Henry Evans is an entrepreneur, author and VP at PhoneBurner. Working both alongside his team and directly with clients, Henry Evans helps ensure the success of thousands of active PhoneBurner clients. His passion is to deliver measurable sales growth to teams of all sizes, by helping them implement a more efficient and more effective sales process.
[Podcast Transcript Using Artificial Intelligence]
Umar Hameed 0:06
Are you ready to become awesomer? Hello, everyone, this is Umar Hameed, your host and welcome to the The No Limits Selling Podcast, where industry leaders share their tips, strategies and advice on how to make you better, stronger, faster. Get ready for another episode.
Umar Hameed 0:35
Hello, everyone, today I have the privilege of having my friend, a leader in sales, Henry Evans. He's the VP of customer service at PhoneBurner. Henry, welcome to the program.
Henry Evans 0:45
Thanks for having me, Umar. Glad to be here.
Umar Hameed 0:48
One of the things I hear time and time again, is that cold calling is dead. And you know what? Cause people really want to believe the lie, they embrace it, kind of your thoughts on it?
Henry Evans 1:00
Well, you know, I actually love it when I hear that. Because that means that more of our customers over at foam burner are going to be getting even better results. And we've seen a lot of tests done out there. And when you really look at the numbers, again, it all depends, everything's relative. It depends on who you're calling, but we have a lot of b2b customers and b2c for that matter, and cold calling definitely is not dead. Building relationships on the phone definitely is not dead. But it's oftentimes done in conjunction now with a email campaign, or a text messaging campaign or a retargeting campaign. You know, you don't see it done. Just always stand alone like it used to. But no, it's definitely not that it is it is alive and well for people getting results today.
Umar Hameed 1:49
What's interesting is our beliefs dictate how we see the world and we want to make sure our beliefs no matter how noble, or how screwed up they are, that they're true. And I think so many salespeople embrace the cold calling is dead. And it's almost like thank God, I don't have to make those calls anymore. And they'll look for data to validate and yet their pipeline is weak. Picking up the phone for a lot of people. It's scary, right?
Henry Evans 2:13
It is, it is. And there's no question we, we actually did a test recently. I actually call that Operation: Eat your own dog food. And I had a bunch of people internal the PhoneBurner. I mean, some people have a sales background like I do. I've been the VP of sales of companies in the past and and have managed sales teams and been in sales myself. My very first job was actually selling the Buffalo Evening News, which was owned by Warren Buffett.
Umar Hameed 2:40
Henry Evans 2:41
It's pretty cool. So my first sales job was for Warren Buffett. But you know, when you when you look at, you know, you know, making calls, people are intimidated by it. So what can you do, and I know that you teach a lot of the mindset components, which are super important. And on the software side, we really have a tool that enables you to make one call in the PhoneBurner, and then it does all the work from there. So you only have to get up and build up and overcome that call reluctance one time of PhoneBurner, then you can call 50,60,150 people all in one setting, just by clicking the button. And we found that when we looked at all the data, Omar was really interesting. One of the biggest issues or leakages, we found with people not making calls is after a bad call, they like feel the need, I got to take a break, man, that call was hard, I got to shake it off and go for a walk, gotta go get it, you know, go to the water cooler, go to the bathroom, whatever, where when you're doing that and phone burner, as soon as you click that button, the next number is ringing. So you don't have time to wallow in the negativity which...
Umar Hameed 3:49
Henry Evans 3:49
actually is a pretty big benefit.
Umar Hameed 3:51
Here's a joke I heard maybe you've heard it before. Henry, do you know how to make a salesperson shut up?
Henry Evans 3:57
I do not. How?
Umar Hameed 3:58
Give them a telephone.
Henry Evans 4:00
There you go. Perfect. It's true. That's true, because everybody's intimidated by it.
Umar Hameed 4:05
making calls is really difficult in this sense. Number one, you got to figure out who you want to call. And to prepare that list, sometimes it's a really hard thing for people to do. And if they don't have a CRM, and CRMs aren't really geared towards making calls. They're geared towards remembering the data and what the next step is. So it's such an arduous process of using a CRM to make calls, number one we'll get I'll let you go deeper into that. And the second thing is like, who might calling next and I think that's one of the beauties of PhoneBurner is that it solves that problem for you. You've already thought about it, it says, you're ready to make calls, how many you want to make hit go and then boom, we're in it.
