Training to Sell with Sales Legend Academy's Dwayne Vera
SideKyk's Benefits of Learning How to Sell
Dwayne Vera is a mentor for anything you need to know about making sales. On his website, SideKyk, you can explore all the possibilities of finance and business information.
Vera's system of classes teach the wonders of using basic to intermediate techniques to show how to not only make sales, but to build relationships beyond initial sales as well.
Learn more about Sidekyk, and the skills used to create sales by listening to this episode of The Thoughtful Entrepreneur above and don’t forget to subscribe on Apple Podcasts – Stitcher – Spotify –Google Play –Castbox – TuneIn – RSS.
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Welcome to The Thoughtful Entrepreneur Show. I'm Josh Elledge, Founder and CEO of UpMyInfluence.com. We turn entrepreneurs into media celebrities, grow their authority, and help them build partnerships with top influencers. We believe that every person has a unique message that can positively impact the world. Stick around to the end of the show; we'll reveal how you can be our next guest on one of the fastest growing daily inspiration podcasts on the planet in 15 to 20 minutes. Let's go.
All right with us right now we've got Dwayne Vera. Dwayne, you are the founder of SalesLegendAcademy.com. And also something really new and cool. And I feel like I almost have the media exclusive here. And that's SideKyk.com And that's on the web at Side K Y K.com. Thank you so much for joining us, Dwayne.
Thank you for having me. I really appreciate it.
So you obviously didn't come out of your mother's womb, training people to sell. So where did this come about?
Yeah, so it came about probably about 12 years ago, just just trying to figure out how to make sales happen. So I've always been a personable person. But that doesn't always translate to actual results. There's a process to actual results. And so maybe taking what I naturally had and trying to build upon it. And I was fortunate enough to have a really good mentor very early in my career, who, who saw potential in me, and and really took me by the, you know, took me about a hand and carried me through this this career that, you know, a span now 1214 years, something like that.
And so, so where did you go professionally?
Yeah. So at first I was working inside of companies, right. I worked for some telecommunication companies. I had to say Teams direct reports, you know, 30 direct reports or staff as large as 3540. But But what happened by a by coincidence is the company I was working for actually pulled out of the market I lived in. And they gave me two options. They said you can either move to the middle of nowhere breadbasket country, United States, or, you know, you can you can say goodbye. And so it was like, Okay, well, goodbyes fine. But within that I really learned how to manage people and processes. And so that that took me on this journey of working with companies to help them kind of get their sales process started. So maybe they were stuck somewhere, or maybe they, you know, they plateaued and they didn't expect it or they didn't know how to grow. They knew they wanted to, they had maximize their current potential, so they wanted to see what else was out there. And you know, that really led to some very cool experiences some really big challenges, but ultimately, it allowed me to kind of get into With a few different industries and see exactly how they operate would take some core principles and use them to help different companies in different industries grow regardless of really what they were selling.
Okay, so now you launched sales legend Academy and this just kind of give people some understanding how quickly you've grown. You launched this in July 19. Last year, and to date you're doing some pretty good business can you kind of explain a little bit about that so people will respect your authority.
So sales legend Academy really was taking what we use in like the enterprise world or in the big fortune 100 fortune 500 world and bring it to an individual or smaller level, because really, the differences between the two companies is usually resources and brand name, right. So I come to you, you know, and I wear an apple shirt. You know why I am by my logo. An Apple has You know, basically infinity dollars to throw at things, but smaller companies usually have a personality to them that resonates closer to their clientele. Because because they are typically from the area that they service or because the owner and the decision maker is closer to the end user, they can make decisions quicker. And so it took some of those resources and training and observations and all these very intelligent people who do studies it took all of that and packaged it together to give to a smaller company or an individual who's out there selling insurance or mortgages or what have you, and allowing them to kind of replicate that success, but much faster, and and a lot less expensive for them. So that's really what sales legend Academy is about is becoming legendary and your sales.
Yeah. And how do you fulfill that? So obviously, you're doing coaching, but you also have the academy itself. Can you kind of explain your offerings?
