Prioritize Trust and Relationships in a High-Tech World with Chris Beall
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The Sales Warrior Within | Season 2 Episode 50 – Prioritize Trust & Relationships in a High-Tech World with Chris Beall
Andy Olen is a Business Leadership Trainer and High-Performance Coach. Andy works with talented salespeople, business teams, and leaders who seek empowerment, improvement, and insight. Andy’s clients strive to be the best in class.
“Good Selling, Good Leading, Good Living.” – Andy Olen
- The guest on this episode of the show is Chris Beall the CEO of Connect And Sell
- B2B selling involves selling to businesses rather than individuals, and it comes with the challenge of gaining the trust of buyers who are risking their careers and deciding if your products and services are best for their business.
- Chris explains that gaining a customer’s trust requires getting inside the buyer’s head through live conversations.
- He discusses the current challenges in the selling environment, including economic conditions, longer sales cycles, and the difficulty of getting live human conversations.
- Chris predicts that in the near future, emails from vendors will be assumed to be written by bots, reducing trust and effectiveness.
- He emphasizes the need for salespeople to focus on getting to the buyer’s ears through conversations rather than relying on written communication.
- The key goal of a cold call is to establish trust before trying to convey value and secure a meeting.
- Connect And Sell, Chris’s company, enables human-to-human conversations by using a combination of brute force and AI to overcome the problem of people not answering the phone.
- His system allows for managing multiple calls simultaneously, providing the ability to load a list from a CRM or a file and initiate conversations with a simple button push.
- Chris shares his story of publishing a book using AI. He did it in record time. The story illustrates the power of AI. Chris encourages salespeople to actively learn and engage with ChatGPT.
Learn more about Chris Beal at ConnectAndSell.com
Find Chris’ podcast here: Market Dominance Guys
Helen Fannucci’s sales management book is available here: Love Your Team
Speakers: Andy Olen & Chris Beall
| 00:02 | There’s a Sales Warrior Within each of us. My name is Andy Olen, and I’m here to help you discover and empower The Sales Warrior Within. Sales warriors, this is Andy Olen. Welcome to another episode of The Sales Warrior Within podcast. I am very optimistic and hopeful that your sales month, your sales quarter, and your sales year is evolving the way that you want it to.
| 00:31 | Today on the show, I’m really excited to welcome Chris Beall Chris is currently the CEO of a company called https://connectandsell.com/ , which is based in Silicon Valley and Chris hosts a podcast called market dominance guys. You can find that at market dominance guys dot com and Chris has led software startups as a founder and early stage developer. He believes the most important part of a software system is the human being, and you’re going to hear that throughout our episode.
| 01:00 | And that the value is to let the computer do what it does well, which is to go fast, to get things done, and to try to put leads in front of people, but then ultimately, to try to facilitate the live interaction between a salesperson and a customer. So in this day of technology, of artificial intelligence.
| 01:22 | And what Chris shares here are just interesting comments and anecdotes and a real through line that really states the following that pretty soon most electronic communications between customers and salespeople are going to be driven through AI through chat GPT through bots talking to each other. And when that happens, if not arguably, already is happening. Why would we even respond to? Why would we get engaged with electronic communication between a salesperson and a customer?
| 01:54 | And so the real trick here that Chris talks about and ways that he and his organization help salespeople is by trying to get that salesperson in front of the customer knowing that the live interaction is still an incredibly critical step in the sales process and in the relationship building process as well. I’m a big believer in the human interaction between salesperson and customer.
| 02:19 | If you want to buy either big ticket items for your business, if you’re looking at making large investments you know, don’t you want to deal with another person to be able to evaluate to ask questions to have a human touch on the process? And I think the answer is a robust yes. But in an era where automation, AI, machine learning is growing and growing, that may create some challenges for the salesperson and customer relationship.
| 02:48 | So Chris talks about ways that the salesperson and his organization breakthrough this dilemma putting humans out front connecting and selling. Please enjoy my conversation with Chris Beal. Chris Beale, welcome to The Sales Warrior Within podcast. It’s great to have you. It’s wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. To be here, Andy. Fantastic. Well, you know, I always like talking to experts in the B2B selling space because I’m in the B2B selling space most of the listeners of the podcast are as well.
