How to increase sales in your business

This episode we will hear from David Reeser, Technology Entrepreneur and Sales Pro.  David began selling door to door at age 13, and since then has gained tremendous experience professionally selling and teaching others to do the same in a uniquely positive way. David is going to share with us his unique approach to sales that has helped many entrepreneurs build their businesses by leveraging a repeatable sales process built on influence and a sincere desire to help a client. 

Derek Schmidt:

Hey everybody, this is Derek Schmidt. Welcome back to the Entrepreneur Bootcamp Podcast. Today, I’m very excited to share our special guest with you, David Reeser, who is the cofounder and CEO of opiAID. And today, we’re going to talk about how to increase your sales in your business.

Derek Schmidt:

So, David, why don’t you take a second, and tell us a little bit about yourself, and your background?

David Reeser:

Sure. Well, thanks, Derek for having me on the show. I really appreciate it. Again, my name is David Reeser, and I’m CEO of IT Works Wilmington. I’m also CEO and cofounder of opiAID. opiAID is a data science company creating innovative solutions to addiction treatment. I also happen to be a professional sales trainer, and I guess that’s the reason why Derek invited me on to the show today.

David Reeser:

I’ve worked with a number of medical device companies to create go-to-market strategies, and train their salespeople, and effectively selling all types of devices and services. I speak quite often at small business centers in North Carolina, as well as come in as a guest speaker, and teacher at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Mostly their entrepreneurship classes to teach sales.

David Reeser:

And the reason I love sales is because I believe that it’s the most important activity that we do in business. Without sales, all the products and services that we have to offer our community, and offer others would go to waste, and would sit inside of a storage shed if it wasn’t for the people that get out there, and make sure that the transaction happens. What’s different about the way I approach sales is that I do it in a uniquely positive way.

David Reeser:

I teach a strategy that allows you to always put your client first so that you feel good about the sale and they do too. And I help people change the way they think about themselves, and the way they view sales because it’s a uniquely positive activity that also happens to be profitable. And it’s usually the last mile in being able to be successful in business. So, I’m so very happy that you invited me on the show today. And I hope that I can bring some value, and that somebody learns something that’s going to affect their business in a positive way.

What are some ways to maximize sales in a business?

Derek Schmidt:

I’m sure, and well, thank you again for joining us. So, we’ll go in right into the questions. And I’ll start with the most generic general question of all, what are some ways that somebody can maximize sales?

David Reeser:

Sure. So, in my opinion, there are some things that have to happen before you’re talking about maximizing sales. First of all, you need to truly understand who your ideal client is. The mistake that we make in business a lot is that we believe we have a product or service that has value, but we never distinctly or clearly define who we’re trying to sell to.

David Reeser:

And before, if you do not clearly define who you’re selling to, your product becomes basically vanilla, you start screaming into the noise. But the more clearly you understand who you need to be talking to, the better you can craft what you need to say to understand about them so that you can speak directly to the challenges they’re having, and be more effective in your sale.

David Reeser:

So, if you’re going to be very effective and maximize your sales, there’s four things you’re going to need to know. The first thing is you have to clearly define what your product or service is, clearly define it. You have to clearly define, write down on a paper would be incredibly detailed, as detailed as you can be about who your ideal client is.

David Reeser:

And if you’re questioning who your ideal client is, your ideal client is a client that is one, enjoyable to work with, two, you understand the unique challenge that they’re experiencing, and three, they’re profitable. So, if you can make money with them, you understand the challenges they have, you have something unique for them, and you enjoy working with them. That’s your ideal client.

David Reeser:

That’s your ideal client. And then, the other thing you need is you have to understand what your product or service means to them. What does it mean to them? And then, finally, you have to understand what’s unique. What are you doing this unique? You can have 100 competitors, and they can all be selling the same product, and that’s okay.

David Reeser:

There has to be something unique about what you do. So, you can speak to that client in a way that’s going to be maximally effective. I call them the four pillars. If you have your four pillars nailed, you’re going to be way more effective at maximizing sales. It will completely change the paradigm of your sales, honest to God.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. I’d definitely do it. I come from more of a marketing background. But in marketing, you definitely want to talk to somebody’s pain points. And so, it sounds like that’s very similar. You want to find out what pains they’re having, and then how you can uniquely solve those pain points. So, based on what you said, it sounds like there are a lot of similarities there.

David Reeser:

Oh, absolutely. In fact, this is how the human mind has never changed. The way we sell changes all the time with technology, it’s how we consume information. That’s always changing. That’s the thing that never changes. The human mind doesn’t change. We make decisions the same way we did 200 years ago, 300 years, and 3,000 years ago.

