Home > Education > Take your opinion out of the equation, now prove it.

Take your opinion out of the equation, now prove it.

Resolve;

Those ‘old school’ selling techniques don’t work any more!

This is the number one unbiased sales training forum - certainly in the English Language in North America, if not the whole world. So, if we cannot learn about actual effective sales practices here - what should be a priority for all sales people - then we must admit that such learning simply does not exist!

Therefore I propose a debate. Let us resolve to understand if the above statement really is true. And the reason why I decided to post this thread is I have seen yet another so-called authority state “that doesn’t work any more” but as yet I have seen not one shred of proof that supports such sweeping statements, just opinions.

The main premise of those touting 'that doesn't work any more' seems to be this; “buyers are more educated today!” And I read such statements as meaning that the information age miraculously educates buyers, as if they study sales skills, know what sales people are trying, are more aware and get offended at the attempt to close or the use of “sales technique(s)”. These type of comments mostly fall into the category that can only be referred to as opinion, not supported by fact/study.

I suggest that the only way to prove what is true is to provide proof sources. To debate less with opinions and more with references to established facts. Are there any ACTUAL pieces of evidence you are aware of and can provide to support or refute the quote that we, in this thread, resolve to unravel one way or another?

I beleive this is a deeply meaningful topic.

In fact I think it is the only meaningful topic today about sales skills (not marketing, the Internet, time managment but practices) because, quite simply, if we arrive at the conclusion that the statement we are debating is false, we've established that there is nothing new to learn, which can open a whole new thread, as there is much to be stated about how technique/practice is applied rather than suggesting that "that doesn't work any longer " and missing what I beleive as a sales trainer to be the whole and real point since training began.

And not to make this impossible but can I also make one more suggestion? Using others opinions - like quoting a book - can be less effective in debate than quoting the results of an actual study, unless the book refers to such a study. I know this may seem to make a debate tougher ... there is much more that I can add, as I studied this topic for 4 months, seeking the for proof but I think before adding anything each of us should weigh in, at least once.

If you think that the premise of using proof as apposed to opinion is not the right way to debate, I guess you need to say so. And, I for one pledge not to take anything in this forum thread personally but, let's agree to one more thing, let us act with class and respect for each other, even if we do not share the same ideas.

I sure hope this thread delivers on its intended purpose and no matter whether our collective reasoning on completion proves the statement is false or true, this thread is truly exciting! - by Gold Calling
How is it that I ask challenging, meaningful questions on this forum and go absolutely no response?

Curious.

Perhaps there is no forum for discussion that is truly meaningful. And that in and of itself is a revelation, at least for me.

Thoughts? - by Gold Calling
I don't know what is meant by old school or education in that sense - maybe you should define it.

I don't provide proof of anythiing for anyone in these matters, Gold Calling. All I know is that I've built a successful business and education is part of it but if the other person doesn't tell me up front he or she has a strong inclination toward wanting what I offer I don't put time into educating.

I'll tell that person to check out a web site and contact me if he or she wants to talk.

Doing that has great freedom implications.

MitchM - by MitchM
Is this data even available? Who has conducted research into the effectiveness of cold calling by skilled practitioners? - by SpeedRacer
How is it that I ask challenging, meaningful questions on this forum and go absolutely no response?

Curious.

Perhaps there is no forum for discussion that is truly meaningful. And that in and of itself is a revelation, at least for me.

Thoughts?
The time from your first post to your second was 24 hours. I don't think you gave much time for anyone to respond. It's been more than 48 hours since someone did respond and you haven't responded back. People are busy. - by Bulldog
I don't know what is meant by old school or education in that sense - maybe you should define it.
Mitch, you used the "old school" term in one of your posts here at S.P.. Here's the post:

I've met a few of them on this forum - they're not as obviously obnoxious or dumb-as-a-fox but just as much an old school and out-of-date throw back to the past.

When you find out up front what someone needs, wants and is ready to buy or at least see if you can deliver to their satisfaction - and YOU make it clear you're looking at them in the same way - you immediately establish a relationship of surface trust and respect that has great potential to reduce wasting time and in coming to a mutually satisfying conclusion.

That's a formula (see my Formulas thread) for success that when applied consistently over time in b2b sales situations (and I'm told from reliable sources b2c situations also) you can count on and take to the bank.