| 03:20 | But there may be other entrepreneurs and folks who own the local retail store or starting an ecommerce site or selling out to the masses. I wanted to talk a little bit at the top of the show about B2B selling and Chris, can you just define what B2B selling is? And what it looks like. Sure. I mean, B2B is when you’re selling to a business, not a person. And the big distinction is from the buyer’s side, if you’re a business buyer, you’re not risking your money, which sounds great, right? But it’s actually much worse.
| 03:50 | You’re risking your career. And that difference in risk for a transaction is what characterizes everything about B2B. I like that. And let’s talk a little bit about the current selling environment for B2B salespeople. What are some of the challenges out there? I mean, we could start at a macro level and talk about probably a much tougher economic environment to sell into right now where business owners and boards are making very different decisions today and a higher interest rate environment, higher inflation environment than they may have a two years ago.
| 04:24 | But what do you see out there, some of the big challenges that B2B salespeople are facing today? Sure. I mean, we have the current kind of topical stuff, which is interest rates went from zero to something. Took 75% of all tech valuations to down to 25% of what they were. And that slowed things down. That doesn’t stop anything. It just slows them down. The big buyers slow down because they’re less certain. Again, when people are risking their careers, they risk their careers more slowly in bad times, right?
| 04:56 | One of the things about B2B is true about B2C also, but more about B2B is you can’t sell anything that they haven’t already bought a solution for. That is, if they’re not already solving the problem, you can’t sell anything to solve that problem, that you’re selling them to some kind of visionary, says, oh, we can solve a problem we’ve never solved. That is not a good market. So you’ve got to sell to folks who already have a solution. And if they have a solution, that means they could wait. And they will wait a little bit longer in the current environment.
| 05:25 | We’re seeing sales cycles up by maybe 25 to 28%. It’s a little hard to get a read on it because it’s not clean across all industries. But that’s a difference. The money’s still there. People still have problems. Companies have problems. That’s not a big deal. The big deal about B2B over the last 20 years and it’s just relentless is two things work against you. I mean, you’ve got to get in conversations with people. B2B is all about trust. And in fact, I have a book here by Anthony Ian arena of elite sales strategies.
| 05:58 | And it opens with a quote. The quote is people buy from people. This is in B2B. People buy from people they trust to make a decision they don’t trust themselves to make. And the reason is, in B2B, the sellers, the expert, the buyer is the amateur, so to speak, they’re not the expert. Otherwise, they just buy from themselves. I suppose. And so the buyer has got to trust one of the sellers with their career. And that means the threshold of trust is actually they have to trust that seller more than they trust themselves.
| 06:29 | They have to put themselves in the doctor’s hand, so to speak. And that is always been a challenge of B2B, but then the question is, well, how do you get trust? And the answer is, not through email, not through LinkedIn invitations. Not through tricky advertisements that cause them to click on something to get trust, you’ve got to get inside their head, literally. And the route to their head is stuck on the sides of their head. It’s called their ears. And you can go right to somebody’s midbrain with a conversation, but conversations have become really, really hard to get.
| 07:01 | So live human conversations you know. I don’t know if our listeners have all been around long enough, but it used to be pretty easy to get a conversation with a senior decision maker. Back in the 80s, when I started building companies in the early 80s, it was never even a consideration. Can I get a hold of this person? Sure, I call the corporate number. I ask for that person. I get to their admin and they either put me through or they send a note to that person you know.
| 07:30 | They have those little pink message thingies and they call me back. That was a good life back then for B2B. Now, that brings to glory most of the time. And it goes to voicemail. So how do I get conversations? That’s huge. The other problem is when I try other means, the ones that wouldn’t work anyway because you can’t get trust. They’re getting so noisy that now you just can’t play and get through. And that just got a lot worse. Does chat GPT has come along and basically said, I can write better than any salesperson.
| 08:02 | And I can do it fast and for free. So now all the written ways, all the textual ways of trying to get somebody to pay attention to you are going to be assumed to be written by the vendor’s bot. And when the vendor’s robot is writing it, you know you can’t trust it. And so even to the degree that you can get some kind of attention now with an email, that just went away. There’ll be a flood of automatically written emails that seem very personalized, wonderfully written, and everybody will know in their heart.
| 08:36 | Those were written by the vendors robot. Would you trust the vendor’s robot with your career? The answer is obvious. So those are some of the challenges that are out there. Let’s say on that last comment for a moment, how much more time in your opinion, Chris, before everyone who receives an email from a vendor has the reaction or the soon to be natural reaction that this was not written by the person sending it to me? I give it 6 months.
