INSIDE Inside Sales – Ep 119: Future Gains from Past Lessons

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What’s the best way to pick up new sales tactics? Well, turns out that the past is our best teacher.

In this new episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, Darryl and Fred Copestake, best-selling author, sales coach, and founder of Brindis, will take you on a walk down memory lane and give you a crash course on using old-school sales tactics. From the ‘50s to the present day, you’ll get a recap of the tried and true techniques such as AIDA, mirroring, FAB, as well as objection-angling, and understanding what value is. Learn how to grow your numbers with these sales-boosting tactics and find out what the ‘20s are all about on this episode of INSIDE Inside Sales!

''So, if you look at the fifties, it was very much about process - big process orientation.'' 🎧 Listen as @FredCopestake revisits the best sales tactics of the past eight decades. Click To Tweet

 

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Host: Darryl PraillVanillaSoft

Guest: Fred Copestake, Brindis

 

Darryl Praill: Good afternoon, everybody. It’s Darryl Praill here. You know what we’re at? We’re at another episode, another week, another time, another place. You and I talking here, on the INSIDE Inside Sales show. Don’t you love it? Does it ever like feel to you like there’s been too much time apart? Those seven days in between every single episode? Do you miss me, as much as I miss you? Lie to me. Tell me you do, make me feel better. I got a story to tell you. The other day, now, if you’re a regular listener, you know all this already. The other day I was on a podcast with Larry Long Jr. So, Larry Long Jr and I were shooting the breeze in conversations leading up to the recording.

Darryl Praill: And then we’re in the green room before the recording. And then we’re in the recording. But at multiple steps along the way there, he starts dropping references to the sixties. He’s dropping references to Motown, and I’m like, dude, I’m a Motown freak. I grew up on the Canadian side of the US-Canada border, right outside Detroit. I grew up in an era, I’m a sixties child, but I grew up really in the seventies. And then high school was the eighties, first half of the eighties. So I grew up where I was, there was really, there was no cable, no cable TV. There was no, no nothing. Everything was over the air. And all of the radio, on the television that I got that influenced me came from Detroit.

Darryl Praill: So I grew up on Marvin Gaye, and I grew up on, you know, just all these amazing artists. It was crazy. And he’s dropping all of these references and like we’re getting each other’s vibes, and it was amazing. And then he starts dropping seventies and eighties pop culture references, whether it’s the Jackson five, or what you talking about Willis and different strokes. And all these TV shows, that nobody today would have a clue what’s going on. And, after that was done, I had so much fun. I was actually thinking about some advice that I had given my kids earlier. Now my kids are 24 and 26 right now. Okay. I know. I know, You’re thinking, how is that possible?

Darryl Praill: Darryl, you look so young. And you would be right. I started very, very young. I was an overachiever even when I was 10 years old. And, I told him that what you guys need to do you may not have the best marks in school. You may not be graduating, you know, in Summa cum Laude and you may not go to Harvard because I’m cheap and poor. Understanding all that, I said there’s a couple of things you need to know. I said you can be book smart, and then you can be street smart. And often if you’re street smart, that makes you more successful than book smarts. I mean if you wanna go to Harvard, or Princeton or Yale. You know, Cambridge or Oxford, you’re gonna benefit from the relationships, the network, more than anything. It’s not something, the education’s good, but it’s that lifelong network.

Darryl Praill: But anywhere else, not near the same. For my American listeners, this may surprise you. But the whole premise of the alumni, which is, you know, you can be 75 years old, and still cheering on your Alma mater. That doesn’t really exist outside of the US, it definitely doesn’t exist here in Canada. It is what it is. So what does all this mean? Well, what it means is, I go back to what Larry and I were talking about. We’re making all these pop culture references. And I said to my kids, if you’re street smart, then you know how to read a room. But one of the biggest things about any kinda even if you can read a room, you know having personal skills, you have to establish a rapport. Part of understanding the rapport is understanding pop culture. So, my kids who are 24 and 26, grew up watching Gilligan’s Island.

Darryl Praill: They grew up watching, you know, Dragnet and Adam 12. They grew up watching all these shows in the fifties and sixties and seventies and eighties. And of course, they would wine and say, Oh these shows are so slow, cause it’s a different era. And I said, just you wait. I said, pop culture, it’s gonna be there. And then as they grew up, and they got into the university, and they got into the workforce, it was pop culture over and over again that they used. And they were dropping sixties, seventies, eighties, nineties references, over and over again. It was every, what they did was they learned from every single decade, a little bit of nuggets and insights, that allowed them to be street smart and engaged no matter who they were talking to.