David Reeser:

My background is in healthcare. Derek, I don’t even know if you know this. I spent 15 years in direct patient care. I’m an expert in cross sectional anatomy, human physiology. That was my specialty for many years. So, I know exactly how the brain works. So, long story short is this. We buy emotionally, and we make decisions intellectually. We buy emotionally. We make decisions intellectually.

David Reeser:

The child’s portion of the mind says I want it. The adult portion of the brain says can we afford it? People buy emotionally. It never changed. So, if you follow four steps, you can build a very smooth, and repeatable sales process. It starts with your four pillars we just talked about. And then, the four steps are build rapport, which means build a bridge. Rapport is know, like, and trust, we get to know each other.

David Reeser:

This transfer of confidence happens as we talk, and I get to know you, which I have a very specific process for, and it’s super easy to do. We get to know each other. We build a process, or we build a bridge of communication, know, like and trust, transfer of confidence, I become your expert. Step two is find pain, right? Pain is defined as need or want, but it’s not just pain as in I need something I’m hurting, I need you to come fix it.

David Reeser:

People also buy for future gain, for a future that they want to have. So, they may not have any current issues, but they want to have this other more desirable future for themselves. Some people buy for that. And then, the third step in my sales process is solution. We offer a solution that’s congruent to their need or want. It’s the same size, the same shape, the same price, the same texture, the same weight, as the challenge that we identified.

David Reeser:

And then close, which is very simply, how do we go ahead and do business? How do we move on to the next step, where we have the transaction occurs? That’s four steps.

Derek Schmidt:

That’s great.

David Reeser:

Rapport, pain, solution, close, keeping it simple. But yes, people buy the exact same way.

How can one approach sales outside of their local geographic area?

Derek Schmidt:

So, if somebody was, they’re pretty decent at selling locally in their geographic area, how could you help somebody, or what advice would you have for somebody to start selling across the nation? So, we’re in North Carolina, but let’s say I wanted to sell somebody in California. Obviously, I can’t go meet them at a networking group, and accidentally run into them, and start a dialogue. What do you suggest are some ways to try to sell over state lines?

David Reeser:

Sure. So, I do this all the time. My business, IT Works, most of my clients are out of state. Many of them I’ve never met before. So, I obviously have done this, and some of them, I’ve never seen them even through a Zoom call, it’s all been phone calls. I’ve actually sold a franchise one time without ever meeting the person, a franchise. So, the point is this, it can be done.

David Reeser:

Where you need to start is you have to understand your mutual connections to this person, you got to do more research. If they’re out of state, you have no relationship, you have to do more research. You have to understand who you’re trying to reach, what it is that you could potentially do for them, and try to identify at least one connection that you have to that individual. Hopefully, it’s a person, but it’s not, maybe it’s a cause.

David Reeser:

Something that builds that bridge that they could somehow see similarities between you that you have more in common than you have not in common, and be targeted. For the love of all, that’s good. Don’t call them and not do your research. Don’t say their name wrong, if they have a difficult name. Don’t talk about something that you really don’t understand. Whatever you do, do it with integrity.

David Reeser:

That’s what I believe in with sales. And many people have told me, sales is a sleazy job, but my belief is this. You can be a dentist, a doctor, an attorney and do it in a sleazy way, or you can carry yourself with integrity, and do it in a way that people will honor you. And will see what you’re doing, and respect you. Sales can be done exactly the same way.

David Reeser:

So, when you’re building rapport, and getting to know somebody, and then talking about challenges, if you don’t truly understand or don’t feel aligned with what you’re saying, stop saying it. Just be transparent because you’re going to build trust a lot better, and you’re going to feel better about yourself too. You know what the key is to actually being successful at sales, 90% of it, you know what it is, 90%?

David Reeser:

It’s having a victory mindset. Victory mindset, which is this, right? Is to understand that you have infinite and inherent value as a person, you have infinite and inherent value. You were born with it. It’s infinite. Nobody can take it away from you. You didn’t have to earn it. You have infinite inherent value, but guess what? They do too. You’re a 10 and they’re a 10, but you’ll never see it in someone else if you can’t see it in yourself.

David Reeser:

That’s the truth. And once you understand that, you start to get away from a lot of the anxieties of the sale, and being judged, and what they’ll think about you. Because no one can change your value. No one can change your worth. If you see yourself as a 10, others will start seeing you that way too. And you for the first time will see others that way also. Change the way you treat them.

David Reeser:

And having a victory mindset, which is something I coined, that’s my term. Having a victory mindset in sales, also means starting with the end in mind. I know how something is going to go before I ever walk into the room. It’s because I planned ahead. I know why I’m there, who I’m talking to, what I hope to achieve. I already know what’s going to happen. I come prepared.

