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By Ralph Roberts

RISMEDIA, Nov. 3, 2007-There are no secrets to selling success. Every salesperson knows what he or she must do to attract clients, grow business, and boost revenue. Sometimes, we just get so caught up in the day-to-day drudgery of doing business that we forget what we should be doing to build our business.

The following ten commandments of selling success can help you refocus your energy and enthusiasm on the factors that contribute most to your selling success:

1. Practice your craft. Practice selling at work, at home, at the airport, in the taxi, at the grocery store, and wherever else you happen to be in contact with other people. The key to selling is being able to establish personal relationships with your clients. Practice by making meaningful connections with everyone you meet.
2. Invest in your own success. As an entrepreneurial salesperson, you have to act like a business, and that means investing in your own personal and professional development, in the latest technology, and in support personnel, so you have more time to spend on what you do best and what earns your company the biggest profits.
3. Adopt new technologies. Tech savvy clients are relying more on the Internet for their information and are using a variety of communications technologies to keep in touch, including cell phones, e-mail, text messaging, VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol or Internet phones), and blogs. To stay in touch with the latest generation of shoppers, you’d better be tech savvy, too.
4. Hire an assistant. Hire or be hired. Hire people to take on tasks that they can perform better, faster, and for less money than you can, and then treat them well. The more work you can outsource to others, the more time and energy you can spend on dollar-productive activities. Instead of asking “What’s the cost of hiring an assistant?” ask “How much revenue am I losing by not having an assistant?”
5. Fire your worst clients. The customer is not always right. In fact, some customers can drag you down, sapping time and energy you could be devoting to other, better clients. You don’t have to be rude about it, but get rid of the clients who are squandering your time and resources.
6. Date your leads… or someone else will. Regardless of how you obtain leads, make sure you keep in touch with those leads until they are ready to buy. One great way to automate the process of keeping in touch with your leads is to add leads to a drip e-mail campaign. A drip campaign sends a series of e-mail messages to prospective clients over the course of several weeks or months automatically.
7. Give without expectations. Sales coaches often recommend that you “give to get.” I’m telling you to “give to give.” If you’re expecting something in return, you’re not really giving-you’re bartering. Give for the sheer pleasure of giving.
8. Take risks. The people who make the most money take the biggest risks, and that applies to sales as much as it applies to anything in the world of business. You have to be willing to invest money and take some chances. Otherwise, you’re not a salesperson. You’re an order taker.
9. Embrace change. The Internet, new technologies, and the global economy have combined forces to accelerate change to a dizzying pace. The only way to survive and thrive in this environment is to embrace rather than resist change. Every change, particular changes that cause problems and headaches, is packed with potential.
10. Achieve a balanced lifestyle. Being a successful human being means much more than achieving career success. It means remaining healthy, building rewarding relationships, supporting your community, and perhaps even raising children. Failing in one area of your life can lead to failures in other areas.

Work on being successful in all areas of your life. Without the strong relationship I have with my wife and children, I would not have achieved the same level of success in my career. Success feeds on success, and, unfortunately, failure feeds on failure. Encourage everyone around you to set goals and pursue their dreams. Surround yourself with success.

Ralph R. Roberts, official spokesperson for Guthy-Renker Home and author of Advanced Selling For Dummies (John Wiley & Sons), can be contacted at 586.751.0000, or by e-mail at

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