Brian Basilico is the award-winning author of the best selling book “It’s Not About You, It’s About Bacon! Relationship Marketing In A Social Media World!” and his latest book, "Toilet Paper Math!”.
He was honored as one of the Top Marketers to Follow in 2018. Brian is an Online Marketing Strategist with over 40 years of marketing experience and the owner of an award-winning internet marketing company, B2b Interactive Marketing, Inc.
He is world-renowned for his LinkedIn Training and Innovative Content Marketing Strategies and was one of the first 1000 people to join the Social Network in 2004.
Brian is a syndicated blogger, podcaster, and a sought-after guest expert featured in Entrepreneur and Inc., magazines, With over 600 episodes, his show “The Bacon Podcast”, is ranked as one of the Top 100 Marketing Podcasts on iTunes, and was also recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of their top 35 business podcasts.
[Podcast Transcript Using Artificial Intelligence]
Umar Hameed 0:01
Are you ready to become awesomer? Hello everyone! My name is Umar Hameed, I'm your host on the No Limits Selling Podcast, where industry leaders share their tips, strategies and advice on how you can become better, stronger, faster. Just before we get started, I've got a question for you, do you have a negative voice inside your head? We all do, right? I'm gonna help you remove that voice and under 30 days guaranteed, not only remove it, but transform it. So instead of the voice that sabotages you, there's one that propels you to much higher levels of performance and success. There's a link in the show notes, click on it to find out more. All right! Let's get started.
Umar Hameed 0:40
Hello, everyone. Welcome to another episode of the No Limits Selling Podcast today. I have Brian Basilico here. He is a podcaster. He is an expert in sales and marketing. And thank you for being on the show.
Brian Basilico 0:53
Well, thanks for having me, Umar, it's a blast.
Umar Hameed 0:55
So sales is the easiest thing to do in the world at the same time is the hardest because you have to deal with your own mindset. Kind of thoughts on that, like duality of it. It's like, "You need something, I got something, let's make a deal," and then then we've got our own stuff we need to deal with that gets in the way of us showing up powerfully.
Brian Basilico 1:14
Umar Hameed 1:16
So your thoughts on that? That duality of it?
Brian Basilico 1:19
Well, I you know, the concept is when you're going to do sales, it's it's really understanding the end user and where they are in the journey. I always look at the sales journey, and I call it from a lead to a prospect to engage to a purchaser, right?
Umar Hameed 1:37
Brian Basilico 1:38
They're ready to buy. So the key thing when you're doing sales, and this is what I look at marketing is where can I meet them in the journey? So that when I do have that sales conversation that we're on the same page, so the duality becomes, you know, how can I get the messages to these people that keeps me top of mind until they're ready to make that decision.
Umar Hameed 1:58
Absolutely. And what's really amazing is the I'm the best salesperson in the world, you don't know that. On the time side, I call someone and they happen to be in the market for it, the desperately waiting for, I was just going to do that. And I seem like a genius at that. And I get this illusion that I'm better than I am. But you're right. It's you need to, to connect with people, you need to engage with people, and you need to be patient. I was coaching the sales team. And one of the salespeople had said, you know, "I finally got that guy to list his house with me, and I sent him another text message." And the leader of the team said, "Well, how many text messages did you send?" "He goes 21."
Brian Basilico 2:37
Umar Hameed 2:37
And he forgot all the other 20 It was just the 21st one came at the exact moment that he needed to take action. And a lot of salespeople think I'm gonna annoy the person. No, you're not they don't even remember you, but if you stay connected, that's how you win.
Brian Basilico 2:52
Absolutely. It's all about how do you provide value at the time and the place where they're at? You know, so communication, I look at, I look at marketing as basically the sparkplug to the sales engine, right? You're still going to need fuel, you have to have the product and service but the bottom line is sales is what drives a business. That's how you make money.
Umar Hameed 3:12
Brian Basilico 3:13
What marketing, a lot of times marketing is misunderstood as just an expense to try to get people interested in sales, when really what it is is a way to prime the pump to get people to stay aware of your product until they're ready to make a purchase.
Umar Hameed 3:28
Yeah, and I think actually, sales is the superset. I mean, marketing is the superset and sales is an element within it. Because marketing tries to figure out what products we need to create in the company, what the customers really want, we equip our salespeople to have the right tools to go out there and connect. And once the salespeople connect and get the sale, is the marketing people that follow up to make sure you know, "Did it live up to it? What do we need to change what didn't do better?" So it's not that they should be competing with each other, but they should be supporting each other because they're part of the same system?
