Posted on: Saturday, October 20th, 2012
You’ve probably heard the term “low-hanging fruit” to describe something that is easy to obtain if you are simply willing to reach out for it. An example of low-hanging fruit in new home sales could be the culling of leads from your elated buyers. According to Bob Mirman, CEO of Eliant – the premiere customer satisfaction organization in our industry – most builders fail to reach this easy-to-grab fruit because they do not call their elated homeowners, those who are most likely to refer. We know this fruit is out there.
There is an argument that for many years in many markets the sale itself was low-hanging fruit, with buyers lining up to purchase and waiting lists being the norm. In that case, the fruit was falling off the tree and into the salesperson’s hands! Those days, of course, are gone. Stand at the bottom of the tree and look for the easy pickings and guess what – you’ll starve! It’s a fact: that fruit is higher up the tree.
So how to we get to it? How do we get the sales that are way up the tree? I think there are four things we need to do to get to that point.
1) Learn how to climb. You cannot reach the fruit if you don’t know how to get up the tree. Do you have the knowledge of how to get up there? Here I refer to understanding the sales process well enough to utilize the proper techniques to reach the sales that no one else can get to. If there ever was a time where it would be in your best interest to know the process as well as you can, it would be today.
Ask yourself, “Have I radically improved my knowledge of ‘tree-climbing’ so that I am prepared to reach sales that others cannot get to?” There might be an action item for you – beef up your knowledge of how to get sales!
2) Get in shape. There’s a big difference between knowing how to climb and actually being in shape to do so. You must get beyond just knowing the principles – you must actually prepare yourself to use what you have learned.
Too much sales training is about increasing head knowledge. But it is the practice of what you have learned that best prepares you for the actual climb. Don’t kid yourself – you’re not any better when you go to a training class. You are better only when you practice what you have learned so that when that moment hits (when you need to jump from branch to branch in a hurry) you’re prepared.
3) Be prepared to work hard. The fact is that high-hanging fruit takes work to get to. The reason the fruit goes unpicked is because too many salespeople only take what is easy to grasp. But the harder you work the farther up the tree you go, and the more unpicked fruit you will find.
Can you really say that you are doing all you need to do to reach for the tough sales? Are you knocking on doors in your community, asking for referrals? Are you willing to drive to an internet prospect’s home to drop off a brochure in person? Are you making all the calls you can make? Are you following up on web leads diligently? The sales go to the hard workers.
4) You have to reach for it! When you get within the grasp, you still have to reach. It does you no good to get to the fruit and then not to pull it down. This would be a ridiculous thought to a farmer. You plant, you water, you grow… and then you reap!!!!
Are your closing skills where they need to be? Are you bold to ask for the sale whenever appropriate? Or are you unwilling to take a risk and grasp for the hard to reach fruit?
Here’s the good news – the hardest fruit to pick is the sweetest of all! And while others are starving because they are waiting for the fruit to fall off the tree, the best of the best go out and get it – they reach the high-hanging sales!