy soft press that moves briefly up then warmly down shake is an irresistible prelude to a promising emotional encounter. A nonverbal starter of how much you care for every person you meet. Remember John Maxwell said, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

“Mr. and Mrs. Filo? I will be in charge of you today. I’m John, how will I call you? the way your friends call you perhaps. (longtime friend smile)? (When they’ve given you the nickname, Offer this handshake smoothly then,) Kindly follow me “nicknames” so we could start?

Never be extreme yet on the first palm to palm. Too constricted grips signal dominance and negative appeal. Remember like in the 1st round of boxing, you are still trying to gauge the kind of personality you’ll be dealing with. The safest approach is to assume that humans love to be greeted with a felt welcome. Offer an emotional hand first – that is the rule of thumb.

HOW THIS LEADS TO GENUINE COMMITMENT: So, you have just meet your prospects. That means, you don’t mean the buying commitment directly yet on this shake. What you wanted to achieve here is to establish a promising committed relationship. Being sincere in your welcome makes the prospect feel valued. Their time, their presence, their commitment which they adjusted to see you for the appointment. This helps them feel comfortable of the atmosphere they are in for the rest of your talk. When they are just rightly comfortable, they feel the encounter is healthy, that meeting with you was a right choice to do. Subconsciously validating that the time commitment they’ve set within their mind of meeting with you, was worth doing so. Collaterally, preconditions their confidence and trust. Precursors for the later commitment you will be asking from them – the owning commitment. Just don’t be too servile to be warm. All of us has that reptilian part of the brain that alarms paranoia and that’s too unsurmountable to fix when activated this early of the encouter. Don’t be too sincere to be genuine. Use this shake with a smile from an old friend.

2. Handshake of Control: (firm, fully grasped, whole grip shake with the brief up and steady down movement)

The so called anaconda constriction is obsolete. Treat this as the millennial version though. Done to emphasize an agreed point, make it just a fully grasped firm shake with the brief up and steady down movement. Note that as you drive the meeting to a closed deal, you have to precede that with series of trial closes. This shake is the trial close ender. The most shake you shall do to increase agreeability and test the owning commitment. This is the gesture thermometer of how much the prospect means the commitment they are showing. Reciprocally, this also shows the prospect how much you mean business, correspondent to their affirmation. Do this shake every after response of your prospects from these sample of closes.

“Does that corner of the unit makes your children more comfortable when they play? So when we can modify the terms to be more breathable for you, would you love to own this house?”

“Aren’t you glad your knowledge about the potential earnings of this concept is clearly laid out versus the compensation plan of other MLM concept you have listened to? Which do you think is more lucrative?”

“It must have been self-assuring to feel that you have known a way to actively sustain your family’s welfare from this day on. No one would want to be guilt ridden in this lifetime, would you agree?

Use this shake too as ender of your intent statement or rules of the game before the start of the pitch. A ritual of agreement which reflects your trustworthiness and professionalism. Do this shake after intent statement like this:

“Our company has proven that inviting couples like you tonight for a personal presentation is far more cost effective than airing our hotels in the mainstream media advertisement. I had deliberately planned to make your time worth interacting with me by customizing my presentation to be efficient. This how it goes… obviously I have been flexible to my pacing specific to my guests every night. I could actually fasten it according to your comprehension but undoubtedly, my presentation shall never be hurried. Don’t you think that’s fair for both of our time?

HOW THIS LEADS TO GENUINE COMMITMENT: The aim of the grip’s firmness is to send a mark to your prospect’s side. Such grip means business and commitment. It is an imperative to let them feel the difference of this handshake to the others. You don’t intend to be warm here or any. You intend doing business. This works as a professional intimidation for “Strokers”, the all-yes, ends-no prospects. You may spiel after this shake, “I’ll hold on to what you just have affirmed”, “You said so” or a sharp third part story of, “My guest yesterday also affirms perfectly the way you do with that handshake, but ended up still not really meaning it. I wonder how people like that still possess credence with their face lifted high. What do you think of those kind of people?” Let the good and the bad in them go out. You wanted to extract which is the genuine and the masked behavior your prospect has. When you are able to identify which, manage it to achieve veracity. A stellar moment for genuine affirmation. Handshake of choice for a fellow sales professional, businessmen and corporate executives every time you agree to a point during your pitch.

