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How To Make Off-Line Sales In a Digital World, Gustavo Munoz Castro

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Gustavo Munoz Castro



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Sales Tips you'll learn today on The Sales Podcast...

  • Spent nine years in technology working for Microsoft
  • Had the entrepreneurial bug before he understood it
  • Felt out of place
  • Saw people following their callings and he questioned his career path
  • He was 32 years old when he went out on his own
  • Did real estate part-time at first
  • Insurance, solar, HVAC, roofing, etc. follow similar processes
  • Attract buyers, they look for inventory

SELL MORE OF EVERYTHING IN THIS GROUP

90% of Facebook leads don't want to talk to you."
  • He runs Facebook Ads
  • Make an off-listing property list
  • Run ads for zero-down options
  • To get the 5x and 10X ROI on real estate you must play in the bigger pool of Facebook instead of Zillow
  • He's making 10-15 attempts the first month
  • Yes, the phone still works and is their #1 tool for booking meetings
  • Yes, you'll get 10-20% of fake information when people opt-in
  • Facebook makes it so easy to opt-in that people are doing it accidentally or without a lot of buying incentive
  • Add leverage
  • Your multi-media, multi-step nurturing will convert that tail-end of leads into sales, which is how you make the big ROI

The A.B.C.D.E.™ Sales & Marketing System

  • He runs $5/day of retargeting ads on Facebook
  • Add value to get their real information, i.e. offer something "secret"
  • You need an online CRM to make this work

Which CRM Is Right For You?

 

  • The Facebook Ads Manager needs to be mastered/understood so you know what you can do unassisted
  • Now you can compare your efforts against the "pro" you hire
  • You can generate real estate leads for $4-$5 each
  • You can hire a good online agency for maybe $1,200/mo now (competition is your friend)
  • A lot of CRMs have automatic posting tools now
  • They'll post ads for you! (At least in real estate.)
  • He'll do the grind for you then hand over the qualified lead or schedule the call
  • How to get started as a new real estate agent
  • Go live every day for just 5-10 minutes

Sales Growth Tools Mentioned In The Sales Podcast

  • Visit Power ISA for more info on how to grow your sales

Order Wes's second book to think, market, and close like The Sales Whisperer.

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Hilmon Sorey on The Sales Podcast.m4a: Audio automatically transcribed by Sonix

Hilmon Sorey on The Sales Podcast.m4a: this m4a audio file was automatically transcribed by Sonix with the best speech-to-text algorithms. This transcript may contain errors.

Wes Schaeffer:
Hilmon Sorey, ClozeLoop, all the way from San Francisco, welcome to The Sales Podcast, man. How the heck are you?

Hilmon Sorey:
I am fantastic and I'm happy to be here. Thanks, Wes.

Wes Schaeffer:
You know, I hate to break this to you, but we're going to have to end this interview because to be qualified to be a guest on my show, you must have written at least nine books and you've only got eight to your name.

Hilmon Sorey:
Well, wait a minute. You said written, not written and published.

Wes Schaeffer:
Now we're going to have to -- we're going to have to get rid of this. I mean, I need somebody that actually puts out some content, okay, not just some dude sitting around. All right?

Hilmon Sorey:
Give it a week. Give it a week.

Wes Schaeffer:
I mean, what in the hell? Eight books. Come on, man. You're making me look bad.

Hilmon Sorey:
I'm either -- I'm either a blowhard or I got a lot to say. I'm not quite -- and they're not mutually exclusive. You know, that's the beauty.

Wes Schaeffer:
I mean, that is true, man.

Hilmon Sorey:
This could have been -- well, see, here's the real deal, if you want the truth, Wes. In high school, I was not a big fan of literature and I had to do Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey. And those books were so long that I decided I would not write one 1400-page book; I would write 10 140-page books. So that's what we've done here.

Wes Schaeffer:
All right. So please tell me it's like extra large font, big spaces, and a lot of pictures.

Hilmon Sorey:
Lots of pictures. You know, don't you love sales books with lots of pictures?

Wes Schaeffer:
Dude, I'm a salesman. You got to -- I mean, you've got to keep my interest. You know, if it's too --

Hilmon Sorey:
It's simple.

Wes Schaeffer:
If it's too densely packed and, you know, got these big words, I got to look up, man, I'm a goner.

Hilmon Sorey:
What's the rule? Know your audience. [laughs]

Wes Schaeffer:
I tell people, you know, I grew up in Louisiana and English was an elective. So you got to go easy on me, man.

Hilmon Sorey:
[laughs] That's great. Well, you've done well with it.

Wes Schaeffer:
[chuckles] So we're going to bounce around a bit. But I want to jump right to cold calling -- "46 Reasons Why Your Cold Calls Fail: ...And How To Fix Them FAST." Because I've had a lot of sales experts on when not long after COVID kicked in, at least our government's response to COVID kicked in. I had Jeb Blunt on the show and we were talking about cold calling. He was saying he was having great success with it. I've had others who make software for outbound dialing, they're having great success -- PhoneBurner, ConnectAndSell, Chris Beall; smart guy, smart software. So what are you -- what are you seeing about cold calling, both before, during and now hopefully after COVID?