Darryl Praill: Whether it’s the CEO or the janitor and they established a common bond. It wasn’t on your economic situation. It wasn’t on your education. It was going back to something you could all relate to and connect to cause it was a shared memory. See, that’s the thing about sales. You’re feeling like you’ve got imposter syndrome. You’re feeling like, you don’t have the right to talk to a CEO. You’re feeling like you can’t relate to their day job, cause you’ve never done their day job, right? I’m not an accounting expert. If I were to go to and sell to an accounting agency, I would go, what the hell do I talk about? But at the end of the day, all the skills we use, are all relational, they’re all pop culture. They’re all street smart. The actual education comes in, just so you know how to actually, you know, write a good business plan and make a good business case.

Welcome Fred Copestake

Darryl Praill: So, that’s my way of saying sales is the best most equal deal going. And you have all these skills at your fingertips because you’re street smart. Because you can relate base in your memories and establish an immediate rapport with somebody else that you’re not using. So, imagine, I’m listening to Sam Dunning’s podcast, and I listened to Fred Copestake come on, he’s given this whole session, about all the stuff you can learn over the decade, how sales have changed over the decades. And I’m like, bam, that’s my guy. That’s what I’m talking about. He’s me. And Fred I have been having this conversation for months and months and months about how to get him on the show. So, I’m like, damnit, forget it, screw it. Fred’s coming on the show. Fred, welcome to the show, my friend.

Fred Copestake: Brilliant now, thank you Darryl, thank you for asking me. It’s a real pleasure.

Darryl Praill: Oh, he’s so subdued and polite. Okay. Let’s just get the whole promotional stuff out of the way. Fred is a rock star, author, sales coach, sales trainer. You can catch him on his website at brindis.co.uk. You may tell by the accent, he’s not Canadian, but hey, we’re all part of the same Commonwealth. So, we don’t exclude them. It’s all good. His book ”Selling through partnering skills”, you can get an Amazon. Dynamite book, you need to read it. But with that said today, when I was talking to Fred, and we’re sharing stories, he’s like Darryl, it’s just about mastering foundations. And then he goes, and that’s what the decades do for us. Every decade had a different foundation we need to learn.

The fifties’ process

Darryl Praill: So Fred, let’s you and I have some fun today and waltz through the decades. Which decade would you like to start in? And what can it teach us?

Fred Copestake: Let’s start at the very beginning. As they say, the famous ones.

Darryl Praill: In the beginning…

Fred Copestake: Well, not right at the beginning, we only got half an hour or so. Going to create another that’s a bit too far back, but let’s get post-war. There we are. I figure we can just about fit that If we start fifties, there we go, that’ll do. Cause what I see, we could go back further in sales, but I don’t think it will help us. Because what I want to do is we take this sort of, this little stroll through the evolution of sales, is pick some of the best bits that are going to be useful to us, in the here and now. And, if we get too far back, we go into that whole snake oil sales, you know, like 1800s. Chinese came, building railroads in America, brought snake oil, salespersons and thought, oh yeah we can sell that to people. Cause it solves everything. And all the scamming, horrible type stuff and manipulative tactics were invented. And we still get tarred with that brush today. Even though it’s so long ago and there are just better things for us to be doing.

Fred Copestake: You know so, let’s start in the fifties and on the interesting, I’m a little bit of a geek around this sort of stuff, you know. But the interesting thing for me about that is, the sales, the sales best practice, the sales techniques, and stuff that was trained, reflects what was happening in the era at the time anyway. So, if you look at the fifties, fifties was very much about process, big process orientation. Yeah, it’s about doing the right things time and time again. You know production and how a lot worked was a biggie. And that was the same in sales. You know it was like, what can we do, time and time again, to make sure we’re successful. Let’s try and model it and keep doing that. And then if anybody argued with me that that’s not relevant today, well, good luck with that. Well, I don’t think you’ll last long in sales anyway. You know, so good process, whether we’re talking the overall sales process, or just the structure of a call, that’s still a process in itself. It’s having a backbone, it’s doing stuff we can do time and time again. That’s what I’d want us to pick from that decade, I’d say.

Darryl Praill: It’s funny you mentioned that cause on the same episode with Larry, we talked about that. And the question I posited to the audience was, if I were to ask you, write down on a piece of paper, or to the modern kids, use your phone and send me a text message, that documents your daily routine, that you do every single day. Can you do it? Or is every day different? Which case if every day is different, then you don’t have a process. Or if you were to do a Cogo, how do you approach a call? Before you start the call? When does your process start? What are you doing? In other words is are you researching, whatever it might be before you go to the call?

