Aspects of Love and Sales
A Geeky guide to selling this Valentine's Day
Valentine’s Day is almost upon us. We asked two amorous Geeks to think about sales as an aspect of love. And they didn’t disappoint. Given their anecdotes below we aren’t sure you should take relationship advice from Sarah & Simon but we can vouch for their sales insights!
Sarah our Chief Customer Experience Geek is married to fellow Geek, Mike. She explains why she loves sales (and Mike) and the lessons she has learned in her relationship with both.
Sales has taught me:
1. TO HAVE A THICK SKIN
I should know all about it as I’ve been married to fellow Geek, Mike, for nearly 20 years!
2. HOW TO BUILD AND WORK HARD AT SUSTAINING LONG-LASTING RELATIONSHIPS
I learned this the hard way back in the 1980’s when Andrew in my class wouldn’t go on a date with me to the Roller Disco, despite me asking him at least once a week for a whole year!
3. THAT PASSIONATE PROFESSIONAL’S PROSPER
My mum used to say about love, “There’s a lid for every pan”, and finding a desire for sales is no different. I love how so many sales professionals are so passionate – you can tell it’s their one true love and it shows!
4. THAT IT’S NOT FOR EVERYONE
Just like romance, sales is definitely not for everyone (my now husband Mike, decided to propose to me on a freezing cold canal bank, in dense fog, while I had a full-on migraine and then gave me a card that he signed, “All the best, Chicken Breast.” Like I said…)🤦♀️
5. THAT IT CAN BE TOTALLY UNPREDICTABLE
Such as on our meticulously planned wedding day in Kenya when my dream dress got lost, a palm tree literally collapsed on top of my mum mid-vows and our wedding cake was eaten by an army of ants!
6. SALES IS JUST LIKE TRUE LOVE
My Sales Geek family stand by each other on good days and stand even closer on bad.
7. HOW TO HELP PEOPLE MAKE THE RIGHT CHOICES
Just like I do in my relationship with my husband – I often tell him, “You can be right or you can be happy!”
Simon Damp, Your Sales Director, has a different take on the similarities between sales and dating. Simon shows that the seven-step sales process mirrors the processes we go through when dating and as a result reveals his considerable experience in both areas!
When it comes to prospecting, think of it in the same way you might when planning a first date. The venue is all important. If you can find a venue that matches personalities with your date then things are likely to get off on a good footing. Take EXACTLY the same approach when prospecting. Consider what venue you would most likely find your prospect in – Are they real ale drinkers, epicureans, or cinephiles? You could drill right down, if you like – for example what type of pub is best for the type of person you’re looking for? Find that out any you are well on your way to finding your ideal customer.
So it’s first date time. There’s a couple of things you might check first. Most importantly and often overlooked – is your date with someone else? Obviously in the dating world that is a massive red flag that would likely lead you to cancel your date. However, in the world of sales it might not be quite as final. But you will need a different approach to succeed. The rest is common sense. Ensure your attire is correct, and you don’t have some of your last meal down your front! And have some good conversation openers at the ready.
There he/she is. Are you ready? What are you going to say? Have you brought a gift? Do you buy the first drink? Do you have some interesting questions lined up to ‘break the ice’?
Once you’ve hit your stride and drinks are provided, then selling at this stage follows the same rules as dating. Find out your similarities, do you have similar likes and dislikes? Spend time ensuring you know what they are looking for. Are you in a position to know that you’d like a second date?
5. HANDLING OBJECTIONS
Be prepared. It’s not always love at first sight. If you know this person is right for you then you should be able to handle their initial objections. You may even want to get out in front of it and answer familiar objections before they are raised.
“I know I’m a little short – but so was Napoleon”
No scratch that… Just be prepared to answer your date/customer’s questions.
Closing a potential client is simply the same as the end of a date.
Drinks done, (Maybe your wingman is ready to move on, as his date/prospect wasn’t the right fit) and you go in for the close (No not, that! – I know it’s Valentine’s but really? Simmer down)
“Can I give you a call”, “Can we meet up or Whatsapp you?” or if you’re REALLY daring –
“Can I send you a proposal?”
You can normally work up to a proposal in sales quicker than you can in love – but who am I to judge? 🤓
Think your work is done? Not a chance!
Now the hard work starts. That’s if they gave the right number! Now you need to get to know what your date is looking for, if you are really their type, what they like, what they don’t like, what they are really after, who they have been with before, and why it broke down? Exactly the same as with a new customer!
Maybe this can be the start of a wonderful new relationship?
Valentines Day throws up some curious sales facts.
If you are a florist, a chocolatier, condom manufacturer or solicitor you better be on your game come February.
Of course if you are unsure you are up to the job this year we can certainly help you at Sales Geek – we could even help you with stocks of condoms (We checked Finchy’s wallet) 🤣
- We spent £1.5 billion on Valentines in 2017. That was up from £908 million in 2016.
- In the UK, the average spend on Valentine’s Day is £28.45. Not a country to be outdone, the U.S. sees an average spend of $221.34, nearly six times the average British spend.
- The Valentine’s Day custom of gifting a box of chocolates was started in the 19th century by Richard Cadbury, the founder of the British chocolate family dynasty. With a new technique recently established at the company to create more varieties of chocolate, Cadbury took the opportunity to sell chocolates as part of Valentine’s Day.
- Condom maker Durex report that sales of condoms increase by an average of 20 to 30% around the 14th of February. No stats are available on how many of those sold are still in wallets in March, though!
- 3% of pet owners buy their pets a Valentine’s Day gift.
- Most florists will increase the cost of their flowers, especially roses, by approximately 30% during the week leading up to Valentine’s Day.
- 50 million red roses are given on Valentines Day.
- 15% of U.S. women send themselves flowers on Valentine’s Day.
- Pregnancy test sales also show an increase and are up 15% through March and April.
- Valentines is the second biggest event for cards, with over 1 billion being sent and the number 1 day for sending flowers.
- Almost half of annual proposals will happen on Valentines Day, but almost half of women would finish their relationship if they didn’t get anything for Valentines Day! This makes Feb 15th to the 20th the biggest time for break up according to relationship status stats on Facebook.
- Teachers will receive the most Valentine’s Day cards, followed by children, mothers, wives, sweethearts, and pets
At Sales Geek our key core value is that we are here to change the world – no less.
And so it proves with love, because in the immortal words of Michael Ball and the most famous of lyric from Aspects of Love: