How to Use Sales Intelligence to Engage with Prospects, with Sam Richter [Episode 376]

Joining me on this episode is my guest Sam Richter, Founder and CEO of SBR Worldwide/Know More, and author of the bestseller called, Take the Cold Out of Cold Calling

Key Takeaways

  • A new salesperson starts in survival mode, and struggles to convince people to do something. It took a mentor to show Sam the nobleness of the sales profession — helping people.
  • Sam’s core expertise is in sales intelligence — finding information on other people, to help your approach be relevant to what they care about.
  • Your prospects are amazingly passionate about one thing. What is it? It’s themselves. What they care about is their problem, and their motivation might not be what you think.
  • To determine if you are a salesperson, or a sales professional, ask yourself if you have ever recommended your competitor, or somebody else, to one of your prospects, when they were a better fit. If you did, it comes back in referrals.
  • Sales professionals are underutilizing social media for sales intelligence. Sharing content is great, but also search out what the prospect cares about, so when you pick up the phone, you first address that matter, for a quick connection.
  • Sam teaches the 3×5 method. Spend three minutes trying to find five pieces of information about a prospect. Twitter has advanced searches you can save to find trigger events, such as new product launches, that give you ‘permission’ to call your contact.
  • YouGottheNews.com is a filtered search engine, similar to Google’s News tab, that searches large and small news publications. YouGotSocial.com is a filtered search to mine Facebook for information about your prospects.
  • Nothing sent through the Internet disappears — not even deleted email messages. Everything on your timeline is available, including friends, and what they put on their pages.

Episode Transcript

Andy Paul (AP)

It’s time to Accelerate. I’m your host, Andy Paul. Join me as I host conversations with the leading experts in sales, marketing sales, automation, sales process, leadership, management, training, coaching, any resource that I believe will help you accelerate the growth of your sales, your business and most importantly, you.

 

Hello and welcome to Accelerate. I’m excited to talk with my guest today. Joining me on the show is Sam Richter. Sam is the founder and CEO of SPR worldwide Know More. That’s a “know” as a knowledge more, and author of bestseller Take the Cold Out of Cold Calling, as well as the developer some really cool technologies, some of which we’re going to talk about today, some custom search engines for the internet. Sam, welcome to Accelerate.

 

Sam Richter (SR)

Hey, thank you so, much. It’s a really honor when I look at all the people you’ve spoken to and spoken with. Wow, it’s a heck of a list. So, it’s really honored to be on that list.

 

AP

Well, you deserve it. It’s only world class experts on the show. So, welcome. We’re excited to talk to you. So, how’d you get your start in sales? Maybe introduce yourself a little bit to the audience beyond of what I told them.

 

SR

Sure. Well, I think I’m probably like many, as I talked about in my presentations, I say how many here when you were in third grade, your teacher said, “What do you want to be when you grew up?” Jumped out of your seat and said, “I want to be in sales!” Very few people. I think like most I kind of stumbled into it. I think probably my first sales experience was, and I’m actually a professional speaker, but kind of an odd career choice because I’m a pretty severe introvert in life. And so, out of or in college, I have a journalism degree and went down the marketing track, wanted to become an advertising or did become an advertising copywriter. Because my goal in life was to pretty much just sit in a closet all day and write ad copy and not have to talk anybody. Well, then, I got promoted to become a creative director. And part of the job as a creative director is, I have to go out and start selling. And that actually really led me into the career I’m in now. But the selling part was, I kind of became that accidental salesperson. It’s kind of a mindset, I think, sales has such a negative connotation to so many people. And for me, I just kind of said, “I’m not, I’m not in sales, what I really do is trying to figure out what other people– what their issues are, and if I could help them achieve their goals more efficiently, more profitably, higher quality than they might be able to do on their own?” And if the answer to that is yes, then I tell stories. And so, yes, I’m in sales but really what I am is a storyteller and in hopefully a good listener.

 

AP

But think about that. Let’s pause there for a second, because that is the adjustment that people have to make getting into sales. And so, how long did it take you—it took me long to come to that realization early in my career that sales is really about the other person was about serving, not pitching something. And once I understood that, it made a huge difference, but yeah, it didn’t come down. How long in your experience you’d find that takes reps? Because that to me, that’s the critical adjustment, if you never get over that hurdle, you’re not going to stay in the profession.

 

SR

Well, I think that’s right. I think for me and like most folks, you get thrown into sales and at first, it’s survival. So, you don’t really think of that because it’s, “I’ve got to go in and”, for lack of better term, “convince somebody of something.” And in fact, I used to joke, when I used to get asked to speak to marketing classes, people say, “What do you do for a living?” And I’d say, “Well, if I do my job, well, I can make people buy crap that they don’t want, and if I do my job really well, I can make people buy crap that they don’t even need”, kind of poking fun at both of my careers, in sales and marketing. But the reality isn’t– and it was somebody who told me this, and I wish I could remember who it was, because I owe them a huge debt of thanks. And they said, “No, what sales really is, it’s an incredibly noble profession. Because again, what you’re really doing is helping other people. You’re not trying to convince somebody.” So, for me it was having a mentor. Actually, I think I know who it was, a gentleman named Don Craighead, who’s kind of been a mentor of mine, through the years, an incredibly successful entrepreneur in Minneapolis. I think we were having lunch one day and he was probably the one who said that to me, that sales is really a noble profession. Because what done well, you’re helping people, you’re not convincing anybody to do anything. And so, like you said, some people probably stumbled across it if they want to survive and feel good about themselves. I was blessed to have a good mentor in my life that I think shared that with me.

 

AP

Yeah. And I had a couple customers actually, that to me, were really formative in my early years about teaching that lesson. One, a prospective client I went in to see and, various older gentlemen brought me into his office. I went into the lobby not expecting at all, but they would let me see the CEO of the company. But he comes out himself, very graciously introduced himself, takes him back to his office yet and sits around this very clean desk, and pulls out a stack of business cards from salespeople selling computer products, at the time I was selling computer systems, and just said, “Well, I didn’t buy from any of these people. Why should I buy from you?” It was such a great lesson. He’s saying, “I may have a need. But, no one’s put it in such a way that it makes it seem compelling to me or valuable to me.” And suddenly, it’s like, “Oh, you mean, it’s not just about pitching. I got to ask a question. I got to understand you.” I got it, in a way that all the lessons and training hadn’t really brought home.

 

SR

That’s right. I mean, to me, my core expertise, if you will, is in what’s called sales intelligence, which is really about finding information on other people so you can be relevant to what they care about. That’s exactly right. Because if you think about it, this is kind of how I start my programs, when you think about your prospects, they’re amazingly passionate about one thing. And what is it? Well, it’s themselves, no offense, they don’t care about you. They really don’t. What they care about is their problems. And it might not be what you think it is. We go in and we say, using your example, this guy is selling computers or IT services. “Well, this guy must have a problem with his IT services that I’m going to solve”. Well, that that might be at the high level, but when we talk about going from the from the 50,000-foot level down to the one-inch level, what’s the one-inch level? Well, this guy, he’s got a boss, this guy’s boss has said, “We got these computer problems”, computer security for example. “We got these computer security issues we need to fix. By the way, Andy, if you fix this, I’m going to get you a $20,000 bonus, but it’s not going to be easy. And that’s why I’m going to give you a $20,000 bonus.” Now you’re sitting there thinking to yourself, “Well, geez, $20,000 bonus, that would be incredible because my wife has been on my back for the last three years to get a new kitchen. And funny it cost $20,000. And boy, wouldn’t it be nice to get her off my back.” And so, where you as the computer salesperson might be going in and saying, “Hey, I’m here to solve your computer security issues.” You as the buyer, yeah, at a 50,000-foot level that’s most important. But what’s really most important is, if you can solve this issue, you get a bonus, if you get a bonus, you get a new kitchen, if you get a new kitchen, you get to wipe off your back. And so, if you as a salesperson can actually figure out that motivation and sell against that. That’s where you’re going to be really successful. Again, kind of an extreme example.

 

AP

That’s absolutely right example because, nowhere in there was it about what you are selling, is about motivation and other person.

 

SR

And in fact, there’s been many times as a professional speaker as an example, where someone will call me, and I listen to their needs. I could I take my presentation and twist it and modify it to fit their needs? And what I do a great job? Absolutely, I could do that. But oftentimes, at a gut level, I know that I’m not the right fit, but I know that AP is a better fit. And so, I’ll recommend Andy. That to me is the true essence of a salesperson. I guess the difference is between a salesperson in a sales professional. Because I think a sales professional goes into a meeting with an attitude of, I’m really here to help the other person achieve their goals, and by the way that might not that might mean not selling my product, and I’m going to help that person achieve their goal. Because somewhere down the line I’m going to get a referral, or somewhere down the line, I am going to be the right person. And I think that’s the real key, if you want to ask yourself, “Are you a salesperson or a sales professional?” Ask yourself this question. Have you ever recommended your competitor to one of your prospects? If the answer is, “Yeah, I’ve done that before”, then you’re probably a sales pro.

 

AP

I think it’s a great point to bring out and I’m not sure we’ve ever had anyone talk about that way on the show. That distinction between being a salesperson and sales professional, I like that distinction. And that’s a great question, have you referred your competitor or somebody else? I mean, I know, it’s come back in spades from the past. I had a situation just earlier this year where a colleague, a sales speaker, just like you and I, referred me to another client that they just actually in their case, wasn’t exact fit and so on, and it turned out a great referral a great client for me, but first time ever really on the receiving end of that, and it was really interesting. It was almost like, yeah, how do you thank somebody?

 

SR

In our world, it’s a little easier. Versus if you’re a person who’s selling widgets, I do really want to promote the widget competitor. But I think it’s a karma thing, right? It is, it comes back, somehow, someway. I’m not trying to get cosmic and Kumbaya on people here, but it works, I don’t know how else to say it, it works. When your mindset is, “I’m really in there to help the other person solve their problem”, to be successful salesperson you have to be a little bit selfish as well. So, if your goal number one is to help the other person solve their problem. Goal number two, if I can solve their problem, I’m going to make a boatload of money doing it. There’s nothing wrong with that either. I mean, I’m “.com” not “.org”, I am in this to make money as you are. But still, if we have the mindset that it’s the other person’s– we help them solve their issue. Again, I’m not a salesperson, that’s just kind of the side benefit. I’m a solving-issue person, who just happens to make money because I might have a product that might be better, or might be the right fit for you.

 

AP

Yeah, absolutely. It’s a great lesson. So, one thing I want to talk about with you is your book, Take the Cold out of Cold Calling, which is an excellent book and recommend people, and there are great lessons in there, and one that I want to talk about first was one that is also, counterintuitive, but it’s absolutely right. As you say sales reps, salespeople are still underutilizing social networks as tools of gaining sales intelligence, on their prospects. And so, let’s talk about that. We got LinkedIn, and Twitter, and Facebook and some discussion groups, blah, blah, blah. But, all the talk is out there, but it’s still just your way of thinking is still being quite underutilized.

 

SR

Yeah, I think it is. Now, I want to be clear on a distinction. There are a lot of folks that’s telling you that, “Oh, you got to participate social media, some magic silver bullet to sell, and you’ll make all this money.” And if for some industries, for some people, it’s the exact right thing to do. But for me, and I could be wrong on this, but I’ll just give you some real easy math. And in my opinion, you can be the best person on LinkedIn, on Facebook, tweeting great content all the time, participating in groups, it’ll take you about an hour a day. And that, by the way, is all important because it’s part of the brand building. And if you do it better than 99% of the planet, an hour a day, are you going to get some new business that you otherwise would not have received? Absolutely, five clients, 10 clients a year? Hey, the average order size of $10,000 a piece that’s pretty good, 100 grand a year doing some twittering sounds like a good deal. But I come from a little bit different track. And I believe is in that same hour you can make– and I’ll just use phone calls, you can make six phone calls. One person you can talk to, one person says call me back, you get four voicemails. Over a period of a year, depending on how many trade shows and vacations you go to. That’s probably anywhere between 1000 – 1200 phone calls per year. And any good salesperson, if I say, look, if you could make 1200 phone calls, and but here’s the key to the right person with the right message at the right time, how many how many deals you think you’re close? And anybody who’s any good, we’ll say 20, 50 100. And so, that’s where I’m coming from. So, when I talk about using social media, it’s really more using social media as an intelligence gathering tool. Hence sales intelligence versus a marketing tool. Marketing tool is more, you’re going to share content. And again, I’m not incredibly important because that helps you build the brand, it gives you credibility. But as I like to say, it also, gets you in the maybe pile, what’s the maybe pile? Well, your great LinkedIn account, your great Facebook account, your testimonials, your reviews, all the people that are saying nice things about you on Facebook, on Twitter, and on LinkedIn, that gets in the maybe pile. Maybe pile means you’re one of three. Now is when you’ve got to differentiate, and you differentiate by using social media. Again, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter to find out what the other person cares about. So, when you pick up the phone, or email or you’re meeting them for coffee, the first words out of your mouth always needs to be about the other person. It could be something about their competition. It could be something about a new product just launched, it could just be a congratulations, “hey, I saw you won that award.” Or it could just be a connection, “Hey, I was on your LinkedIn profile. And I see that we went to the same school together, or we have the same degree, different colleges”, but some way where you’re connecting with somebody in a way that’s relevant to what they care about. So, when I talk about social media, that’s what I’m talking about is more of an intelligence gathering tool versus a marketing tool. Yeah. Although, again, not to marketing is bad, but my specific expertise is in the intelligence gathering area.