Henry Evans 4:43
Yeah, that's that's exactly how it works and the more thinking you can take out of it the better. So we have one of our features called lead stream which is automated, lead distribution, which means you dump 1000, 10,000, 50,000 leads into a bucket, and then different team members can dial out of that bucket. And I'd like to kind of frame it for somebody that hasn't ever used a system like that. It's like an all you can eat buffet, Umar can have as much as you want to have but you have to eat one bite at a time so nothing gets wasted. So you get all the leads you want but nothing is actually wasted. But this idea of, of deciding who to call that takes all of that decision out of it. And just with normal PhoneBurner, we use a folder and a save search methodology to just take the thinking out of it. Click this list, and click the button to dial. And when we first started, we didn't realize that, you know, because we started as a CRM, and then we built our power dialer on top of it. And then we also obviously work with other serums, like Salesforce and HubSpot, and Zoho and, and others through, you know, things like Zapier, but yeah, the idea of not having to think about who to call is really important with whatever system you use. And then how do you very quickly just jump into the calls, without over analyzing it. And a lot of people get, you know, analysis paralysis when it comes to sales.
Umar Hameed 6:08
Absolutely. And I think once you're in the thick of things, it's a lot like public speaking, people have the biggest fears before you get on stage. And then the second biggest fear is when you're on stage. And people make a really bad mistake, because people have been advising them to see the audience naked. And Americans are overweight, this is not a good thing, it causes trauma. But once they get going after the first minute of speaking, 99% of people are okay, and they just go It's just that initial reluctance to get started. And I think what PhoneBurner does is that once you make that first first phone call, like you said, then the whole thing's rolling, and you just roll with it. Because you don't have to be creative and unique on each single call. I mean, pretty much it's like, hey, "Henry, how are you?" And the next person's, "Hey, Judy, how are you," or whatever opening you've got, so there's not a lot of creativity there, but getting started is critical. And using best practices, so you've been working with a team, how do you recommend we capture best practices?
Henry Evans 7:09
Yeah, that's a that's a really good question. And I'll kind of share an example of a particular company, it's actually a company in the mortgage space and big phone burner customers. And then they also recommend it to others, but they've got a really unique best practice. So what they do is they recommend you have call Mondays, which is in the morning, when you first come in, you're calling...
Umar Hameed 7:33
Henry Evans 7:33
...all of your, all of your new leads, basically. So every morning, but especially Monday is like Newly Monday, Tuesday is like I think it's called Touchbase Tuesday, they have like funny names, everything is like touch base. And for census of setup for mortgage agents, it's calling and touching base with all of your existing clients that are in the pipeline. And then they have Realtor Wednesdays or something like that, where on Wednesdays, you're calling all of your realtors, and just kind of touching base with your top 30 realtors that you work with. And each one's a different list inside of, in our case, our platform inside a PhoneBurner but could be in anything but. So you so the best practices, how do you set up a system to automate the thinking, so now you don't have to think about what do I do, "It's Wednesday, what do I do," you know, Wednesday is realtor day and you're gonna get your realtor list and call them up. And the other thing they teach, which I love is you make all of your calls first thing when you go in.
Umar Hameed 7:34
Henry Evans 7:34
And so you don't wait till the afternoon or when you feel like it, it's just when you get in, you don't check your email, you don't check CNN, you don't check your stock, you know, nothing, you just get in, get your calls done. And you know, if you're using a power dialer, like we have, if you've got 50 calls, it's going to take you less than an hour. So before 9am if you come in at eight, you're already have blown through all of your calls for the day. And then you can go about the rest of your business and you get a nice feeling of accomplishment to knowing that, "Hey, I already was able to get that done."
Umar Hameed 9:04
And the reason we put off calling is because it sucks, but it's the most important thing to fill your pipeline and make sure you hit your number. And when you put it off. It's like you're putting off the most important thing you need to do. I was working with the sales team and one of the people that was doing the calling. So I heard him make a call, I had explained to him, you know, the call you just made was very rigid and mechanical and awkward and that vibe people pick up. So rather than say that to him, we had recorded it. And I said, "Okay, do me a favor, who's your best friend?" He goes, "My best friends Jack. I said, "Okay, where is he right now?" "He's at home," "Call him up right now and invite him to the movies this weekend. And let's go out see like the latest action flake." And the guy calls his buddy up, and I record that too. And I say, "Now listen to the two calls to the richness of your voice, the familiarity, the warmth in it,
Henry Evans 9:57
I love it.