Darryl Praill: And as I was saying with Larry, we spent so much time, working on some of our skills, in objection and in discovery, asking the right questions, blah, blah, blah, that we forget about the basics, which is just, what’s the rinse and repeat process that we need to follow. Cause if we do that enough, it becomes just natural. And we just do it. And that way we make sure we’re not missing any of the steps we need to take, in a normal sales process. To make sure we anticipate either the objections, we set the stage for establishing value and price, we identify need. All that just happens without even thinking about it. And when that happens all of a sudden we become much more confident salespeople because we’re not so obsessed with did I miss something? That’s just my point of view.

Fred Copestake: Ah, I agree. We’ll agree on that one. I’m sure we probably won’t agree all the way through. But hey, that’ll be fun. But no, for me, the way I talk about it to people is actually the call, let’s talk about the call. Let’s talk about that bit. It begins at the end. And everyone goes, what are you talking about, Fred? Well, what do you wanna happen as a result of it? So, what’s the objective?

Darryl Praill: Yes.

Fred Copestake: And I’ll say to people, what’s the objective of your call? And they go, oh, I don’t know. Well, don’t even bother picking the phone on that. Don’t connect on zoom. Don’t do whatever you’re gonna do, because it’s gonna be an utter waste of time. And you don’t really wanna waste your time. You certainly do not wanna be wasting your customer’s time. Because you’ll burn that bridge. So, what’s the objective? What do you really want from it? Primary objective. What happens if you don’t achieve that? What would be your fallback? So that actually, that time you’ve invested having that conversation, it’s still good. Then we work backwards from it. It’s like a golfer. You know, they sort of, they don’t hit the ball as far as they can see where it lands and then go on to the next shot. They go, right I want to end up in the holes, so ill putt off the greens. It’s easier.

Fred Copestake: So then I’ll do that shot to arrive there, and that shot and then they work backwards and we do the same. So then we can structure the call, having worked backwards, forwards. Attention. You’ve got to grab somebody’s attention. Use your elevator pitch, your benefit statement, your value prop. I don’t really care what you call it. But use something that gets them focused in on this is why we’re having it. Show interest in people. Ask questions. Prescription without diagnosis is malpractice. You know, we’ve heard that one do that. Then, you can move into the, right, build some desire, so get them to think about what it is that you wants to say to them. And then, we finish with some kind of action. Some kind of advancement. AIDA, attention, interest, desire, action. That works elegantly. Invented in the fifties, I use that every day still, so.

Darryl Praill: Okay, so-

Fred Copestake: There you go.

The sixties’ brain

Darryl Praill: What we learned from the fifties, was process. What did we learn from the sixties, my friend?

Fred Copestake: All about the mind.

Darryl Praill: Ouhhh. The brain.

Fred Copestake: All about the brain. The psychedelia. Think of the sixties as a decade all those substances people taking to alter how they think.

Darryl Praill: Yes!

Fred Copestake: But I’m not suggesting that. Please do not edit that in a way that makes me look like some kind of drug pusher. The end of a beautiful career. No, what I’ve talked about with the sixties what we saw reflected in business, was this whole kind of psychology of stuff. So how were people thinking? What, you know, what were their preferences and thought patterns? So, salespeople, this is where it’s that whole focus on can I read their personality style? Can I work out how they like information? How do they work? And then change myself, to what I say and do. You don’t change personality but you change your behaviors, so they’re more comfortable.

Fred Copestake: That’s what we trying to do with that. So you pick up on the clues and if somebody is quite friendly and you are gonna have to do some small talk, I mean some people find that hard but it’s important for those people. There are people who like data, facts, figures and you have to give them loads and loads of information and answer lots of questions. Are they people that are really to the point, bang, bang, bang, That’s what I want. Go on, tell me. Sorted. And you think all right, they’re a bit rude. No, it’s just how they think. Or are they people who like to talk a lot about themselves and get all excited and animated and tell stories? You know, that’s all personal we don’t know anybody like that.

Darryl Praill: That would be me just to clear that.

Fred Copestake: There’s two of this, is there. We’d get word in edgeways. We’d start talking over each other all the time.

