Sept. 30, 2022

#59 - Build Trust, Build Relationships, Build Your Business

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Most people get it backwards. They start by pitching, by explaining how their product works and all the special features that are built into it. But customers don't care and they won't listen if you haven't first establish trust and understanding.    

In this 14 min chat, Brendan and Bob talk about the importance of establishing meaningful connection with your prospective customer. Because you can’t make the sale or solve the problem if the customer doensn’t trust you to do it.

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Brendan: Okay, Bob.
So you know what this is, of course it's another episode of Let's Chat Sales

Bob: Let's Chat Sales. 

Brendan: And today let's talk about the little things that add up to developing trust in a relationship

Bob: Which is a big thing. 

Brendan: Yeah. Which turns into a very big thing 

Bob: Without trust. You're not gonna get the business

Brendan: Yes. And with trust, it becomes not about price.

It becomes about, being able to rely on someone that, you know, so let's, let's kind get 

Bob: Partnership, right? 

Brendan: Yeah. The partnership and the practicality of knowing that, if you've developed enough trust and reliability with a relationship, 

What happens is, the customer comes to rely on that and they don't wanna go and find a new vendor. 

They don't wanna find someone else because you've proven yourself to be reliable.

The switching cost of finding a new partner is a drag they'd much rather go off and do something new than switch out someone who's developed a level of trust and reliability that they can, they can count on.

Bob: It's like that friend you have from 25 years ago, that you know, was a knucklehead and every now and then he or she does a knucklehead thing.

And you accept it, but they also do great things. 

So always, they remember your birthday and it's the same thing in business. 

And I think 

Brendan: And you can't replace that person very easily, the effort to invest and find someone and, and vet them and then replace that friend.

You know, in that example, that's a big task and nobody people don't wanna do that.

They wanna, they want as little change in their life as possible.

Bob: Right. And we know from, I don't know if you ever read the book, the go giver by Bob Berg. 

Brendan: Yeah, I have

Bob: But you know, the go giver is all about the no, like, and trust factor.

Brendan: Yeah.

Bob: You know, someone, you like them and you trust them. 

And the hardest one is trust.

So you, you were telling me earlier that you're in a situation where you've had a whole bunch of little things. 

Come together to potentially lead you to something big. 

What are some of those little things Brendan? 

Brendan: So, I've been working on a deal, of some of some size for us, for my startup and and it's in a new area.

And, there are a lot of little things that ingredients, little components that have built up and, 

And made this kind of the relationship sort of work. 

And the deal's not quite done yet. 

So knock on wood, but it it's looking quite encouraging. 

And I think the first thing was.

One of the ingredients is following up right away and kind of being very proactive in terms of your response back to them.

Not, not salesy, but just, you know, matter of fact, informational, but, responsive in a quick way.

He, this fellow happened in a new vendor, a new potential partner for us, in the social media space. 

And he reached out, had some curiosity about what we do. 

And I got the email and I responded back right away with a, just a quick email that says, here's what we do, blah, blah, blah.

And this is where the overlap might be and would love to chat and 

Bob: Not a sales pitch 

Brendan: Not a sales pitch at all, just to, Hey, here's where I think the overlap is.

I like what you guys do, you know, cetera, cetera, but just so 

Bob: very soft 

Brendan: very, yeah, very kind of open the door to whatever's possible. So then nothing really happened for a day. Or two.

Bob: A day. 

You're too funny. 

Nothing really happened for a day. Do you expect stuff to happen in a day? 

Brendan: Well, like I sent an email and sometimes you expect an email right back and you don't get it. 

And so, so I waited a day and his phone numbers and the email. So I called him, said, 

Hey, you know, Joe, what, you know, blah, blah, blah.

I just happen to wait

Bob: Are you old or something Brendan? 

Picking up the phone and calling someone. 

Brendan: Yeah, that's another thing, right? Is that just the idea of picking up the phone? 


