ABC – Always be closing. Not in 2020.

You will often hear the term ABC in sales “always be closing”, regrettably it is still being used. But here is why it should never be used. Let’s say someone take up golf they have never swung a club but want to strive out onto the golf course like the next PGA winner with their friends. You can buy a standard set of golf clubs for £200 / $260 including the bag. But likewise, you can buy a single club the Driver for £600 / $780. So our friend George goes along to a golf store and he has money to spend but has no idea what he wants or what he should spend. George strikes up a conversation with the sales rep and its quickly apparent that George hasn’t a clue about golf, but he has money.

The sales rep states, you don’t need to bother with anything under £2000 / £2600 you want the very best, it will give you the best start and you will look and feel like a pro. George agrees, but before he swipes his credit card the sales rep tells him you need the latest lightweight balls at £40 / $52 a pack, happy George swipes his credit card and off he set’s ready for his first round of golf. George arrives in the clubhouse eagerly awaiting his friends to appear, when they do arrive George doesn’t even get the words out, do you want to see my new golf clubs. George is met with roars of laughter, boy George someone has seen you coming, who do you think you are the next pro, hey big spender the drinks are on you later. A bit upset George nevertheless walks out onto the first green, places the ball on the tee and lines up to hit the ball just like the professional. But despite George stance, swing and confidence he spins around and misses the ball, just like me, I don’t play golf. As the round of golf progresses George thinks to himself, these clubs are useless, I’m not even hitting the ball and when I do it runs along the grass and not into the air like the pros.

Almost at the end of the game Georges friend comes over to him and says George you look so unhappy, I thought you wanted to learn how to play golf? George replies I did, I bought the best set so I could get ahead, the friend chuckles and says O’ George the secret to golf is you start with a cheap set and as you improve your swing and knowledge of the game you upgrade.

Moral of the story: Will George ever buy from that sports store again, no. Will he continually tell other people not to buy from them yes. Could he take to social media and vent his frustration – possibly. The sales rep made a sale and probably a good commission as its not every day that your top of the range goods sells but imagine the story differently.

George walking into the sports store and the sales rep talking about the grip of the club, the distance an entry-level, mid-range and top-end club will give. Advising George that you need to be getting the ball into the air before you move onto a mid-range set of clubs. The sales rep tells George that the store hosts each week a starter class for people just like George, it goes over your stance, swing, and which club to use when.

Now consider the life-time value of George as an individual, he will more than likely buy from the sports store again, he will tell his friends about the great service and could even take to social media to state how happy he is. George has become a fan and is giving free referrals.

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