Darryl Praill: What I love about what you’re saying here, I actually had this conversation on LinkedIn the other day, and it was a lengthy commentary on this person’s posts. It was an interesting post. It was a young woman and she made a declaration. She goes, you know, if you’re guilty of saying any of the following expressions, you know, bing, bing, bing, bing you know, you wanna be in, do you understand, does that make sense? You know, whatever. She had like, a dozen of them, right? Stop it. Those are old school. Those don’t make sense. You know, that’s rude, whatever don’t, you know, instead do this and this and this. So the actual substance of her post was and her intent was very good. It was please don’t do this and do this. She offered you actual alternatives. And everyone was like, oh, this is great. Thank you so much. And I was, of course, me and I said, I disagree, like a thousand percent with this.

Darryl Praill: And part of the reason I disagree is cause yeah, I said some of those things. But like I said to her, and you just said it here, was I said, you’re projecting your own biases, on how you like to engage. And you’re declaring, that nobody should engage this way cause you don’t like it. I said, there’s a reason we have Disc or Myers Brigg or enneagram or whatever. So you can pick up on how the individual you’re prospecting wants to engage with you. And that’s how you need to reciprocate. That’s exactly what I, you literally said, personality style, pick up on the clues. I said people talk about mirroring. Now you can agree with it or not agree with it. I know people don’t like it these days but there’s a reason mirroring works. If you’re a loud talker, I’m gonna be a loud talker, that’s how it works.

Fred Copestake: I’ve never heard that people don’t like that these days.

Darryl Praill: Yes

Fred Copestake: Or you don’t like the way the human brain has been formed over millions of years now.

Darryl Praill: I know, I know.

Fred Copestake: That was different now, we changed it the last two. Okay, bye.

Darryl Praill: Well, a lot of it is politics and cancel culture, right? That’s a lot of it, lot of it and it’s like, no you can politics and cancel culture all you want to but people still buy the way they buy at the end of the day.

Fred Copestake: Okay, well if I wrap it up in a way that behaves, in a way that is gonna make somebody else comfortable, is that okay? Is that acceptable? Can we do all that?

Darryl Praill: That is acceptable. That’s politically correct. So, let’s go to the seventies

Fred Copestake: Well, that’s okay, we’re allowed to say that. We’re allowed to have comfortable customers and do stuff to let them work in the way they want.

Darryl Praill: What a crazy thought.

The seventies’ FABulousness

Darryl Praill: Now in the seventies, I’m thinking disco and I’m thinking, you know, John Travolta and pantsuits and wide bell-bottom jeans. And so talk to me. What did we learn in that decade?

Fred Copestake: FAB. I mean, basically FAB lights thunderbirds on go.

Darryl Praill: Yeah!

Fred Copestake: Probably lost reference on a lot of listeners. Yeah, FAB, but certainly where I am here, in the UK, fab means fabulous, great, super. We don’t use it now. It’s very old fashioned. Or you do, you do if you’re in sales because it means features, advantages and benefits. And we have to understand that. That is a building block of successful selling. That’s the first thing I train on anything. Before we even get into all the funky stuff. It’s guys, you’ve got to understand this, your products, your services, your organization. It’s a bunch of features. And if you talk about that to people, you will soon turn them off. You’ll soon bore them.

Fred Copestake: You’ve got to translate them into the advantages in terms of what does that mean? But the benefits, what does that mean for them? If it doesn’t mean something for them, it’s not a benefit. And it’s pointless in talking about it. So don’t worry that it’s in your brochure, don’t worry that’s what you’ve heard on training. If it doesn’t mean something to somebody it’s irrelevant. Don’t use it, focus on them. Talk about the benefit to them. If you can say, ‘so what’ to it, it’s probably not a benefit. So the little test you can use yourself. So I’m going to say this, can that person say, so what? If they can, you need to work harder to turn it into something that’s useful for them. That’s what we take, the seventies is a pretty big decade in selling, if that’s giving us that focus.

Darryl Praill: Well, it’s so amazing because I know one of the big things that are really relevant in the last, you know, year or so. And Samantha McKenna has almost made this her trademark of Sam sales. And she’ll just say, ”what’s in it for me”, right? And she’ll use the expression ”if they say so what, then you’ve not conveyed what’s in it for them”. Yet, and here we are in the twenties and you’re going back you know, roughly, at least almost 50 years, and you were saying FAB. Features, advantages and benefits. With the benefits focus on them, What’s in it for me. This is proof. This is why I brought Copestake here. Because he’s still relevant. All right, do you get that? Anyway, I’m rattling.