Brian Basilico 3:59
Well, they are part of the same system. But unfortunately, especially in bigger companies, they tend to be in different buildings.
Umar Hameed 4:04
Brian Basilico 4:04
And you're in Baltimore so I'll give you a real life example that I think you can understand. I'm not trying to get political, but it really kind of explains it. You know, sales and marketing are two pieces of the same pie. It's part of our government, right? It's called the it's called the, you know, legislative branch. But the thing is, is that the House of Representatives represents the salespeople, they're the ones out doing forums and meetings with people and they represent a group of people that's a smaller subset, right. They understand...
Umar Hameed 4:05
Brian Basilico 4:05
...their audience a lot better. And so they put together a lot of a lot of great ideas. And so that's what the salespeople do. Now, the the Senate tends to be where legislation goes to die, right? You know,
Umar Hameed 4:47
Brian Basilico 4:47
they lump all that stuff in and it sits there. That's marketing. The problem is, is that they say, "Well, this is this is what we want, this is what we want." They're not listening to what the house is saying that their people want, right?
Umar Hameed 4:58
Brian Basilico 4:58
They're looking at the bigger picture So marketing tends to sit in its own house, even when I worked at At&t, the sales are good. We had five buildings in the one complex and sales was in Building One, and marketing was in Building Five. And you had to walk through all the other buildings to talk to each other, when they should be on the same page. And the way I look at marketing is marketing should be driven by what the sales people are telling you the caught your audience's saying.
Umar Hameed 5:23
Absolutely, they got the finger on the pulse. So let's take the sales cycle. So getting an appointment is a critical part of the sales process. Without that, you can be the best closer in the world, if you can't get enough at bats, forget about it.
Brian Basilico 5:37
Umar Hameed 5:37
So in this day and age with people, with voicemail, people also being bombarded with stuff, you wouldn't believe the number of calls I get from numbers that are identical to my phone number. As soon as they see a number that's really close to my number. I know it's a spammer,
Brian Basilico 5:52
Umar Hameed 5:52
calling to do something. So how do we get appointments in this day and age? So let's say we're, let's say we're a training company, and we're reaching out to VPs of sales? How do we get their attention? How do we get them to actually have a conversation with us?
Brian Basilico 6:06
Well, the simplest way to do that, number one is connect up with them. And don't try to sell them anything first, right? Just say, "Hey, you know, I, I'm interested in what you have to say, I've been following you on LinkedIn, let's say or I looked at your website, I just want to connect," right? And then the key thing that you have to do is you have to stay in their purview. So how do you stay in their purview, you wish them happy birthday, you talk about their promotion, you do something, do engage with them on a personal level. What that does from a social media standpoint is the more you engage with somebody, the more the algorithm shows them your stuff. So the thing you have to do is be present, right? And it's something that I do in business called the 10-10-10. What the 10-10-10 is you pick out 10 people, 10 minutes, 10 words, all right? Every single day, you reach out to 10 people and all you say, and when I say 10 minutes, it's one minute per person, you can send them an email, you can send them a Facebook message, LinkedIn message, Twitter, message, smoke signal, whatever you want to do. But the 10 words you say is how are you doing? How can I help you. And if you reach out to 10 people a day, the average person will reach somewhere between 150 to 200 people a month. And even if they don't respond to you, at least they are, you know, aware that you're there and that you care. And people don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care. So by staying in front of those people, it gives you the opportunity when the time is right for them to maybe communicate back, right? And you have to track those things. You have to think about, you know, am I entering the right data into my [garbled] CRM? How do I keep track of all of this stuff? How do I manage? You know, people look at it as managing customers, I look at it as managing relationships.
Umar Hameed 7:50
Absolutely. So once you've got the engagement, at least to, "Hey, we should do something, let's do a presentation." So talk to me about presentations in this day and age, what's the best way to present? What should we focus on? And how do we create presentations that get people to move forward in the sales process?
Brian Basilico 8:09
Well, I think the best way to create a presentation or do anything in marketing is, is know the person that you're talking to and let them design the presentation for you. So ask them a bunch of questions before you give the presentation, then make the presentation answer those questions for them and give them an opportunity to be engaged in it. I don't know if you've heard of a tool called Mentimeter.
