Ad Sales Training: Being your Best on Every Sales Call

When sales expert and coach Mike Blinder first started his career, his number one fear was rejection. But one of his early mentors pushed him out onto the streets and toughened him up by forcing him to knock on doors.

“I learned something about me,” said the president and founder of the Blinder Group during a special training workshop at the INK+BEYOND newspaper conference. “I was amazingly good once I got in to build rapport with business owners.”

Blinder gave a two-part presentation at the annual industry event on how newspaper staff can develop a successful sales strategy by getting through the door, finding the right rapport and making an effective presentation to close more deals.

Outlining his Client 1st Training System, Blinder relates sales to scaling a mountain. According to Blinder, the climb begins with the approach, after that comes establishing a rapport and from there you keep on climbing until you reach the peak, which is the close.

Some sale reps are good at the approach but fail at making the close while other sale reps find the approach hard but succeed very well with the close, said Blinder.

Blinder said he has meet a lot of sales people who haven’t been given good rapport training, saying the number one problem they have is the idea they need to be liked.

It’s not about being liked but being respected and getting results, said Blinder.
Sales isn’t about talking, it’s about listening and making the meeting about the client.
Another important key element to building good rapport is good body language, said Blinder, adding sales is an exchange of energy and mirroring body language is an effective strategy.

Even on the phone, a sales person can mirror the voice of the person he or she is speaking to. Blinder referred to this technique as “tele-mirroring.”
It’s also important to find a balance between ego and empathy in rapport, said Blinder, relating someone with too much ego drive as the guy at the party with the bad breath that you are trying constantly to get away from.

It may seem common sense, but remembering a person’s name is also important to rapport, said Blinder, as well as speaking the language of the customer.

“You speak business, not media,” said Blinder.
After establishing rapport, the goal is reaching for the end result, or what Blinder calls the top of the mountain: the close.

Blinder said it’s important to get a firm appointment and uncover the decision-makers and influencers within companies can help lead to that appointment.

But sometimes after you go through all of the effort taken to get a client to the top, they still don’t always follow through.Blinder offered some solutions to help get a client over that hump and get them to the other side of the mountain.

He likes using a technique called hypnotic closing.“Through hypnoses, I will have the advertiser on the other side right from the beginning,” said Blinder.

He avoids the objection by making the client believe they already own the product before they actually own it by simply asking them what they need to solve their problems, said Blinder.

“If you can have a post-agreement from the start, they sometimes feel they don’t have any need for objections,” explained Blinder.
Blinder also likes Spec Ads because it helps to put something visual in front of the client.

The number one rule to remember, says Blinder, is sales is a numbers game and it’s important to get out or pick up the phone and engage with clients.