Umar Hameed 9:58
one it's there and the other one is like," no wonder people are like instantly wary of your call. And then letting him hear it allowed him to go, "I totally get what that is," and that caused the improvement. Because I think all too often we tell people what the issue is, but they just can't understand it because they can hear themselves.
Henry Evans 10:17
Right. No, that's that's absolutely right. And, and that's why getting coaching, I think is so important. You know, if you look at all of the most successful athletes in anything, they they all have coaches, and sometimes we think well i'm i'm a salesperson, or I'm a, I'm a VP of sales or director of marketing, whatever it is, like, I'm I don't need any coaching. But everybody can use somebody. You know, Tiger Woods, you know, you know, his coaches and better than he is, but he sees things that he doesn't even though,
Umar Hameed 10:48
Henry Evans 10:48
Tiger is a better golfer. So having somebody point that out, that's a really good idea. One of the ways that, you know, I've seen that work really well is to record calls.
Umar Hameed 10:58
Henry Evans 10:58
You know, and we've actually got that option inside of the software. So if that's something that that you're allowed to do, and whatever market you're in, and you know, all dependent, who you're calling, and what state and all that stuff, there's different laws out there, but we have the capability, that's fascinating, to be able to like listen to a call and hear how it went and then have somebody critique it afterwards. And sometimes just knowing that you're gonna be recorded is enough to do a better job. So yeah, that would be fascinating to do that though like, here's you talking to your friend, here's you doing a cold call, hear the difference and I'm sure it was profound for that person.
Umar Hameed 11:33
Absolutely. And one of my other clients, they did something really interesting, they put the call recording, they also had a webcam recording the sales rep, and every single sales rep was pissed off, and big brother's watching me, and I can't believe you're doing this. And it just caused major headaches, and then they realized they miscommunicated what they wanted. So then they re communicated whites there. And this is what they said more clearly the second time, "What we want to do is to record every single call that you make. And at the end of the week, what we want you to do is to pick a call that went really well, and a call that went sideways and then sit down with your manager." Because you know, no managers got enough time to listen to all the calls, or somebody calls.
Henry Evans 12:12
Umar Hameed 12:12
But the sales rep comes in and says, "Yeah, this call went really well." And if it went really well, and it was just okay, the manager goes, you know, "Good job." But if it went exceptionally well, the manager says, "Wait a minute, we need to let everybody in the company here, this is going to be the new way of doing this, this is best practices. So really big kudos to that sales rep for doing it." And on the call that went sideways, then they can both discuss it, not that you did this wrong, but we're sitting on the same side of the table looking at the call and saying, "Oh, when he said this, you miss that." And if you had gone down this path, it would have been better, and his coaching that's on point and really helps the salesperson get better rather than generalities because you're not.
Henry Evans 12:54
Yeah. Anytime you can be very specific. And all the sales coaching and training I've done and, and give and receive, the more explicit and specific you can be the better like, "Hey, on this call at this point right here, you see if you would have asked this, how it might have gone a different direction. And you see the way you went the direction it went. And just pointing that out," because again, a lot of the time we just don't realize what we're doing.
Henry Evans 12:54
Yeah. And we're blind to ourselves. And by the way, that's why God invented spouses to point out what [garbled]
Henry Evans 13:23
Exactly, exactly, yes.
Umar Hameed 13:25
Isn't it going back to that story, what the client saw was this because when the salespeople realized, this is a coaching tool for us to get better, the end result was, that every single sales rep in the organization improved their sales by 25% minimum.
Henry Evans 13:41
Umar Hameed 13:42
Because they had onpoint coaching that made them do better, because they realized what needed changing. And I think that's ultimately what we need to do as leaders is how can we get our people to let go of their fear and move forward? And going back to that team metaphor and, you know, successful athletes having coaches, you know, what happens when you have a team that goes sideways, and they fired the general manager, the new general manager comes in, and you know, the first thing they they do, this is what they say in the press conference, we're going back to basics.