3. Handshake of Empathy: (soft compassionate grip, with brief up but the down movement sticks a second or two to the prospects hand while looking straight to the eyes)

A detector of the authenticity of an objection. Like the Warmth Handshake but with the probing eye contact straight to the prospect’s soul. A soft compassionate grip, still with brief up and down movement that sticks a second or two to the prospects hand as you gaze through their guilt reflex.  This simply senses for a sincere heartbeat. Prospects are seasoned in masking objection to stall you from involving them, especially when you haven’t establish the need and had pitched prematurely. Probe for the sincerity and never be sold to their Mystique moves. Mourn with them but still qualify the truth. Regardless of finances, prospects will all purchase when they are sold. You have to detect should they are lying so you can detour to another approach. Ask. When they seem hopeless of availing the offer, find out the truth behind. Apply a negative trial close to further your probe.

“When it is affordable, why you aren’t seeing your family enjoying such benefits?” Ask then wait for the response. Whatever is their concern, consider it but don’t believe it yet as true. Empathize by offering this shake so you can feel the guilt free-ness of their reflexes.

HOW THIS LEADS TO GENUINE COMMITMENT: They aren’t saying more YESES. Treat every first objection of its kind as genuine and empathize with it. Then probe its believability and proactively overcome it. Handshake of Empathy is two faced. (1) Whenever they are honest enough base on your probing prowess that it isn’t affordable to them, it is proactive that you treated that with compassion. You could then offer a more affordable package and terms, then close. That works to all objections too. Empathize. Then, be compassionate on their concern. Overcome. Then sense and probe the prospects’ reception. (2) When their objection seem deliberate just to stall the closing, isolate where is really the hump of your game plan. You may not be real friends yet. You haven’t really establish their need to your product or your pitch just tend to sound so pushy. Detour. Do something strategic as soon as you sense this so you can achieve a genuine sales commitment.  Note too, that there are minor objections specific to your guests’ concern which just simply warrants empathy and could be set aside. Just be meticulous.

4. Handshake of Regret: (fully grasped compassionate press with a sad-for-them affect)

The Take-away close handshake. It is like you too through this shake, conceded that your offer is too nice for them. That they feel they are one of those who isn’t for the benefits.  A shake of take away to the still negotiable prospect and a shake of goodbye especially to those kind of prospects who are really close minded after all the time you have got for a head to head (Admit it, there are really prospects like that.). The least is, you never appear pushy or a loser.

Shake hands with pity, tap their shoulders, with sad affect looking at their eyes. “I knew this is not really for everyone who liked it.”

HOW THIS LEADS TO GENUINE COMMITMENT: So the prospect said NO. This too is two edged, the “now it’s deal” and the “still no deal”. (1) You wanted to pose a take away. Inflicting a fear of loss over a hope of gain emotion. Let them feel that you who let them feel the benefits were beneficial to them through your involvement spiels, is the very same person letting them realize those weren’t really for them. Let them feel their dreams and aspirations were robbed in front of them. Trigger their gratification and ego whether they would do actively about it and save their dreams as you offer them a more breathable customized package.  (2) The flip is, they said no since they didn’t really appreciate the benefits you were painting. They remained resistant. All are exhausted this time. Both your time and the ways you could’ve done to sold them. Your mission here is to retain pride for yourself and for your offering. Don’t let them bring home an image of you begging for the benefits for them because that appears like you begging for a commission. Have pride that your offer isn’t really for everyone but it is your passion to let every breathing pocket appreciate the worth of your product. After all your plans has been consumed, it is then their call. Still, head’s up!