David Reeser:

Just like you show up for a football game and you’re on the team, you know the plays already. But I’m still going to go in there, and do it with integrity, do it with honesty, and give it my very best. Sorry, I don’t know if I took us down a rabbit trail there, but it’s really important to know.

Derek Schmidt:

No, it’s very interesting, you bring it up. It’s like dating. You spend some time getting to know each other, and then you go in for the ask, right? So, it’s very interesting.

David Reeser:

But to your point, though, if you’re going to do business, I’m sorry to cut you off, especially since you’re the host Derek.

Derek Schmidt:

No, you’re fine.

David Reeser:

Right. But if you’re going to do business with somebody out of state, you better know why you’re doing business with them. Don’t just cold call them with no background. If you’re selling a $5 widget, maybe you have to, but if you’re selling something that has significant value to it, and a price tag associated with that high value item. Do your research. Know why you’re calling. And there’s certainly strategies that you can put into place to be successful, but research is the best thing.

David Reeser:

Having some type of mutual connection, whether it’s an individual that you can lean on, and use what I call social pressure to close the sale, or get the sale going, or a common thread and cause, it’s something you both hold dear, or being in the same industry, and sharing common knowledge. There’s got to be something that bridges the gap if there’s a physical distance.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. Very good points. And we’re all always selling something whether that’d be trying to acquire a new friend, or like I said, dating or whatever, you’re always selling something, right?

David Reeser:

That’s it. That’s the truth. I call it influence. We’re all influencing at some point in our lives, we’re influencing, not convincing, not persuade, influence. Big difference.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. We had talked about this a little before we started the podcast, but there’s a really good book called Influence, and it walks you through different examples. And its influence, or persuasion, it’s not necessarily manipulation.

Is cold calling and cold emailing still a thing?

Derek Schmidt:

All right. Well, let me change gears a little bit here. So, we’ve heard cold calling, we’ve heard cold emailing, are these still a thing, or do you recommend them?

David Reeser:

So, let me tell you how I feel about, since you asked. If you ever send me a LinkedIn message that looks like it was templated, I am never going to respond to it. It’s absolutely not going to happen. And if you send me an email that says how about we talk at 10:00? And you’ll never hear from me. You will never hear from me. So, the more and more crafty we get with our emails, and this is just my personal feeling, and everyone is entitled to their opinion, they all stink, right?

David Reeser:

But my personal feeling is that that email and LinkedIn, as long as it comes off as genuine, and it doesn’t feel like spam, it could probably be very effective, and people probably have varying levels of tolerance. But as soon as something works, so many people jump in, and just drill it so hard that we all get burned out from it.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah, I agree.

David Reeser:

Right. That’s the truth. But there’s no problem with cold calling. I actually have no problem with cold calling, as long as you know who you’re calling, and why you’re calling them, and that you control the call. I actually write scripts for places that do cold calling. I can write you a sales script. If we sat down, I walked through the four steps with you, and your four pillars.

David Reeser:

I can write you a sales script that you can call 100 people in a row if you want to, as long as you know who you’re following, and it will work. I know how to do it. Yeah, but it takes control. It takes control if you want to do business with people.

Derek Schmidt:

I think when so many people are doing that same thing too, we just automatically tune it out. But a lot can be said for the guy that takes time to do a little research, and then reaches out. Something funny why I was laughing so hard at that was people reach out to me all the time on LinkedIn. And they’re like, “Hey, we have this agency, would you be interested in offloading some of your development at half the cost or whatever?”

Derek Schmidt:

And I immediately flip it, and try to reverse sell them on, like Swell or something else, right? I’m like, “Oh, that’s great. You got an agency, we built this for agencies, you’re the perfect client.” And they immediately ghost me, but it’s so funny. Because it’s probably this automated message that gets sent out to everybody. So, very, very good points there.

David Reeser:

Well, this is the other thing, too. So, thank you for sharing that, by the way, because I’m having that experience too, where either I just know that it’s just this super, super cold email, or there’s actually an opportunity that I could do business with them. We could flip the script on them, which is cool. That’s cool, too. This is the other thing is people buy for all types of different reasons.

David Reeser:

Not everybody buys for the lowest price. Especially, if you use the word cheap. Don’t ever use the word cheap, inexpensive. Nothing is cheap because if it’s cheap, it’s also not well made, or it’s not quality. Use the word inexpensive. But people buy for different reasons. We may both, you and I go buy a Tesla, we might buy a Tesla.

David Reeser:

You may buy a Tesla because you know it’s really practical, and the cost of ownership is low over the years once you’ve made the initial purchase. That may be your motivation. I may buy a Tesla because I want to look super cool in it. That may be the reason, same car, same amount of money spent, same purchase, we bought for different reasons. It means something different to us.