Hilmon Sorey:
So I will tell you exactly the same before, during and after. There's something that I like to say about the sales profession, which is that there are three types of individuals. There are the folks who are skating towards the puck, right? They're constantly realizing that we live in this landscape of sales, which is constantly evolving; right? The buyer is constantly evolving. The market is constantly evolving. The technology is constantly evolving. We got to stay on our game. We got to see where it's going. And then there are those folks who are kind of they cling to something that worked and then it shifts and it's like, oh, man, who moved my cheese; right? I've got to go catch up.

And then there the folks who are like, everything's different. Right now, if you listen to LinkedIn, everything's changed. Right? And a year ago, everything changed also; right? Well, if everything's constantly changing, that might be an indication of what you need to do is to constantly evolve; right? So the idea here is -- and Jeb's a great guy and Chris is a great guy; he wrote the foreword for one of our books -- and I'll tell you this, the idea is that cold calling has always worked; right? What has changed are the means with which we do so.

We've got different access to data and now also we're no longer calling people in offices. We've actually got to get a hold of people's cell phone numbers, which requires a different spin on how we're having a conversation with them. They're also likely at home, which correlates to a higher level of availability and also correlates to a higher level of commitment to some other things that they might be focused on. So the rigor with respect to how you manage a cold call remains the same from a psychology perspective and from a practice perspective. The things that have changed are the actual approach to those conversations.

So I've always said cold calling is successful. I don't go out there and broadcast it significantly because not everybody needs to know. I'm going to save that for my clients -- the huge reveal. Here's the big deal, Wes. You know what? If you pick up the phone and try to reach people, you can reach more people with a higher quality conversation doing that than you can with any other mechanism -- don't tell. You know, that's the idea.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah, very nice. All right. We can keep going; I like that answer. [chuckles] So do you have partners? Because you started a sales training-sales methodology-sales coaching business. That's what ClozeLoop is.

Hilmon Sorey:
That's correct. Yeah. We call it sales strategy training and sales enablement.

Wes Schaeffer:
Okay. And you've got partners there, or is it just you?

Hilmon Sorey:
I do. My partner, Cory Bray, we've been working together since inception and actually prior to inception we made a foray into developing coaching software for sales and then quickly realized that we're not software developers; we are at our core consultants and trainers. So I'll say that the market pivoted us back to our competency. [chuckles]

Wes Schaeffer:
So wait a minute. You created a business based on a Leonardo DiCaprio movie?

Hilmon Sorey:
[laughs] Am I the first?

Wes Schaeffer:
Man, that's dedication. I need to go to IMDB and look up when Inception was created.

Hilmon Sorey:
That's right. [laughs]

Wes Schaeffer:
That's cool, though. I mean, you got somebody that you know, like, and trust because I've kissed a few frogs in that space looking for partners and, you know, hasn't been all that successful. Maybe I'm not a good kisser.

Hilmon Sorey:
Well, you know, I don't even know what to do with that, Wes. [laughs]

Wes Schaeffer:
I got seven kids, so I might be all right.

Hilmon Sorey:
I was about to say, you must be doing something right.

Wes Schaeffer:
I mean, I'm either a good kisser or a good salesman or both. I mean, you know --

Hilmon Sorey:
[laughs] You got something working for you there, man.

I will say this. I've been in the same boat where -- I've come at this a couple of different ways with respect to partnerships and growing the business. I've been in the space of sales consulting and training for about 15 years, and the first, the beginning of that was as a sales trainer for a really large, well-known sales training organization, and I've seen people do it right and I've seen people do it effectively. The biggest challenge in any service business is scale, right? Software is easy. You go sell more stuff. You got SAAS sitting in the cloud. You know, you've got your economics that allow you to just be expansive with how you go to market, and there's not a big impact.

Whereas in our business, you know, you've got quality assurance issues. You've got issues around the number of consultants that you're employing and those consultants billing and things like that. So the challenge on the partnership front is, as you said, having a known entity, but not just the known entity, because they're folks you know that you still shouldn't be working with; you know what I mean? It's a known entity that you effectively work together with.

And here's the last piece, is how do you ensure that this person that you're partnered with, you don't have enough -- you don't have such significant overlap of the Venn diagram that you don't really get one plus one equals three or four; you end up with kind of the same person doing the same thing and you have the same energy; and none of you like doing the books, none of you like doing the minutia of spreadsheets, and both of you love training and selling. Well, you know, that doesn't really correlate to creating a business.

So Cory and I have a great overlap on the Venn diagram where we have some core competencies that we share. We obviously are ideologically aligned, but not so much so that we don't fight and argue tooth and nail over each one of these books and like half of the frameworks that we put out. But I think it makes the product stronger, and together we've grown a little shy of 20 percent business inside of three and a half, four years.

