Often in sales you’re looking to stand out. The client needs to remember you and your product and service in order to be excited to buy. In Jeff Haden’s article, “How to be unforgettable: 6 ways to make an amazing first impression” Haden asks how many people you meet throughout the year. A lot right?
Well of that group, who actually remembers you? Haden writes, “Being known -- being remembered -- is one of the main goals of marketing, advertising, and personal branding. Out of sight is out of mind. Out of mind is out of business. That's why, in order to be successful, you need to be unforgettable.”
There are many reasons you want to be unforgettable, most of them aren’t to help you professionally. There are the professional ones but also being unforgettable helps you live a more satisfying life.
Haden gives us six ways to make a great first impression:
- Stop seeing and start doing. Everyone watches TV and sees movies, everyone has these opinions. Most opinions are regarded as unimportant. People don’t care what you say, they care about what you do. Spend life doing things instead of watching them.
- Do something unusual. “Similar isn’t memorable.” Do something no one else does. “Whatever you do, the less productive and sensible it is, the better. Your goal isn't to accomplish something worthwhile; the goal is to collect experiences. Experiences, especially unusual experiences, make your life a lot richer and way more interesting.”
- Embark on a crazy mission. “So do something, just once, that adults no longer do. Drive eight hours to see a band. Buy your seafood at the dock. Or do something no one else thinks of doing. Ride along with a policeman on a Friday night (it's the king of eye-opening experiences). Pick something it doesn't make sense to do a certain way and do it that way. You'll remember it forever -- and so will other people.
- Embrace a cause.
- Let other people spread the word.
- Get over yourself. “Stop trying to seem perfect. Accept your faults. Make mistakes. Hang yourself out there. Try and fail. Then be gracious when you fail. When you do, people will definitely remember you, because people who are willing to fail are rare, and because people who display grace and humility, especially in the face of defeat, are extremely rare.
Having stories and experiences will help you be memorable and unforgettable. People will listen to you, and they will love when you put your life experiences and connect them to sales.
In Keenan’s article, Keenan talks about leadership. He emphasizes how difficult being a true leader is. Sales leadership applies here as well. “Being a leader is hard because you have to want to be a leader. Being a leader is very different than being someone’s boss. That’s authority. Don’t confuse authority with leadership. Leadership is earned. Leadership is when others choose to follow you because they believe in you. If people are following you because they have to, you’re not leading.”
Keenan says that leadership inspires commitment which is a difficult thing to inspire people in. Leaders need active followers, which are fewer in number than passive followers.
“When it comes to business, it is my opinion we too often hold the leader accountable for failing to lead and don’t hold followers accountable enough for following. If we choose to follow someone, something, some company, we have an obligation to be active followers. I get it. The leader plays a big role in creating that commitment. But it’s a two-way street and followers have to be accountable too and that is why leading is so hard.”
The take away from this? Be an active follower, and notice and appreciate your active followers.
In Sims Wyeth’s article, Wyeth talks about being confident. He made a list of seven keys to be confident in job interviews, but we’re giving this a sales twist because pitching and selling have much in common with interviewing. His seven keys:
- Be excited, not nervous.
- Arrive prepared with questions to ask.
- Develop your vocal presence.
- Practice smiling.
- Focus your eyes when you speak to people.
- Boost your signal to noise ratio. Align your physical movements to your intentions.
- Prepare for the whack job. In sales, prepare for the bizarre questions and concerns.
In Leura Fine’s article, the author lists three brilliant ways to help us conquer our fears-whether personal or professional.
- Close your eyes and visualize what you want to accomplish. Imagining it can make a daunting scene become less intimidating.
- Allow yourself a moment to feel overwhelmed.
- Focus on the journey, not the destination. What are you learning? Remember how important experience is.
How do you conquer your fears?
In Alison Wood Brooks article, Brooks explains that we judge a person’s confidence, competence, and status based on a single joke. Through her experiments, she and her co-authors found that people generally wanted a leader or presenter who told a good joke. They then tested what telling a bad joke did:
“Replicating our previous results, individuals who told a successful joke were perceived as more competent, more confident, and higher status than serious individuals. In an interesting twist, participants who told a failed joke were not perceived as worse than participants who gave a serious response, and telling a failed joke actually increased perceptions of the interviewee’s confidence.”
Moral of the story: Try telling jokes. You’ll be seen as more confident and competent. Even if it’s a bad joke. But never tell an inappropriate joke, especially to a new audience.