David Reeser:

That’s why I say understand your ideal client, and why they’re buying, speak to the thing that they need, and want, and not to the product or service. Nobody buys a product or service. They don’t buy features and benefits. They do not buy features and benefits. They buy to end their pain, their need or want. That’s so incredibly important to understand. And this is what it sounds like.

David Reeser:

If you’re selling an individual, talk to the thing that they want. There’s actually this company I use as an example, there’s a company that advertise itself as the company that will come in, they’ll organize your office. Almost like JAM Organizing, shout out the JAM Organizing. They’re almost like JAM Organize. They come and organize your office, streamline your space, they’ll make everything beautiful. Do you know what 90% of their business is?

Derek Schmidt:

What?

David Reeser:

Hauling trash.

Derek Schmidt:

Nice.

David Reeser:

They don’t want to talk about that. It doesn’t sound sexy. If they advertise, we’ll haul your junk out of your overstuffed office and home, we’re clear the junk out because you’re a slob like no, forgive me. No one is going to buy. It doesn’t make them feel good. People only want to buy when you make them feel good when you’re around. But guess what they realized, they realized everybody would benefit from a clear streamlined office, it makes them feel relaxed.

David Reeser:

That’s only 10% of their business. They make 90% of their profit, and the vast majority of their work is just hauling trash away. Isn’t that beautiful? They understand their client. They understand what they actually want and need. They’re not trying to sell the solution. They’re selling the end of their pain. They want to organize space. It’s how the sausage is made. It’s the real business.

Derek Schmidt:

It’s interesting because as you mentioned that, I started thinking I’m like, “Yeah, you have a business, and you go, and you clean office, and then all that trash you just turn around, and flip it on eBay,” and you’re making the double the money for. Anyways, getting my wheels turning, but-

David Reeser:

That’s okay. That’s what they’re doing though. They’re slick. They’re smart.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. They’re smart.

David Reeser:

Know your client. If you can see it in your head, you can hold it in your hand. Get it all planned out in your head, and you can make it a reality. But you got to think ahead, you got to think ahead. Because I’m seeing companies even now, Derek, that are having successful sales, but when you look at their churn rate, we look at their churn rate, and that they’re selling like crazy.

David Reeser:

But they’re not becoming any more profitable is because they really don’t understand their product market fit. They don’t understand their ideal client. They just don’t get it. They’re trying to sell more, sell more, sell more, but they’re attrition is so high.

Derek Schmidt:

They’ve got a leaky bucket.

David Reeser:

Yeah. Do your homework. You’re going to have a repeatable sales process. And that’s what I help people cut out that fat because I can see it, and I’m objective enough because I know how it works. And I can learn your product or service fast enough. And honestly, you don’t need to be an expert in anything. I don’t need to be an expert in your business. It’s not important.

David Reeser:

Derek, I love you. I don’t know anything about marketing. But if you shared with me your four pillars, and I truly understood those on their sales well enough, I could outsell anybody on your team. And it’s not an insult to anybody on your team. I love your team. You got a great team there. It’s just I know the sales process super well. So, when somebody learns how to do it like that, you can drop them on the moon, and they’ll be able to sell it.

David Reeser:

The people in this podcast, you could drop them anywhere in the country, and they’ll be able to sell. Geographic borders don’t matter because human behavior is the same. We make decisions the same way. There are cultural norms, the speed, the cadence of your language. The way you position products, and knowing the social construct. You can’t show up late to a Japanese business meeting.

David Reeser:

But if you’re in India, you show up an hour late, it won’t matter. Knowing some of those social norms are going to be important in sales, and Germans, you got to take them out to lunch, and not talk about your product for a week before you start doing business. It’s the truth, and it’s okay. If you get past those cultural norms, these four steps are exactly the same, exactly the same.

Is it easier to sell B2B or B2C?

Derek Schmidt:

That’s awesome. So, based on your experience, do you think it’s easier to sell in a B2B space or a B2C, and that stands for everyone watching business to business or business to consumer?

David Reeser:

I don’t think it makes a difference. B2B or B2C makes no difference. It’s just that the length of time, and the amount of money that is generated is different. So, normally, business to consumer, depending on what item you’re selling, the sales process is going to be faster. People buy emotionally, they probably have less people they have to check with. Especially, with a low dollar item.

David Reeser:

If they’re going to spend 50 bucks on Amazon, they may not have to ask their wife or their husband, can I buy this? But when you’re selling business to business, and the item is $100,000 item, you might need a chief operating officer, a CFO or a practice manager to be able to come in and say, “Yeah, there’s multiple people involved.” So, it becomes a little bit more complex, can get stretched out.