Wes Schaeffer:
Nice. Very cool. So were y'all well-positioned well for COVID, or did you have to make some big changes?

Hilmon Sorey:
You know, I don't know. Positioning for COVID is probably a difficult question to answer, because I don't want to, in hindsight, sound arrogant and say, "We were perfectly positioned for COVID." I'll say that our business -- and you know this well, being in this business yourself -- our business is positioned for any kind of an economy, because when we're in a recessionary economy or when the economy is shrinking, there are folks who are saying, hey, I've got to maintain, I've got to retain, and then the smart people who are saying, here's an opportunity for me to grow; right? On the flip side of it, when the economy is booming, everybody wants to grow.

And so in the context of that, everybody needs some kind of, some level of sales strategy, sales training, sales enablement, which, you know, we could go down the rabbit hole of what that means. So the short answer to the question is we were positioned really well. We had our biggest year last year. Our clients, more importantly, some of them had their biggest quarters and biggest years last year because of us being hands-on with them and it's a partnership with a client relationship. They have to trust you well enough to take your advice and execute well enough on that advice to actually perform. So we take only the credit that is attributed to us as an organization in saying that all of our clients had monstrous years last year, which is great. So there's a little bit of a silver lining in what's been a really challenging time for folks.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah, because I see a couple of arguments in this space. Like, when times are good, some prospects will say, well, times are really good, I don't need training. We're making a lot of money. And conversely, when times are bad, they're like, I can't spend money on training. Times are bad. All of our margins are cut, you know? So is it just a mindset? Like, do you just have to pick and choose the smart prospects to bring on as clients? I mean, do you see the same arguments sometimes?

Hilmon Sorey:
Nailed it. That is exactly the criteria that we're looking for when we say, okay, this is our ideal customer profile, this falls into our winning zone, are the folks who get it. You know, three years ago when I was in advertising and I was actually an associate publisher of a business journal in a different life, and I used to say to our advertising team, look, don't go after people and try to convince them to advertise. That's a losing proposition. Go after the folks who are already advertising and show them a better audience; right? Show them better conversion on their dollars.

And it's the same thing in this business. I'm not trying to convince anybody. You know, everybody knows their business better than I do. I have no delusions around that; right? So if you believe that for you consolidation and what we heard around this time last year, you probably heard it quite a bit, too, Wes, was VCs and PEs saying, all right, trim the fat -- trim the fat, it's time to go lean because we don't know what's going to happen. Well, smart money said, well, let's just see if we can pivot to the marketplace. Let's see if we can double down on offering our existing customers whatever we can to retain them and help them to be successful and see if there's a lane where we solve a problem that people are now experiencing. And those folks end up having monstrous years. So, yeah, I'm not in the business of trying to convince, cajole, connive anybody into doing anything. I want to find the folks who have like-mindedness and demonstrate to them where we can make an impact.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. And I was telling everybody last year, like, now's the time to go gobble up market share. Don't worry about margins. You know, it's like keep the doors open. Go -- go get business, because others are going to -- you know, that hunkering down mentality, it's like, yeah, let me know how that works out for you a year from now. Good grief.

Hilmon Sorey:
If you study history, you go back and look at these things, you don't even have to have a magic 8-ball that tells you these things. Just go study history. Go look at when the greatest fortunes were built during the Great Depression. You know, there's a reason to follow that path. All of this stuff, I say this -- you know, I've been beating this drum of all of these things have been done before. You know, all you have to do is go follow the path that somebody else has tread and you can have a lot of success. And can add one thing to this?

One of the biggest challenges that we saw -- and, you know, I'm up here in San Francisco and we do have a large swath of clients that are actually in that seed stage/Series A stage, and there are a couple of parts of our business, one where we deal with nice unicorn-sized global organizations, Fortune 500 recent IPOs; and then on the other side of the business, we enjoy really helping startups and seed stage organizations develop processes and strategies to help them to succeed and go to market.

On that latter part of the equation, one of the challenges is that there are more -- there are more young CEOs and founders in the marketplace now running very serious businesses with a lot of venture capital behind them than ever before -- and this is not meant in a disparaging way -- just by virtue of not having seen economic cycles shift, 26 years old, just graduated Stanford, started a company, I'm a technologist and I've come up with a great disruptive idea, haven't seen it before -- one of the biggest challenges there is how do you surround yourself with advisors and coaches or resources that have been there to impart to you the knowledge that they've got so that you can run your business.

And I think that the folks who in that swath of the economy had those types of resources actually found both a little less hair loss and anxiety and a whole lot more success than the folks who kind of hunkered down and were, like, this is unfamiliar; I don't know what to do.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah, yeah. Sometimes it's good to have a little bit of gray hair.

Hilmon Sorey:
Well, I don't have any hair, so I never got to gray. Mine all left me before it turned colors. But I'll tell you, when the sun shines on a bald scalp, you know, enlightenment occurs. Wasn't Buddha bald? [laughs]

Wes Schaeffer:
Hey, grow that beard out, man. I bet there's some gray in there.