I'm working with a couple of new distributors on my team and because they're doing what I tell them in this regard they're finding success in their first two months whereas those who have gone off the deep end thinking something either esoteric or complicated touted by some sales gurus have struggled themselver out of business.
Mitch, what's your definition of old school? - by Skip Anderson
As an expert at these things, Skip, I'm positive you understand definitions depend on context over and over again. That understanding - the pliant nature of what we define - and how it fits into a context is one of of the subtle things that can head to great success.

Old school as I've read it and seen it defined can mean hard sell, switch-and-bait, and do whatever it takes to get the sale including getting down on one knee. (A self defined "old school" roofing salesman actually defined "old school" selling that way and said: if it was good enough when you proposed to your wife it's good enough to get one foot in the door and the other on the ground.")

BUT old school can mean a complete system as defined by Frank Bettger in "How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling" which is also accurate.

So I define "old school" in many ways just as "love" or "marriage" or even "commitment" have many definitions.

The question you miss, Skip UNLESS you are satisfied is: Gold Calling what do you mean by "old school."

Also, do you as a sales expert anything of substance to add to Gold Calling's provocative question, Skip?" I bet you do and it will add value to this discussion and probably open it up.

Go for it - give it a boost and let's get this one going!

MitchM - by MitchM
Since I started this thread and suggested debating a quote, I think I am entitled to say a few things;

(1) the quote does not refer to cold calling or any specific practice. Since I have seen it used to describe much of what we do as "old school" in reference to perhaps a "new school" of sales, I purposely left any sales practice out of my suggestion for debate.

(2) "switch-and-bait" should be "bait-and-switch". And this is a very specific term that really involves an unethical sales practice, not sure it needs to be discussed personally, but that is just my opinion.

(3) Mitch's referance to the "hard sell" is the very essence of this post, the reason why I posted what I did and what is behind much of what I have posted at this forum, with the exception of some of the posts on Gold Calling.

It is my belief that the "new school" sales training refers to the "old school" as not working any longer because there have always been those who did not understand the finer art of selling. There have always been those who needed to employ tactics in sellign that I find repulsive, as well as those who were far more subtle, that actually helped people make a decision.

What is it that we do? I for one would not like to be perceived as a pressure sales person. I would like to be perceived as one who understands the nuisances of selling, that is a professional that helps people with a real need for my product or service to understand that what I offer fits the bill and helps them buy.

I could go on and on trying to describe what I feel it is like to be a pro. The bottom-line for me is; most trainers and book sellers refer to the past as if no one sold with class, as if there were no professionals. Because I can assure you, that what worked in the time of Jesus walking the face of the earth will always work.

Debate that.

I will be back every few days to try and flush out what I just stated, to make my point more clearly. Good luck, and good selling. - by Gold Calling
Thanks Gold Calling - you make it very clear. I can't give any proof statistically now but will look into it.

MitchM - by MitchM
It is my belief that the "new school" sales training refers to the "old school" as not working any longer because there have always been those who did not understand the finer art of selling. There have always been those who needed to employ tactics in selling that I find repulsive, as well as those who were far more subtle, that actually helped people make a decision.

What is it that we do? I for one would not like to be perceived as a pressure sales person. I would like to be perceived as one who understands the nuances of selling, that is a professional that helps people with a real need for my product or service to understand that what I offer fits the bill and helps them buy.

I could go on and on trying to describe what I feel it is like to be a pro. The bottom-line for me is; most trainers and book sellers refer to the past as if no one sold with class, as if there were no professionals. Because I can assure you, that what worked in the time of Jesus walking the face of the earth will always work.
Gold, I couldn't agree with you more.

In my opinion, the real question is one of of "effective selling" vs. "not-effective selling" within an ethical framework, not "new" vs. "old."

How many consumer products that tout "new and improved" on the label are really significantly new and improved? I think few are. The problem is that it's just too easy for someone to taut a new system or a new book as "new", but upon closer examination, ithis "new" thing is either: (1) not new; (2) repackaging of so called old material; (3) about marketing or promotions or something other than selling. - by Skip Anderson
Skip is right on this - none of yet has offered more than opinons not the proof you ask for, GC - AND YET touting something as new or as a "re-invention" can indicate a new twist to an old concept or just good marketing. OR it may not.

Truth will be in the mind of the beholder.

MitchM - by MitchM
In my opinion, the real question is one of of "effective selling" vs. "not-effective selling" within an ethical framework, not "new" vs. "old."
Re-read what Skip stated people. This is one of the best encapsulated expressions of what I have wrestled with since approximately October of last year, when I began to look at the sales training industry (for the first time in more than 15 years) and, found, much to my chagrin, what a sorry state the training industry is in!