And this is where I go back to text and email. I'll send you 

Bob: Let's do a whole episode on that. 

Brendan: Yeah. Well 

Bob: Picking up the phone.

Brendan: Yeah, that's good. 

Bob: Yeah. 

Brendan: It's sidekick 1 0 1.  Always be thinking ahead. 

That's so, yeah, text and email are fine. 

They, have their place, but as I've said multiple times, there's no nuance. 

There's you know, it's easy to mistake and or misinterpret a statement that's written it's,

There's not a lot of information in some of these statements and a conversation is much, can be much more well, it's much more fluid.

It's much more, it's obviously real time and, and you get to know the other person. 

And so I pick up the phone called and we chatted for a bit.. 

And, we sort of got into it in terms of what they needed and what they were. 

And, I started that conversation, not by pitching what we do, but by asking what they were looking to do and what their issues were and just discovery, you know, just few.

And then, and 

Bob: But not discovery. Like I've gotta make this sale. 

Brendan: No 

Bob: but discovery, just to understand. 

Brendan: Yeah. 

Bob: To see if there's even. Worth more investment on either party's part, right?

Brendan: Yeah. Right.

Bob: Cause I think that's a real big distinction because I can ask questions, Brendan, you know? 

Hey, so have you ever had a coach before?

Oh, you did. 

How much did you pay for that coach? 

What do you do for you? 

Or I can ask you, Hey, what are some of the challenges you're facing? 

Brendan: Yeah. So 

Bob: and those are very different questions and very different intent.

Brendan: Yeah. So my questions. Like so, let me know a little bit more about here's what I understand about what you do, what am I missing?

What should I know about what you do? 

What are you trying to accomplish? Cuz we're, it was a, it's a data product. 

What would you like to do? 

And then, and then kind of brainstorm, you know, asking a question like, oh, if we did this, would that help? 

Yes, no. 

And so it's, you're just trying to help problem solve and brainstorm and, and kind of do some what if with them and that sort of thing is rather unique with salespeople. 

A lot of salespeople go right into feature pitch. Here's the benefit. This is what we do. 

You'll really like this, a lot of most customers, they know what they want or, or if they don't they'll explain what their problem is, and then you kinda work to the solution.

So I think that that, that worked, that helped out a lot. 

My ongoing responsiveness was a big thing. 

The fact that he was on a time tight timeframe. He's got money. He needs to spend it. 

Now, the company needs to spend it.

They've got, it's gotta be done this year. So I, he's on a, what I call a bomb run.

He's he's gotta get this done by a certain time. The other

Bob: and you found that out through your discovery? Yeah. Right, right. 

And it came up because he at, you know, at some point he felt like he felt comfortable telling me that he could. 

And then the thing that I think that really solidified it is I came back to him and said, Hey, I have no idea how to price this.

Brendan: This is a new product for us. We've not done this. 

We know that we've got some value here, but like give me a, like, gimme some rough order of. 

He came back like, and I said, I'm serious. I, I mean, we're just, we're neophytes this. 

I have no idea. 

What I mean, is this a B record? 

Is it, is it five bucks a record?

What is it? 

And then he, he went on to explain, he sort of educated me and it was, it was genuine curiosity in my part and genuine willingness. 

It was a genuine willingness to not know. 

And, and that is a very disarming thing for customers, you know, for. 

If you're in a position where you can, where you're willing to say, Hey, I don't know the answer to this.

Can you help me out? 

People will step up and, and that's a great way to develop trust

Bob: But you established a rapport with them first by asking questions that said, I genuinely wanna understand. I'm not selling you. 

If, if you're in a hardcore sales mode and you ask, I really don't know how to price this.

It's a setup. You know exactly how priced it. 

They're gonna say, oh, we'll price it this way and go, no, I have a better way. 

Brendan: Well, I don't know. 

Bob: So I think, your mutuality of discovery was really key to that, right? 