Hilmon Sorey:
You know how long it would take me to grow a beard? [Laughs] That's slower than watching grass grow. That's for sure.

Wes Schaeffer:
[chuckles] So you're big in the systems, right? How about sales enablement? I see your approach here from the assess-design-deliver-support-revenue. How does one balance a sales team between the hey, this is our way -- you know, the IBM way; right? You're going to do it just like this every single time, versus like here's the framework. Here's the borders. Don't cross the line. And, you know, as long as you're within our barriers, you know, you're free to roam.

Hilmon Sorey:
I love the zoo analogy. Here's your pen. [laughs] Here's the spectators and we'll feed you.

Wes Schaeffer:
I've been that bull in a china shop and I've worked with some good guys that let me go break some stuff and they just swept up behind me because the net net was positive.

Hilmon Sorey:
Okay. So that means you're like a Jordan, right? So we're making a basketball analogy. You know, we wrote the book "Triangle Selling." If you dig into it, it doesn't take long to figure out that we're giant Bulls fans from that Jordan era, and triangle selling is not far removed from the triangle offense, in all candor there. So there's a little reveal.

But the idea is this. The idea is you equip your sales team with the fundamentals for a couple of things. One, that will create consistent and scalable success. That's one piece. The second piece is accountability and transparency. And the third piece is that whatever sales methodology you're running has to be able to align to the goals of the organization directly in a way where if I'm in the C-suite/executive suite, if I'm part of the executive team, I need to be able to walk the floor or listen to a call and understand how what is tactically being executed by a salesperson directly correlates to the business objectives of the organization.

So let's say you're trying to go upstream, right? You've been selling midmarket; it's time to break into enterprise. You understand that there are things that you need to do to create a solution sale and to increase your ACV significantly; right? That's the strategic thing conversation that's happening at the board level with the executive management team. Now, how does that correlate to what your strategic sales people are doing on the ground? Well, you've got to have a demo framework that allows for them to be able to uncover pain, present value, challenge some assumptions and get next steps.

Hilmon Sorey:
So how do you create frameworks and systems that allow for someone at that high level to be able to see into, manage, and hold accountable that individual who's executing tactically as a salesperson? So to your point, now you got a salesperson, right? The salesperson, particularly this particular story that I chose, has a senior level salesperson who's had success, who got to this level of being a strategic account executive because they are smart and they understand things. Well, the biggest challenge there is not training and rigor and trying to hold somebody in between the rails. What you want to do there is cross what's called the knowing-doing gap.

And folks far smarter than me, a couple of Harvard guys wrote a book called "The Knowing Doing Gap," which talks about the amount of money -- in the eighty billions of dollars -- that are being spent on training and retraining folks every year. And the reason is because there is a knowing-doing gap. The things that we know to do are not always the things that we do in execution, in our workflow. They say that if we all did what we knew, we'd all be skinny, rich and happy. So what we try to do with frameworks is help that seller to have frameworks that they can apply in their workflow that just simply remind them and create the highest opportunity for execution on the things that best practices and proof has demonstrated to be successful for the role.

So where we get opted here is folks like Michael Jordan, folks like Wes, who are incredibly successful, bull in a china shop, they break things, you still are no fool. You want to do the thing that's going to be successful over and over and think as less about it as you possibly can. You don't want every conversation to be net new. So why do you opt in? Because this greases the skids for 80 percent of your conversations and then you're allowed to be Wes. You want that ball in your hands at the end of the game because you've got a feel for the game. You know what's going to happen. And that's what you want, right? You can't do that until you've got enough rigor on the team on the basics to be able to play together. And this is the other piece is that you are running a team.

So I always laugh at these organizations that say, hey, you know, we're running MEDDIC and BANT and Sandler and Spin, and, you know, we got all these different -- it's like, wow, what does that Kool-Aid taste like? And how do you coach or hold any of those folks accountable? Or the "We've done our homebrew." Well, that's great if you've been in a thousand different companies and understand what's happening in SAAS and what's happening in your industry and what's happening to your buyer that well, that you've kind of jiggered up your whole -- your own homebrew sales methodology. If that's working for you, that's fantastic. Chances are there's probably a better way that that requires less friction and less impact on the team.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. You know, I get pushback from prospects because I have a framework, but I keep things pretty loose. I like to kind of sit down with the team, see where they are, because it's rare that the team is exactly where the boss says they are.

Hilmon Sorey:
Right.

Wes Schaeffer:
Right? "So, you know, well, my team is just they go clankety-clank, you know, above 70 miles an hour. So I need you to fix that clickety-clanking like." Well, fool, they're not accelerating, they're not braking, they're clanking at 30 and 50 and 70, you know?. So how do you bridge that? Because they're like, well it just doesn't seem structured enough.