5. Handshake of Belongingness: (Firm congratulatory shake)

The done deal with a pulse. A firm shake which congratulates their educated choice of availing the benefits you have already knew that they deserve. The shake which you envision to do every after you ask for the sale. The most shake you will do every sales week. Be collected not to be so overwhelmed and proud. Contain the euphoria later on the after wave meeting. Appear like you have expected the deal, yet be happy for your prospect’s ownership.

“What if I could stretch the offer like this, isn’t it more comfortably affordable? (Wait for response) Who shall be the principal owner? (Affirmed with either’s name) How would you settle that, card or cash? (Card) Offer this shake and ask for the paper works.

HOW THIS LEADS TO GENUINE COMMITMENT: So they finally said YES. Definitely this seals the genuinity of all the commitment-gathering handshakes you did throughout the meeting. So how this leads to genuine commitment of your next prospect? Remember the entire responses you have experience from the very first handshake you did for this “now-owner” and use it to calibrate your next handshakes for the next prospect. This is then the start of you commitment in the post sales care and owner referral optimization. Be ready then on your next handshake partner, your next close.

Bridge hands over the sales table. Be sensitive with the closing intuition every time you grasp a prospect’s hand so you can articulate strategic modulations to let your message reach across the hugging palms. It takes practice to be an expert, increase your score on your daily pitch.

As you ornament motions along the pitch, include handshakes which are pertinent to the emotion you wanted to trigger. The impact is strategically deafening.  An impact which prospect essentially feels what something isn’t told since the message is meant to be uttered simply the way you hold. That impact is a closing silencer.


POINTERS

Handshake with eye contact. Look through the eyes not to the hands.

Don’t shake with not same hands. When guest is left handed, re-offer a shake with your left hand.

Don’t shake half or digital reach. Offer a hand again. Full grasp. Whole grip.

If sweaty, have a table side hanky. Be self-deprecating enough to orient them before hand in the meet and greet.

For Islam clients, exempt the wife from the handshake and start your connection stating that you have known from a previous Islam couple that handshake isn’t really ethical in their custom.

Asians prefer weak handshake. Scandinavians shake firm.

Instances when you were offered with a handshake, stand and shake hands stating your full name.

Hand wash every after presentation. Have an alcohol or hand sanitizer at table side always.

HOW TO: Close More Deals Through Gossip

The “Gossip Close”. Well, this is a personally coined term for Third Party Story as I wrote this post. Third Party Story or TPS is one of the tools of the trade which sites a commonality of a previous buyer to that of the latest prospect in order to encourage a purchase.

One could always personalize and articulate how TPS is delivered. However, generic contents considered as pillars of an effective Gossip Close are

(1) Time Element of the previous purchase (Urgency) (2) Real Names Of Buyers (develop a mental database of buyers) (3) Commonality that’s further articulated with emotions, logic and kinesthetics (common discomfort, same demography or occupation similar situation or objection)   (4) Mental Pause and (5) Closing through Handshake.

So how really to let them buy through the story of the previous buyer? Here is an example spiel to let you appreciate the numbered points after.

“I used to have a guest seated there just yesterday. Paul and Amy De Leon of  Angeles City . They have been like you, searching for a more frugal way of traveling with their family while at the same time in a luxurious room . As I showed them how this concept gives them the reasonability and quality of family vacationing, they asserted that this would be the better way of spending their next holidays and never waste their money in vacations ever. Do you think they made a sound choice? Would you be like them, when the offer is affordable, save and at the same time enjoy a not for everyone kind of getaway? (Pause for 5 seconds to let them absorb the thought) Then recognize their affirmation by shaking their hands, Welcome to the Club then?! (the close)”

1: IDENTIFICATION AND EMPATHY.

Truer than ever, prospects like it when you to talk about them. Their success, their family, anything that turns their hot button. On the case of TPS, you talk about a person whom your prospect could identify himself through a similarity.