Umar Hameed 8:29
Brian Basilico 8:30
It's Mentimeter is a it's a it's something that I use in presentations, I've learned it from somebody else. And bottom line, when I go in to present to a group, what I can do is I can pull the group, they can pull up their cell phone, and basically I asked him, Okay, what was the biggest challenge during the pandemic, right? You just ask them to put in one word, and it creates a word cloud. Or you can go in and say, "Okay, who said it was the kids," right? And you can ask them questions. If you ask people questions and engage them, they're going to be much more involved in the process, right? So that's a good tool.
Umar Hameed 9:05
So give me an example of a specific client you were working with. And the interview you did before you did your presentation. What was some of those questions? Like give me a real life example.
Brian Basilico 9:16
Sure. So real life example is I had a customer who came to me and said, "We're spending $100,000 a year, what the heck are we getting for it?" And I said, "I don't know," right? This was before I got the the job. So what I did is I said, "Okay, well let me go look at what's going on." And so I was looking at their process, like how much are you spending on on Google ads and Facebook ads? What are you doing here? Are you doing any books? Are you doing any webinars? Are you doing any videos? And what are you spending on those and why are you doing them and asking them the questions. They basically told me what they liked and didn't like. So when I went in and did the presentation, I was basically echoing back every single thing that they told me and told them immediately how they could save 60,000 of the 100,000 allocated toward The things they wanted to do rather than spending it on what they were doing.
Umar Hameed 10:03
Brilliant. And I think the thing people desperately want from desperate housewives to billionaires is someone to listen to them, like truly human to human connection is like so important. And so often overlooked by, "Let me tell you about my fantastic thing."
Brian Basilico 10:18
Exactly. Yeah. More so today than ever before, because we're all we're basically starved. I mean, I went in the other day for a doctor's appointment, they said, "You haven't been here in three years." in this like, "Yeah, I've been here three years, because there's been COVID I couldn't get in," right? So you know, now I was able to go in finally, and that, you know, after we started talking about, it was amazing how that time had passed. You know, people are just hungry for communication for human interaction. So the more you can interact as a human and not as a robot, the better off you're going to be.
Umar Hameed 10:50
Brilliant. So let's talk about handling objections. So you've got the appointment, you've done your research, you figured out what they want, you get the appointment, you figured out what they want, you get do the presentation. And at some point, you go, would you like to X? And then the objection comes out, whatever the objection is. Sp how do you handle objections in an elegant way that strengthens the relationship with the client, but also moves the sale forward?
Brian Basilico 11:12
Well, the you know, my business is very unique in the sense that I don't have a lot of clients and a lot of sales and a lot of objections. Usually, what I say is, we are good fit, or we're not a good fit. And what happens is, when I tell a client, we're not a good fit, a lot of times they will say you're right, or they'll try to justify why they are, right? So that's kind of the key thing is when we get to that point, and they're they're bringing up all these objections I'm saying, you know, I'll give you a clear cut example is one of the customers came to me and said, "Why like constant contact?" I said, "Okay, well, no offense, but it's it's a great email platform, but it doesn't do what you need it to do for your business." And they said, "Well, I don't want it to do anything more than what I do because this is the way I like email." I said, "Okay, that's great that you like it that way but bottom line is, do your customers like it, you're not talking to you, you're talking to your customers?" "Well, I am my customer," "Okay. I don't think we're going to be a good fit." Well, guess what they called me back and said, "Tell me more how we can fix this problem." It took them a while to realize that they were in their own way. So that's that's the way overcome objections is give them a chance to figure it out.
Umar Hameed 12:18
I bet you the people listening to this podcast, all four of them, "Hi mom," the are going to remember this, think of a customer where all the flags were do not do business with this person. And for whatever reason we pushed through, and we got the deal and we regretted it.
Brian Basilico 12:38
Oh, God. Yes. Yeah.
Umar Hameed 12:40
And so pushing back early is not a bad thing. And if you lose that thing, you're actually probably saving yourself a lot of grief and a lot of headaches.
Brian Basilico 12:47
Mm hmm. Yes. If somebody wants it too badly. I mean, one of the other telltale signs to me is like, if if I pay you now, will I get a discount? And the answer is no. You know, if that's what you're interested in saving money than you're looking at the wrong place. What you want is value, you know, the biggest. And the biggest thing about what I do for businesses from marketing perspective is everything is based on only one thing and one thing only, and that is how do I create better conversations between their sales team and their customer, right? And so what how do I know when it's working when they pay their bill, and the thing that I was able to do is a, you know, a company making about $50 million, set a 30% increase in the middle of a pandemic, why, because we listened to their customers, and we made better connections between their sales team and our customers. And the customers bought more of what they could get needed in the supply chain COVID era.