| 09:05 | Oh, 6 months. I work close. Yeah, we’re really close. Because what’s about to happen is Microsoft is coming out with products they’re called co-pilot products that answer emails automatically, that is they write the answer and you look at it. It’s a brilliant product, by the way. I love it. And so, hey, if you can answer them, well, you know, you can certainly answer a non email, right? You can have it write the not it’s not an answer. It’s my cold email.
| 09:36 | And you can even do it with, say, their LinkedIn profile is the input. So now you get a personalized email that gets sent, it appears to be all about you. And when you get enough of those, you’ll realize they’re not about me at all. They’re insincere attempts to get my attention without bothering to talk to me. And that’s where it goes. And so the next tech that will come along will be automatic, but email detection.
| 10:03 | So it’ll be spam filters based on one thing, says if this is written by a bot, throw it in this in the dirt pile. Interesting. And so how will our real written emails of the future get through those bots? How in your opinion will it know that this was really from Chris or from Andy? I don’t know how anybody’s going to solve that problem. I actually don’t. I think it’s a very hard problem because email wasn’t built to make distinctions among senders.
| 10:32 | And so anybody can be a sender. You can automate the sending process. Think about companies like outreach and sales loft. I remember speaking with the founder of one of those companies back about 7 years ago. It’s like, what do you really do? Oh, we let reps send lots more emails that don’t get caught in spam filters. That’s actually what they were doing. Well, spam filters don’t stand still. It’s an arms race, right? And now we’re going to have cheaper emails written by chat GPT or something else you know whenever it happens to be barred or whatever.
| 11:05 | And those are going to be detectable in patterns. And so there’ll be another arms race. And at the margin, you just block them all. And that’s right. That’s right. And so the solution then is you have to get to someone’s ears, not necessarily not necessarily their eyes. You have to get to their ears. So talk a little bit about how salespeople B2B salespeople need to or continue to develop the skills of getting to the buyer’s ears.
| 11:35 | Yeah, first it was just mechanics. I mean, dialing as a pain, navigating phone systems as a pain, going to voicemail repeatedly as a pain and leaving voicemails that never get you know because you can read them. Now you can read your voicemails so you could dismiss them really quickly as they can’t have that much text in them. So you know that’s all a pain, right? That can be overcome. That’s the business we’re in. It’s kind of in a way, not a big deal. It’s just, it has to be done.
| 12:02 | Somebody’s got to provide multiple parallel dials with some mechanism inside that navigates fund systems. Toxic gatekeepers and gets to real people. Okay, so say you solve that problem. Now you’ve got your big problem. Big problem is you call me, you get me. I don’t know why answered. I was in a hurry, right? It’s kind of funny why people answer. But I answer. This is Chris. What do you say? And why do you say it? That’s the hard part.
| 12:29 | You’ve got to know what your goal is in a cold call as a B2B seller. And the general goal that folks have is, I want to get a meeting and I want to do it based on value and perceived value. Sounds great, right? You perceive value in my offering and you’ll take a meeting with me. The problem is you won’t listen to me for the purpose of hearing value until you trust me. So now how do I get you to trust me? Well, first of all, I have to actually believe in what I’m selling, which isn’t my product.
| 13:00 | It’s the meeting. So that’s important. I have to actually believe in the value of the meeting for you, even if we never do business together. So that’s, you know, you got to get your head on straight, which most salespeople don’t have. They’re so eager to get to the deal. It’s like, I must be closer to the deal if I can get them to the meeting. And they must be closer to the meeting if I can get them to see the value. And they skip the trust part. So the geniuses use their voice, and we all hear them and go, wow, that’s really good. Well, everybody’s got to learn to use their voice.
| 13:31 | It’s like surfing. You can go buy a surfboard with a hundred years of technology in it, a hundred years of experience in it, but you still have to learn to use your body, your brain, your balance, and knowledge of how waves work in order to do something on a surfboard on the thrash around and wait for sharps to show up. So what do you do? Well, you got to know first, what’s the purpose of a cold call? And I was just a one of our big customers the other day. And I was talking to their B2B salespeople about this.
| 14:00 | And I said, you all think the purpose of a cold call is to get a meeting, right? Yes, yes, yes. Said it’s not. The purpose of a cold call is to get trust. Because trust is durable. And I was taught this by Chris Voss, author of never split the difference, how to negotiate as if your life depends on it. And at dinner one night, I was lucky enough to be seated with them. And I asked him, how long do we have to get trust in a cold call? They said, 7 seconds, just like that. And I said, really?