 

AP

And that’s sort of how I phrase the original question, you said it’s underutilized for gathering intelligence. So, what should they be doing?

 

SR

Well, I mean, if you think about LinkedIn, I mean, there’s a perfect example. Why do you have a LinkedIn profile? Well, you have it because you want people to know about you. So, I mean, at a very basic level, I teach what’s called the three by five, spend three minutes trying to find five pieces of information, or five minutes trying to find three pieces of information, and LinkedIn for sure, I mean, if I’m going to go meet with somebody, I go to their LinkedIn profile. But don’t just go to it because I have some period interest or something, I’m really looking for a specific piece of information in mind, something in common, does the other person work? Or did they used to work at a place where you might have a client? Where did they go to school? What interests do they have? So, just at a bare minimum, look at LinkedIn and find a little bit of background about the person so, you could connect with them, for lack of better term a human level, that’s an easy one. Twitter, a little bit less so, but Twitter you can mine it, you can use the advanced search capabilities of Twitter to really mind competition. Sales intelligence, you can automate it. So, you can save tweets. So, let’s say you were prospecting was really important to me. I might set up a specific query within Twitter that pulls back results, I saved that search, for example, it might be related to a new product launch. So, Twitter I might use more for what we call a trigger event trigger event is why would somebody at the company take my phone call today versus last week they wouldn’t have, sometimes those trigger events might be a new promotion a new hire a new product launch. Twitter because it’s instant news type, that’s what it is. That’s what I might use Twitter for, to kind of get instant insight of what’s going on inside a company, which gives me, I call it the second most powerful word in sales, it gives me permission to call that person to call my contact. Facebook, I’ll use if somebody’s LinkedIn profile just isn’t very robust, now you got to use that one carefully. When I’m looking for in Facebook unintelligent side is really some personal things about them, do they have kids? How old are the kids? What sports do they like? Or hobbies religious affiliation, political affiliation, I might not use that information. When I meet with somebody, that’s a little freaky, but it does. If I know somebody has children, it does guide me to ask better questions. So, for example, I have a son who plays baseball. If I know that you have a son that plays baseball, I’m not going to say that when we first meet, that’s a little spooky. But there will be a point in time where you turn around to me and say, “Sam, tell me a little bit about yourself.” Now normally, I’m not going to tell you that I have a son that plays baseball. But if I know that you do, I might say, “Well, I’ve got a family, awesome wife been married 23 years, I’ve got a son who plays baseball”, I’ll just throw that out. Because I know there’s a pretty decent chance, you’re going to say, “Oh, I’ve got a son who plays baseball.” And again, now we’re connecting at that human level and relevant level. So, those are the kinds of ways that at a high level that I might use different sorts of social media as an intelligence gathering tool.

 

AP

Now in your book you’re talking about the invisible web. Which I presume you’re not talking about the dark web, but what is it? How are you defining the invisible web? And how does somebody find it and use it for prospecting and gathering sales intelligence?