Fred Copestake: No, no, WIIFM. That’s how I present that. The “what’s in it for me.” WIIFM and I’ll use a flip chart cause I am old school. And you write that up and everyone goes, oh, is that, well, no, is that a radio station? I go, it does look like a radio station. WII FM. Yeah. And that you’ve got to tune in to the buyer. That’s what we’re saying. You tune in like you tune a radio station. In the old days anyway, yeah?

Darryl Praill: Yeah.

Fred Copestake: To be talking about the stuff that they need to hear they wanna hear because it’s relevant to them. So that’s our take from the seventies

Darryl Praill: So the eighties is FAB, right? And as Sam would say in the twenties, show me, you know, me, right? Show me, you know, me. I love it. What’s in it for me?

The eighties’ objection handling

Darryl Praill: All right, in the eighties, all right, this is where I came of age. I went to high school, I went to university. I met my wife in the eighties. Talk to me. Bring it back.

Fred Copestake: Oh, what a decade? What a decade.

Darryl Praill: It was a good decade.

Fred Copestake: Yeah was some great music. You don’t take your music spirit lightly.

Darryl Praill: I was –

Fred Copestake: I was like, yeah you know, that’s Duran Duran that’s –

Darryl Praill: Yes, that’s Duran Duran.

Fred Copestake: You know all the new romantic stuff, I get totally lost and some good rock, you know?

Darryl Praill: Yes.

Fred Copestake: But let’s just stop at that because I’m not sure how much value it brings to us in modern-day telling the eighties. It does. It does, but it’s the decade I lean least on because I feel in the eighties, if you look at a lot of sales training, it’s all about objection handling. And the focus of it was to get to the end of the sale as fast as possible, and then, overcome objections, barter hurdles out the way. Yeah. Wrestle with your customer, into a compliant state that they’re then going to say, yes. Usually, its 101 techniques of which is basically asking the question to kind of manipulate them and mind game them into buying something from you. And look, I’m probably over arguing it a little bit there, but, that’s what I feel.

Darryl Praill: You’re not, cause the eighties if I recall, was the whole Wolf of Wall Street. If I recall, that’s when that movie came out and that was exact same thing.

Fred Copestake: Greed is good.

Darryl Praill: Greed is good.

Fred Copestake: And that was how people were acting. And that was what reflected in the training. And so, there’s a little bit out of it. So part of the objection handling techniques that we can take, is to take them and dilute. And what he was saying is that, you rather than just completely argue with somebody, you sort of cushion your response a little bit. But I would now turn that in a modern-day selling into treat concerns with concern. But don’t call it an objection. That’s a stupid, stupid word. If somebody is objecting, it’s actually a concern that they’re missing a bit of information.

Fred Copestake: They don’t get something. So take that seriously. Treat with concern. Don’t yes but them, that’s an argument. But then just say well, I appreciate what you saying and understand it and take it on your shoulders that you’ve not done a very good sales job. You’ve not given them enough information and then supply what they need. That’s what I’d take from the eighties. So I’d say be a little bit careful with some of the old fashioned sales techniquey type stuff that gave us and get yourself into the nineties fast. Cause the nineties gives us a lot of good stuff.

Darryl Praill: But it is interesting how it changes, right? So objection handling is something we need to all be good at. To your point, one of the things maybe eighties was known for, was challenging your prospect, you know, challenge them hard, maybe too hard. Cause you’re trying to go for the hard close, which is why you’re challenging them. But the premise of challenging assumptions is valid. In the sense that how many times do they say why do you need this? Well, I need it because of this reason.

Darryl Praill: And then the reality is if you were to drill down a little more and do some good discovery, in the constant, why, why, why, why, why, tell me more, explain that to me. Describe this situation. You start to realize that in fact what the reason they gave you, was why they’re motivated. It’s not the real reason. There’s actually a reason behind the reason and that’s the real stuff. So, you do have to challenge sometimes, but objection handling is part of every cycle. It’s a skill you’ve got to have. And many of us, I know for a fact, this is where most sales reps crumble because they don’t feel confident or they don’t like conflict. This is a hard one for them.

Fred Copestake: Yeah. But, but what I would say there as well, a challenge I’ll push back. Is that,

Darryl Praill: Challenge me.

Fred Copestake: You handle objections

Darryl Praill: Treat my concern with concern.

Fred Copestake: No I can’t, not on this case you don’t need it. I’m adapting to the customer in front of me. You’re an expressive driver. I’m just gonna go straight and to tell you,

Darryl Praill: He’s mirroring me, you see what he’s doing here folks?

Fred Copestake: I’m watching the slides. Cause it’s just like, it’s easy. You don’t have to even think about it. No. What I would say, if you’re getting too wrapped up in handling objections, it could well be that you’re not doing the stuff early in the sale well enough.

