The Magic of Jay Owenhouse - I posted this as a localism blog as it pertains to local Montana and Idaho areas where I live and work.
For my real estate community I wanted to elaborate about the ‘magic' behind the former employer of mine, Jay Owenhouse, and his touring magic show.
According to my agreement with Jay I am not allowed to disclose the secrets of any illusions, or perform them without payment to Jay and/or the inventors of the illusion (magic tricks are actually patented!). So don't ask how they do it, just watch the show, it's not magic dummy!
However, the best tricks I learned from Jay and his manager Curt Bradbury are sales tricks.
While attending college at M.S.U Bozeman I spent my evenings selling tickets over the phone for upcoming shows. I spent my weekends on a tour bus working on the crew as a stage hand.
Jay does hundreds of thousands of dollars in promotions per year with a small group of sales people on the phones, like me. Each show is sponsored by a local community group usually associated with the local Sheriff's Department. This is key.
I would never sell a single ticket without getting my foot in the door representing a local community group. That way this sale goes to benefit the local community and provides family entertainment that is usually unmatched in most of Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming. Plus if you can't go to the show, we have a list of kids that will be able to use your tickets if you choose to donate them.
Not only does the community get a significant amount of money by sponsoring the show and allowing us to use the association name in the sales pitch, but they only have to work for one night by coming to the show to meet and greet (and sometimes help with set up and takedown). Often the sales were collected at the local Sheriff's Department or a public library. Tickets were mailed with a prepaid envelope, and people received their tickets before even paying for them. They simply commit to purchasing a package over the phone with us, and pay because of the local sponsorship. There were never any collections efforts, and almost everyone paid and attended the show.
The tricks I learned from them in sales have carried me through a now 10 year career as a top producing salesperson. Many real estate agents and other salespeople do not understand the laws of sales numbers.
• PITCHES: At the magic show we defined what a pitch is through a sales presentation over the phone ending with ‘Can we count on your support and drop those tickets in the mail for ya?'.
Do you know the definition of a sales pitch?
If you don't, it is simply when you offer your product or service to a consumer and they make a buying decision, either yes or no. So clearly define your pitch and get people to say yes or no either way. Generally the salesperson who get's the most yes's, also get's the most no's.
• SALES TO REFUSALS: Identify your pitch and track your number of pitches per hour/day/week/month. Compare this to your number of sales. This will actually show you the number of pitches it takes YOU to receive one sale on average. It is important to know that when someone tells you no, you are still making money, and now one pitch closer to someone who will tell you yes. It is the only way that I have found to maintain positivity in the face of constant rejection, and I am happy when someone refuses my service. I am very confident in my numbers, on a long enough scale it will always average out, that's why we call it the LAW of averages. Confidence is huge in sales!
• DOLLARS PER PITCH: Identify your average commission (in real estate subtract any commission split to find YOUR average). Divide this by the number of pitches per sale and you will come up with a dollar figure that YOUR pitch is worth, regardless if a person tells you yes or no. $$$
• GOALS: Most importantly set a goal for yourself in terms of pitches versus time. This goal, however, needs to have something personal attached that you actually want, and it usually needs to be something for yourself. Not to pay my bills, to make as much money as I can, or even to buy something as a gift for someone with my commissions. It needs to be something that you will enjoy and fills a personal desire in your subconscious mind. Write it down every week and put it somewhere you will constantly look at it (a sticky note on your phone, computer screen, etc.)
In my college days I could only work part time, 4 - 6 hours of sales calls each night, so I needed to get as many pitches in per hour that I could. This was my first telemarketing job not using an automatic or predictive dialer. I learned to dial the phone without looking at the keys, and to manage my call list with a system of dispositions to track my statistics. Never stop dialing the phone! Always run your numbers when you are having trouble!
• To stay positive I learned to ‘pound the phone' and the easiest way I have found to get over a refusal is to dial the next number. As soon as you begin a new pitch you will forget about the last guy who hung up on you or told you things about your mother that you never knew, etc. The worst thing you can do is talk about someone who told you no, it simply reaffirms a negative outcome in your mind.
• I found that my pitch was worth $12 in the beginning. The best thing in sales is: as you develop your skills your pitch will be worth more, and gradually through weekly sales training I made more money per pitch. This is so much better to me that working on hourly or salary that increases as a function of time/experience. It doesn't matter where you start only that you constantly improve!
• My goal generally revolved around the number of six packs I needed to get with my commissions. Now that I am older I have settled down a bit, but I always make a goal that is just for me. It drives my Fiancée crazy that I always buy something fun for just me with my commissions, but it is very important for salespeople to do this. This way you will stay motivated!
I have been the best salesperson in every office I've worked in and I plan on making rookie of the year for 2009. I was not the best because I am so great, smart, and handsome....I am great, smart, and handsome but that's not why I was always the best. I make it easy on myself by selling with the odds in my favor. I make the numbers do the work and it always averages out. This way I don't have to count on being the smoothest, slick, most knowledgeable salesperson to make the most money.
Questions and comments welcome.
For more information regarding Montana Real Estate or lead generation services in your local area feel to free to contact me with no obligation.