* Note – We are updating this post regularly. While the title says “53 Industry Experts…” you can expect more than 53 experts to be listed in this post since we will add more experts.
If you have an amazing sales tip (that’s proven and tested to work) that you’d like to share with our community, do reach out to us and we’ll be more than happy to add you to the list. Cheers!
You’re at your wit’s end. You’re about to experience the mother of all meltdowns because of your abysmal sales record for the past few months.
It stinks to high heavens because you started your business with the thought of turning it into a constant source of income. However, the only thing it has done so far is suck the money out of your bank accounts.
Friends, if you’re done crying out your body weight and you’re now putting together a new game plan to recover from your rock-bottom sales record, then allow me to help you with just that.
I will share with you the best sales tips that I managed to put together from 50+ industry experts. That way, you can consider their ideas when creating an epic strategy to explode your sales.
Short backstory: I reached out to several industry experts with the hopes of putting together a round-up for 10 industry experts only. However, since I received bajillions of referrals, I decided to accept everyone. After a month or so of sending back and forth email to the influencers, the list has now ballooned to 50+ experts.
Pretty awesome, huh?
Let’s hop right in.
1. Mark Shapiro, President of Executive Boutique Call Center
In 2010 I had the good fortune of being introduced to Rochelle Carrington who is a sales trainer for Sandler Sales Training. David Sandler was the founder of a world-wide sales training program that totally changed the way I approached sales. Sandler emphasizes that nobody likes to be “sold” to and the process should not feel like your “selling”. It’s really about taking the time to find out what problems (or “Pain” in Sandler terminology) your prospect is having and seeing if you can help them solve their pain. It’s only after you have asked the right questions which will allow your prospect to open up to you with what is really driving their decision making, that you can really know whether you’re a good fit. For those interested in a great short read that will introduce you to the Sandler Sales system, I recommend the book You Can’t Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar by David Sandler or contact Rochelle for a more in depth learning experience.
2. Michael Quoc, Founder and CEO of Dealspotr
Selling has three key steps. First, understand the person. Who are they, and what do they deal with each day? Next, understand what they feel. Go beyond their day-to-day activities and understand the gut-level emotions they feel. What do they desire? What are their fears? From there, develop an action. What easy, simple, immediate action can you motivate them to take that will move them one step down the sales funnel?
3. Simon Gould, Managing Director SydneyDigitalMarketing.com.au
Always agree about what success should look like at the very start of your collaboration, that way, everyone’s expectations are managed from the outset of a new client/agency relationship.
4. Dan Steiner, CEO and Co-Founder of Elite Legal Marketing
Using pain points is one of the most important parts of selling. For example, lawyers often envy other lawyers, so use what the competitors are doing as a way of selling. Nobody wants to be 2nd best.
5. Alejandro Russo, CEO of Candela Premium Mamajuana
The most important sales tip is to listen. When visiting a potential client, most people go in and start selling. No one likes to be sold to. The best of the best simply sit down, ask questions and listen. The more you listen, the more fundamental insights you will get that will get you closer to sealing the deal.
6. Sam Oh, Web Strategist, Digital Marketer and Founder of Money Journal
Increase your perceived value.
I’ve seen way too many companies fight over price. They think that lowering their price is going to bring in more sales. Sometimes this works, but you also have to take into account the new rates multiplied by sales to reach your desired goals.
Instead, you can increase your perceived value by removing copy that triggers price-based thinking (i.e., cheap, bargain, best price guaranteed) and focus on how others see you. Another increase perceived value is to get your customers to leave reviews for you on authority sites in your niche. For example, restaurants can use Yelp and authors might want to build their profile on Amazon.
Authority sites already rank well in Google so when a potential customer is searching for [your company name] review, they’ll be on a trusted platform people already believe.
7. Aaron Agius, Managing Director of Louder Online
My one sales tip is to make sure you clearly identify who your audience is and where they exist before you start trying to sell. If you try selling to everyone, you’ll end up selling to no one. Get your targeting right first.
8. AJ Kumar, Founder of Limitless Publishing
The key to success as a salesperson is adaptability. Being adaptable means you are both flexible and versatile. A flexible person is willing to go with the flow, regardless of what is happening. A versatile person is able to go with the flow. If you learn to be fluent to adapt, you will be a winner every time.