David Reeser:

But it doesn’t really matter from a difficulty standpoint, B2B or B2C because the individual makes decisions exactly the same way. Sales process is the same four steps, and we could roleplay. That’s another thing that is something I really believe in is roleplay. Because people are like, “Oh, sure, Dave, tell me whatever you like. Yep, you sound pretty confident.” But this is the thing.

David Reeser:

You can create any scenario you want. Same four pillars, same four steps, I will sell you, or guess what? Maybe it won’t be a fit and that’s okay. If it’s truly not a fit, I can walk away, or I’ll recommend somebody who might be a better fit for you. And that’s okay. But we can dance. And I can show you that the steps are real. Long story short is this. It makes no difference as long as you come in prepared.

David Reeser:

If you’re a consumer, you’re selling the business, makes no difference, same four steps, same four pillars. It’s just that because of the dynamics at play, the dance will be maybe at a slightly different pace, might have to dance a little bit faster. If you’re dancing with business, you might have to dance a little bit slower. The music and the steps are the same.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. And that’s something very important just now, you may not be a fit, and that’s something that when I started my first official business, I was trying to sell, and cater to anybody, and everybody, and later did I realize like it’s okay to say no. And you really want to work with the people that you’re going to add and provide a lot of value to.

Derek Schmidt:

And when you start deviating from that, you open yourself up to a lot of risk and everything.

Does the sales approach change depending on if it’s B2B or B2C? If so, how?

Derek Schmidt:

So, I think that was very important to touch on. You answered this question, but I’ll give you an opportunity to expand on it if you want. Does the sales approach change at all depending on business to business or business to consumer? And if so, how?

David Reeser:

I touched on it a little bit, but essentially, business to business, there’s usually just more decision makers involved. You’ll see this in business to consumer too, like if you sell insurance, it’s pretty common. Where if you go to sell insurance, and the wife is there, but the husband isn’t, but it takes both people to sign off on moving forward, I call that a one-leg situation, one leg.

David Reeser:

You need both legs to walk out with that deal. In a one-leg situation, you’re better off just canceling the appointment and say, “You know what, sounds like it’s not a good time right now. When would be a better time for us to sit down?” You really should have your husband and wife in the room. So, business to consumer can involve multiple decision makers too. And obviously, there are a lot more consumers than there are businesses.

David Reeser:

So, depending on who you’re calling on, and when I say calling on, who you’re selling to, you may have a much larger crowd if you’re business to consumer, especially if it’s something everyone “needs.” But if you’re a business to business, and you sell your… let’s say, you’re a design agency for nuclear reactors, how many nuclear reactors are there in the world? You might have a smaller niche, you may only have 10 prospects, but guess what?

David Reeser:

If you land two out of those 10 prospects, you’ll have a golden parachute the rest of your life potentially. So, just know your market, know where your margins are. Guess what, I already defined this. Your ideal client is fun to work with, you enjoy working with them. They’re profitable, profitable for you to work with, and you understand the unique challenges, and know how to solve them. That’s your ideal client. Whether it’s business or consumer, it doesn’t matter.

Derek Schmidt:

Perfect.

Is it easier to sell a product or a service?

David Reeser:

Well, it just depends on if you want a client or a customer.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah, and maybe you want to touch on the difference? What’s the difference in a client and a customer? And that’s a great point.

David Reeser:

Yeah. A customer is a one-off transaction. A client is recurring revenue. That’s business for life. That’s called a relationship. Anybody can sell somebody one time. Anybody can do that. But it takes integrity, it takes investment to create a client. And typically, service businesses, you are a client. You don’t want to do a service one time. And sometimes with products, you can be a client too.

David Reeser:

But a client means repeatable revenue. That means you’re going to eat for life as long as you continue to solve the problem. You definitely want clients, not customers, but clients take effort. Customers take effort too, but not like a client. You want clients if there’s any question about it. And I think it’s probably a little bit easier to get clients in a service business, as long as the service that they’re going to repeatedly need.

David Reeser:

Like, for instance, I’m looking outside of my house, which I’m working from home these days, and I’m ready for another power wash cleaning of my house. So, that’s a service I’m going to continually need, as long as I live in the south. But there are other things I may not need that our products. Maybe I’ll buy it one time, like my cell phone, I may not buy a cell phone for a very long time, who knows?

David Reeser:

Or a home, for instance, I’ll stay my home forever. But yeah, you should always aim for a client. Products and services, it’s still a sale. Like you were saying before, influence the sales process, influence. It’s every aspect of our lives. It’s recommending a restaurant, a place to go on vacation, hooking up two people, trying to win the job interview, selling a product, selling a service. It’s all the same. It’s all the same. But always go for clients.