Henry Evans 14:15
Umar Hameed 14:15
Because you always have to go back to basics and in our profession, going back to basics is using the phone effectively.
Henry Evans 14:22
Absolutely. Yeah. There's a famous story about Vince Lombardi who was the, you know, famed coach, where he would start off every season, and he would show a football, and they would say, this is a football, it's X inches long and X inches wide. And he would walk them around the field, this is a football field, and he would talk about why it's 100 yards and why this is 10 yards and it was it was back to the basics. But like think about it, when's the last time somebody did that? This is the this is the anatomy of a sales call. This is what we do and why we do it and going back to the basics oftentimes, and again, I I almost hate the phrase because it's so cliche but sales is a numbers game. But fundamentally, if you're doing cold or even warm outreach, it really is, if you don't put in the numbers, it's going to be hard to get the results. It's just you know, it's just how the how the numbers play out. So going back to the basics and the fundamentals, I think is really important for everybody.
Umar Hameed 15:17
Couldn't agree more, I think there's like three aspects to sales, one of them is having the right skill set, so you know what to do. And then you need to have the right mindset to make sure you do it properly, then you get the numbers. And if you've got an okay, skill set, and an okay, mindset, your numbers are lower, so you have to do more calls, to make ends meet. But if you improve your skill set, the number of calls you need to make reduce, and if you have a stronger skill set the mindset, and then you are like in the zone, that's where you're highly effective.
Henry Evans 15:51
I couldn't agree more. Yeah. And, and it's interesting, you know, because some, some people are just naturally gifted at one or other or both of those. But I'm, I'm a firm believer that sales is a is a teachable skill, that anybody who can communicate, that's kind of the number one thing. If you can communicate, it can be learned and a lot of sales, people think, well, it's been able to talk smoothly, and it's like, but fundamentally, though, we're given two years for reason is it's asking good, pertinent questions.
Umar Hameed 16:25
Henry Evans 16:26
And I'm saying guiding people, and then having the, the wherewithal to tell them if it's not a good fit. I mean, I've had, you know, calls with customers and all sorts of products I've sold, and then you know what, to be perfectly honest, this isn't the best fit, I'd recommend this competitor of ours, they're a better fit for. And people always appreciate that, if you genuinely look out for their best interest, they pick up on that energy. And then they know that, hey, you're not going to steer them wrong, it's more of a consulting role is how I found almost always brings more success than a hardline hammer somebody in the getting them to buy.
Umar Hameed 16:59
I been to sales conferences with is like a couple hundred salespeople. And I talked to them about beliefs. It's like, okay, beliefs get set when we're very, very young. So the thought process is simple. "Complete the sentence for me, please, salespeople are?" somebody in the audience goes, "Driven," someone else says, "Powerful," "Make it happen," and there's like, all these positive attributes, and after about six or seven of them, somebody else goes, "They're sleazy," "They're untrustworthy," and all of a sudden, you get a list of negative things. They are the beliefs in our society around sales, but to the great salespeople do not force anybody to buy, like you said, they build a connection rapport. And then they actually delve into the world of the customer and say, "Hey, what's going on? What's working? What isn't?" and then the customer goes, "This is my problem, " and then they figure out whether there's a fit. So sales is a noble profession, that nothing in this world happens till a salesperson makes it happen.
Henry Evans 17:54
Absolutely. And, and it's, it's interesting, because I think, you know, even as recent as you know, three, four or five years ago, but definitely 10 years ago and up, you could get by with, for lack of a better word, pressure selling somebody into something nowadays, with Yelp, and social review sites and jeetu, and all these different places, you know, Google reviews, Facebook, you know, it's like, there's just no hiding. And you know, you better take good care of your customers, and you better treat people who are prospects really, really well, because if not, boy, it's gonna come back to bite you I've seen, you know, literally companies that have had to close down and reopen because, you know, they just didn't take care of their customers. I mean, it's just, you know, or closed down permanently. I mean, you really, it's, it's a different world with, you know, just this extreme viral communication that we all have instantly. It's, it's, I mean, you got to really think about that. And I feel pretty strongly that the days of pressure selling people are pretty much dead now. It's just, it's just too hard to do it.
Umar Hameed 19:01
Yeah. And I think in this day and age of even this police reform that's happening now is happening, because there are this full transparency now, whether you want...