 

SR

So, I think the invisible web, my definition would be any website that is, for lack of a better term, invisible to Google. Now, why can’t Google find a website, it’s called indexing a website. So, if you think of Google as a vacuum cleaner, it kind of sucks up words, stores the words in the vacuum cleaner bag or the database, you go into Google type in three words, all Google is doing the same word of those three words appear most often my vacuum cleaner back. There are sites that Google can’t vacuum up. Matter of fact, it’s the far majority of the internet. Now, those could be websites that are just poorly built, kind of Google can’t find anything there. But more likely than not, it’s for– and then and then there’s the whole like you said, the deep web and that’s where the hackers of the world hang out, I’m talking about that. The easiest way to define the invisible web for the average salesperson is websites where you have to register to access the information. So, registration is free. So, it’s the free and publicly accessible internet. So, let’s say you go to an Industry Association website, they’ve got an online magazine, there’s 100,000 articles, they’re all 100,000 articles are free if you register. But you have to register. Well, Google can’t register. And whoever owns that website doesn’t want Google to find the article, because if you could find the article via Google search, there’d be no reason to go to their website and register. That probably be the easiest example of the invisible web. And there’s lots of great sites like that. I mean, Facebook technically is an invisible website. By that definition. It’s free. But I got a login if I want to access it, so, Facebook would be on the invisible web, if you will.

 

AP

So, give some examples. Let’s say of– you gave one with the trade association. But I was thinking of sorts in context of, you’ve got this search engine, you’ve developed some custom search engines to help salespeople find more sales intelligence. And so, how do they work? And maybe talk a little bit about those, You Got News and You Got Social? And how do they sort of overlay with the invisible web? Do they help with that?

 

SR

Well, I think those are perfectly good examples of the invisible web. Because I guess another definition of the invisible web is, is any website that does show up on Google, but after page three, because no one looks at it. So, in a sense, it’s invisible anyhow. So, that’s kind of what you got the news. I’m a big proponent, again, is never walk into a meeting without having a piece of information on another person. Well, how do you get information news articles? So, when I’m researching a company, or sometimes even researching a person, you type your name, type it in Google and now make sure you type it in quotation marks when you type a proper noun within quotation marks you pull up the exact phrase, versus Google thinks that’s an end. So, if I go in into Google and type in AP, I get you. But I also, get a lot of websites on Andy Smith and Paul Jones. But if I put “AP”, every result will be AP. And so, when I’m searching on a company, I put it within quotation marks. And then on the results page, you’ll get all your stuff. But there’ll be a little tab there called news. And I’ll click on the news button. And what I’m looking for is news articles. By the way, if you want to sort your news articles by date, there’s a little button there called search tools, click the search tools button, and a little drop-down menu appears you can sort your articles by date. Well, that works really well if you’re calling on a larger company. But a lot of us, most of us are calling on small businesses, all that size companies right now and they’re not going to show up in Google News. They’re going to show up in the Lakeshore, because Google News is looking at like CNN, USA Today, Wall Street Journal. It’ll also, look at the Chicago Tribune to the world, but most of our clients are showing up in the Lake Shore weekly news, right, those small weekly publications So, what I’ve done with you got the news is, basically if you think of Google as a vacuum cleaner, this is a vacuum cleaner, but it’s only looking at news articles. Again, it’s going to look at the USA Today’s of the world but it’s also going to look at the Lake Shore weekly news and the “Poughkeepsie” times and, and when you use the search engine, you there’s also, some tabs on the result page. So, only show me national news, only show me business news, only show me press releases. So, it allows you to sort your news in a way, so I find many of those news articles? If I copied the exact headline of the news article, did a Google search? It probably, are they technically invisible? I guess not. Because Google can find them if you tell them if you tell Google exactly what to look for. But in a sense, it’s invisible because if you do a search on a company and there’s 3 million results, that might be in the 2 million range, it’s all going with you got the news is kind of pulling them to the top as an example some mining the visible / invisible web on that one.

 

AP

So, that you got the news. So, that’s again, people, custom search engine you developed to help male professional salespeople gain intelligence on potential customers might not otherwise rise to the first page or second page of Google Chrome.