Derek Schmidt:

And you’ve seen some companies blend these. For example, if you’ve got one of those mops that have the heads that you have to replace every now and then, while you’re stuck with that product refilling that mop head every three months, or every three uses, whatever it is, and just like Amazon, subscribe and receive three mop heads every month, or whatever. So, there’s a blend there, too. It’s really interesting to see what people come up with on blending this-

David Reeser:

Yeah. That’s a beautiful point. Actually, that is a great point. But you know how you get to that point? Is understanding unique needs of your ideal client. Know how they think, walk in their shoes, solve the problems before they even realize they even have them. Show them a better future than they knew could exist because you thought ahead. Have vision.

Has the way people are sold to changed?

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. Boom. Would you say the way that people are sold to has changed, I guess over the years, and if yes, how would you say that’s changed?

David Reeser:

Honestly, I think the only way that’s changed is the way that we communicate with them. The way that we buy has not changed at all. The way we buy, the way we effectively sell, it’s almost like music. We have these different trends through the different decades. Something happened where we had disco in the ’70s, no offense to the disco fans, I’m glad it’s gone.

David Reeser:

And every era has had different style of music, but same instruments. Relatively same instruments, different style of music, different way that it’s presented. But at the end of the day, the sales process and effective sales process, it worked back in Zig Ziglar’s day, so I’m a student of sales, I’ve read everything, pretty much everything that’s out there on sales, I’ve read it. And the way I teach is a hybrid of everything I’ve read.

David Reeser:

So, the way that Zig Ziglar sold decades ago, and David Sandler, the same process works just as well. It’s how you communicate it. It’s how you communicate it. Pre-internet, guess what? We weren’t doing online marketing. Is that right? So, the way you communicate your message has changed. It used to be a lot of in-person, now it’s through the computer. It was over the phone, and now it’s Zoom.

David Reeser:

So, the way we’re communicating our message has changed. But the way we sell, the way we buy, it goes through these weird phases where they try different things, and try to tease things out. But at the end of the day, there’s this core understanding of these four steps, and that’s why I take it down to it. I’ve seen sales processes that are like 19 steps. I’m like, “That’s absurd. Nobody can learn that.” And so, I deduced it to four steps, and I made it super clean, and super, super easy to learn. Yeah.

Derek Schmidt:

It’s awesome.

David Reeser:

It’s just the way the message is communicated. Sales has not changed. The way we buy has not changed. It has not changed.

Derek Schmidt:

Good. Hopefully, it continues to not change too much because then I’ll be left behind, but-

David Reeser:

You’ll be fine.

How to reach a sales quota?

Derek Schmidt:

I’ve got a couple more questions for you. And this next one is interesting. What I’d like to do is play through an example. So, let’s say, hypothetically, I have a web design business, and you are my salesperson. You’ve got a monthly quota of $50,000 that we need to hit. How are you going to reach that sales target?

David Reeser:

Just that General. Okay, no problem. So, first of all, I’d factor out what the average-size client is. If I need to hit 50,000 in one month… new business?

Derek Schmidt:

New business or upsells?

David Reeser:

Or upsell, oh, upsell is stupid easy. So, it would depend on the value of the upsell. So, if I was upselling them, and I had the capacity to get $10,000 per sale on an upsell, I would chase that business all day long. I already have a relationship with them. It’s way easier to cross sell and upsell, and for those that you don’t know what that means, is cross sell is to give them other parallel products to add value to what they’ve already bought from you.

David Reeser:

Upsell is when you take them from the first floor to the third floor. They may have bought the bronze package you’re going to take them to the platinum package, because you’ve identified that they would benefit from it. Hey, John, you’re John, and I’m David, okay? Let’s just go with John. I like to do that with roleplay. Is that fair?

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah.

David Reeser:

Do you want to do this?

Derek Schmidt:

Sure.

David Reeser:

John, you’ve been such a loyal client, and we sincerely appreciate you.

Derek Schmidt:

Thank you.

David Reeser:

And then, I find out what’s been new in your world. And I’d say, “John, the reason I’m calling you today is because you know that I check in, in a regular cadence. I check in every three months to make sure that one, we’re not totally screwing it up. Two, find out what’s been working well for you. And three, that I really need to do this. And three, how can I set you up for success in the future?”

David Reeser:

I call it the 30-second call. I do this with all my clients. So, my 30-second call sounds like that. What am I totally screwing up? And I say it like that because it gives them permission to be honest with me. What am I totally screwing up? What are we getting right? And how can I set you up for success moving forward?

David Reeser:

And then, when I get to that third point, I say, “Hey, John, just wanted to let you know, that 10 of my other clients that started out as bronze package just like you moved up to the platinum a few months ago after we added a few features, and they’ve seen $4,000 return on investment for each of those three months. And when I saw that you weren’t on that package yet, realizing you’re even more loyal than them.