Brendan: Yeah. But at the same time, like I said, at the beginning, it's a new product. 

We had not sold this before.

So I was really, it is, and we really hadn't. We hadn't thought we thought about at some point selling it, but selling this sort of thing, but we didn't know that we don't, we. 

We didn't know. So why not say it? At least that's a style that works for me cause I, it comes across as genuine. 

It comes across.

And so, you know, and I, and I probably establish, I know enough about the industry and about what we do and what, where the overlap might be in terms of the questions and the comments that I made that have like it, it made my lack of knowledge in this other area seem credible.

Bob: Right. So you said, you said then ago that you were gonna sell records. Are you selling 70 eights, 30 threes or 40 fives 

Brendan: selling data records, Bob, but 

Bob: data records. Okay. Okay. All right. 

Brendan: Data file. Yeah. 

Bob: Okay 

Brendan: Big ass data file. So, so then I think the next thing was, I put together like a, what I call, you know, a draft proposal.

And it had some stuff missing. 

It had some ideas in it. It had some additional stuff that, that I thought we might be, might be of value. 

And then, and then around it, the question, is this a value? 

I don't know. You take it, you gotta tell me. 

And I think that worked well. 

And also one of the things I did I think was helpful was I sent the, the proposal just to him previously.

It had been to multiple different. 

Like in the conversation, he was the key guy. I hadn't spoken to other people, but other people have been copied in. 

But when I put the proposal together, I just sent it just to him and by doing so it allowed me to kind of establish that,

Hey, you're the guy, you're the decision maker.

You know, I want your feedback. You know, I trust you to give me good advice and he doesn't have other people looking over his shoulder at the proposal and weighing in. 

So he, he kind of has some control over it. 

It's a bit of a gamble, but in this case, it, it worked so far. 

It's worked well for me. And, and that, I think that's one of the things that.

Understanding how you can develop trust, developing trust tends to happen on a one-on-one basis. 

It doesn't happen in a group setting. 

You can do things that benefit you, that kind of, that kind of establish that your character and your credibility. 

In a group setting, but trust is oftentimes developed one on one and it's, it's that ability to be, you know, to be candid and vulnerable.

And, and I just find that most cases, the opportunity to, to have really meaningful conversations happens much more on a one on one basis.

Bob: I couldn't agree more. I think it's hard with the group because there's so many different factors. 

The, the other thing I really like Brendan about what you're saying and it took me a long time in sales to realize it is the less I'm focused on making the sale. 

The more opportunities arise, because when you get to this place where you're just having that discussion discovering what's going on, I've been in meetings where someone says something and

it's like, you know, we do that. 

I didn't know you did that. 

Oh yeah, we do that. Or that's on our list for six months from now.

Brendan: Yeah. Yeah. 

Bob: And you don't get that when you go in and say, here's my product or here's my service.

Brendan: Right. 

Bob: You buy my widget, this is my widget.  Like it, or lump it, take it or leave it. 

And I think what you did is really open the door to. 

That broader discussion, which I find leads to a bigger partnership. 

It's often that person coming back to you in three or six months or a year and going, Hey, Brendan, you were so good at figuring out this for us.

This, this seems like something you could figure out for us. 

Can we bring you into this meeting? 

Brendan: Yeah.

Bob: And next thing you know, right. 

Have a new product or service that you didn't even think of. 

That is a natural extension of what you're doing. 

Brendan: Yep. Yep. 

One of the things I will often do in a sales call that I think is really helpful is to say here's where we're good. 

And, here's where we're not good if I'm in the coaching situation or, you know, I'm talking to someone about coaching

Bob: mm-hmm 

Brendan: or I'm talking about some sort of product or something that some here's, I'll say, this is what we're really good at. 

We're in this space. If you're in this area, this, if this is the, you wanna try and accomplish, we're really good at that.

We have a lot of references in it. 