 

SR

Yeah, it’s completely free. You don’t have to register. Just a quick funny story that you’ll probably appreciate. So, my first book back in 2008, there was a really great new search engine that I featured it was two chapters of the book. Well, they went out of business. Andy is someone who can appreciate because you’ve written books before. I had two choices, I could either recreate the technology or rewrite two chapters of the book. And trust me, recreating the technology was a lot less painful than writing. That’s how we came up with that one.

 

AP

Yeah, especially working with the publisher.

 

SR

Exactly. So, for me, I just I just I need a replacement for the chapters.

 

AP

Okay, you got the news. And now you’ve got You Got Social.

 

SR

You Got Social. Yeah. So, You Got Social is an interesting one because, Facebook, there’s 1.5 1.6 billion users on Facebook. So, if I go into Facebook and type in, to try to find AP and Facebook. I don’t know the number, but I bet you it’s three or four thousand. Right, you know. And with You Got Social is, it’s really more of a guided search. And I really got the idea in some of the code from a gentleman named Michael Basil, Michael is a brilliant online dude. I think he was like head of the FBI, cyber division or something like that. And so, I took a lot of his work and just made it more meaningful, if you will, for salespeople. And so, what it allows you to do it’s kind of using a series of pulldown menus. Well, I’m looking for AP and, and so, I can type in a name and Then the next click the “Andy” button, the next pulldown menu, I can choose maybe job title. So, for you I put in speaker, or author, or blogger, or whatever, if I search where you might live, I might type in New York, or I might type in San Diego. And so, I get the right AP. But it’s also, pretty cool not only researching an individual, in this was not my intention in doing it, but I’ve been using it this way and it’s pretty fabulous. It’s actually an amazing list building tool. So, for example, I do a lot of work in the financial services industry, financial advisors like to do events where they like to invite people to an event. One event that oftentimes advisors like to do is, they like to do wine tasting events for wealthy people. Well, there’s lots of places where I can go get the demographics of somebody where I can go online and say, okay, find me all CEOs in Minneapolis, assuming a CEO is a higher net worth individual, but where do you go and find out CEOs in Minneapolis who likes wine? And by the way, they are Wisconsin badger football fans? How do you do that? Well, Facebook, You Got Social allows you to do that. So, find me all CEOs in Minneapolis who like Wisconsin Badgers and also, like red wine. Now am I getting every person in Minneapolis who is a CEO, who likes the Badgers and likes wine? Of course not, somebody has to self-identify that on their Facebook page. But it’s, it’s crazy what you can do on the site. And I recently added a power search button, I’m still refining it, where that’s where it gets really cool because, on your Facebook page, if I log into Facebook, I type in AP, if I look at the web address of your Facebook page, it’s going to be a certain name, my Andy.Paul.423, something like that. Well, I’m going to grab that name, I can go into the power search area of You Got Social, type in that name, and it will give me your unique Facebook identifier number. So, think of that as your social security number for your Facebook page. Well, now that I have that there’s a number of other search tools that I built in there, where you can say, “Well, based on that number find all photos that other people have commented on related to Andy. Find me all of Andy’s friends. Find me all of Andy’s relatives. Find me all of the places that Andy’s friends like.” So, when I’m researching a person, it really can give me a really complete picture of who that individual is. Now, do we really need to do that if I’m selling computer, toner printer? No. But if I’m a financial advisor or an insurance person, if I’m asking for a referral–

 

AP

If I am selling a complex product to a C level person.

 

SR

Yeah, for sure, but it’s a little spooky to be honest with you, the stuff you can find.

 

AP

Well, and you sort of have you have written about this in many cases, about the dangers of having too much information about yourself out there. Yeah, for sure. Paradoxically, I mean, even though you you’re developing the tools to help us get it, but at the same time, having done that, you’ve seen that, we need to be cautious.