9. Andrew Medal, Founder of Agent Beta
Your network becomes your net worth.
Focus on the relationship, not the sale. The relationship comes first, and the sale happens after. It may take some time, even as long as ten years, but it’s always worth it.
10. Joe Martinez, Senior Manager, Paid Media & Community at Granular
If you search for “insect exterminator” in Google, do you need to see ads explaining what those companies do? No. We all know what exterminators do.
Using this understanding when writing ads and landing page content, I stay away from the what and focus on the why. Why should someone choose you over the competition? What problems will you solve for users? What value do you bring another competitor can’t offer? Does the customer know everything they’re getting from your product or service? Focus on building user trust and confidence to guide potential customers along the next step in the funnel. If you take away the doubt, the only thing left for a user to do is convert.
11. Cate Costa, Founder of Venture Catalyst Consulting
My best tip when it comes to selling is to stop trying to figure out how to sell to your ideal customer and start trying to understand your ideal client. When you get inside the head and heart of your ideal customer and figure out what motivates him/her, you’ll have no trouble selling.
12. Ashley Faulkes, Founder of Mad Lemmings
My number one tip for selling is quite simple, and certainly not new. It is getting to know your potential clients as deeply and personally as possible, and open up to them in return (instead of being a faceless brand or blog).
The reason I recommend this is as follows: when I started selling services directly online I found it very hard. But then, things began to work for me via relationships and referrals. The reason was simple, those people knew me, so their referrals trusted me by default. Even if what I was selling was expensive Web Design and SEO services
Then, when I started selling courses, the sales mostly came from people who I knew in one way or another. Sure, there were some complete strangers, but most sales came from people who had followed me or known/interacted with me in some way.
Hopefully, this simple advice can save you wasting time on scaling sales techniques that just don’t work
13. Jayson DeMers, Founder and CEO of AudienceBloom
My best tip for selling is to be professionally persistent. If you send an email or leave a voicemail, don’t forget to follow-up when your prospect inevitably fails to return it. Following up politely but persistently has resulted in many, many new sales for me.
14. Kristen Vanstrom, Personal Branding Coach
Don’t fall into a stereotype. Don’t change your personality just to fit the typical sales guy/girl mold. Be relatable. Talk from your personal point of view. Communicating with your customer helps you build trust, and ultimately, leads to long-term customer relationships.
15. Dmitry Dragilev, Founder of JustReachOut
When it comes to selling and cold email outreach, I think about the opening conversation starter I want to have with my recipient. If I saw them face to face at a conference what would I say to them? Many people write stuff in emails which they would never say live face to face to someone. So I always ask what would I say to them live if I met them at a conference for the first time. Regarding resources and templates I use, I like to use:
- One of these 26 cold email templates
- One of these email endings
- Find a common topic to chat with them by using one of these PR tools.
16. Mike Loomis, Business Coach and Writer at MikeLoomis.co
Ask questions that unveil the best solution for your client, and keep asking until all parties are clear on the value of the solution you can offer.
17. David Leonhardt, Ghostwriter and President of The Happy Guy Marketing
My best tip to selling a service online is to make it easy for people to contact you no matter where they are on your page. The longer your content or sales pitch, the more important this is. I have a query form to the right of my content at THGMwriters.com. As you scroll, the form disappears and up pops a red “GET MY FREE QUOTE” button, always there when you need it. With our new fully responsive design, that button is there on all devices, so especially on a tiny screen, you don’t have to search for it.
Why I like this is because I am not a hard sell kind of guy. I hate being sold to, and I don’t like “selling” to people. But I love being served, and I love helping people. Being always there for people when they need me a natural extension of my personality. Nothing sells like authenticity.
18. Michael Port, Professional Speaker and NYTimes, WSJ Bestselling Author
One of my close colleagues, Ian Altman, always says, “Price matters most when the seller thinks price matters most.” You need to be able to value your services so that you are comfortable and confident selling them. If you’re always worried about the price, then other people are not going to buy because you’re insecure. They’ll feel it.