Yeah, so the Academy is really just a it's a classroom setting. It's wonderful. A week. And it just allows you to learn some some basic techniques and then more advanced techniques on how to sell, and really how to build relationships beyond the initial sale. Most sales, close courses or trainings is about getting revenue in which is great, everybody needs it, it's very important. But But taking it to the legendary status or the next level, it's really about building that relationship in so that you kind of have an evergreen pool of people, you know, working and working some of the big companies, you would see that the top performers, they didn't necessarily have the best marketing, but what would have was a core group of people who were constantly referring to them or buying back from them. And they were able to make a lot of sales, because they treated those people so well. And it's, it's taking that and applying it in your business because as a business owner, you already been busy with all these other things. Let's take this off your plate, show you the proper way to do it. So you can learn from other people's failures, mistakes, you know, successes and use that in your business. Yeah,
so, you know, it's interesting, I think along that philosophy, I just had a conversation with someone about, you know why it is so important to have authority and to have just people know about what you do. And you know, I think about, you know, imagine the power of having, let's say, you sell cars, for example. And imagine if you had, you know, 2000 people in your region that knew you had a relationship with you, and you didn't necessarily sell them a car every time you engage with them, but you were helpful to them. And you had a relationship built on trust. And if you only soil sold Toyotas, you know, they felt comfortable enough to get your opinion on high on dies or something like that, that level of relationship. Imagine how valuable that would be if you'd built that up. And so, you know, you kind of compare that with, you know, well, you know, maybe when I encounter someone or have an initial exchange with someone, it's me Just trying to sell them. And I'm just going to try and hyper sort them as quickly as possible. And if they don't by just a numbers game for me, right? These are two schools of thought here. And the other one might feel inefficient, right? And so you're cold calculating sales and marketers might just play the numbers game. What do you think about that whole? Is it what I just illustrated there?
Yeah, that's it. That's it. I love that illustration. It's so true. They're so opposite. And I'm definitely the school of thought of building a relationship. You know, I actually laugh when people say that sales is just a numbers game. It's true. There's there's math involved. Absolutely. Right there. You can't make a living off one sale unless that one sales you know, gigantic, but it's really more of a relationship game and and as anybody who has a good relationship in their life, whether it's a spouse, a child, a friend, parent, that can't be cold and calculated with numbers, because if it is, it's really no longer relationship that kind of turns into, you know, just just two people will know each other Other. And so in the same way you treat your relationships in sales, as real relationships, you're going to get such a better long term value out of that relationship than you ever could. And that ties right into kind of what I speak about, or teach about in the classes is emotional intelligence plays a big part in what is happening behind the scenes for successful companies. There's a lot of great companies out there who have great products, they know their clients, they have systems in place, they have highly intelligent people, you know, intellectually, but emotionally, they're not very intelligent. Then somewhere along the line, they start to falter. And it's because they're really not relating to those who they're trying to sell to, and it just kind of can put them out of business very quickly. And so, to the direct answer to your question, is it sales is a numbers game, there's numbers involved, but sales is really a relationship game or an emotional game. And if you play that game, if you will, then then you really can be successful. In your sales, how do you feel that this translates to marketing and advertising? Yeah, so so it translates very well. Because again, if you think about it from a relationship standpoint, you stop putting things in silos like advertising, marketing, sales, customer success, right? It just becomes a customer experience. Yeah, you know, it's experience you're taking now, this relationship and just carrying it through different phases, very similar to you know, dating, engagement, marriage, you know, family extension, it's the same thing. It's the same relationship, just different phases. And so likewise, with marketing, you know, now you're able to tailor an approach that reaches the hearts of your target audience and let them know that you're someone who they want to be in a relationship with and then as they go through that relationship journey down the traditional path again, you know, marketing and sales and and all of that, the relationships just getting stronger. And so it's kind of like you wouldn't walk up to someone right away and say, Hey, would you marry and expect them to say yes, right? There's, there's, there's something that happens there. But by the time you're ready to ask them to marry you, you're pretty sure they're going to say yeah, because right now you know all of these things. So it's the same thing. If you take them on this relationship by time you ask them for the sale, you already know what their answer is going to be now it's about putting them in the mindset of what it's going to be once they say yes.
So what would you say then that most sales professionals and and really, even though even if you're the founder of the company, and you don't have a Director of Sales yet, and like whoever is doing the sales for your company, what do you think most people are kind of getting wrong right now?
Yeah, I think the biggest thing is most people are really trying to replicate Silicon Valley and grow it regardless of what anything else, right so so in their mind, they're thinking, Okay, I need funding, and I need to just market blast market, and I need to just get my message out there to as many people as possible Then hopefully, you know, they, they resonate with it, and it's all good. And it's like, really, that's kind of the opposite of what should happen. And really, you should find the core group of people that you're already resonate with, find out what their interests or needs are, and then find the product or solution and present it to them. And so a lot of people, they fall in love with their idea. And then they go, Okay, how do I figure this out? market this and get this to people who need this and it's like, fall in love with the people, and then through conversation with them, figure out what they need, and then present that to them. That's going to be your ticket to success. Yeah.
Duane is a business owner yourself, what do you do to stimulate your own sales?