 

SR

Well, we sure do. And I give a whole program on that. So, if my main program is sales intelligence, which is how to find information on other people, I do another one, it’s called don’t steal the cheesecake. There’s a story I tell about that. But it’s all about how, in a digital world, you need to assume that everybody’s searching on you. And they are, and how do you control what they find? And, the reality is, I think we all know this, but the book 1984 Big brother is here. I mean, big brother is here we are on , because everybody with an iPhone is a big brother. Just it’s kind of a side note. So, yesterday, my wife and I went to get our driver’s license renewed, and we decided to get these enhanced driver’s licenses because in Minnesota, you’re going to be required to do it within a year if otherwise you can’t get on a plane. And in filling out the enhanced driver’s license for many of your listeners probably already have done this, but they might not even know what that is. Did you know that in an enhanced driver’s license, they actually embed into driver’s license, an RFID chip with an antenna. And my wife asked me, “Why are they doing that?” And I said, “Because theoretically, they’re tracking you”, like I find an iPhone device. It’s probably like that. I mean, they could find my driver’s license. So, it’s a little scary, all the stuff that’s out there. And, by the way, nothing disappears. I mean, just as a side note, not to be political. But everyone talks about who Hillary Clinton’s emails and she deleted 30,000 emails. No, she didn’t. I mean, she may have deleted him off of her server. But, at one point in time somebody hits send, and once they hit send, they go through the internet, if you will. So, they’ve gone through somebody else’s server, theoretically it was captured, but by the way, it ended up on somebody else’s computer or mobile device. So, they never disappeared, nothing disappears. And I guess that’s the real lesson from the flip side of it, yeah, I try to teach you how to find information in an ethical way and use it ethically to build relationships. On the flip side is, you need to know that everything you do in a digital format, theoretically, somebody can find including your where your driver’s licenses at any given point in time. So, it’s kind of a scary world we live in.

 

AP

Yeah, because it works both ways. I mean, certainly buyers will do or prospective employers. Yeah, we’ll do a reception to into you. And this is not a mystery anymore that prospective employers might look at your Facebook but it’ll get a lot more these days.

 

SR

It’s not Yeah, it’s not just your Facebook page and you might be doing everything perfectly. So, I’m going to hire you for a super– you’re going to be my number two guy. This is the most important hire I’ve ever made at my company with You Got Social as an example, I can go in and in not only search–

 

AP

34:05

Search my friends, what they’re doing.

 

SR

Exactly, what your friends they’re doing. And it’s kind of that guilt by association. I can find a lot by who the people you hang out with the most. And what’s that old saying, you become the five people you hang out with the most. So, I’m going to research the five people you hang out with the most and, because you’re a really smart guy, and you might have, for lack of a better term, scrubbed your Facebook account and it’s perfect. But then I go look at your friends. And I’m like, “Okay, this is how they feel.” Oh, there’s so, I’m going to make judgments based on who you hang out with.

 

AP

Yeah, I only hang out with people that aren’t active on Facebook. That’s the new criteria. we’re choosing our friends and associates by– Sam now we’re moving into the last segment of show where I’ve got some standard questions I ask all my guests. And so, the first one is a hypothetical scenario. And in this scenario, you Sam just been hired as vice president sales at a company whose sales have hit a rough patch, the CEO and the board are anxious to hit the reset button, get things back on track. And so, the question is, what could you do? What two things could you do in your first week on the job that could have the biggest impact?

 

SR

Well, I think the, the first thing is you don’t want to jump in, you think you’re an expert and try to change everything. So, what I would do is, really look at the people who was on my sales team, and what’s their background? Let’s assume that the company I’ve just been hired at has done a good job of hiring salespeople, at least based on your background. They’ve got good resumes; they’ve been successful in the past. Okay, let’s assume that I have a pretty decent product. So, sales are down. I look at it and I say– I’ll take a sales guy, we’ll call him Joe. So, Joe, when I look at Joe’s resume, man, he’s been awesomely successful everywhere he’s been. So, when we hired him at Widget Corp, did he do this his first day on the job? Did he just get amnesia? But did he forget everything? Does that likely? No, probably not. Okay. So, we probably have the right people, you know that Jim Collins thing, we have the right people in the office. So, that’s the first thing I’d do. Assuming that we got the right people on the bus, they didn’t have amnesia the second they started on the job, then the next question is, well, do we have the right product? And so, that’s a little bit more of analysis of maybe talking to some customers, who is our competition? Is there a market for our product? Does anybody care anymore? I mean, are we selling AOL CDs? probably not a large market anymore. But, is our product any good? Got to find outlook, let’s assume the answer is yes. Obviously, there’s marketing material and those kinds of things, you’re going to evaluate and look at. But one of the things that I think is so important, assuming you’ve got good people, assuming you’ve got a decent product at a fair price, because again, if you don’t have those things, you got to go fix those first. But assuming that’s all true, then there’s only one other thing, are my people being trained effectively? To prospect trained effectively to negotiate to sell to provide value. Because I would say, for the most part based on my experience, that’s where we see the issues that they haven’t been trained, we hire these really smart people who have great resumes. And we say, here’s our wonderful product. Now go sell some stuff, and we just let them go. We take our best sales guy, and we promote him to the sales manager. And we say, “Make all make everybody like you.” And that oftentimes doesn’t work because a friend of mine Spencer Segal coined the phrase and I love it. It’s called unconsciously competent. If I ask a salesperson, “What makes you successful? I want you to think about it”, there’ll be able to write down 15 things. If you actually follow that person with a video camera, you’ll notice the 78 things that they do, but most of them they just don’t even know they’re doing. To me, it comes back to management. Do you have the right people? And are those people training their teams effectively? So, that’s what I would probably at first.