19. Sarah Rickerd, Owner of Content Conquered
During a conference that I attended recently, I heard the following tip from author Bob Burg: ‘The value of what you’re selling must be greater than the payment you receive.’ I love that. He’s not saying that you should be undercharging, just that your customers need to see value in what you’re offering that’s above, and beyond the particular product or service they’re paying for.
When I work with satisfied clients, for example, they aren’t just paying for articles. They’re paying for the leads and sales that come from using content as a brand building tool, as well as the time savings of not having to do the writing themselves. When you figure out what your value is and how you can communicate it to potential customers, selling becomes so much easier.
20. Jeff Shore, Founder of Shore Consulting
There is a profound psychological hack that salespeople would be wise to consider. When it comes to decision-making, it’s easy equals right. The easier a concept seems to a customer, the “righter” it feels. The converse is also true: Complex equals Wrong.
This principle explains why feature-dumping is so ineffective. The complexity sends a dangerous message to the prospect’s brain.
Think through the customer’s buying process and ask where that customer sometimes gets confused or overwhelmed. If you can figure out how to simplify the message, you will make it easier for the client to make a decision.
21. Corey Blake, President at MWI
When selling, it is crucial that you trust yourself and your offering before anything else, then you can sell with the confidence that will leave people begging to work with you. Selling with confidence takes all “desperation” out of your sales pitch, and leaves potential clients wanting to take part in the “exclusive club” that is your product or service.
22. John Teel, Founder and Lead Engineer of Predictable Designs
Start selling from day one. Never wait until your product or service is ready for the market before you start actually to sell it. Developing a new product is by no means trivial, but selling will be your biggest obstacle to success. Most inventors and entrepreneurs make the mistake of focusing all of their energy on developing their product and not nearly enough on selling it. If you feel more comfortable with product development than product sales, then bring on a co-founder who’s strength is sales. For most startups, it’s best if one founder focuses on development, while the other focuses on sales.
23. Jill Schiefelbein, The Dynamic Communicator
There is a massive gap between information and knowledge. Find the gap. Fill the gap. Make the sale.
24. Sean Ogle, Founder of Location Rebel
I believe that people want to work with people they like. This makes building rapport one of the most important things you can do for your business. During the first minute of talking to a client you’re trying to sell, look for one thing that you have in common. Then talk about that to build the connection. Then when it comes time to sell it will be much easier to make that transition.
25. William Harris, Founder and Ecommerce Growth Consultant of Elumynt
My #1 tip for selling:
The best advice I can give anyone that wants to sell something, whether online or offline, is to know your ideal customer persona. You don’t have to make some fancy alliterated PDF about Carlos Customer. The more knowledge you have about your ideal client, the better prepared you will be. The better your product/service will fit their needs. And also the better you will be able to speak to how you differentiate from your competitors in a way that specifically reaches into their buying potential.
26. John Lincoln, Co-Founder and CEO of Ignite Visibility
When it comes to online marketing, no matter what the website, product or service, there is one thing that works better than all others. I truly believe in this and even wrote a book on the topic named Digital Influencer. That one thing, become one of the top experts in your field and promote your work online like crazy.
Getting started is the most difficult aspect for most people. They are afraid to write their first post, do their first video, release their first study, etc. But every if you first items are terrible, they are still worth doing. Why? People start to realize that you are an authority on that subject. They might not know anyone else in the field at all! Now they know at least one person who does it.
If you can develop a model to become an influencer online and are always growing your distribution, your business will continue to grow as well. Be aggressive, be bold, jump in 100% and don’t look back. Make the time; it will pay off.
27. Dan Scalco, Founder and Marketing Director of Digitalux
When it comes to selling, the best thing you can do is give, give, give. A sale only occurs after trust has been formed between the seller and the buyer. Your primary goal in selling shouldn’t be to rattle off features or tell them how low your price is, it should be to explain why they should choose you. Do you have their best interest in mind? What makes you the most reputable brand? No matter what you’re selling, trust is essential when it comes to increasing sales.
28. Sara Davis, President of Foxtail Marketing
Don’t sell. Be authentic, and listen. Listen to what the prospective client needs, wants, and hopes for. And identify if it is going to be a realistic fit for your business. If not, help all you can, and point them in the right direction.