| 14:29 | Because our research says 8 seconds. And he said, your research is wrong. It’s 7 seconds. And then I thought, well, here’s a follow on question. What do we have to do in those 7 seconds? He says, oh, that’s easy. All we have to do is to show the other person we see the world through their eyes. We call it tactical empathy. And then we have to demonstrate to them that we’re competent to solve a problem they have right now. Well, isn’t the problem they have right now? Me?
| 14:59 | And he said, bingo, that’s why you’re in control and a cold call. Because you control the solution to the problem. Because you are the problem. That person is looking for one and only one thing to get off this call with their self image intact. If you can show them you can solve that problem, they’ll actually give you something. Trust. And that trust will be expressed by them listening to you. Not for very long, but they’ll listen to you. Now you can go toward value.
| 15:30 | But what we’ve discovered is values of bad, bad place to go next. The next place you want to go is curiosity. Curiosity is the universal emotion for taking action. Folks are not attracted strongly to value until they’re curious. Like what’s that? And you know if you’re at a party and everybody’s sitting around talking to each other and suddenly two people turn their head toward the door, everybody looks. Who’s coming in the door? Is it? I don’t know. You know?
| 16:00 | Harry and Meghan is a Cher, is it that crazy neighbor from across the hall? Folks are curious about what interests other people. And so your scripting needs to speak to curiosity before you get to value. In fact, you can just leave value for the meeting. I mean, you’re wasting your time going for a value in a cold call. Just go, fear, not yours, theirs, their fear of the invisible stranger if that’s you.
| 16:27 | To trust by the two things that Chris Voss says. Tactical empathy, plus showing them that you can solve their problem right now, which is you. It’s kind of hard to do because you have to throw yourself out of the bus. Two, curiosity to commitment to take the meeting. And then you’re done. It’s a 5 sentence process. It can be learned by anybody. But it’s emotionally very hard for reps because reps want sales reps in B2B or B2C or wherever tend to be very direct performers.
| 16:58 | They don’t like roundabout stuff. They like to go right at it or like hold the lord Nelson damn the maneuvers, go straight at them, right? In this case, you need the maneuvers. You got to go from fear, they’re fair to trust. Trust is highly reliable. Don’t ever blow it. Once you have it, you own that trust in that marketplace, take it to curiosity, and then it’s easy to get commitment.
| 17:22 | Talk a little bit about how your organization https://connectandsell.com/ enables this paradigm, this ability to access people and then to establish the start or the catalyst of that human to human conversation. Yeah. What we do is essentially kind of a brute force plus AI attack on the problem that people don’t answer the phone. So we do two things.
| 17:50 | One is we have more calls going on being managed by a combination of people and technology. Then you could do yourself. So we’re generally doing 5 at a time. So you load a list out of your CRM or a file, you push a button when you want to talk. You wait. This is the beauty of it. You can do something else. You can send that personalized follow-up email the one that follows a conversation and will actually be open. Thank you for our conversation today, is the only subject matter line or subject line that will last in B2B.
| 18:21 | Thank you for our conversation today. If a bot sends it and you discover its line pretty fast. But if you send it, it’s refers to an actual conversation and they just had it with you, right? So it’s a brute force attack that says, let’s dial in parallel. Let’s have machines and humans work together behind the scenes to get through all the junk that goes on and dialing. Dial by name directories, IVR trees, gatekeepers you know, voicemail.
| 18:49 | And then we deliver with a little beep in your ear, but not in the other person’s ear. It shows you who you’re talking with, while you’re talking about them about and you’re in a conversation with a target on your list. That’s it. Takes about three or four minutes on average, and you can do something else. And pet the dog, you can sip your coffee, you can get some exercise and put off your dementia. You can do all sorts of things. But you get to talk to people. So what does it do in terms of the numbers? Probably ten X in terms of you’ll talk to ten times more people.
| 19:20 | So it’s good to make good target less. The other thing that we do is we have information about who answers the phone and on what numbers. It’s called fast phone numbers. It’s built into our system. So we score 9 million contact phone number combinations every night. Against so we can stack rank every decision maker known, and we know all the decision makers because folks pay us to help them get a hold of them. And we know what their score is. And it’s a one to 100 scoring system, a hundred means they answer the phone every single time.