We got a lot of experience and we go, but if you're, if you're talking about going over here and doing this. 

That's. I mean, we can do that. 

We're not as solid at that. We're not, that's not our strength. 

And then that gives them the ability to make a decision about whether or not they, you know, how important is it to be good at something, versus how important is it to be working with someone who you can trust?

And you'd be surprised how often people will go for the latter. 

It's they want someone that they can bank on, that they can deal with. 

They can work with, you know, but without having to go to a contract, if you have to go to a contract and point out, Hey, you promised to do this. 

Bob: Right. 

Brendan: That relationship is shot in my opinion.

Bob: Yes. 

Brendan: So, so the ability to, to get people and, and yeah, to your point, being able to say, yeah, we don't do that back away. 

Not trying to make the sale. If it it's not a. 

I think, yeah. There's I talk about that all the time. That's just critically important to your sales processes. 

Like if you worry about making the sale, then you're worried about the wrong thing.

And if you make, and if you worry about trying to solve the problem and make sure there's a fit, the chances are. The fit will find itself. 

Bob: Mm-hmm 

Brendan: You'll find that opportunity. So, the last thing I'll say on this topic that I think is I, again, I don't, this deal isn't done yet, but it could be, but he explained where his budget was, what he could afford.

At one point he finally said, I said, I wanna be at X. 

And he said, I can't do that. You know, it may be worth that, but here's what I have. And here's what I can do. 

I can probably go to and I bid, I proposed back something that was about 10% less than that. So gave him some room, we can afford to do this.

And then, added optional updates for 10 K and 10 K and 10 K for in the future and by doing so that allowed him to, you know, he can, he can buy. 

He's in, within his threshold. 

Well, within his budget threshold, but, I have the opportunity up to get additional new updates that are not that costly for us to do, but that allow us to get some additional revenue down the road.

And I think that is gonna, he's gonna find that another thing where I'm not taking every dollar off the table. 

Bob: Right.

Brendan: And I find that if you can afford to, to not be greedy. The opportunities and the opportunities present themselves more 

Bob: and the long game's valuable. 

Brendan: Yeah. Yeah. It absolutely which 

Bob: hits don't always work out 

Brendan: exactly 

Bob: long term clients are a whole lot better.

Brendan: Yeah. Yeah. So 

Bob: They're happier. They trust you more and their checks always clear. 

Yep. That's right. That's right.

Which is, which is important. 

Yeah. I think we've kicked this around enough today. Brendan. 

Brendan: I think we did. 

I think this is,

Bob: can we do another one real soon? 

Yeah, let's do one. We have, yeah. We're, we're due.

Brendan: Right. All right. 

Bob: Hey, if you liked what you heard. 

Can you do us two favors, one, rate us on whatever platform, if it's apple or Google, say how great we are. We'd love five stars.

Brendan will tolerate four stars.

I will go into a deep dark depression at four 

Brendan: It's a B solid B. 

Bob: The other thing you can do is share this with someone who needs to hear it.

It'll make a big difference in someone's life. 

You know that person just send it to 'em with a little note, I was listening to these two knuckleheads.

You should listen to 'til.  We'd appreciate both of those things 

Brendan: And there's a course too, Bob.

Bob: There is a course. Yes. Talk about that. 

Brendan: September 26th, launching a course sales course, 28 day sprint.

There'll be more details in the doobly-doo, but you should check it out and I'll put a link in the, doobly-do. Right. 

Bob: Okay.

Brendan: All right. 

Bob: Sounds good. A lot going on. 

Brendan: All right. You bet. See you, Bob. 

Bob: See ya

Brendan: That was another episode of Let's Chat Sales a quick one, of course. 

And I hope it was helpful. 

And if it was, please like, and subscribe and more importantly, share it with your friends.

There should be something right here you could point to and click on and try that out. 

It should be good. It's probably good. 

Certainly short. It's probably helpful.  And thanks for listening or watching.