Henry Evans 19:10
Umar Hameed 19:10
...it or not.
Henry Evans 19:11
Umar Hameed 19:11
As it should be. And I like our chief sales officer for the country right now. I think is Dr. Fauci because he's been selling us what's the best way to overcome this. Before we part company, let me tell you what I really appreciate about your technology. I get calls all the time from automated dialers and I hate them because there's a pause.
Henry Evans 19:32
Umar Hameed 19:32
And it's like, you know, it's somebody.
Henry Evans 19:34
You can tell.
Umar Hameed 19:35
And, you can tell and the one thing I love about PhoneBurner is this is that soon as a customer picks up the phone, you say hello, there is no pause, nobody knows that you use the automatic dialer. If you dial in number goes into voicemail, I just call somebody today and there was like a 42 second voicemail,
Henry Evans 19:53
Umar Hameed 19:54
like intro for me to leave a message. "Hi, my name's da da da da, and I only returned calls da da da," and I like I said, it's like, "Oh my God." The nice thing about PhoneBurner is soon as the PhoneBurner app dials a number, as soon as you start hearing a voicemail, you hit go, it waits for the beep and leaves a message. One of the things we do badly as human beings is leave phone messages because but in PhoneBurner, you record the perfect message.
Henry Evans 20:20
Umar Hameed 20:21
And you can re record it 100 times. So once you got it perfect, all you need to do as soon as you start somebody with the high level message, you hit go, you're calling the next person. So your four hours of dialing, that would have been horrible and painful, gets reduced to under one hour. And you get on with the rest of your day. And because the rest of your day now is filled with appointments.
Henry Evans 20:43
That's, that's that's literally exactly what happens. And I was talking to a customer yesterday, that's literally he said, I just can't believe how much time this has saved. And it. And it's interesting, though. So to your point on the voicemail, you know, there's, you know, so many people try to take selling, and like cram a whole bunch of steps in the one. And if you look at selling just like dating, you don't meet somebody for the first time and go, you know, "I really like you a lot. Why don't we go spend the weekend in Napa, and we should really consider getting married on a first date." Now, even though,
Umar Hameed 21:15
Henry Evans 21:15
my first date with my wife, I actually felt like that, if I was dead, that I would have had a big creeper sign on my head, and she would have thought I was absolutely nuts. So there's a time and a place you have to go through a courtship process and sales,
Umar Hameed 21:29
Henry Evans 21:29
just like you do with dating. And so this this concept of, you know, leaving a long voicemail, no, no, the only goal of the voicemail to get them to call you back just like a date. The only goal is the text of the text or the emails, just get them to the next step. So don't don't try to skip steps. And a lot of people like, "Well, I want to tell him everything in the email, I want to send them an email follow up, I want to have a video on there and three testimonials." And I'm like, "Do you think they're going to read any of that?"
Umar Hameed 21:29
Henry Evans 21:29
People are so time compressed and busy, they won't read it. So just slow it down, walk them through the steps, just like it's like a dating, you know, just a dating analogy that and that tends to help people think about the 42 second voicemail because it does not work very well.
Umar Hameed 22:11
No, not at well, short and sweet. And sales is a lot like this, one of my friends, his name's Phil McWilliams. When he was in university, he was went to a party at his friend's house when he was coming down the basement, he saw this young, gorgeous woman across the way and he went, I'm gonna marry her. But he did not immediately propose he did not matter. And then after three or four hours, they went out on a date. And then after several dates, they got more serious and he ended up marrying her like 29 years ago and they've been happily married. As a salesperson, you may think this is a perfect marriage, but don't propose it on the first email.
Henry Evans 22:51
So true. So true. There's a time and a place. Yeah, you gotta you got to walk through the steps. And unfortunately, you can't skip steps even if you know that your product or service is perfect for them or like your friend knew, she's the perfect woman for me it is new and in his in his gut. Just don't, just don't share that with them right away.
Umar Hameed 23:11
Absolutely. Henry, I appreciate what you guys are doing that PhoneBurner you make the hardest part of selling a lot easier for folks, so thank you for doing that. And thank you for being on the program.
Henry Evans 23:22
Happy to be here. Thanks so much for having me.
Umar Hameed 23:29
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.