| 19:51 | These people don’t exist. And one means they never answer on that particular phone number. So you want that efficiency also for those dials. And then actually, the third thing we do is we manage follow-ups. So only about one out of 12 of the folks you talk to in your ideal customer profile are in market right now for what you offer. Because there’s a three year replacement cycle for pretty much everything in B2B. So they’re too close.
| 20:22 | Most of them are too close to having just bought a solution to consider your solution. That’s fine. Talk to them once a quarter. And when they’re ready to buy and they trust you, I do a good job in the conversation. They’ll buy from you. It’s pretty simple. I got a guy who works for us named John Jackson. John has been around for a few decades. I’m 68. He was 68 a while ago. And I think he has more holes than one than I do also. So I invite John a great deal.
| 20:52 | He says, here’s my selling technique because somebody once told me he’s the greatest sales guy on earth. As to why are you the greatest sales guy on earth? And he says, Chris, all I do is I talk to everybody in my market once a quarter. When they’re ready to buy, they buy from John Jackson. That’s it. That’s it. When they’re ready to buy, they’ll buy from you. So you have to voice nurture them. And once you started voice nurturing somebody, you can add in digital nurturing.
| 21:20 | Because now, they’ll open your email. Now they’ll accept your LinkedIn invite. Now you can send them real content. So you start with a conversation. You’re 6 quarters away on average from selling to them. Even a meeting, perhaps. Don’t coerce, just have a very broad portfolio of folks you’re talking to, let each one mature. It’s like I’ve got a grapefruit tree out in the backyard here in Arizona. It’s got little teeny tiny grapefruit on it right now. I’m an idiot to go pick those before they’re bigger grapefruit.
| 21:51 | And eventually they have to be beautiful yellow grapefruit. Then I can pick them. Sometimes you just have to wait. So you have a portfolio. We don’t just see grapefruit. We some other things around here, right? That ripen at different times. Like cows. Cows are almost always right, by the way. And I think that’s great advice. That all you need to do is once a quarter, have a discussion.
| 22:16 | And you know I think to your point, salespeople also, you said that earlier on that our natural instinct is to go direct, be direct, get it done fast, move quickly, move on to the next one. And the advice that you just shared was you know what? There’s a cycle here. And so you’re consistency in your predictability of dropping in once every 90 days at some point that will pay off when the time is right.
| 22:44 | And I think that’s another big thing for B2B salespeople and you said it really well earlier. Chris, is that someone’s career, the buyer’s career is dependent on the decision that they make. And if they go with you, the execution has to ensure that their career gets better, not worse. And you know that when it comes to the cycles that these buyers are on as well, is for a B2B salesperson, all of the stars have to align to get that opportunity to go down.
| 23:14 | Because of the factors you shared and because the timing cycles just rotate it, they need when they need you when they’re ready to execute when they’re ready with the money, all that stuff has to align in order for that deal to go through. So that just implicitly says that the salesperson has to be patient and methodical and wait their turn. But it’s not waiting by doing nothing. It’s waiting purposefully and checking in and making the most of that 90 minute experience once a quarter.
| 23:43 | Yeah, that’s about it. And it might be a 92nd experience once a quarter. And it’s still trust building because the human voice is carrying 20,000 bits a second of emotional information directly into that person’s midbrain. A whole email is an email is only 5000 bits. So that’s four emails per second going into that person’s emotional centers. It doesn’t take much time. It just takes repetition. They need to be reminded that you’re somebody who cares enough about them to talk to them.
| 24:14 | And they have to believe that you’re an expert. I mean, all we do in B2B sales really is we allow somebody to come to the conclusion when the time is right, that we’re an expert and we’re on their side. That’s right. That’s kind of it. And so now are we truly an expert? Well, that takes care of the expert part. If you’re not an expert, go become an expert, right? And now are you on their side? Well, you can kind of tell. What would you do at the margin within a deal? Would you shade it in the direction of their safety, their career safety, or your commission?
| 24:45 | If you want a great reputation, you edge in the direction of their career safety. If you want to be known as a hit and run artist, you do the commission thing. If you do the safety thing, you’ll make a lot more money. Ironically, because your reputation will proceed you, as I said, your reputation proceeds you, right? So it’s actually very, very simple. This is what my podcast is about, market dominance guys. It’s not about dominance like dominating that person.
| 25:14 | It’s about paving markets with trust and harvesting that trust as transactions as each possible transaction ripens. And nothing else. Yeah. And it makes a lot of sense. And I like the way that you just sort of put it out there in front of us. And you know I completely agree with this idea of the flywheel effect. I’ve moved a little bit away from a sales funnel, though I think there are a lot of aspects of a traditional sales funnel that I like.