I'm like, I can give you plenty of structure. I don't want to make robots. I don't want to build little sales whisperers. I'll give them some talk tracks. I'll give them little nuggets to get some early wins, really just to build their confidence so then they'll listen to me as we continue; right? So how do you balance that? Like here's our way versus -- again, it's kind of the same question in a way, but it's more like how -- do you come in saying, look, we're going to issue this, we're going to deliver this 97-step method to make you hiring-sales, enabling-cold calling, closing-negotiating fools -- wizards? Or we're going to look around and then we'll advise where we see areas that we can improve?

Hilmon Sorey:
Yeah. You know, it actually is directly the latter. And first off, the visual of little sales whisperers is one that's still stuck in my head. [chuckles] Forced people who are selling --

Wes Schaeffer:
[chuckles] They're issued hats, they're given a calculator, a knife. So whatever, you got -- give you all the tools -- oh, and a pen; press real hard, third copy's yours or I will stab you. But anyway, I digress. Man, why do you do this to me? Come on now. The question's back to you.

Hilmon Sorey:
The question's back to me. Fair enough. All right. So here's how we think about this. First off, there are tons of organizations that want to come in and boil the ocean; right? And I'll tell you, I think the reason they do it is because they can't perform a point solution. They can't impact revenue or impact metrics in the short term because they're not frameworks-driven. They're kind of system-driven; right? Like, I got a system, we're going to come in, we're going to overlay the system and you're like, but wait, I just got to clank. Yeah, well, we're going to put it all there, you know; we'll get back in a couple of months. It costs a fortune, gets everybody involved, and limited efficacy to our experience. We've actually come behind those folks and done something pretty swiftly to actually align things better, more effectively after those types of engagements.

But here's what we look at. We say there has to be some form of assessment on the front end, because the problem that is typically brought to us is seldom the problem. It typically starts from somewhere else. Folks will say, yeah, demos are not converting. Well, the demos are not converting because you didn't qualify well enough in discovery and uncover enough pain to actually have a demo that has no merit or value for the individual you're talking to. You get where I'm going with this thing, right? It's all connected to each other. It's like a body, right? It's never just the toe; it's the way you're walking and other things, right?

So at the very front end of most of our engagements, we include an assessment. Sometimes it's as light as just a skills assessment, which helps us to, in a 20-minute online assessment with salespeople, comes back and spits out competencies that we then roll up at an organizational view where we say, okay, a wide swath of your organization has challenges to talking about money. A wide swath of your organization has challenges when it comes to leveraging social or managing conversations and uncovering pain or demonstrating the value of your solution, whatever it might be. But after that piece, there is a bigger piece that we can do for larger organizations, which is called the Sales Effectiveness Assessment, which goes through strategy systems, staff and skills. And I know this sounds like a mammoth endeavor, but here's the deal.

With most sales organizations, these things can be done in about 7 to 14 days, where we interview folks on the team; we ask for opportunity to look at data. The data could be anything from sales decks to sales messaging to things are coming out of marketing, all of these types of things that correlate to the sales process. And along with that sales assessment that I mentioned earlier, we then reflect back to an organization based upon your short-term goals, whether that's you've got a funding tranche coming up, whether that's you're trying to IPO in a limited amount of time, whether that's that you've got to hire a whole bunch of people, onboard them and effectively hit a revenue number, whatever it might be that you're trying to achieve, here are the highest-priority things you need to work on.

Because you know how this goes, Wes. Sales organizations have so many moving parts that you could get in and push string for the rest of your life saying that you're impacting, that you're making this more efficient; you're putting in a process, you're putting a system -- and it may have zero impact on the goals of the organization. All we're trying to do is align on what is it that you're trying to achieve, and our delivery promise is that within 90 days we will go after that thing, resolve that thing, train what needs to be trained, lever into a process if it's necessary or provide a playbook that allows for velocity, a long tail of success after our relationship and hand you back the keys. And if there's another project that needs doing in 90 days, 180 days or two years later, we're here for that as well.

Most of our clients engage us early on for one project that moves the needle so significantly that we end up with some additional opportunities to work with them to continue that trajectory going forward. But that's our view, is let's get in, let's assess, let's align that assessment to the goals of the organization; let's pick off a few things that are high priority and high value that actually create a domino effect throughout the sales org and tackle those things, provide you what you need, and get out.

Wes Schaeffer:
Amen. That's what my father-in-law said. Get out, but I got stuck around.

Hilmon Sorey:
That was after kid number what?

Wes Schaeffer:
I digress. [laughs] You know, I do something similar, I don't go after these big, long engagements. I like that "systems versus frameworks." It's like usually -- small hinges swing big doors.

Hilmon Sorey:
I like that.

Wes Schaeffer:
Usually there's something in there that can be tweaked and it's not major. It may take a minute to find it, but it's not major; but then you got to build a new habit. Like golf, right? Hideki Matsuyama, I think it's his name.

Hilmon Sorey:
I don't know the last name.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah, just won the Masters; right? I love golf. And there's -- you're not hitting the ball right. Like, certainly at a high level, it's small. It's like literally like take your right thumb and move it like two millimeters left or right. You know, your takeaway started outside, you know, one degree; just alter the takeaway one degree outside, one degree inside. And man, like these big improvements -- but it takes an expert to even know that's possible.