Be a human. If you can help, tell them how you can help. And if you can’t, but you leave them with a positive reflection of your brand – they may come back, or they may refer their friends. You don’t need to “sell” to sell.
29. Barry Moltz, Small Business Speaker at BarryMoltz.com
We can’t sell any product to anyone. Instead, it’s important that we have to be there when people are ready to buy. This is why sales and marketing are so important.
30. Jason Parks, President of The Media Captain
When it comes to selling, you need to be an expert on the product or service you are offering. If you think you have a natural sales skillset set, it won’t get you far if you are not extremely well versed on the item you are selling.
Sales people need to get their hands dirty. Learn the industry and the product or service that you are pitching on the B2B or B2C side, and you will improve your selling.
31. Nathan Resnick, CEO of Sourcify
My best selling tip is to be genuine. Don’t start off the conversation trying to sell. Instead, focus on getting to know the person, understanding their needs, and then you can finally make a brief pitch. The worst salesmen are the ones that go straight into the pitch. If you aren’t genuinely interested in the people you’re selling to, why should they care?
32. Josh Denning, Founder & CEO of Authority Factory
My best tip for great sales is to focus on asking questions about your potential client’s situation. Then use active listening to identify the pain points and genuine desires to improve their status in their language, and, their answers. Once you’ve identified the biggest pain points, and, first wants, link your solution to overcoming the pain points and as being the bridge to their desired outcome.
33. Dan Western, CEO and Founder of Wealthy Gorilla
For me, the biggest part of selling to my audience is to make sure that I’m always building a positive relationship with them, and being completely transparent. People buy from people, especially when it comes to digital products and online courses. Information is everywhere, but the relationship between you and your customers is unique, and that’s what keeps them coming back for more.
34. Gee Ranasinha, CEO of Kexino
My one tip for better selling? Check your ego at the door.
Consultative sales approaches are all the rage at the moment. However, consciously or unconsciously, many salespeople misinterpret their newly-mandated advisory role to being overly dominant, controlling, and – dare I say – manipulative. It’s true that at, the beginning of any sales interaction, the salesperson should take the lead on shaping the behavioral interplay between prospect and seller – the sales person wants the sale at the end of the day. However if the sales interaction comes across as a little more than a game of who can score the most points over the other, then ego has overtaken process. Selling is not done to a prospect but done with a prospect. 21st-century selling necessitates human relations prevail over human nature.
Sure, customers buy your product because they understand the value it brings to their situation. But it’s also because they feel that you know them. That means entering the buyer’s world from both rational and emotional positions. We sell most successfully when we truly empathize and authentically ‘give.’ But to have (and communicate) a genuine intention to provide, we must control our needs, priorities – and egos.
35. Melissa Dawn, Life & Business Coach & Founder of CEO of Your Life
My best tip would be to listen to the client’s needs truly. If your product or service is indeed beneficial to their needs, then explain the benefits to them. If it is not, then direct them towards something that is (even it is referring them to another company). Put the client’s needs before the enterprise’s needs. This is good karma, and it will come back to you tenfold.
36. Kendra Lee, Author and President of KLA Group
Follow up. Follow up. Follow up.
I know it sounds basic, but the percentage of salespeople who don’t follow up and follow through is high. You distinguish yourself merely by doing what you said you would do – following up.
37. Mike Murphy, Growth Evangelist at immikemurphy.com
Stop selling, seriously. No one gets up in the morning and says, “Man, I hope someone sells me something today!” Instead take a stance of being of service to the people you meet. Listen to the words they say very carefully. Pay attention to their pain points and struggles BEHIND their struggles. If they want to make more money, why do they want to earn that money? What is it that’s causing them pain that this new funding could potentially fix.
When you listen and care, you can provide the solution that they need and get paid for it. Is this still selling? Yes, of course, it is. But know you’re not looking at each prospect as a “mark.” You’re not trying to close them. Instead, you’re viewing them as a person with hope, goals, dreams and challenges to see if you’ve got the skills or products that can help them. If you don’t, the very best thing you can do for them is not to sell to them and direct them to the proper solution. If you can help their situation, then it’s your duty and responsibility to provide them with the exact product or service they need.