| 25:47 | Top of funnel, bringing them down to a close and the activities and the pursuit of that successful navigation. But the flywheel is, to your point, once you’re seen as the expert, you have an opportunity where they trust you enough to say yes to that first time. Exceed their expectations because you’ve navigated and late, as you say, the foundation of trust also the opportunity to ensure that that person’s career takes sad positive step forward. Guess what? They’re going to likely bring you back at some point.
| 26:17 | This is a known and safe entity. Andy and Chris have more good things to say. Next time we have an opportunity. Let’s bring those individuals back. Let’s hear what their new products are. And oh, by the way, let me recommend and provide a testimonial to someone else. That’s the flywheel and the faster and more efficient that it spins. The better it is for the B2B sales person. So I think that these are really nice additional points to add to the phenomenon of the flywheel as well.
| 26:45 | Yeah, I love the flywheel as a concept as something to organize our thinking. I think the funnel makes sense when you’re looking at all the numbers, but when you’re looking over time, the funnel actually vanishes, because 11, twelfths of the funnel would be considered to leak, but it’s not really leaking. It’s just becoming yours in the future. My view is that if you talk to somebody and you fail to follow up with them once a quarter, you’re working for your competitor. You’re putting effort into educating that person.
| 27:15 | So now when your competitor has their first call, they get the benefit of your first call, which was expensive. Their first call is now more effective and less expensive. So you’re actually putting in time and money to work for your competitor. Why somebody would do that is entirely beyond me. And yet, I’ve often had to work with salespeople to say, I’m not going to call that person back. They hung up on me. So I call them back in a quarter and say, hey, when we spoke back on March 11th or whatever, you didn’t have time for a conversation is now a better time.
| 27:45 | You know, just like do that. And you will go from a funnel to a Niagara, which is what you really want. It is. Absolutely. And so just on https://connectandsell.com/ again and this great process and product that you and service that you offer, what type of clients and customers are you working with and who are good prospects for you and folks that are listening to this to say, you know what? I got to give Chris a call on this stuff.
| 28:14 | Yeah, it’s an absurdly horizontal product, which is I would prefer that it’s not, but it is. It’s kind of like air or something. It’s like, well, everybody needs it. But some people need it more than others because they’ve been holding their breath you know. And they need a breath right now, right? So if you need pipeline right now, you really owe it to yourself to take a test drive with https://connectandsell.com/ its free. It’s a full day of production. Tony Sofia and over at sada system said on his podcast when I asked him as a guest, didn’t you guys make some money on your connected cell test drive?
| 28:45 | And his VP Billy Franz laughed and said, we made tens of millions of dollars of pipeline in those three hours. So it’s an interesting fun thing to do. Reps love it because it’s scary. My wife says it’s the best weight loss program in the world is you’re about to push that button, your heart rate goes to one 60 and you didn’t even have to get up and try it around, right? So you know that’s kind of a way to look at it is very horizontal.
| 29:14 | What we find is our big customers tend to have numerically large markets. But that isn’t always our most loyal customers. We have a company we work with called blue flame minerals. And they call folks who own mineral rights in a rancher’s farmer or stuff like that. And after about three months of https://connectandsell.com/ , which wasn’t very intensive usage, but it was very intelligent usage, very, very ill. You wouldn’t expect this to be a connected cell style business. He had so much opportunity to go raise $52 million.
| 29:45 | Wow. Well, great you know. That was good. He stopped using connected self for four months while he went and raised money to buy all the opportunities that he dug up, so to speak through calling. So it’s really, when you really think about it, time is always the enemy in sales. We always say times is our only asset, but it’s actually, it’s almost the other way around. Our overhead is like a racehorse. It eats while we sleep. And that’s why resources are expensive. They eat while we sleep.
| 30:14 | So what are we going to do with that little chunk of time we have in a day to reach out to people? And how much are we going to get for that? So if you value your time and you think the opportunity cost of not having conversations during that time, you could set aside is very high, then it’s a good product for you. So we measure impact in terms of dollars of pipeline generated per prospecting hour. And I think we’re the only people who measure this, actually.
| 30:44 | And we like the number to be above a $1000 an hour. Of pipeline because if you look at that and you think I got three to one coverage, that’s $333 an hour of future business. And for a rep who’s making a quarter $1 million 300,000 a year or whatever, that’s about a 66% gross margin activity. And that’s about how all of us should be looking at our activities as you should run a 60 to 70% gross margin on everything that you do.
