I always send emails out to see what kinds of videos you want and one person asked if I could make a video about ‘getting past gatekeepers.’
Now when it comes to sales, you’ve probably heard all kinds of different ways to get past gatekeepers and all kinds of things you can say, do, and all that stuff.
Almost every book on sales or every sales speaker tells you what to do. But very rarely does it work. Sometimes, it sounds good when they say it but when you actually do it, it doesn’t work. And that’s the difference between theory and reality.
Now there are only two reasons why you would be asking this question. Either you’re doing something wrong when you want to get hired as a speaker, or you’re selling a coaching/consulting program…or some type of product.
If you want to get hired a speaker and you have a problem getting past gatekeepers then you’re doing something wrong.
And what I mean by that is lets say you’re contacting someone about their event so you can get hired…
Well, all you have to do is send an email and say, “Hi, I saw your event xyz, can you tell me who’s in charge of hiring the speakers?”
I’ve never had someone say, “I’m not telling you that.”
You shouldn’t cold call because you’re just wasting time. And you’re wasting time because maybe they don’t answer and now you have to call back. So that’s time wasted.
But maybe they do answer…and what do you do when they answer and everything goes according to plan? Well…you send them an email anyways to your website.
So why call in the first place when you can just email and they can answer it when they’re ready, plus…you skip the step of the call and just get straight to the point.
You can also reach more people by sending emails versus calling.
But here’s the point…
If you’re sending an email and asking for the person in charge of hiring speakers and they’re not giving you that name then you’re doing something wrong.
Maybe you’re trying to sell yourself in the first email. Maybe you have the email signature at the bottom and they go check out your site and tell you no…even when they’re not the person hiring speakers.
But let’s say you’re selling a coaching/consulting program.
I’m assuming that’s the only reason someone would ask the question of how to get past gatekeepers.
So you have a coaching program and you call someone up so you can tell them how amazing your sales training is and how badly they need it. The problem is, when you call them up, the person won’t even put you through to the right people, they just say they don’t want it.
Now here’s the point where most people are going to tell you to use some brilliant line that’s going to get you past the gatekeeper but let me tell you the truth.
The truth is that your entire business needs to change.
What do I mean?
Think about it from the other person’s perspective. Someone calls you up on the phone and says, “Hey I want to talk to you about your sales team. I have a sales training program that I would like to talk to you about, when can we set an appointment to talk about it?”
What’s going through your mind?
You’re thinking… “Who the hell is this person?”
Some random person wants to talk about their program…they want to take up your time…and you have no idea who they are. What you’re really hearing from the person is, “Hey my name is ‘Who cares’ and I would like to take up your time and take your money from you. When can we meet up?”
Think about what you do when a telemarketer calls you? You immediately hang up.
It doesn’t matter what they say, you just hang up. For all you know, the thing they were selling could change your life…but you’re not listening to them because all you hear is, “I want to take up your time and take your money.”
It’s also important to note the way people buy high ticket items.
How do you buy a car?
If someone called you on the phone and tried to sell you a car, would you buy it? Of course not.
Before you buy a car, a house, or any high ticket item, you do some research. You look to see which car you like the best. What’s inside the car? Do you need heated seats? You go check out a couple of car lots…you never just go to one. Then after awhile, you buy the car.
Basically, you’ve been thinking about it for awhile, and then you buy it. You don’t just wake up and say, “I’m going to go buy a car today.”
If you have a coaching program and you want to sell it, you need a better funnel that shows people what you have to offer before you sell them the coaching.
Just like this website…
You notice I have all kinds of information for free on the blog. Then if you want the better information, you can join the PLATFORM members area for only $348 a year. If you want the information that guides you on building your speaking business, step by step for 12 weeks, building a speaking business from scratch…then you can join the SpeakPro Academy which is $1997.
Then, and only then, will someone pay $10,000 or more for coaching.
But if I started out by calling you up as a speaker and said, “Hey my name is Benji Bruce, I have a coaching program for speakers. Want to give me $10,000?” You would be like, “Man, what are you smokin?”
If you’re a speaker and you have a coaching program, consulting program, or some high ticket item, you need to show people that you’re worth what you’re asking for.
People have no idea who you are and they don’t know if what you’re offering is good or not. So if you give them a taste, then they’re more willing to invest into your program.
So if you have problems getting past gatekeepers then it’s because your entire business model is wrong.
People should be coming to you rather than you having to go to them.
If you’re selling a sales training program for $50,000 and you want a car company to hire you to train their sales team, then you’re not going to do that by cold calling the car company and telling them about the program.
You’re going to do that by putting out videos, blog posts, and all that other stuff about sales…more specifically, selling cars…and when they stumble upon it…maybe because you did PPC or SEO stuff, then they’re going to sign up to your email list. Then they’re going to keep reading the stuff you’re giving away for free.
You’re giving away free videos about how to sell a car in 10 minutes to anyone who walks in the door. And videos on how to sell 300 cars in 3 weeks. Or whatever you want to give away…you’re giving stuff away and then they contact you and say, “Hey, we want to hire you to train our sales team.”
That’s how it works.
So, if you’re having problems getting past gatekeepers, change your entire business model. Don’t get stuck in the past with the old ways of marketing.
And more importantly, don’t listen to people who are telling you things based on their previous reputation. They might have done things in the past that worked and they built up their name based on the results they got…but that doesn’t mean it works right now.
It’s almost like Michael Jackson telling you how to sell CDs. You’re thinking, “Oh shoot, this is Michael Jackson…if anyone knows how to sell CDs then it’s this guy.” But the problem is that nowadays, nobody cares about CDs. CD sales are the lowest they’ve ever been and they keep declining. Nowadays, people just want that one song on iTunes so they can put it on their iPod…they don’t go to the store to buy the whole CD.
Things change really fast so it’s important that you keep up. There’s a difference between what used to work and what does work. So don’t just listen to someone because of their previous street cred…get specialized knowledge on what’s currently working.