38. Vivek Patel, Local Search Specialist & Content Marketer at E2M
I’d like to share one of my favorite tips on digital marketing. More often than not, we find it difficult to justify the price of the services we offer our customers. Sometimes, people do not feel convinced when paying for our expertise. This needs to be dealt with carefully.
Positioning your brand favorably is instrumental in bringing in new customers. Our best sources of acquiring new business are the people who have worked with us in the past, i.e. references. You too can use your network of individuals for acquiring new business by making the right moves.
Here’s what works best: When you connect with someone on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter, include a short message saying why you want to associate with them. Understand your prospect’s business issues clearly and show them what you do rather than just talk about it, i.e. offer solutions.
Identify and follow the practices that your competitors are following when offering services similar to yours. Doing so before providing your customers with solutions will help you distinguish and even better yourself in the ever-burgeoning market.
Follow up with your warmest prospects with a decisive plan of action on the email. Don’t ask them to visit your website. Instead, add the call-to-action in the email itself.
I believe these are great ways to attract more people to your doorstep, asking you to work with them. They will also help you raise your brand profile and generate further inquiries over time.
39. Mikal Belicove, Author and Columnist at Entprepreneur.com
Start With What, Not Why!
“When it comes to selling, put yourself in your prospect’s shoes to determine first-hand what their pain-point is and what is deemed to be an acceptable solution. If you’re in sales, you’re already accustomed to the first part — getting to know your prospect’s point(s) of pain. Sadly, you may be led to believe, either by the owner of your firm, your sales manager, or even your product engineers, that the solution you’re selling features one-size-fits-all attributes.
Don’t believe it because hardly does the solution you’re selling ever match up entirely with your prospect’s exact needs. In addition to the prospect’s needs always changing, someone in their organization will find something wrong or missing among your feature set. Therein lies an opportunity to understand the second part — the acceptable solution.
Every organization that’s in the market for a solution has must-have requirements, whether stated or not. Great sales people know how to find, document, and communicate such requirements back to the home office, as well as work with prospects to understand their own solution’s engineering roadmap.
Think of the “what’s” such as what the prospect needs, what timeframe they need it in, what features they’re willing to live without, what expectations they’ll have you as their solution provider, and what price they’re willing to pay.
By starting with “what” you’ll always come across as honest, transparent, and concerned about the prospect’s outcome more so than your own, which always a great place to start.”
40. Jerry Jao, CEO and Founder of Retention Science
One of the tips that I try to stay true to and asks my sales team to do the same is: “Listen attentively to what your sales prospects are looking for, v.s. just keep selling product features to them. I believe the art of closing deals is when you truly can help those who you’re selling to, and you won’t know how to help your prospects if you don’t listen to them.
41. Matt Sweetwood, CEO and President of beBee, Inc
The key to selling is you have to be authentic. And that means not only do you have to believe in what you are selling, but you also have expert at it.
42. Derek Miller, Content Marketer and Social Media Strategist at CopyPress.com
The best tip to selling is to find a product or service that you genuinely believe in, and that solves a real problem. This is a very undervalued characteristic of great salespeople, but you can easily see a difference in someone who believes in their product/service vs. someone who doesn’t. Not only will this passion be visible, but you’ll also find that you’re providing real value to your clients. This will lead to more satisfaction, more repeat business, more referrals, and ultimately, more sales.
43. Joan Stewart, aka The Publicity Hound, a PR and Publicity Expert, Author & Blogger
Regardless of what you’re selling, learn to write sales copy that you can use online or offline. Knowing how to convince people to buy from you —right now — can make you more money over a lifetime than most other marketing tools. Multimillionaire Internet marketer Tom Antion has a terrific free web class on Copywriting 901: The Fast Track to Writing Words That Sell.
44. Rohan Ayyar, Digital Marketing Head at E2M
Never fail to give discounts to customers who bargains on price. Acquiring customers cost a bit higher but boosting your customer’s ego is priceless.
45. Shana Starr, Managing Partner at LFPR
The best tip to selling is to understand what your potential customer needs and then show how you can address or help them accomplish that particular need. Stay away from generic sales material, customize the approach.