I stand as one who is literally sick to his stomach over much of what would pass as knowledge today in regards to both sales and marketing. You know the feeling, deep down in your stomach, when you know something is wrong, you know it to your very core, you just can't quite put your finger on it instantly ... in terms of how to express your feeling of "Oh my ...

I am pleased to note that the owner of this site is one who is NOT mislead by unproven foundations of new image selling (or should I say with the HYPE). Thank God he and therefore this site exists. And, let me tell you, after extensive searching, as far as I am aware this is the only unbiased site on sales on the Internet (no, that does not mean I don't like other sales sites, they are in the sales training industry however and cannot be considered anything but biased), certainly in the top 10 at Google and Yahoo.

And, while I am at it, I must lay a some what heavy suggestion on you; for goodness sake, tell everyone you know in sales that this site is here and for real, because here you know that here the truth is not being sold out!

You also need to know, even though Skip and I are acquainted, what I posted and his reply are not orchestrated forum posts, just raw truth, emotion and professionalism, a spontaneous reaction to events, me reading a bad email from a so-called trainer and posting here, then Skip jumping on my post, very eloquently I might add.

You see, though Skip and I have been known to disagree, when it comes to the influence of minds that could one day attain sales greatness, we (and Jeff Blackwell and others here) care, and that is the main reason why we post.

My time on Sales Practice has not made me a profit in comparison to what I can and do do. People like Skip and I simply care that you are not getting mislead. That you, no matter your expereince, do not waste any portion of your life and career to find out you were influenced by those who do not know better.

... this "new" thing is either: (1) not new; (2) repackaging of so called old material ...
.

Yes, look at NEEDS ... sometime in the eighties a sales training group emerged that changed that moniker to became PAIN ... just another word for the same thing (except of course that some needs are not represented by pain at all, which is why the original word is slightly superior) .... HOT BUTTONS again is just a way of saying the same thing too. Then have a look at the MLM industry, they took the words SALES and SELLING and stated; "We do not sell, what we do is share" and "we are in the sharing business" ... a little indirect, wouldn't you say?

Yes, selling is sharing. But there is much more to it than that. There are nuances and the subtleties that separate a great sales pros and great MLMers from the ones who could be said to employ techniques that not only "doesn't work any more" but NEVER DID!

It never worked, at least not effectively. The only thing that has changed and why we have all these 'new image' ideas flourishing is is the Internet and the World Wide Web came along and now ... presto ... it is "new". Yah? Hogwash!

It ain't new, there is nothing new about the fact that so-called sales professionaals would rather do things an easier way. They feel pain too (not only customers) and, obviously, the pain of rejection is what comes to mind, that and a fear of prospecting. And it is this that must be overcome, not with an easier way but with training, personal development, attitude and never-give-up-edness!

It is in your refinement, your subtleness, your delicacy, your intricacy ... your dedication to understanding your prospect ... that is where you will find what you seek. That is where your potential for true sales mastery resides, not in some new fangled thing called Sales 2.0 or any other marketing phrase you can think of that is really just meaningless when it comes to the various sales practices.

There is a place for the use of the telephone, there is a place for the subtle use of closing techniques, there is a place for door knocking, just as there is a place for a website, Pay-Per-Click advertising and direct mail marketing. And, yes, as in life, in sales you need to be a good actor just as you must be comfortable being yourself.

And, let me express this last point. If you follow me closely, then you might by now start reading a dichotomy in the way I express professional salesmanship, if so good. It most certainly is intended as we, the pros of selling get that we are different depending on our mood, so are the prospects we have to help to understand why they should buy, as are the occasional prospect that cannot make a decision - who might need a little push.

I am subtle, I am blunt, I am an actor, I am genuine, I do use closing techniques and, though I hesitate to say this as it will be misinterpreted by a few; I occasionally close in a way that might be referred to as "hard" (but very occasionally and only when needed - usually with those who are Indifferent),

Yes, I also believe in marketing to generate prospects while I simultaneously teach and believe in the skills that go (literally) hand-in-hand with the phone as a new business generation tool. Yes, I am a moving target, I am aware of that. And I am a master of sales, after 31 years of training and expereince and 29 years of expereince in Network Marketing.

Finally, let ,me close with saying, becoming a sales master is not easy, face it and get on with it. Otherwise you may very well waste what otherwise would have been much more effective years in your chosen profession, that which is in my opinion the greatest in the whole world.

Best of luck always ... Steve - by Gold Calling
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