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Who uses more/different skill......who earns more?

Here's a question.

I keep reading here about cold calling....selling....are they the same thing........different?

Here are two scenarios . . .

1. Big furniture store or a large car showroom:
The salespeople interact with customers who are visiting the premises as a result of $xxxxxx being spent on huge advertising campaigns by the business owner. The do their thing (sales/selling) and get paid on results.

2. Large insurance/investment company:
The salespeople use whatever means is at their disposal, telephone, cold calling refferrals or whatever to first of all 'find' a potential customer and then subsequently (having appointed them or done sone selling face to face or on the telephone) they do their thing (sales/selling) and get paid onresults.

I have worked in both scenarios over the years and have my own views about which one takes more skill, which one should be paid more.

I usually make a distinction between 'cold calling' and 'selling' because of the 2 situations outlined above. I have worked with many highly skilled and successful salespeople from both camps and whilst many of their skills overlap, there is clearly a demand for one particular skill above, that is not required in the other.

So my questions are....which job is more difficult/easier?

Which one should have the higher potential earnings?

Which one would YOU rather do? - by helisell
I'm selling insurance. The job is vastly different at the outset, though a salesperson at Walmart could make cold calls too... I suppose.... it's not likely.

If I am attempting to persuade someone, I am attempting to "sell" someone. Just look to your grandchildren in a toystore... :)

Aloha... shds; ;bg - by rattus58

I appreciate the distinction you make and, although everything you describe is technically "selling", I, too tend to use the two terms of "cold calling" (or more accurately, "prospecting") and selling.

Personally, I don't think one is harder or easier. To be a top sales performer in either category you need significant skills.

That's my two cents.

Skip - by Skip Anderson
Hi Skip.....15 years ago I may have agreed with you but...

About 12 years ago I personally started to recruit and train (and worked in the field with) the largest direct (door to door) sales team in the UK.

Many of the prospective candidates we took on were from successful sales backgrounds.

However, when faced with the reality of being on a doorstep and doing the pre-presentation job of getting into the house....they failed dismally. Not only failed but suffered tremendous setbacks in their personal confidence.

This despite the fact that they received the same training as many totally inexperienced people who went on to be very successful.

So despit being 'successful' salespeople they couldn't cut it in the big bad world of direct sales.....and this is why I now recognise that there is a huge difference in the skillset and personality type required when we look st the two activities...'canvassing and selling'

Some can do the 'selling' bit but die a thousand deaths when having to canvass/prospect.

I hate using these simple words like 'selling' 'canvassing' prospecting' for things that demand a much longer explanation but I'm assuming everyone here knows that it's a 'given' that we know these are complex subjects.

So I still maintain that there is a big difference between the two activities. - by helisell
I don't disagree about the challenges of door-to-door selling and canvassing.

And selling in the home is similar, and retail can be similar too (although the state of selling in most retail establishments has sunk to such a low level that we have to take that into account).

I've said many times, and written many times, that most b2b salespeople would fail miserably in a one-call close scenario. I've seen it happen, too...over and over again. You have to have highly refined sales skills to do the type of selling you're talking about, helisell. I'm with you on that.

That's one reason I get