It started with a dream. Markita Andrews wanted to travel the world. That’s what she told her mom at 8 years old after moving to New York. Her mom relocated after being separated from Markita’s father. It could have been brushed off as a wishful childlike fantasy, but Markita was serious.
Markita’s mom was a waitress. On her salary, it would be highly unlikely Markita’s dream would ever come true. She told Markita if she really meant it, she needed to go to college in order to pay for her trip one day. Markita had a dream, now she needed a plan.
As it happened, the Girl Scouts were holding a contest. Whoever sold the most cookies would win a trip around the world. Markita jumped at her opportunity! She saw this as her ticket to accomplish her goal and she ran with it.
Markita learned quick. She discovered ways to persuade people that are often overlooked even by the best sales people. Here are 5 ways she won more sales: She Was Bold. Knocking on doors is one of the most challenging forms of sales. Psychologists’ tell us that our greatest need is acceptance and our greatest fear is rejection. Markita’s ability to face rejection and not take it personally is a winning trait that kept her momentum going. Law of Contrast. Markita employed a wonderful technique. She started with a high dollar amount in order to condition the potential buyers to think big. Whether they bought higher priced items or lower, they were likely to purchase a product because of options and contrast. Markita was far more successful than her counterparts because she understood this persuasive trigger. Persistence. Since Markita had a strong desire, she was able to focus on it when rejection arouse. Her passion for traveling around the world was greater than any one sale. She instinctively adhered to the idea that (as Jack Canfield would say) “ ‘No’ is just another word for next.” Humor. After breaking various sales records and reaching somewhat of a celebrity status, Markita was invited to be a guest on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson . During the interview Johnny asked: “What’s the secret to your success?” Markita replied, “I just went to everyone’s house and said, ‘Can I have a $30,000 donation for the Girl Scouts?” When they said ‘No,’ I said, ‘Would you at least buy a box of Girl Scout cookies?’ Fan Creation. By letting others know of her dream, Markita created support. She caused people to want to help her because she had a greater purpose. She had a vision of something greater than herself, she not only wanted to experience the world, but she wanted to pay her mom’s way too. This passion resonated with people and created raving fans who were rooting for her.
So What Should You Do? By employing the persuasive techniques above you and I are sure to win more sales. You don’t need to be an Ivy league grad to have guts, and you don’t need to be a scholar to have sizzle. What you really need is what Markita has, a PhD in Personality, Performance, and Persistence. The rest is just product knowledge and repetition.
Since it’s founding in 1912, no other person has sold more cookies than Markita Andrews. By using a combination of passion, persuasion, and a little psychology, Markita won more sales (and possibly hearts) than any other girl in the history of the Girl Scouts.
Markita not only won her trip around the world, but she sold over $80,000 dollars worth of cookies in the twelve years she was a girl scout. Not bad huh?
David Dallas Rivers is a husband, father of 3, an entrepreneur, speaker, and small business marketing consultant. He is the author of The Gift of Persuasion, How to Influence Others by Being a Better You.