Umar Hameed 13:39
Interesting. One of the things you mentioned was, you know, uh, you and I are having a great conversation in the middle of that conversation in the deal that we're doing. And I just had this happen recently, I hired somebody in the negotiation part out of the blue, the issue came up of not taking advantage of people. As soon as I see an issue like that kind of surface by the other person, I kind of make a mental note, watch out for that behavior from that person.
Brian Basilico 14:03
Umar Hameed 14:04
And sure enough, has been two weeks, and every single promise and deadline that was promised has been ignored. And it was like, so if you do a negotiation and the issue of trust or fairness or something comes up out of the blue, then just put a red flag up and go, "Okay, I'm going to manage this really, really closely."
Brian Basilico 14:23
Yes, I bet you to read that in their eyes can't see. And you can mind read that whole process.
Umar Hameed 14:27
Absolutely. So if you're listening to this, we actually did a podcast a couple of days ago, where I was teaching Brian how to use reading eye movements to uncover what people are thinking. And we're gonna actually put a connection to his podcast in the show notes here so you can go find it. So we get to the stage of we're closing the deal.
Brian Basilico 14:47
Umar Hameed 14:47
And closing the deal is, could be as simple as, "what would you like to do." but also we need to set expectations of, "Okay, now that we're moving forward, this is what this relationship is going to look like." So there aren't any surprises and there isn't anybody kind of going, "I want to return this, I don't think I wanted to do this." So tell me about how you close and how you make sure the close stays closed. And more so it sets the stage for a really beneficial relationship between you and your clients.
Brian Basilico 15:16
Well, one, there are two key things that I tell my clients up front and number one is...
Umar Hameed 15:20
There's no refund.
Brian Basilico 15:22
No, well, yeah, no, actually there is refund.
Umar Hameed 15:25
Brian Basilico 15:25
Yeah, I give refunds bottom line, I have a very simple, oh sorry about that. So I have a speaking of which, that was one of those calls that you were talking about. But one of the things that I do is I tell my clients, here's the bottom line, I have no contracts, so you have nothing to worry about, you're not gonna be stuck with me for a year, it's a month a month thing. If you're happy, pay me all right. If next month, you're not happy, then pay me and tell me you're done. And if you're really unhappy, don't pay me for the last month, that's the way I work with my clients
Umar Hameed 15:53
Smart. Me too.
Brian Basilico 15:54
They know 100% that they're, they have no, there's no long term commitment, they're not stuck in something. The second piece of it is, is I tell my clients, I have two expectations from you. Number one, you're going to show up every single week for a meeting. And you have to show for that meeting, reschedule but we have to have that meeting every single week, so that we can realign our expectations of each other. So you know, they know they only have to commit to four meetings, right? And, and they have to live up to their side of the commitment. And I let them know, if you don't live up to your side of the commitment, then I will fire you.
Umar Hameed 16:26
Brian Basilico 16:26
So that's the key. So the expectation is, I will deliver on my end, you have to deliver on your end, and we have this mutual agreement. Now moving forward, we'll figure out where it goes from there because the world is fluid, right? So we have to be able to adapt to each other and figure out the best way to work together. And the companies that have stuck with me have done so for years and years and years because we both have lived up to our commitments.
Umar Hameed 16:49
So one of the area's that's really kind of interesting is there's some people out there salespeople that can get the appointment, do a great presentation, handle objections, clothes, ask for like large sums of money without breaking into a sweat. But if you ask them to ask for a referral, it violate something within. So some people have a lot of difficulty asking for referrals, even though they do a great job and the clients love them. So A, how do you ask for referrals? and B, how would you recommend someone that's got difficulty asking for them to actually ask?
Brian Basilico 17:26
Well, there's there's a couple of different ways to do that. First and foremost, if you follow the 10-10-10, it's a lot easier because you're in constant communication with the people,
Umar Hameed 17:33
Brian Basilico 17:33
right? Second one is, when I asked for a referral, I just say Is there anybody else who's not a competitor, that you think that could benefit from this, and I don't want you to tell me now just keep that, you know, basically plant that somewhere and let me know if it pops up. So what you're trying to do is plant the seed on that. The next piece of it and this is a LinkedIn piece of gold is if you want to get a recommendation or get a referral or do something from somebody, the best thing you can do is going to give them a recommendation on LinkedIn. Because LinkedIn notifies them, they have to approve it to get it put on. And generally speaking, what they'll do is you'll have about 70% of the people that will come back and actually think about you and reciprocate in a better word competitive. So they're gonna write you a better recommendation by you doing it first. And then now you're exposed to their entire audience. So they're basically recommending you to all of the people that they would do a referral to anyways.