| 31:15 | And then put together a portfolio of activities and life is good. So we like the $1000 an hour as a threshold. I’ve got a guy from a big real estate company. It’s $1.5 million an hour of pipeline generated. For prospecting hour. But you’ve got to think in terms of time, not in terms of numbers. Some people say, what if I don’t have a big market, it’s like so what? How much time do you have infinity? Yeah. That’s a great way to think about it.
| 31:44 | Chris Beale is the CEO of Connect and Sell, and you can find https://connectandsell.com/ if I’m not mistaken, right, Chris? That’s a rumor. That’s the rumor. Absolutely. And also check out market dominance guys, his podcast. I’m excited to listen to that. Just the title is catchy enough to get me to log on and subscribe. And you know as an author, I wanted to close on this Chris as an author of my book, the trilogy of yes, I thought I wrote it in pretty fast order fast time, about 6, 7 months from first words to publication.
| 32:19 | But I think you might have the world record on book authoring time. So tell us a little bit about what you did here. Well, so I got curious about chat GPT because who wouldn’t be, right? And specifically, when Satya Nadella CEO of Microsoft dropped $10 billion into OpenAI in a single day, I thought, well, he’s one of the smartest guys around. And that’s a big risk. That’s a big bet. So why? So I thought, well, you know, I like to lay my hands on stuff.
| 32:47 | I’m an actual ancient software developer from 8 billion years ago. We used to like chisel software into stone and stuff like that. So I thought I’ll give it a whirl. What’s a good project? So I set myself the task of writing a book using chat DBT between 6 a.m. on a Saturday morning and 11 p.m. that Sunday Night. So it’s a little less than two days. And what I did was just took 25 episodes of our podcast market dominance guys. Ask chat GPT to summarize them. There’s 25 chapters.
| 33:18 | Then I asked it a question about each one prompt that they’re called, it’s called prompt engineering. And if you want to sound a real smart about chat GPT, say, I’ve been studying prompt engineering, okay? That’s all you have to say. Everybody knows it sounds like a genius. And so prompted it for each chapter, something I was curious about. And I copied and pasted it all together. I had it right in intro. I had it right its own acknowledgments, it wrote our bios, I have three co authors, or there are three of us because it’s the podcast team.
| 33:50 | And then I asked it how to publish the book. And it told me, step by step, how to go to Amazon and get my book published or our book published. And walk through those steps, and now we’ve got it out in paperback, hardback, and Kindle. I am going to have chat GPT read it or not it read it, but I’ll have a robot voice read it. And I had to do the cover art. Dali, which is chat and GPT. Artistic cousin did the cover art.
| 34:18 | It was a little rough what I had to tell it, which is I had to use the phrase stocky about my podcast co host to get the right picture. But I did a great picture for the front. And that was it. That’s really, and the title of the book for all of the listeners that are interested. It’s called market dominance, a conversation with chat GPT. Fascinating. And it’s interesting you know. When you do a podcast, you do create wonderful and informative content. Arguably so.
| 34:48 | And so you took what the transcripts of those podcasts and ask chat GPT to summarize what you inputted? Yeah. So I used rev to do the transcription because it’s really, really good yeah. And then I just dumped those blindly into chat GPT one at a time and said, summarize. And then I asked a question about the summaries and I just copied all that into word. I probably spent 75% of my time formatting and word because I’m not very good at that.
| 35:16 | And so I could have done it in four hours, actually. When I go back and look at it, the book could have been written in four hours and published in one. But I was an amateur at the time. I was just stumbling around. That’s amazing. And a lot of people who are curious about self publishing, that’s sort of the beauty of Amazon’s platform. Maybe there are others out there, but I use Amazon as well, is that yeah, it’s an upload, it’s a bunch of questions that you answer on their site, and then you place an order and you can have your paperback or hardcover book sent to you and when anyone orders it on Amazon, they just print it on demand and send it out.
| 35:52 | It’s literally, I’m not sure other than if you want the big media tour or have the aspirations to have your book in the Hudson news at every airport that why would you go through someone else when you can just do it literally as you did Chris in less than 48 hours? That’s amazing. Yeah, Hudson news anyway, it costs you a hundred grand to it’s a pay to play. So that’s what I hear anyway. Yeah, I got that. That’ll happen. Another reason not to do it.
