Aug 27, 2002

What Could Be Better Than Selling Water Equipment?


It might be worth your time this month to take a minute to
really appreciate the business you are in. Sometimes we ask ourselves if there
is an easier way to make a living, but the truth is, we already are in the
promised land. Think about it. We sell good health, long life and saving money.
Those are all topics that people want to talk about. Imagine how depressed you
could get selling disability insurance, cemetery plots or nursing home suites.

In addition to the fact that we sell an up-beat product, we sell
one that everyone needs. If you sell health insurance, you quickly find that 40
percent of the people in our country won't buy it. If you sell
women's clothes, only slightly more than 50 percent of the population
wears them. That means more than half the people you speak to would have no
need for the product.

The good news for us all is that everyone needs pure water,
and they need it every day. We have the biggest population of people who need
our product--everyone on earth. Couple this with the fact that only about
10 percent of U.S. homes have water improvement equipment and you have an
unparalleled opportunity to sell.

But do we try to sell as many people as we can? Most of us
do not. If you view talking with people as work or selling, you will never be
as successful as if you view it as helping them make a health improving,
life-lengthening, money-making decision. Here are a few examples of great
salespeople who loved to help people improve their lives.

About 10 years ago, I was at a home show. I was tired and
grumpy. I needed a break, starting with a visit to the men's room. Two
men were washing their hands. One of them turned and used the opening line I
have recommended, "Excuse me sir, you don't let your family drink
from the tap at home do you?" He started a sales introduction and got an
appointment. This salesperson did not even take a break on breaks. He
couldn't wait to tell people about the equipment.

About five years ago, my boss sent me out to rent a second
office for the company. I was accompanied by Doug, an excellent salesman. The real estate agent
showed us around a vacant office, and I was picturing the training room, phone
room, etc. Doug said to the agent, "You don't drink from the tap at
home, do you?" He started to sell and got an appointment with the real
estate agent. He sold the agent a softener and RO and got an appointment to
talk with 60 agents at their sales meeting. From that, he received 10
appointments and sold five systems. All I did was see the building. Doug saw
everything as an opportunity to tell people how much he could help them.

Around this same time, Doug and I were working a booth in a
mall. We took a break and headed to a restaurant for lunch. I was famished and
started munching as soon as my food came. Doug asked to see the manager. When
the manager arrived, Doug pointed out the spots on the silverware and asked the
manager, "If I could show you a way to get rid of these spots with no
work and to save hundreds of dollars on soap, could I have 10 minutes of your
time next week?" Doug got an appointment, I got indigestion.

Last week, I was speaking at a seminar in Phoenix. We talked
about believing in the product and looking for opportunities to help everyone
you meet. The next day, Mike returned a call which he received on his cell
phone. When he returned the call, he found it was a wrong number. Instead of
simply hanging up, he said, "You folks aren't drinking from the
tap, are you?" and started to sell. From his skill, effort and
enthusiasm, he got an appointment and made a sale.

These are just a few examples of how great salespeople are
sold enough to see opportunity everywhere. Some salespeople wait for the
company to provide them with appointments. Those who believe we actually are
helping people and making their lives better cannot wait to tell others the
good news. Take a look around and you will see opportunity wherever you gaze.

About the author

Carl Davidson is president and founder of Sales & Management Solutions, a training and consulting company, Lockport, N.Y. He is a well-known entertainer and speaker, as well as the author of several books and hundreds of magazine articles. He can be reached at 800-941-0068 or [email protected].