Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at

You Cannot Ignore the Present.
It’s Where Your Sales Are!

My sales perspective flies in the face of traditional selling. And it’s not just a disruption, it’s the new way of sales. What’s your perspective?

Here are seven realities to get your thinking started:
FIRST REALITY: Traditional selling is aggressive — telling, pitching, manipulating, and closing. This old-world approach to sales is over and has been for more than a decade.
SECOND REALITY: The first sale that’s made is the salesperson. If the prospective customer does not buy you, they’re not buying anything.
THIRD REALITY: The customer is as smart or smarter than you are. The internet has provided them with competitive savvy and social media has provided proof.
FOURTH REALITY: Your customers and prospects are busy with THEIR stuff and may have little or no time to be bothered by you and your stuff. It’s so much more powerful when they find you in time of need.
FIFTH REALITY: Customers and prospects want intellectual engagement about how THEY WIN, not a sales pitch! They do not care about your urgency to make quota. They only care about their urgency to make profit.
SIXTH REALITY: The prospective customer must perceive value in your sales offering, trust you as a person and as a company, perceive that they win as a result of purchase, and be able to visualize outcome after purchase (maybe with the help of your video testimonials). SEVENTH REALITY: You better have a social presence and a social reputation that proves your worth to others, and provides peace of mind to the prospect.

Look at this list — carefully — and see if what you do, the actions you take, or any of the strategies about how you sell are contained here. If they are, you will consistently lose to the “new way.”
Cold calling. If selling has a dark side, it’s the cold call. Total interruption of others (the prospect), and predominantly a waste of salespeople’s time. Higher than 90% rejection rate and the major cause of sales failure.
Hunting and farming salespeople. This is basically a sales specialist making a sale and then running away. Leaving behind the service department, or inside sales, or the delivery guy, and the customer to feel deserted. Hunting and farming is the worst case for relationship building ever created.
Find the pain. Perhaps the rudest of all sales processes, it’s “probing” to make prospects feel uncomfortable. This is an old-world tactic, where the salesperson miraculously proposes a solution to an issue that the prospect has. The solution is not the issue. The issue is that finding the pain is the focal point of the sale. No value, no engagement, no connection — simply manipulation. The only thing more idiotic (and more rude) than “finding the pain” is cold calling.
Pitch the product. Telling your prospective customer stuff about your product that they could’ve found online in three seconds, or that you could’ve emailed them in advance of your meeting. Customers do not care what you’re selling, unless you’re showing them how they win as a result of purchase such as how they will produce more, and how they will profit more. Start there.
Overcome objections. “Your price is too high.” Really? You still dealing with that? Where’s the value? Where’s the testimonial? Where’s the relationship? Where’s the trust? Where’s the social proof?
Close the sale. Manipulative closing is a thing of the past. The sale is made emotionally, not manipulatively.
Proposals and bidding. This part of selling will never go away, but can be significantly reduced with loyal relationships and proven quality.
Insincere follow-up. Call looking for money.
Customer satisfaction. J.D. Power and Associates gives “customer satisfaction” awards to airlines. Do I need to say anything more about how ridiculous customer satisfaction is? Ask for (beg for) referrals. If you ask for a referral once, and the customer does not give you one, and you call again reminding the customer that they promised to give you a referral, and the customer still does not give you one, they will never take your call again. Instead of asking for referrals, why don’t you give one?
Low or no social media presence. Failure to understand the fact that social media is a combination of attraction, proof that you are you say you are, and a sales tool.
Low or no social media awareness. Inability or refusal of salespeople to participate gives your competition an ability to use it and dominate.
Low or no relationship. The quality of the relationship allows you to make multiple sales, earn more profit, earn referrals, and gain their testimonial proof. If you’re lacking in these four areas it’s your relationship report card, and loss of sales or profit, or both.

The old way of selling is worthless — everything from cold calling and finding the pain to overcoming objections and closing the sale. The old ways are manipulative, insincere, and aggressive. And be cautioned that customers and prospects are not only against it, they’re insulted by it! Ouch.