David Reeser:

I thought I needed to at least bring this up to you, and show you what it is, and what it’s all about. And being that you just told me that you’re looking to be able to grow your presence, it seems like this might actually be a good fit. Would you like to take a look at that?” It’s always on you. Do you want to take a look at that? Do you see what I’m saying?

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah, I do. And I like how you structure the beginning on like, what are we totally messing up? I think that’s really important too, to have that in a relationship, that honesty, and give them that opportunity.

David Reeser:

Yeah, of course. And this is the thing, nobody’s going to continue to buy from you if they’re not happy. They’re not. And the way people work, especially in the south here is they’ll… it depends on where you are, but in general, if someone’s unhappy, and they’re not telling you about it, you’re not being transparent, they’ll probably look at your competition, and maybe moving their business.

David Reeser:

So, while you thought you were getting on the phone to upsell or cross sell them to a package that you genuinely believe will help them, that’s the other thing. You have to have a sincere desire to want to help them. If you don’t, shut it down now. Don’t even get into sales. Don’t call anybody. If you don’t have a sincere desire to help them, stop.

David Reeser:

And I don’t even want to teach you, period, because this is like an unfair advantage if you know how to do this if your heart isn’t right. But if you sincerely know that you can bring value and help them, you’ll feel good about making that call. And if you start out by asking what are you totally screwing up, they’re going to share with you why they may be leaving, or something they don’t feel right about.

David Reeser:

Now, you have the opportunity to right the ship. Before you try selling them, right the ship, and then check back in with them, and say, “Hey, it’s been a week, we took care of that problem that you identified. How’s it going now? Are we in a better place?” Well, you know what, when you’re ready, one of the reasons I was talking to you before is I want to share with you this new thing that we’re doing, we’re seeing great returns.

David Reeser:

And I thought of you. I thought this could be great for you, and I genuinely did. And I thought it would be great for you. But I wanted to make sure we took care of some challenges that were happening. When you’re ready to look at this, you let me know. And let me tell you, they’re going to take a look at it. They’re like, “You know what, thanks for handling that for me. I’m ready. Let’s look at it.” Do you see how the dynamics in that conversation?

Derek Schmidt:

Absolutely.

David Reeser:

Now, if my quote is $50,000, I just got to close five of those. I just need to know what my sales cycle is. And then, I have a repeatable strategy. If it takes me 10 days to close a deal, and I have to close five of them, and it means I have to have a regular cadence in my follow up. I have to understand how many touch points. It’s just math. It’s just process at that point. That’s why you want strategy.

David Reeser:

If you’re always guessing, and you’re just trying to be a social butterfly, you’re going spend too much time building rapport, and not enough time getting the real things that you need to understand so that you can close business. You’re going to have these unbelievably long sales cycles for people who may be great salespeople, but they spent too much time building rapport, and don’t spend enough time in these other processes. Does that make sense?

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. I think those are all-

David Reeser:

So, my quota in my first sales job was $150,000 a month, Derek. $150,000 a month. And guess what I was pulling a month?

Derek Schmidt:

What?

David Reeser:

$185,000.

Derek Schmidt:

What was the ticket price on what you were selling?

David Reeser:

So, they were services. They were between $3,000 and $6,000.

Derek Schmidt:

Nice.

David Reeser:

Yeah. And I had to sell $150,000 a month to meet quota. And I was regularly at $185,000.

Derek Schmidt:

That’s awesome.

David Reeser:

Right. Yeah. So, I have like 1,000 clients, and I knew exactly what I was doing when I walk in the door. It was like, tying my shoes. So, I know that this stuff works. And then, after that, I got picked up by a startup because they saw what I was doing, and they scooped me up. And that’s when I became VP of this health company called AffordAScan. It became ContactMyDoc.

David Reeser:

And then eventually, I learned enough to just be a consultant. And then, a bunch of companies hired me on the side to do some of these same things. That’s why I understand health care delivery and healthcare. The point being is this, I’ve had big quotas. I know what it means to meet a quota. You need process. You have to understand these four pillars. You have to have a repeatable thing in place.

David Reeser:

You have to have your head right. 90% of sales is managing the real estate between your ears. Manage real estate between your ears. Get a victory mindset. Put this process in place. And it’s like busting out widgets. It becomes much easier. That’s it. Sorry if I came off too strong there, but I really want your people to know that.

A closing note from our guest.

Derek Schmidt:

No, this is great. And we’re getting close to the end here. And before we jump into the lightning round, is there anything else you want to leave our listeners with as far as a piece of advice?

David Reeser:

Wow. I guess if you came here to learn sales, my piece of advice is, guard your hearts and minds from what you’re learning out there because I’m not going to call anybody out because I don’t believe and say anything negative about anybody. But I see some of the sales material that’s out there, and, man, I don’t agree with it. I don’t agree with it. I won’t call anybody out by name, but I will tell you, there’s some folks that you should look at.

David Reeser:

So, if you’re a startup, you should look at a book that was written by Amos Schwartzfarb, who’s the managing partner of Techstars. He has a book called Sell More Faster. That’s a great book for startups that are looking to figure out that product market fit, something he calls the W3. I would highly recommend you read that. I’d also look at books by Anthony Iannarino, and look at some basic strategies from David Sandler, or look at some things that I’ve put on YouTube.

David Reeser:

I’ve put a couple free videos on YouTube just to help people out. But if you really want to get sharp at sales, and you want an honest opinion of what your process looks like, you can email me too. My email, which I’ll probably have in this link is [email protected] If there’s something I can do to help you, I will, without even charging you because I have a sincere desire to see businesses succeed.

David Reeser:

When small businesses succeed, it makes for stronger communities, it gives people freedom. And I have a strong desire, and that’s the reason I came on this podcast. I have a strong desire to see entrepreneurs who are doing good things for good people, to be successful, have command of their life, and their freedom, help others to do the same, and create stronger, more tightly-knitted communities.

David Reeser:

I firmly believe in that. That’s why I’m here today. So, educate yourself, guard your mind for what gets into your mind. Because we’re 80% of what we consume, whether it’s coming in our mouth, our ears, our nose, or our eyes. Put good information in front of you if you’re going to learn how to do this, and look out for your neighbor.

David Reeser:

If you want me to help you, email me. I’ll give you as much advice as I can. And if you want to bring me in to train your folks, I could potentially do that too. But I just want to see people win. When we all win… anyway, I’m going to leave it there. Thanks for having me on the podcast. You can hit me with any questions you want.

Lightning Round Q & A

Derek Schmidt:

Yes. Let’s jump into this lightning round real quick. This is designed to be really fast, all right? So, try to answer them as quickly as you can. Hopefully, you haven’t had much time to think about these. What’s your favorite quote?

David Reeser:

Now, this is going to sound terrible, but this is my favorite quote. It’s people before profit.

Derek Schmidt:

Okay. What’s your favorite book?

David Reeser:

The Giver by Lois Lowry.

Derek Schmidt:

What’s your favorite hobby?

David Reeser:

I would say kayaking, but I don’t do it anymore. I love kayaking. I just don’t have the time to do it. So, right now, it’s riding my bike.

Derek Schmidt:

Okay. And what does your morning routine look like?

David Reeser:

Gosh, wake up anytime I want, which is freaking awesome.

Derek Schmidt:

It is.

David Reeser:

I have a wonderful life. So, I wake up anytime I want, and it’s always before 9:00 though. I’m not sleeping until noon. I pray, I work out, I spend time with my girls before they start home school. And then, I get showered, and put together, and I jump into email. That’s my morning routine.

Derek Schmidt:

Very nice. Okay. So, I’m going to give you three animals, you have one of them you’re scared of, one of them is a pet, and one is your spirit animal. Your animals are llama, orangutan, and squirrel.

David Reeser:

Wait a second. So, one I’m scared of. Repeat this again please.

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah. So, llama, orangutan, and squirrel. One of them you’re scared of, one of them is your pet, and one is your spirit animal.

David Reeser:

Gosh, my spirit animal is probably the squirrel because I got to get those nuts, you know what I mean? I don’t know. The orangutan, I’m probably scared of the… I don’t know. That’s a great question. I don’t know. I don’t know. You really threw me off on that one. The pet would be the orangutan, but he’d probably be my friend because they’re pretty intelligent animals.

Derek Schmidt:

Okay. So, you’re scared of a llama?

David Reeser:

I’m scared of the llama. Yeah. Actually, I am scared of the llama. Have you ever seen those things spit?

Derek Schmidt:

Yeah, yeah.

David Reeser:

Yeah. I’m scared of the llama. My spirit animal is the squirrel. And the orangutan is my best friend. His name is Pete.

Derek Schmidt:

Perfect. And then once again, tell everybody who you are, and where they can connect with you.

David Reeser:

My name is David Reeser. And you can email me at [email protected] Or you can just google me because there’s a lot of stuff out there. I got a couple of videos on YouTube. And if I can help you, feel free to reach out to me, and I sure hope this podcast is helpful to you. And thank you, Derek, my friend, for bringing me on to the bootcamp podcast. And yes, have a wonderful, wonderful day.

Derek Schmidt:

Perfect. Thank you so much for joining us, David. And we’ll catch up after this call. Thank you, everybody.

David Reeser:

Sounds good.

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