| 36:21 | Well, this is a good book, by the way. It’s not a good book. It’s just a book. You know, my wife wrote a great book. Anybody who’s in sales management, go check out Helen fanucci, love your team, a survival guide for sales managers in a hybrid world. That is a great book. And that took more than a year, my book took two days. But I tell you what this chat GPT thing is a two edged sword. I highly recommend everybody in sales spend some time with it.
| 36:51 | Get the pro edition. It costs you 20 bucks a month. You can probably afford it. And go in there and start asking some questions about your target market. And you will be shocked at what it knows. Yeah. I have just started to play with it, not the pro edition, but just the free one. And inevitably, whenever friends get together and they rendezvous in a certain city, like we’re going to be doing this weekend with our friends from Atlanta, who are heading to Nashville. We’re heading from Milwaukee to Nashville. Three out of the four of us have really never spent time socially there.
| 37:21 | So what do we do? What are we doing? We go out and we explore and we do our Google searches. I just went to chat GPT and I said, give me a 72 hour agenda for this weekend in Nashville. Here are some of the things we want to do. I send it to my buddies like, Andy, this is the best thing. I can’t believe you put all this stuff together and I just winked at him and I said, hey, that’s AI for you, but it was a wonderful agenda. And we’re only now collectively scratching the surface on where this is going, but it is, it is revolutionary. True, truly it is.
| 37:51 | I asked chat GPT day before yesterday, I thought you know I’m raising a little money right now. We’re going to raise 10 million bucks and we love the market conditions. Everybody else hates them. We love them. Because capital efficiency is suddenly popular. And we sell capital efficiency for sales, right? So I thought, hey, you know, why don’t I ask chat GPT to give me a dialog between an entrepreneur and an investor about a company like ours? So I described the company in detail, took a paragraph.
| 38:20 | And said, please, in 2000 words, write me a dialog. And it went back and forth and back and forth and I tell you it was better than what most of us would say to investors and the investor reactions were more realistic. So you would not think that it could do that. That cost me maybe four minutes of writing and I got something that I could think about for talking to investors. Yeah. It’s explosive. It’s explosive.
| 38:50 | And it’s exciting, a little bit scary, but glad to see the applications. And how it applies to sales is going to be really interesting. And I think salespeople, the faster, or the greater greater curiosity you have and the faster you are to be open minded about this, that’s going to play to your advantage. If you don’t think it’s coming and you want to stay away from it and it’s not helpful to you. Just don’t be disappointed when other people are passing you by.
| 39:18 | When you get run over, just go, yeah, I kind of like those wheel marks on my face. Or if you have your retirement planned out and you just want to watch all from watch it all from the sidelines, I think that’s fine too. Well, Chris, it’s been great having you on The Sales Warrior Within podcast. Thank you for doing this. And you can find Chris again at connecting cell dot com. Check out his great podcast, market dominance guys. I will also put Helen’s book up on the show notes as well and a link to that.
| 39:48 | So I’m excited to check that out. And definitely check out Chris’s book, the chats, chat with GPT, and how he put that all together in two days. And I’ll put all of that information and links to that in the show notes. But Chris, thanks again for being with us really a fun conversation. Thank you. Thanks, Andy.
| 40:09 | Thank you again to Chris Beall for reminding all of us sales warriors, just how important trust is between a salesperson and a customer when your customer his or her career is on the line based on the decision of whether to buy your product or not in the success of buying your product, either the financial success, the operational success, that person’s career is on the line when they’re making a critical decision, a decision to engage with you, your company, your products and services, it’s absolutely essential to have trust between that customer and that salesperson so that customer knows that they can make a good decision, a wise decision, and move forward with confidence.
| 40:56 | So if they’re going to bet on you and bet their career on you, boy, trust and a relationship is super important. And Chris gave us so many different ways on how salespeople need to think about building trust and how technology can help us break through some of the artificial barriers that are being thrown up there with artificial intelligence, machine learning, and how to break through as a salesperson to get that live conversation, either through software as a solution like https://connectandsell.com/ , Chris’s company provides, or through just best practices on breaking through establishing that relationship building trust and moving forward with a great relationship, that is prosperous to all involved.
| 41:41 | Thank you, Chris, so much for your insights. Thank you for being a guest on The Sales Warrior Within. And thank all of you for tuning into this episode of The Sales Warrior Within. My name is Andy Olen and I’m looking forward to speaking with all of you soon. And in the meantime, and as always, good selling, good leading and good living.