46. Kelsey Ramsden, Entrepreneur, Speaker, and Mentor at KelseyRamsden.com
(1) Listen to what they are truly in pain about, not what they say they need.
(2) Solve the pain.
(3) Sell them what they think they want, give them what their pain needs.
(4) Reflect the buyer. NO buyer cares what you think. They only care about what they think.
(5) Every transaction is based on trust. Think trust before transaction.
(6) The best customers can’t be ‘sold’ at, they can only be made aware, .at that point, what you have to offer must be exceptional.
(7) Exceptional solutions create word of mouth, which in today’s market is the only way to build a solid foundational business — free of fickle customers.
(8) Marketing is the price you will have to pay for being unremarkable.
47. Jon Nastor, Creator of Hack the Entrepreneur
My one best tip is:
If you want to close the sale you need to build trust, add urgency, and remove the risk. Every time.
48. Terri L. Maurer, Speaker, Trainer and Author at Maurer Consulting Group
Every successful small business operates based on systems and procedures that assure continuity and uniformity by each member of your team. Anything worth achieving, including sales goals, begins with a plan. When it comes to sales planning, that means implementing a Sales Success System.
Develop your company sales system strategy. Identify and understand who your ideal customer is. Determine what steps will be taken to reach that targeted audience. Get their attention. Once you have a potential client’s interest, ask yourself “What should you do next to make sure you close the deal and make a sale?”
Your sales process need not be complex. You need a step-by-step strategy. It will be difficult for your firm to prosper without the sales system. Don’t use a ‘wing it’ approach to sales. Be prepared with a sales system to increase chances of closing more sales.
49. Brad Hines, Owner of Bradfordhines.com
The sale is made on the umpteenth impression of the brand when the buyer most feels like they took the decision on their own.
Selling is convincing the person to make the sell. Marketing is knowing who they are, why them, and how you will find them and what to do when you do.
50. Adam Toren, Co-founder at BizWarriors.com
LISTEN, LEARN & SURVEY your customers and potential clients carefully to what they want and communicate to you. Always be slow to speak and quick to listen.
You can ask all the questions in the world but if you don’t hear what your clients and potential customers are trying to tell you then you will never be able to present them with what they want and desire.
51. Joe Mathews, CEO of Franchise Performance Group
My best sales tip is to stop selling.
Instead, simply help people buy. Identify what they want and need and how you can help. Then give it to them at a fair price.
52. Christopher Hawker, CEO of Trident Design, LLC
My best tip when it comes to selling is to look at the process as “enrolling” rather than “selling.” To clarify the distinction, selling is something you do for your benefit, whereas enrolling for the other’s benefit. It is the art of focusing on the needs of the potential client and what is going to serve them best, how you can offer them value, and then “enrolling” them in that vision.
People can smell your agenda a mile away. But if you are indeed focused out on their needs, they will spot that, too. People buy mostly based on relationship, so concentrate on that rather than the sale, and the sale will follow.
53. Pierre Lechelle, B2B Saas Growth Marketer
Love your product and know it inside out. Just reading a script won’t make much of an impact if you want to attract the attention of your ideal buyer. You have to understand your customers and product a 100% if you want to be able to sell it correctly.
There is a second tip… It’s not because someone isn’t yet ready to purchase that you shouldn’t nurture them through various channels. Make sure that you always keep in touch with your leads with relevant content. That will increase the likelihood of leads knowing what you do and how you can help them. But it will also shorten the sales cycle and make the sale much easier as you educate people over time.
54. Justin McGill, CEO & Founder of LeadFuze
Always close a sales call with the question, “Is there any reason why you would not sign up?”
This question cuts to the chase without it feeling slimy. It allows your prospective customer to also give you their true objections which you can ease there on the call as well as in follow-ups. Lastly, if they say there isn’t a reason, it gets them to commit to verbally (and mentally) commit to moving forward.
This one question has significantly boosted close ratios for us. Here are few resources that I prefer to follow, when it comes to selling and cold email outreach.
Let me guess: You have tricks up your sleeve about selling that you’d like to share, don’t you?
If you’d like to share with us your tips about selling, please share your ideas in the comments below. We’ll be more than happy to update the post and add you on the list as well. We look forward to reading your tips. Cheers!