Which one are you? It’s the difference between the old way and the new way, and it’s really not a choice anymore.

Me? I prefer being assertive. And there is a huge difference between assertive and aggressive. Here are the four majors:
Aggressive salespeople tell. Assertive salespeople ask.
Aggressive salespeople try to “close.” Assertive salespeople use testimonial proof.
Aggressive salespeople go for the sale. Assertive salespeople go for the customer.
Aggressive salespeople think “quota.” Assertive salespeople think “relationship.”

Here’s my list of what’s happening NOW in assertive sales. The New Way. UPDATE: Sales will be happening the new way for the foreseeable future:
Value attraction. A marketing approach that tells me how I win, not who you are.
Social attraction. A social presence that’s value-message based. Social messages that your prospective customer can find. NOTE: It’s time to rethink and revamp the so-called “law of attraction.” If you’re looking to identify and attract willing buyers, value attraction and social attraction are the new laws. Value attraction and social attraction are the new way of selling.
Find the pleasure. Things you both know about and like will make the sale easier and faster than painful things (that are likely none of your business) that make the prospect uncomfortable.
Ask emotionally engaging questions. Ask questions about them (the prospect or customer), that make them respond in terms of you. Uncover their experience, their wisdom, and their knowledge.
Discover the customer’s motive to buy. Why people buy his one billion times more powerful than how to sell.
Give perceived value beyond price. As a customer, I don’t need justification to make a purchase. I need a perception that the value you offer me in exchange for my money is greater than the pressure charging. I need to know how I win, produce, and profit as a result of purchase. I already know what it is, I already know what it does, I already know how it works. I don’t need you to tell me you’re the greatest. I just need you to tell me how I win after I take ownership.
Confirm the urgency of your offer. Once you understand the customer’s motive to buy, their urgency becomes apparent. If you haven’t uncovered their motive, you will never know when they intend to purchase.
Provide “voice-of-customer” proof. Video testimonials are the new black. When you say it about yourself, it’s bragging. When a customer says it about you, it’s proof. Take advantage of your best salespeople — your loyal customers! Testimonial videos can be offered as sales proof during a presentation and can also be posted on every form of your social media outreach. One of the most interesting aspects of testimonials is they also reinforce the belief of salespeople in their own product.
Be both available and easy to do business with. 24.7.365 is the new 9-5. I want a friendly, intelligent, live human being to answer the phone when I call, and so does EVERY HUMAN BEING ON THE PLANET.
Give “after the sale” value. Once I purchase, show me more and tell me more about how I can use, produce more, and profit more from what I own. Give me a weekly value message, not another sales message. Serve me, WOW me, and surprise me.
Earn customer loyalty. Loyalty is earned slowly over time. (Just like trust.) Loyalty is gained with quality of product, ease of doing business, availability of people, online alternatives to both purchasing and service, speed of response, and value received. Loyal customers purchase time and time again without regard to price. Loyalty is defined in two parts:Part one: Will the customer do business with you again?Part two: Will the customer refer you? If they do both, that’s loyalty. Any other measurement is bogus.
Earn referrals. Asking for referrals has been replaced by earning referrals and giving referrals. Think about the last time you GAVE a referral. Oh wait, maybe you never have! That’s because giving referrals requires work. I didn’t say the new way of selling was easy, I just said it was a new way. Ask before you tell. Give before you get. Earn before you ask.
Build online and word-of-mouth reputation. What are you known as? What are you known for? What is your image? What is your Google image? What is your social image? These five elements comprise your reputation. No asset is more valuable.
Build relationships. Everyone talks about being relationship oriented. But my findings show just the opposite. A quick review of the elements above will let you see exactly where you are on the “solid relationship” scale. I don’t want you to be relationship oriented, I want you to be relationship building. Every day.

Review this list and rate yourself between 1 and 10. Anywhere you score less than a seven in is telling you you’re not near the new way yet. Work at it!

The new way will pay.