Sales Lessons in a Chick-flick

This weekend, I was subjected to a horrible chick-flick.  To, be more accurate, it was a chick-documentary, but still not something that I would ever pick myself.  The documentary was “My Date With Drew.”  For those of you not familiar with this documentary, essentially its about a man who decides he is going to give himself 30 days to try to secure a single date with Drew Barrymore.

In his words, its a story about how a nobody can use networking, and six degrees of separation to get to an “untouchable” person like Drew Barrymore.  What the movie is REALLY about is how the main character will NEVER be successful in life. – or at least never be successful in sales.

Throughout the 30 days that he alotted for his task, he had several opportunities to ask for the sale.  He sat down with the writer of Charlie’s Angels that he got to through a connection.  Did he ask if this man would make Drew aware of the project?  NO!   He got a facial from the woman that gives Drew’s facials.  Did he ask her to give Drew a DVD or let her know about the project?  NO!   He met with Drew’s cousin.  Did he ask her to make a connection?  NO!  When he got into her movie premiere, he got to shake her hand and STILL could not bring himself to tell her about the project.

I was going MENTAL while watching this movie as he had at least 5 times to ask for the “sale” in his 30 days and he never did!

He eventually got the date after about 90 days, because they set up a web site which took off virally and Drew found out about it through the internet buzz.  Esentially she found out about it by accident.

Here is someone who let the idea of his end game psych him out into just going for it.  Its the same for salespeople trying to sell to the “big elephant” account, or calling the CEO or CMO of a company.  You can’t let the celebrity around a person or the size of the account distract you from just asking for the sale.

So the three lessons that are evident in this chick-flick are:

1)  ASK FOR THE SALE!  Look for every opportunity to ask for the signature on the dotted line – and take every opportunity.  They usually know you want the sale, and will often stall it as long as you let them.

2) FORGET CELEBRITY:  People are people.  Forget that they are the CEO, the CMO, CTO, COO, VP of whatever – or that thay are phenominally successful.  They are people.  They need solutions and appreciate a good solution when one is presented to them – especially if it saves them money or time or gives them a competitive advantage.

3) IMAGINED OBJECTIONS:  You must always focus on the solution you provide and understand that very often the obstacle that you think is there – is not really there.  The customer will create enough obstacles and objections for you – don’t create your own.  In this example, he almost let the fact that Drew got engaged detract him from his mission.  Understanding that his mission was not about becoming romantic with Drew – but about a common guy getting to an “untouchable,”  he got back on track.  Likewise, we as salespeople can’t let what we THINK are the obstacles get in our way – we need to move forward.  Drew was happy to help the project once she understood its mission.  If YOU honestly know that your product will help your customer, then you need to find a way to show that customer that the product solves their problems – forgetting what “common knowledge” may speak.  This is actually a great topic for a whole post on its own…