Identification in Psychology, is a largely unconscious process, often a defense mechanism, by which an individual takes as his or her own the characteristics, postures, achievements, or other identifying traits of other persons or groups.  This is exactly what TPS wants to trigger. To ignite a mental suggestion to the prospect that the people who availed the offer were humans who have similarity with them, like same essence of the problem existent to them or any identifying facet. This is then reinforced by the emotional aim of Empathy. In the case of the similarity of existent discomfort, Empathy lets them behave that having such problem isn’t comfortable and the advise you are about to pitch will relieve them from the discomfort. The identification of the prospect on the similar existent problem of the previous buyer is contagious to identifying of the prospect on the similar solution availed by the already buyer. This strengthens their interest on the journey of understanding that your offer is the solution to the felt need. Thus, subtly persuading them that they need your offer and tickles them to actively listen, cooperate and contemplate as you pitch. The Identification-Empathy tandem is the foremost of the psychological aim of the Gossip Close.

2: CONFIDENCE AND BELONGINGNESS.

As you turned the prospect high that there are also those who have experienced same or even worse challenge than them and had triumphantly deciphered a solution for it, This ignites the emotion of belongingness. That they are in the same group of vulnerable humans who could actively do something about their discomfort. This inspires them to be confident on asserting for a sound solution. This challenges them to mend their discomfort through your offer to feel that they are one of those educated choosers who solved their needs. That is actually belongingness in a continuum. From accepting same problem through identification, to the confidence on the journey of getting the problem solved and to the rewarding relief of deliberately ending their discomfort with an educated choice (your offer).

3: INVOLVEMENT.

It is showing what your offer could benefit to them according to a real person whom they have identify with. TPS serves as an effective situational demonstration of how exactly your offer is used to help achieve a real solution from a real person. This also strengthens your appeal being an expert on how your offer was proven to be a better solution as done by the previous purchaser. They feel that it is already them applying your product’s benefits and features to mend their problem because of the identification your TPS has caused to them. Involvement here has become more effective since it doesn’t sound like a too-good-to-be-true, canned-pitched benefit from a salesman who hungers a deal but rather a virtual image of them using the feature and feeling the benefits like the previous buyer you have mentioned whom they identified with.

4: CREDIBILITY AND COMPASSION.

TPS serves as a testimony of both trustworthiness to you and the company . Furthermore, proves your compassion using your product expertise, to help. This lets them perceive you as a competent teacher to their recently identified problem. They are giving to you not just the permission to help them the way you helped a previous “like them”, but as well as their confidence of exchanging their hard earned money to the benefits of your offer proven to be effective from a buyer who are “like them”. TPS gives you then authority.

5: OVERCOME OBJECTION.

Objection connotes “tell me more why I should get your offer”. In order to play cool and not too pushy in overcoming objections, TPS is your subtle tool. Prospects never want to be stabbed to the idea that they are wrong in their objections about your offer. Thus, letting them know that there are previous guests who thought same way they do, relates that you understand their point and their concern is normal and was previously resolved. This convince them that their apprehension about the product was manageable as evidenced by the experience of a previous “like them” who availed the offer and is in fact enjoying purchase.

6: ENTERTAINMENT.

Human ears are good for only 20minutes. When you aren’t able to dramatize your pitch, then it basically turns to a preach. In order to make your pitch interesting and compelling, present it novel-like with TPS. Amusing them with the same exact plot where they are, with engaging characters similar to them in an exciting journey to a happily-solve-their-problem ever after. You could close gracefully through the Gossip Close.

Closers need to be good writers when using TPS. Gossip, on this context connotes as a sales tool. A decent, pro-to-your-offer kind of gossip. Then, Closers have to be good monolog speakers too. You have to deliver the TPS script splendidly.  Just like in theaters, audience choose which story they could empathize and identify. Trophies and sounding applause are given to the actor who portrayed a character the most convincingly. The box office bursts to which story best entertained.

Selling the story (not just telling) of previous buyers is an affecting art to fortify weight on you pitch. It is an imperative whenever you want an articulate process of closing.