 

AP

Good. That’d be that’d be a busy first week. So, I’ve got some rapid-fire questions for you. Give me one-word answers or you can elaborate a little bit if you wish. So, the first one is when you SR are out selling your services. What’s your most powerful sales attribute?

 

SR

I use the line or a modification of this. Before I meet with people, I left a little bit of homework, you’re a super busy guy and guess I don’t want to waste your time. And guess what I found? I tell the person what I find. And then I’d be quiet and listen. It’s really when you find something cool. And you let the other person elaborate on it. They tell you some awesome stories. And, it gives you permission to ask better questions.

 

AP

Okay, good answer. So, next question. I think you answered already earlier. Who’s your sales role model?

 

SR

Gosh, there’s so, many. If I were to really go back and think of who’s the best salesperson, the best sales book that I’ve read of all time, I go back to Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Because I think that’s what sales is all about. You’re trying to influence people, but you’re trying to build friendships as well. And so, I’d have to say Dale Carnegie.

 

AP

Well, you’re also, answered the next question which is, which is one book you have every salesperson should read so, How to Win Friends and Influence People.

 

SR

Can I give you two more? Another Carnegie one, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living because I think as salespeople we worry too much. Absolutely and, and then thinking Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. I’m not the first that I’ve ever said those three, but I think if you read those three books, pretty much all the other books, the articles you’ve written and stuff I’ve written are all based on the genuine on the original concepts in those books we’ve just maybe modernized or put a different twist on those, but if you memorize those three books you’re going to do really well.

 

AP

Good recommendations, especially about the stop worrying. And last question. What music is on your playlist right now?

 

SR

I used to have Spotify. I know I have Amazon Music because I did the $99 Prime thing and now, I feel that I’ve got to get my $99 so, I’m fascinated how fun it is to go through. And so, one day I’ll listen to jazz, and one day I’ll listen to 80s, and one day I’ll listen to classical so, I don’t really have any music that’s on my playlist other than I’m just fascinated with how cool Amazon Music is.

 

AP

I love it. All right. Well, Sam, thanks for being on the show today. tell people how they can get in touch with you or connect with you.

 

SR

Sure, it’s really easy, samrichter.com or just go into Google and type in SR and if I’m any good at what I do, I better show up number one, if I don’t show up number one, don’t hire me because that means I don’t know what I’m talking about.

 

AP

There’s the test. love it when people put themselves out on the line. Well, again, thanks for being on the show. And remember friends, make it a part of your day every day to deliberately learn something new to help you accelerate your success. And one easy way to do that is to make this podcast a part of your daily routine, whether you listen to commute, in the gym, or make it part of your morning sales meeting. That way, you won’t miss any of my conversations with top business experts like my guest today, Sam Ritcher, who shared his expertise about how to accelerate the growth of your business. Thanks for joining me. Until next time, this is AP. Good selling everyone.

 

Thanks for listening to the show. If you like what you heard and want to make sure you don’t miss any upcoming episodes, please subscribe to this podcast on iTunes or stitcher.com. For more information about today’s guests, visit my website at andypaul.com.