Hilmon Sorey:
Yes.

Wes Schaeffer:
Right? And then it's like, let's find -- let's fix something that's nagging and then you're free to -- I like to help them find the time. I don't have time for this. Let's find out. What if I give you back one hour a day for all five of your salespeople, for the rest of their lives. What?

Hilmon Sorey:
Huge.

Wes Schaeffer:
Let me find that. I'm not saying I'm going to show you how to go close a billion-dollar deal. I'm saying I'll find you an hour that your people are wasting each day, you know? Okay, deal. Let's go.

Hilmon Sorey:
Well, that's that theory of marginal gains, right? One percent day by day aggregate to a big shift, doesn't it?

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. And I always say people they overestimate what they can achieve in a month or a year; they underestimate what they can achieve in 90 days or five years; right? We're all looking for that easy button, aren't we?

Hilmon Sorey:
[Laughs] It's big and red, but it's elusive.

Wes Schaeffer:
Golly. I just got a LinkedIn from some guy, some kind of growth hacker. I'm like, oh, my gosh, I'm so sick of it.

Hilmon Sorey:
The fact that hacking has become a thing that is sought after versus -- you know, Cory, my business partner, and I, we always talk about how there seems to be less and less of an appetite for mastery. You know, the Tips-and-Tricksters drive me crazy. I think about sales as a very serious profession; right? I wouldn't go to a doctor that was online searching for tips and tricks as to how to fix my ailments. I don't go to my accountant who's looking for tips and tricks for how to get by my taxes done. It's like, let's be professional about it.

And here's the thing. You put in a little bit of rigor, it goes a long way. You know what I mean? And it is fun. Winning is fun. I would rather -- to your point, I would rather have a coach who is holding me accountable to doing something consistently to the point where I get muscle memory around it and no longer have to think about it, then be online going from guru to guru to guru with tips and tricks and then trying to figure out how I aggregate all of these sometimes -- contrary opinions into my workflow, which is responsible for me to pay my mortgage and feed my family and do the things that I need to do in life. I'm not sure I understand that.

But there's a lot of the tip culture because everybody's got an idea. The other piece around this, though, that's interesting to me, Wes, this is one of the reasons I'm stuck in this industry so long -- all of these things, even tips and tricks, are nested in a greater psychology. There's a greater science to it all where I don't need, you know, Jimmy McSales telling me -- I hope that's not a real person. If it is, Jimmy, I'm very sorry.

Wes Schaeffer:
It could be. It could be.

Hilmon Sorey:
Very well could be. [laughs] I don't need Jimmy McSales giving me the tip. I want to know what logic or what's the defense -- the scientific defensibility behind the tips. I can come up with my own stuff; you know what I mean? That's how I look at this. That's the longevity in sales, rather than spinning around like a dreidel or a top and trying to figure out which way I'm going to land next.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. There's the tips and the tricks; there are the master classes. Everybody has a master class. So maybe I need to do a master class and I can give the tips and then -- I don't know.

Hilmon Sorey:
Maybe give the quiz afterwards and get that big certification that you get. Take a selfie of and post somewhere on social media.

Wes Schaeffer:
Oh my gosh. I was just telling my son the other day, we're talking, he's getting into sales, and I've sold -- I've been a partner of Infusionsoft since 2008; been a partner of HubSpot since 2014. And the InfusionSoft community was really active and and these guys would say, how do you sell so much? And I'm like, how do you code so much; right? [laughs]

Because, like, embedded in that question is like, sales should be really easy and you're a knucklehead and you can't code for jack crap so you're really not that smart and I'm really smart because I can code, so therefore I should be able to outsell you. I'm like --

Hilmon Sorey:
That's right.

Wes Schaeffer:
Right? I was connecting those dots. I'm like, dude, that's all I do is sell. That's all I've ever done is sell.

Hilmon Sorey:
Stayed in your lane.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. And you know, now it is simple. It is easy for me. But there's a lot of things -- do you find it, is it hard sometimes like the curse of knowledge, like you've done things so long you have to kind of keep reminding yourself, go back to basics, go back -- they don't know this, you know, stick with the basics because you're already -- like my jujitsu instructor. I was laughing the other day. He's like, okay, do this, you know, one thing at a time. He's doing this move and I'm talking with my training partner. I'm like, he did 17 things at once. He said, do one thing at a time. [chuckles] His right hand's here; his elbow's here; his left knee's there; right knee's there; he's using his head -- like it all matters.

Hilmon Sorey:
It all matters.

Wes Schaeffer:
Just do one thing at a time. But we're really doing 17 things at a time if we've done this for any length of time.

Hilmon Sorey:
That's right.

Wes Schaeffer:
You know, how do you stay grounded in the fundamentals?

