What We Learned from Perry Marshall

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Perry S. Marshall, internet marketing legend and author of the best-seller, ‘80/20 Sales and Marketing: The Definitive Guide to Working Less and Making More’ was today’s guest at the Warrior Ask Me Anything (WAMA) event. Perry talked about how business owners can leverage the 80/20 rule in identifying the right customers in sales and marketing.

The 80/20 rule

Most of the time, a lot of business owners think that they can market and sell to anyone. According to Perry, the 80/20 rule “turns marketing upside down”.

You can have the people you hire as example (let’s pick those in the sales department). In the 80/20 rule, it says that 80 percent of your salespeople are the wrong people. If you have 10 salespeople, two of them (the good people) will generate 80 percent of the sales and the other eight (the bad/wrong people) will only generate 20 percent of the sales. In the 80/20 rule, the good ones are 16 times better than the bad ones.

Perry said the first thing to do with this is to get rid of the wrong ones. The same principle applies for the people you are selling your products to. Sales, according to Perry, “is not a convincing process, it is a disqualification process”. It can be done by asking questions or showing your product to people. Some will notice you, some won’t.

Those who did not pay attention are the wrong ones to get rid of. Perry noted that most people spend their time trying to fix the bad ones rather than empowering the good ones. Find out who is interested in what you have to offer. They are the ones you should be working with even if they make up only a small segment of your list.

To be a smart marketer, Perry said you have to be a “pragmatic realist”. You have to understand that the big results you get is coming from a small part of what you do. With 80/20, you have to pour your energy into that tiny part that gives explosive results and potential.

Why apply the 80/20 principle?

“If have customers you don’t like, you have to get rid of them. You have to get rid of the good to make room for the great. Get rid of the mediocre to make room for the good. Most companies don’t do this that’s why they’re mediocre,” Perry shared.

When businesses define their products too broadly, they seem to drift away from the “bleeding neck” - where there’s a sense of urgency to buy something in order to deal with their ‘pain’. The product suddenly becomes for everyone.

These businesses have to narrow down their market. Perry said that the way to do it is to dig into the original story, just like great copywriters do.

“I have only in my life been successful at selling to the same person that I already was,” said Perry.

You can only understand your customer’s pain if you’ve experienced it yourself. You will become a more effective seller because you’ve been there, you were able to solve the problem, and you’re sharing the story and the solution to them.

“You should be selling to people you understand about subjects you know about,” Perry added.

The Star Principle

A member of the audience raised a question on how to grow a business without working 60 hours per week. Perry’s answer? Star Principle. This is a formula that tells you if your business has high chances of success. See here if your business is a star.

Selling and persuasion

“I believe that selling, it’s almost like an argument for why you should be doing business with me instead of everybody else. Arguments don’t win arguments. what wins arguments is evidence. You need to make an argument to why they need to give you their money and back it up with proof and evidence,” explained Perry.

Perry also shared notable insights on writing a book and how to overcome writer’s block. Another important thing you should hear is the “racking the shotgun” story that backed up the 80/20 principle. So watch out for Perry’s WAMA recording which will be uploaded next week - another exclusive content for Warrior Forum War Room members!


Posted 13 February, 2015

flDyan Staff

Junior Product Marketing Manager at Freelancer. Outside of work, I'm into wedding coordination, entrepreneurship, beach trips, badminton, reading novels, and binge-watching TV series on Netflix.

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