Umar Hameed 18:29
Brilliant. One of the things that has been a focus area for me of late is engagement. How do you engage with people in a deeper way, especially if it's a group, so if you're in LinkedIn, you've got a post that you want to create engagement for, that adds value to many people, not just one, so how do you go about creating engagement at all levels, one to one in the sales situation, one to many, and let's say a post in Facebook or LinkedIn, and also kind of being gauged with the people that you lead yourself.
Brian Basilico 18:59
Okay, so there's a formula for this, and it's called a race, all right? And there's two different races. There's the marketing race, and then there is the sales race. If you want to learn more about this, go to b2b-im.com, that's my website, B2b Interactive Marketing, b2b-im.com/ebook, you can download an explains it. But the two parts of the race from a engagement standpoint, R stands for relativity engagement. Then, the next thing is, I'm sorry, I have to go through my brain, so it's, without having it in front of me so it's relatively is it relative to the person? The A is awareness, excuse me raise awareness, the C is consistency and the E is experience, okay. So and what I mean by experiences more engagement is creating engagement with other people back so the art is it relative to that person, right? Are you creating awareness, you do the awareness through consistency, you constantly post that group every single week. If you post once a month, nobody's gonna see it.
Umar Hameed 20:06
Brian Basilico 20:06
But if you do it on a regular basis, they'll know it. And then the engagement happens when somebody says something on your posts likes your posts, go with thangka. It's that simple. If somebody clicks and doesn't like, go say thanks for clicking, if somebody puts a comment in comment back, you have to engage them in order to get them to engage you, that's the marketing side of the race. The other side of the race, the sales side is R is relationship, A is authority, C is commitment and then E is experience. To the bottom line is you have to create a relationship with that person, you have to build authority through that relationship that you know what you're talking about, then you have to have a commitment to them, show them that you're going to deliver on what you promised and finally create an experience for them that they've never had with anybody else. Be different, and make them feel like this is going to be different than the other guy is trying to sell me the same product for 10 cents less.
Umar Hameed 20:59
Brilliant. Brian, thanks so much for being on the show. But before we part company, is there a brain hack that you used to be more effective, close better, be happier, be sexier that you'd like to share with the audience?
Brian Basilico 21:10
Yes, I have themed days. And the theme days for this. I have a marketing Monday, it's Training Tuesday, working Wednesday, togetherness Thursday and flexible Friday, Monday spend working on my business, basically, my marketing messages, get everything prepped for the week. Tuesday, I train my people and I have a business coach that trains me.
Umar Hameed 21:29
Brian Basilico 21:29
That whole days dedicated to learning giving and teaching. Wednesday is working Wednesday, it's when I do my client meetings and I plan all of my work activities. Doesn't mean they don't work the rest of the week but that's the focus of the day. Togetherness Thursday is where I do networking and also we'll just have random meetings like a lunch club or do podcasts and things of that nature. And then Friday is flexible. I can go golfing, I could work I could do whatever it is that I want to do. So having a theme day helps you to better understand what needs to get done each time so you're not sitting here trying to scramble.
Umar Hameed 22:01
So Brian, before we part company, we're going to put all your connections, emails, social media stuff in the show notes but if you could share as people are running on a treadmill today listening to you how they can get a hold of you and how they can get that ebook because I think they're in a race to do better in life.
Brian Basilico 22:19
Exactly. And it's really simple to find everything. All you do is you go to link. or linktr.ee, its link tree, it's linktr.ee/baconguy. And if you go to linktree.baconguy, or excuse me, linktr, it's always hard to do this URL, linktr.ee/baconguy. You'll have connections to everything, podcasts, blogs, LinkedIn, the ebook, everything is there.
Brian Basilico 22:31
Brilliant. Thanks so much for being on the show and I'm looking forward to our next conversation.
Umar Hameed 22:56
If you enjoyed this episode, please go to iTunes and leave a five-star rating. And if you're looking for more tools, go to my website at nolimitsselling.com. I've got a free mind training course there, that's going to teach you some insights from the world of Neuro-Linguistic Programming and that is the fastest way to get better results.