Darryl Praill: Yes.

Fred Copestake: You’re dashing into getting into trying to close something, to sort of push something on somebody and you’ve probably not asked those questions. You’ve not understood them. You’ve not used to tell me, explain to me, describe to me. TED. I love TED questions like right. Cause they’re directions, actually. They’re not even questions or open questions, to understand where somebody is now, where do they wanna be? And that for me, that, if you look at the nineties that’s what came then. The sales went through a sea change in the nineties. Yeah, after the back of, the Neil Rackham research, where they saw that the best sales guys weren’t doing what they have trained actually.

Fred Copestake: Rather than push for the close, they were actually just asking more questions they’re understanding customer. They were saying, the customer is here now, they wanna be there but by understanding the impact of that, the consequences it has to them, the effect on their business, how that’s important to them, they were taking time to understand it. And not just for themselves as a salesperson, it’s so the customer could go, Whoa I hadn’t thought that, Oh, actually, that’s quite a big deal, isn’t it? Yeah. Right, I need to do something about that then. And that broadly is what consultative selling brought to us.

Fred Copestake: And I know that’s a bit, maybe a bit oversimplified but by asking questions, to get somebody else to reflect and think about where they are now, is not really where they wanna be. And then say, well, can you help me with that? Yes, I can. You almost don’t need to handle objections. You start and present to them and say, well, okay here’s what we can do about that. Oh, that’s brilliant. Now, there might be some detail that needs clarifying but, having that prescription before or after diagnosis piece, it just makes so much more sense. It was a really big decade the nineties, and that’s that scenario there all the training we do you know, we’ll definitely spend some time thinking about that because that’s where we need to go. As we move through the noughties, tens and twenties.

The nineties’, noughties’ and tens’ consultative selling

Darryl Praill: So it’s crazy, right? Cause I obviously, you know, I really came of age in the nineties, cause that’s when I was really in the workforce, truly, truly. I think I entered 89. So, this whole consultative selling thing, it’s truly a nineties phenomenon. That’s what everybody did. And I even remember back then how, coming off of the eighties, that was like just so mind-boggling to so many people who had gotten to the eighties groove, cause it was very much you went from being very aggressive to being very much, I don’t know how you want to say it, co-operative, you know, aligned. Because you were truly consulting with them. I love your point. And the prescription after diagnosis.

Darryl Praill: A lot of times is spent in the upfront on the diagnosis. And many of you today will push back, get up frustrated or upset when you get stuck in a deal on price. And it’s, you know, you’re trying to close the deal and price has become an issue. And we’ll I often say, well, that’s because you should have dealt with price upfront. Which is going back to exactly what Fred’s talking about. Asking those hard questions upfront. And so, the other party is really getting up by asking questions and helping them understand the impact of change. Then that already sets you up for, well, that’s the impact, well then, if this price is, yeah, the price is a lot, but the impact is like a lot. It’s like 3 X, 5 X, 10 X. So, therefore, the price is irrelevant. In other words, you’re getting over those obstacles. I love the consultative selling. It’s consultative selling still alive, in your opinion?

Fred Copestake: A form of it. It’s the absolute foundation, it’s absolute foundations. And this is how I see it. And this is my opinion on stuff. It got a bit of a revival of the tens with challenger sale. So when we talk about challenger, there’s actually a very specific form of selling, called challenger, that the CEB and now the Gartner guys developed. Because they looked at what people were doing, and the fantastic piece of research and found that actually, the most successful salespeople are the ones that will push back. They won’t think, oh, I can’t say that to the customer, cause they won’t even like me anymore.

Fred Copestake: And they won’t be my friend and the relationship will be fall apart. So I know the relationship will fall apart, if you see them about to make a mistake, or if you let them do something that isn’t best for them and doesn’t highlight that, and don’t kind of call them out on it. You don’t have to do it in a nasty way but you do have to do that. And I know a lot of salespeople do find that quite tricky. But it’s the very much the right thing to do, you know. And that is where, I think it takes, it’s consultative plus, plus, plus, if you like. Cause you need those fundamental skills and you need to bring in, we’ve kind of jumped a decade there we need to bring in the stuff of the noughties which for me was value by selling to have that insight, and to have that understanding, to be able to push on them.