Hilmon Sorey:
I think that so this is where frameworks play a big part, is knowing the framework that applies to each stage of a sales conversation; makes it very easy -- going back to your idea of the golf swing, right? How are you addressing the ball? How are you pulling back? What is your follow-through? What is your head doing? What are your hips doing? If you understand the components of a sales process -- which most people understand just because we've either been sold to or we've been part of the sales process -- if you understand the inherent components, it's very easy if you're a game film watcher. What I mean by that is quite literally now folks are watching themselves on Zoom and saying, how did this presentation go, how this demo go; how this discovery call go? Or if you've got one of the myriad call coaching software that allow you to hear that live, then if you're taking a look at those things, what they call game film, then it's very easy for you to see where you've got opportunities for improvement.

You know what's hard -- and this is something that we talk to managers about -- is not to overcoach. You mentioned the 17 things that you might be doing in any jujitsu move or any defense. Well, as a coach, you can't coach all 17. You got to pick the one that is actually going to have the highest impact on that person's ability to execute for this week; right? And then you get that thing tuned up, and then you work on the next one, you know what I mean? So the biggest challenge in this -- and we talk about this in "The Five Secrets of a Sales C.O.A.C.H.," the biggest issue for sales coaches is identifying that challenge that's going to have the biggest impact on a salesperson's effectiveness, given what they're trying to do, and then coaching with respect to that challenge and outlining a path that defines where there's an opportunity, they're creating an action plan and holding folks accountable and then being able to support them through it.

So your question as to whether or not -- I mean, I'm constantly looking at my own stuff. Constantly. You know, the beauty of this business, as you well know, is you can't be successful in it unless you're out as a product of your own product. You know, somebody the other day that was like, well, that was actually that was the first time that I actually had a discovery conversation with all these vendors that we're talking to with respect to doing this sales transformation issue -- sales transformation initiative. And I said, really? So you're considering vendors who didn't do discovery to help your team get better at discovery. And they were like, I didn't think about that. [laughs] So they showed up and did huge demos, and isn't that what you just told me was the problem with your sales team? Very interesting correlation there; right?

But I enjoy those little nuances of the profession. But, hey, it's one of the things I enjoy as well, which is probably what keeps people at golf for a long time is that, you know, you take a week off -- oh, gosh, there's a great quote about this, but I'm going to completely botch. But some famous pianist said, you know, I take a day off and I notice; I take a week off -- and what is it? My wife notices. And I take a month off and the audience notices; right? It kind of feels that way. That was a terrible -- if somebody's looking that up. I apologize for destroying it.

Wes Schaeffer:
That was it. Yeah, it was. But yeah, I know. I know the quote. I think that was it. Is selling an art or a science?

Hilmon Sorey:
So it is a science. It is a science that allows for artistry. Let me not answer your question, Wes; how's that? [Laughs].

So, like, maybe, you know, is this is probably going to sound incredibly lofty. I have a huge appreciation for architecture. And you know why? Because to build a building requires an understanding of physics and calculus and algebra that is really powerful -- and probably some other math -- not my genre -- that is really powerful; right? Just to design something that is going to hold up well, that is going to support people with is going to conduct its purpose in the structural world, right?

Now, there are lots of buildings around. There's some really ugly buildings around. So on top of that, an architect also has to be a little bit of an artist, right? They have to, in the scope of all of that math, which is binary largely, of course you have some multivariables in there, but it's largely -- has correct answers, right? In the scope of all that you still have to create Falling Water -- I'm a huge Frank Lloyd Wright fan -- so you still have to create this thing that is aesthetically pleasing. You have to create this thing that actually is a space that someone wants to work in or the people thrive in or that people come across the world to look at.

That's art, right? So forgive me for aligning sales to the profession of architecture, but, hey, there are some things that are science. There is an element of influence. There's an element of psychology. There's an element of communication. There's an element of behavioral change. These are all pieces that are sciences, and these are large bodies of science that actually impact human behavior with respect to things outside of sales, because we have to realize, we're selling a human being. That's all we're doing is having a conversation with a human being. We're trying to uncover whether or not they have a problem and then trying to create an opportunity to influence their behavior; right? That's it.

So that's the piece that's the science. Now, how you go about doing that, that's your artistry. Maybe Wes has some Bayou thing going on where he just knows how to connect with people because he's got some art to this and he just -- his pace and his tone and there's some things that he uses as colloquialisms that just bring down barriers and now he has an opportunity for conversation. Hilmon can't do it. Hilmon grew up in Chicago, speaks an entirely different way; has an entirely different mindset and things that he's experienced. But he goes about in a different way; right? That's where -- and this kind of goes back to something you asked earlier, which I really appreciate, which is we're not trying to create automatons as salespeople.

It's not -- we're not trying to turn them into widgets and say, this is the doctrine. Here are the rails. Here's what you do. Here's the process. Just go do it. And, you know, people who talk about the dawn of AI be replacing salespeople; like, well, that's a joke. As long as you're selling human beings, there's going to be something that's nuanced around human behavior. But that's how I look at the world, is that if we can provide people -- and here's where you excel. If you can provide people with enough understanding, competence, and muscle memory and development with respect to the science piece, then you can actually show up and be more authentic. You're not worrying about how you leverage your personality or things that you can't put a finger on into your effectiveness as a salesperson. You know here are the rudiments of a meeting. Here's what I'm dealing with on the other side of the phone. I've got those things in spades now. I'm going to put some Hilmon into this conversation so I feel okay showing up every day and not like a phony every time I pick up the phone to call on behalf of ClozeLoop. You know what I mean?

