Could Five Little Words sell a Million Gallons of Gasoline?


  • When I first started in sales, I was trained by the Cadbury Confectionery Company. This company sold chocolate, yip chocolate...  but they had some of the best training programs any sales person would want. Even today looking back some 25 years later, the training, compared to what is on offer today, would stack up with the best.

    My First Real Job

    My job was to sell confectionery and stationery to newsagents and stationers in Sydney Australia. I would walk the streets of Sydney knocking on newsagents and stationers doors carrying a big blue bag full of samples of all the latest products from Cadbury and other suppliers

     On many occasions I would have to cold call on new clients and try and sell my products , sometimes I would get in the door, sometimes I wouldn't , but what I learned from my training with Cadbury was to open the conversation with tested selling sentences.

    I'm reminded of a story about just that: Tested Selling Sentences. I've kept this story on file for a few years now, just to remind me the importance of using tested selling sentences.

    Here's the story

    *“The Selling Word is mightier than the price tag. With words we govern people. 1 million people every week buy gasoline and oil because of certain tested words they hear from the man at the pump.

    My dad owned a gasoline station near Highland Park in Rochester, New York.

    On Saturdays and Sundays I would help him sell oil. One day a gasoline salesman from Standard Oil approached me. He asked me, what do you say to sell gasoline to motorists?

    I had no particular statement, so I told him: “Sometimes ask people if they want to five or ten, other times I just say how many today?”

    The salesman said, “The next motorist who comes in, say this to him: shall I fill it up?”

    I used the sentence, and the motorist told me to fill his tank. I sold 15 gallons instead of the usual 5or 10.

    What a sure fire method of getting tanks filled up! The sentence worked and has been working successfully for 20 years.

    A simple story to illustrate a point, so what are your tested selling sentences? How do you qualify clients? How do you move the sale forward?  How do you isolate objections? There are selling sentences out there to assist you in getting these questions answered.

    If you're interested we would be more than happy to supply you with 15 that you could use tomorrow.  Just e-mail me mike.brunel@talkingmediasales.com and I'll send you some straight away.

    Good selling

    *Story Source: Elmer Wheeler