Fred Copestake: If I, you know, I’m not totally stupid I don’t probably look at it but if I’m going to challenge you, if I’m going to push back on you Darryl, I’m gonna have a pretty good basis to do that on because otherwise, you’ll just tear me apart. But if I say, well, no, I’ll tell you why I’m saying this. And this is where it’s coming from, and here’s my research, and this is how I’m seeing it, and this is the backup, then you’ll think, oh, okay now that is useful for that I actually hadn’t thought that. No, no, no. Thank you. I appreciate that. And how does that work? Oh, we need to work on this together. Don’t we? Because you seem to have got some understanding here that I don’t have. So that for me is where value selling noughties comes in. It’s generating those insights and that stuff that’s gonna be useful for customers. And again,

Darryl Praill: So we’ve just done two back decades back to back he skipped one to see if you were paying attention. So if the nineties was about asking questions consultative selling,

Fred Copestake: I didn’t skip it, you did, sorry to interrupt you, but you took us into the tens.

Darryl Praill: See, I had to push back on you. I had to push back. So the noughties were value-based selling, generating insights. I love it. And the tens were challenger selling, so calling prospects that was necessary but being consultative plus, plus, plus. You see, I’m busy writing notes down here and he messed me up cause I had to go and jump a line and then go back to the other decade. So there we go.

Fred Copestake: Leap in spaces. Really big spaces.

The twenties’ collaboration

Darryl Praill: All right. So, bring us home. It’s the twenties.

Fred Copestake: Well, the other thing I would say that happened in the noughties and tens really, was at the same time as this stuff going on, so being very grounded and having good sales skills, understanding how to ask questions, understanding how to help people understand value. And as one of my colleagues said, he’s got a brilliant, I’ve got to share this. I wish I’d come up with it. But he talks about, well, he’ll say what’s value? The answer is, well, it’s a mystery. I don’t know. You don’t know, marketing doesn’t know. Customer knows. Or customer doesn’t, might not know actually, we’ve got to work with them to understand what value is for them. That’s the key.

Fred Copestake: That’s the sort of takeaway tip I would say if you are value selling is, you can’t dictate to me what you think value is. You’ve got to work with me to understand what it is. So there’s a sort of difference. I know what it says here are my value prop. I don’t care it’s what’s in here. And what I might not know, that’s what you need to work out. So we need to put that in the end with, how we’re using insight to generate that and to get that understanding. That’s when you’re really cooking with gas to be talking about proper customer value. So pain that they might have, that’s kind of consulting, gain that they can get that will in very simple terms, that’ll be how I define value selling and what those decades bring to us. And that’s why they do sit nicely together. They do make sense now.

Darryl Praill: They do.

Fred Copestake: When we look back to apply those things.

Darryl Praill: I’m just thinking back, now this may not be a UK reference but in North America, I’m thinking of them you know, you said, you know, defining value. What is it? Well, it’s a mystery. Only the customer knows. So, using some pop culture references here, especially if you’re a nineties child or not, you gotta be Steve and Blues Clues, with your little detective book figuring it all out and taking down notes. Or you want to go back another decade or two you gotta be the gang from Scooby-Doo in the mystery van, figuring it all out. So there we go. All right.

Fred Copestake: You’ve seen my training slides. Which of course is lost on a lot of people. But I don’t care. Those were just personality styles that I used to talk about Star Trek, that completely loses people.

Darryl Praill: See, we have a question are you are a Trekkie or a Trekker, but that’s a whole different episode. So there we go. As last night, just last night, I was watching repeats of Star Trek Deep Space Nine and the night before that, next-gen. So, I’m guilty. Twenties.

Fred Copestake: I know it’s, just before we go to the twenties, before I lose it, do you wanna know the expression which will pretty much wind up every geek out there?

Darryl Praill: What?

Fred Copestake: Use the force Harry said Gandalf. If people don’t take anything else from the worth of the podcast, take that, it’s brilliant. Put it anywhere you can.

Fred Copestake: That is gonna mess them up.

Darryl Praill: It’ll upset so many people. Its superb.

Fred Copestake: I love it.

Darryl Praill: All right. Twenties.

Fred Copestake: And, twenties’ collaboration, yeah. Stop, listen, collaborate. Apologies to Vanilla Ice. I know it would have been obscure pop references there. Vanilla Ice, stop, collaborate and listen. It’s actually stop, listen and collaborate. Cause that’s what salespeople need to do. We need to just slow down a little bit, sometimes, listen to what people are saying and then really apply a mindset. How can we collaborate? How can we work together? And how can I facilitate the customer? How can I help them? So again, you can see how it’s tapping in to all that stuff we said, good call structure, understanding the person we’re working with, working out what the benefits are, thinking what their value they can get, how to ask questions in a certain way so that now we can properly really collaborate on stuff, work together. Co-create, to move things together, because that’s how you are going to add value now.