Wes Schaeffer:
I do. So the short answer is selling as both science and art.

Hilmon Sorey:
I think so, yes. Sorry. [Laughs] You'll get the T-shirt made just so I get that right next time.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. I ask that question, because I've told people all along selling is very scientific. Because you always hear, oh, Hilmon, you got the gift of gab, man. You never met a stranger, man. You got a great personality. You're really good with people. You should go into sales. Like maybe.

You know, but selling is very scientific. It's very prescriptive. An introvert can do very well. Introverts often do very well. You mentioned architecture. My very first paid client back in like late '06, early '07, was a referral from my neighbor, and it was an architect, a guy was going out on his own. He's like, I got to learn how to sell. I got to get some business. And I gave him the process, the framework, and he did it. It's like, okay, I'm going to do this. He didn't question me, didn't challenge it. You know, we had to refine it a little bit for him and his situation, but it was 90 percent, you know, and we smooth the edges for him. But it's -- people always ask, it's this mystical thing, you're just like born with it. Like, I'm an engineer from the Air Force Academy.

Hilmon Sorey:
[Laughs] You know what, though? That explains a lot. I was just going to say to you, engineers make some of the best salespeople because they could follow a framework or a process. They understand also how to pivot with the data; right? If the feedback is telling you that this thing's not working, you go in a different direction. You don't suddenly get emotional about it, you know what I mean?

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. And it's like on the one hand, I do hate being too closed-in; right? "You're only going to do it this way." But I also hate inefficiencies; right? I'm the rare male that will pull over and ask for directions; right? It's like, I hate being lost. I hate being late. I hate wasting time and gas. And I got to get somew- -- I'm not in this car for fun. How come we don't have the directions? Who got this wrong? You know, it's like I want results, you know? And if you're telling me I've got to do these 87 things in order to get the result I want, I will go do those 87 things. But I won't be looking around like, can we do them in 85?

Hilmon Sorey:
[Laughs] I'm with you. I'll take that. I'll take that road trip with you any day.

Wes Schaeffer:
Oh, man. Very cool. All right. So I am linking to your site and it's ClozeLoop with a Z, right?

Hilmon Sorey:
That's right.

Wes Schaeffer:
I'm linking to all eight of your books as well. Man, got too much -- too much going on, man. It's a good thing. It's a good thing. Is that where we want to send them? Go to ClozeLoop.com?

Hilmon Sorey:
Yeah. Go to ClozeLoop.com. I'm happy to connect with folks on LinkedIn and have a conversation. This is the stuff I wake up passionate about, go to sleep thinking about. So yeah, that's the reason for the books. And yes, if you go to ClozeLoopBookstore.com, all of the books are there and they're a little cheaper than Amazon. So you can browse those things and once you buy one, we usually send you something that gives you an opportunity to get some of the others. But if you find something that's valuable, that's what we put them out for. So Wes, it's a pleasure being on your show. I really appreciate it.

Wes Schaeffer:
Well, thanks for coming on. And I'm going to have to delete the video because, you know, I get these handsome studs on my show that make me -- I just pale in comparison. I'm just deleting the video. So we're just doing audio on this one.

Hilmon Sorey:
[Chuckles] How do you get a handsome voice? I was always told I had a great face for radio.

Wes Schaeffer:
[Laughs] And look, all I'm saying is my dad used to hang a pork chop around my neck to get the dog to play with me. I mean, that's all I'm saying. I don't know what that means, but that's my life, okay?

Hilmon Sorey:
[Laughs] That's awesome.

Wes Schaeffer:
It is what it is.

Hilmon Sorey:
That'st awesome. I love it, man.

Wes Schaeffer:
Well, look, if you see a tall, skinny dude that kind of looks like me, but he's got a little scraggly beard and long curly hair and he responds to Jake, can you feed him, please? Can you, like, buy him a lot, make sure that he's not going hungry?

Hilmon Sorey:
I'll feed him. I'll look out for your son any day.

Wes Schaeffer:
All right. And look, well drinks are fine. Don't buy on that top shelf stuff. He's still young; he's got to pay his dues. All right? You get the good stuff but he he gets a Jim Beam, Jack -- don't give him any good stuff. All right?

Hilmon Sorey:
We'll make him earn it. We'll keep him hungry.

Wes Schaeffer:
Very nice. All right. Hilman, ClozeLoop, San Francisco. Thank you, sir. It's been great.

Hilmon Sorey:
Thank you, Wes. I enjoyed it. Appreciate it.

Wes Schaeffer:
Have a great day.

Hilmon Sorey:
You, too.

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