Challenge Corner


Sell Alphabet for Selling People

Sell Alphabet: Salesperson enjoying interacting with customer

I like to use a Sell Alphabet to keep my focus on people in every selling situation.

The Sell Alphabet I use is based on the 7 letters in “people”. It highlights my core beliefs about selling and selling people.

Capital Letter P

comes first because selling people first is the key. Selling people first, integrated with your sales process, drives performance and results…every time.

Capital Letter E

ngage your prospects and customers on their terms. They’ve usually done their own research by the time they get to you. Use that to engage them through questioning so you can start where they are. Once you’ve discovered what they’ve learned and what they’re after, you can:

Capital Letter O

pportunity. Selling people first is your opportunity to get to know your customers as individuals so you can further build positive relationships with them. When you know and understand your customers as individuals, you will gain  their trust. Once they trust you, they become much more willing to make a positive buying decision.

Capital Letter P

ersonal sales skills. The more highly developed yours are, the greater your selling success. Work to improve them every day. With solid personal sales skills, you avoid becoming just a “data miner” focused only on numbers. Keeping the personal touch brings you results…and makes all your selling activity even more rewarding.

Capital Letter L

earning. Every day is a learning day in selling. Make learning one of your top priorities. What to learn?

As you learn more and more about selling, your market and your customers, you’ll be able to refine and improve your personal sales process.

Capital Letter E

xpertise, the natural outcome of Learning, begins with mastery of your personal selling skills. Applying them with a customer focused strategy and sales process leads to your personal sales success, helping you produce more sales…faster.

So that’s my Sell Alphabet for selling The Word People.

What Sell Alphabet are you using?

Peter's signature


For me, selling is all about selling people.

Harvey Mackay has been a huge influence on my approach to selling because he’s a master of 2 concepts:

We sales people know that, no matter what process and software we’re using, we are the key to getting the sales task accomplished.

The best part?

We’re selling our products and services to people…and it’s people who make  the buying decisions.

So …

Here are my 3 favorite tips to do just that. They’re quick reminders on sharpening our personal selling game.

TIP #1: People buy from people, especially people who make themselves “easy to buy from”.

Couple talking to salesman



TIP #2: People want to do business with people who understand them and what they want.

Saleswoman listening to customer

This next tip says it all…

TIP #3: People want to do business with people they like, respect and trust.



Next time, I’ll talk about the big payoff from putting these 3 people tips into action.

Peter's signature


For more, check out a summary of Harvey Mackay’s The MacKay MBA of Selling in the Real World.

Salesman puzzled by no sales

So, I got data and I got social…how come I got no sales? How can I get better sales results?

Those are questions I get asked almost every day when I’m talking with sales people. They’re frustrated because they have so many tools available but aren’t seeing results from them.

It’s no secret there’s a huge emphasis today on using data in the selling process.  Google “data in sales process” and you’ll get over 162,000,000 entries!

While working on a client assignment recently, I discovered 101 software products alone that manage data and sales activity. Yikes … and I’m sure that’s only some of what’s available. In addition to data and sales activity management tools, there’s the whole world of social: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest. …

Now I’m not putting any of these down: they are useful, practical tools and all have their place.

If we’re not careful, however, we can easily get disrupted, distracted and buried in data – lost in all the noise and buzz.
With too much attention on data and process, we risk becoming data brokers, administrators and connectivity experts instead of salespeople.

We end up neglecting our real objectiveproducing sales results and selling more.

To produce results and sell more, we need to remind ourselves that:

So how do we sell and manage data at the same time?

Down the road, I’m going to talk more about how we keep a strong personal sales focus and sell more … while not getting overwhelmed with data and process.

Peter's signature


Customer shaking hands with sales person. Selling is simple.

Selling ain’t rocket science. Selling is simple, real simple.

In all my reading and research, I’m constantly amazed at how complex we’ve made selling. It appears to me we have clouded what selling really is, overwhelming it with technology…even if the technology is useful and practical.

The danger in so much technology is that we become data miners, process managers and social media gurus, forgetting we are sales people and sales leaders. We minimize what really produces results: interactions with people who make buying decisions.

So here’s my Selling is Simple checklist to get back to what selling really is:

  1. Qualify the needs of your potential buyer.
  2. Present your solution for those needs.
  3. Close the deal…or gain a commitment so you can close it later.
  4. Build an ongoing relationship for future deals.
  5. Repeat.

… and that’s all there is to it. Rocket science? I don’t think so.

So what do you think?