As we do here at the insurance pro blog from time-to-time, I'm taking a slight diversion from all things related to life insurance and personal finance to talk about something else that I think needs to be discussed.
If that doesn't interest you…I understand.
Not to worry, we're not abandoning the core of what this site is all about but today's post is gonna be more of a rant if you wanna know the truth.
Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to see a post from a friend on Facebook that caught my eye. And it wasn't a picture of a basket full of kittens either…what a concept?
No, it was referencing a new book that was just put out on the Kindle platform–The #1 Way to Increase Your Close Rate: Define What You Stand Against (The 7 Steps to a Successful Business in a Changing Market)
The title immediately caught my eye.
Actually it was the subtitle to tell you the truth.
Now, I'm not one to buy tons of books on “how to improve your business” or “21 ways to close more sales this year” type stuff. God knows I've spent enough money and have enough of those books in my possession already to furnish a library.
So…I'll admit it was free and short. That sort of sealed the deal for me.
Just looked, not free anymore but it's only $1.99…totally worth it.
Anyway, I grabbed it and had a bit of time to read it. And now that I've finally traded in ye ole' Blackberry for a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 (my phablet), I can read kindle books on my phone anytime I have a couple extra minutes or while scarfing down my lunch.
I read the whole book in about 45 minutes or so. Score!
Nothing better than a writer who can get to the point, make the point, and knows when to shut up. The hallmark of excellence in my mind.
I'm working hard to extend the same courtesy to those of you still trudging through this rant.
My advice to you…if you own a business, work with customers, are in a sales position, have patients, clients or just generally give a damn about the people who pay you or your company for a product or service…buy this book, read it, read it again and then trash your mission statement, your slogan, and by all means your unique selling proposition (USP).
I discovered in this book the best expression of our business philosophy. Drew writes, “In recent years, far fewer people have fallen for manipulative advertising. Sure, devious tactics can still persuade some consumers to buy certain products and services, but such marketing has just a short-term effect. People wise up quickly.”
He just summarized my entire “sales philosophy” in two sentences…can you hear my ego being crushed?
But seriously, I was smiling from ear to ear.
How does it translate to the life insurance industry?
It means don't spam me with things like this:
Click on the image above to read this drivel
Oh it's not spam in the true meaning of the word. They're using the email advertising service provided by a publication I subscribe to.
But the message is pure spam…including that extra special gelatinized stuff at the top. Tasty.
Why do people think this is good?
We don't view our clients as a means to an end.
I don't see everyone we work with as a ticket for me to “take 2 months off in the summer to spend with my family”…who does that? Gimme a break.
You know what I stand against?
I stand against those in the life insurance industry that see every client as an opportunity to make the most money possible. I stand against companies that only train their agents to be salespeople. I stand against using emotionally manipulative sales tactics to guilt people into buying life insurance. I stand against people like Suze Orman, Dave Ramsey and Art Williams who freely dispense financial advice with very little consideration for the truth (pesky little details).
I'll leave you with one last bit from the book…
Why should your customer care about what you're selling? What's in it for them? You see, there's one word people love to hear most whether they will admit it or not. This word has only three letters (and no, as Roy Williams says, that word is not “sex”). This powerful word is none other than “you”. When searching for answers to their problems, your audience doesn't want to hear a story about you. They want to hear a story about themselves.
How will you:
-Make them money?
-Save them money?
-Reduce their stress?
-Improve their reputation?
If the idea of having someone try to give YOU what YOU want sounds appealing…reach out to us. /end rant
Brantley is a practicing life insurance agent and has been for nearly 18 years. After years of trying to sell like his sales managers wanted him to, he discovered that people want to buy life insurance if you actually explain the benefits.