This article was largely inspired by the past writings and videos of The Brooks Group’s Founder, Bill Brooks. It is our honor to further his legacy by sharing his timeless teachings with you today.
A Brief History of the IMPACT Selling® System
Bill Brooks was a failure-to-success sales professional who climbed the ranks from door-to-door salesperson to CEO.
He founded The Brooks Group out of his home in 1977, and in the following 40 years wrote more than 20 sales and sales management books (including three best sellers), recorded countless audio programs, and developed the IMPACT Selling® System, which is in use by thousands of companies in hundreds of industries.
Today, IMPACT has been taught to over one million sales professionals around the world.
The Sales Success Quotient
Bill is credited with saying that sales is driven by three things and three things only. Together, they make up the Sales Success Formula:
(Job Skills + Sales Skills) x Personal Skills = Sales Success Quotient
Job skills include product knowledge, industry knowledge, and knowing how to run the software and the computer. Many companies think they can give their people that information and its sales training.
Sales skills include prospecting, positioning, pre-call planning, value-added selling, asking the right questions, gathering feedback, providing social proof, and closing.
Personal skills are the multiplier in sales. A salesperson with strong personal skills is a self-starter who is results-oriented, demonstrates empathy and emotional intelligence, actively listens, handles rejection well, and has the determination to stick to a sequential selling system. These personal skills cannot be overestimated.
The Basics of Selling Will Never Change
Bill was able to give average salespeople the success they were looking for because his system focused on building personal skills in conjunction with sales skills.
IMPACT will teach your sales team how to sell their way through any economic event the world throws at them.
“The secret to selling is never in the selling, it’s in the prospecting” — Bill Brooks
In 1995 while writing “You’re Working Too Hard To Make the Sale”, Bill and his co-author Tom Travisano reviewed more than 12,000 face-to-face sales interviews.
They found that when a salesperson followed a linked sequential sales process (selling system) they had a 93% chance of closing the sale.
Without a selling system, success dropped to 42%.
So, the question becomes: Are your salespeople “winging it?”
Finding Qualified Buyers
Sales professionals trained with the IMPACT Selling® System learn to focus most of their time finding and understanding their prospects.
This begins with an understanding of the five characteristics of qualified prospects:
- Awareness of need
- Authority and ability to buy
- Sense of urgency
- Trust in you and your organization
- Willingness to listen
IMPACT creates a paradigm shift in the way a salesperson thinks.
They realize they will be much more effective by developing and using strong personal skills to find qualified prospects, and then allowing those prospects to explain in their own words what they want to buy.
This is done by asking the right people the right questions at the right time.
Interestingly enough, Brooks and Travisano found that the average sales presentation consisted of six to eight features or benefits. Twenty-four hours later the average prospect remembered only one of them. In 39% of the cases, they remembered it incorrectly and in 49% of the cases, they remembered something that wasn’t brought up at all.
Your Sales Success Is Our Life’s Work
Bill’s vision became the legacy that we strive to advance as we help sales professionals enjoy the success he knew they could achieve.
Like Bill, we firmly believe that all selling problems can be overcome.
If you’re still on the fence about IMPACT or have some logistical questions about how it will work for your organization—just reach out to our team.