Selling In A Down Economy and Tough Times : Harnessing the Power in Numbers

“One of the most beautiful compensations of this life is that no one can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.”  — Ralph Waldo Emerson

When challenged with selling in a down economy, it is important to remember that there is still power in numbers.  And by numbers I do not mean the stock market average or the sinking worth of our homes.  I mean people power.  It is well documented that most people have some form of relationship with around 250 people (widely referred to as their Circle of Influence).   These are not 250 people we would invite to our Christmas – Hanukkah – or even Festivus party (just a little something for the Seinfeld fans).

These are 250 people we know directly or indirectly, ranging from family members to random contacts that involve some amount of persuasion.  This persuasion is used all the time to recommend a good restaurant, shoe store, plastic surgeon, energy drink, personal trainer, handyman , florist or _____(insert your profession here).

Theoretically, each of our 250-some-odd contacts could recommend us and our services to 250 additional people.  That is cool to think about and empowering to consider!

But here’s the rub:
Just because they COULD recommend us, our products, and our services to 250 others does not mean that they ARE or that they WILL.

It comes down to trust and value. 

This is especially true when selling in a down economy and tough times.  Trust is a feeling.  It is a buzz.   Trust is fluid.  It is fragile. Value is established in the mind of the beholder.  Trust between people is built moment by moment, year to year. Value is established over time.   It takes a series of progress based impressions.

How do we build trust?

How do we establish value?

Think about the people you trust.

Why do you trust them?

Is it because they said “Trust me” or “You can trust me”?  No, these people have proven themselves trustworthy by continually doing things in a way that has built our trust.   They got to know us.   They care about us.   They are reliable.

Some quick questions to ask yourself:

Do people have a trusting impression of you and your services?  Why, or why not?

Do they see you, your company, and your services as providing progress?

Do they value what you do for them and others?

Enough to recommend you to others?

Enough to use your service themselves?

Do they value their relationship with you?

Do they feel that a relationship with you means progress for them?

In short, they earned our trust by “giving a hoot.” Few people give a hoot these days. When we show genuine interest in others, it shines a big attractive spotlight on uw as someone with whom to cultivate a relationship. Work diligently to increase the number of people you actively support and who support you.  Helping others to progress is the proverbial two-sided coin. It helps us to progress in equal measure.

Be Progress.

Selling in a Down Economy and Tough Times : Harnessing the Power of Numbers by Dean Lindsay (Author of The Progress Challenge and Cracking the Networking CODE)