Fred Copestake: And you’ve got to be the individual that can do that. That’s the point, you’ve got to demonstrate, that you’re the go-to person. So that’s kind of using other elements of social media and these kinds of things where you can build your platform. And I know you’re a big fan of this stuff, so I’m going to hand it over back to you, that, you are the go-to person because that’s how you operate. You’ve got this knowledge, you’ve got the insights and you’ve clearly indicated to me, that’s the way you work. Cause that’s who I wanna speak to, I don’t want someone who is gonna come and read a brochure to me. Cause I can look up a brochure. I can do that. I need someone who’s gonna help me think and work together to almost create something out of nothing, potentially. That’s for me where the twenties is. Sales is becoming more and more complex but, that’s what we need to get our heads around. How to do this.

Darryl Praill: As I look through the decades, fifties, process. Sixties was all about, you know, the mind the brain, pick up the preferences and their sentiments personality styles. Seventies was FAB. Features, advantages, benefits. What’s in it for me. Eighties was objection handling. Nineties was ask questions, you know, understand consultative selling, you know, understand the impact of change. The noughties was value-based selling, generating insight, help them understand value. Remember, it’s a mystery that only the customer knows. The tens was challenger selling calling prospects out when necessary, but being consultative plus, plus, plus. And the twenties is collaboration. There’s a real corollary between Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z’s and our own personality styles here along the way.

Darryl Praill: Yet, ironically, all of these skills are still necessary today because, all the necessities of the sales process you don’t know if you’re gonna be, if the buyer is a Gen X or a Millennial or a Gen Z. So, there you go, there you have it. My friends, my friends out there, in INSIDE Inside Sales land. This, this is the one, the only Fred Copestake. Check him out on LinkedIn. Follow him. He’s dynamite. He’s on Twitter @fredcopestake. It’s really complex that way. So if you can do that, that’d be great. Brindis.co.uk. Fred, any final thoughts? Any way that you can get ahold of. I mean, you’re an author you’re a sales training rockstar. It’s all on the website, brindis.co.uk. How else, what else do they need to know about you?

Fred Copestake: One little thing that I will get through. This is brand new. I didn’t think I’m gonna talk about this on the podcast yet. So I’ve saved it specially.

Darryl Praill: Saved it special, yes.

Fred Copestake: I’d love you to go look at an app called rocky.ai. Okay. So this is an AI-driven coaching, conversational bot. And the reason it’s kind of on my agenda now is that Rocky’s read all my stuff and now knows how to sell. And Rocky can coach you, cause just I would love to be in everyone’s pocket, to be able to coach them as and when they need it, can’t be that practically. Rocky can. So, all this stuff that’s in the book, you don’t need my book now, Rocky’s got it. And rather than just read the book, Rocky will give it to you at the right time. You can read it sequentially, and you can take the course within the app, or you could just do the morning, afternoon reflections, and you can pick up on the stuff that I cover.

Fred Copestake: A lot of the things that we talk about within that. And, actually to be honest, even if you just turn off the selling stuff, don’t look at that. I would recommend you do this because Rocky can also take you through wellness. He can take you through mindset stuff, so help with clarity, purpose. It’s a really cool piece of care, which if you just get in the habit of a little conversation, with this little robot guy, who uses AI to pull back the conversation. So it will never be the same for anybody, ever. That will make you better as a salesperson. So even as you told the sales to file, just getting your own mind clear that’ll help big time.

Darryl Praill: It’s like a bonus round rocky.ai. I’m looking at it right now. Growth mindset and daily reflection app for strategic thinking, courage and focus, answer five-minute accountability. And self-reflection questions with your AI coaching bot. And it’s supported by curated soft skill tutorials and comments from like-minded people. You can get on the app store for Android or Apple. There’s also a web app too. So rocky.ai and yes, you heard it here first from the one, the only Fred Copestake. Fred, I’ve had a lot of fun today, walking through the decades with you. Thank you so much for spending time with us here.

Fred Copestake: It’s an absolute pleasure. I hope you’re not too misty-eyed to remember all those,

Darryl Praill: I’m feeling old. It’s what it is. Cause I understand that what’s on the stake is almost. Okay, guys. We’re doing it again, next week, there’ll be another episode coming at you loud and proud in the meantime, from Fred and I, we wish you much success. Take care. We’ll talk to you soon. Bye-bye.