Um, I think the first thing that I do is try to understand what that sales process looks like. And that way, I know that when I start telling people about whatever this is, whatever the sale is, that they're gonna To be taken care of all the way through, because it's very difficult to make a sale and then not know how the back end product works, right, which some great salespeople can do, right? They'll go out there and they'll sell you on something and then turn around and go, Okay, how are we going to fulfill this? That's not necessarily the best way to get it done. Right. So yeah, I like to do that research. And then in that research, it helps me to emotionally connect with whoever I'm trying to solve the problem for. And then I try to reach them and various ways, whether it's usually directly I'm a face to face kind of person. So I would love to either walk into your place, wherever that is in the world, if I can't do that made a meet up with you somewhere, but I want to have some form of direct relationship or contact with you so that you can see the genuineness of what I'm doing. And again, that's a very general answer. There's probably more specific based on like sales legend Academy, for instance, that one, you know, being very intimately acquainted with my target market audience like salespeople, catching them where they usually Are you in, you know, finding them where they are in the point of need, right? So usually if they're online searching for how do I become a better salesperson? That's the perfect person in place to say, hey, actually, here's how and here's how I know this because I was in your boat before.
Yeah. So, um, specifically, around lead gen, like, What? What do you like right now? I mean, now for different industries. It's different. But, you know, does this play your philosophy? Again, we're talking about, you know, this whole customer relationship, as opposed to, you know, conversion and, you know, where, again, just kind of it's kind of siloing independent parts of this. But I am curious about you know, how you where you see, lead gen really working well right now.
Yeah, so I think video is huge. Right now video is just absolutely gigantic. And it should be because it creates that that personal feeling. podcasting, as you and I spoke about previously, is taking off by leaps and bounds. And I think those are really intimate settings. You know, because it's a one on one, it's you in the camera or you in the, you know, the microphone. So those are very big. I think authority marketing is very big. So, you know, getting in front of people through publications or on television, which you are the expert on, right. So those things are gigantic. But another thing I think is very interesting and very underutilized. is just a good old question and answer whatever form that looks like but so many people that I've seen that are really successful put themselves out there not to be the expert, like, you know, because Forbes has quoted them, but the expert like they had a town hall of some sort and they said, Hey, you know what? Ask your questions. Here's my expertise. Let me answer them for you. And using that as a lead generation source because it's a very selfless B, it's very educational, and see people who are interested in finding out those answers that you're an expert to are likely the same people that are going to be interested in your product. So for instance, I just did something like that about CRMs, right? Mm hmm. super important. CRM is very important. Every business probably should have one until it's a very hour long question and answer. And from that it generated leads from from individuals that are like, Hey, you know what, I was looking for this? I know you got to do it based on this question answer that you just did. How can I work with you? Oh, perfect. Yeah, we can do that. So um, for me, those are really the big things right. So video podcast, traditional authority marketing, which you speak on and know way more about than I do. And then a good old fashioned question and answer, no,
you know, all agreed. Now it may feel inefficient and there are a lot of people selling a lot of smoke and mirrors. systems that say, well, all you have to do is just pay a bunch of money, Facebook ads and just funnel people in. And you know, where it's pretty calculated. I'm not a huge fan of that, again, it may feel inefficient to say, Well, I'm going to just start serving audiences. But you know, listen, I mean, that's exactly what it savings Angel did $6 million in revenue with zero dollars in advertising, right? So I mean, you can, I mean, I'm not saying both, you could make both ways work. I just think that, you know, playing the long game a little bit, life is just easy. So when you're respected when you have that authority, and when you have that social proof, you just don't have to work as hard. You don't have to use masterful copy everywhere. You could just be authentic and honest with people. And, you know, it's just a I think it's a more fun way to do business.
Yeah, I think it's true. It's like when when your personality and your authenticity, as you said comes out and people are drawn to that. Then that's just you. That's just your your brand. if let's say it's not you, let's say it's your brand, right something you can pass on to your children. It that's great because now people are doing business with with you. as you go about your day as you do what you want to do. Gary Vee is Navy stone around a lot people feel very different about him. But one thing that he really does do well, again, regardless of how you feel about him is he has him like if you meet him in person, and if you see him on on YouTube, it's the same guy now, while there's another person, which I won't name names, and most people may not know about him, because he's very niche specific. But if you see him on YouTube, he has a million subscribers. He actually lives here in the Tampa Bay area, but if you see on YouTube, he has his country accent, and he's kind of a backwoods in his persona, but if you talk to him in person, it's like talking to you or not. And when I when I found that out, you know, when I talked to him in person, it caught me off guard, but not in a good way because I felt like man So who am I watching these videos? Because if I want to do business with that guy, yeah, see Can you? I don't really know what I'm getting here. So it's it's, it's, the authenticity is very important. Yeah,
yeah. So Dwayne, tell me about your new project here that you've just launched.
Yeah, sidekick. So sidekick is it's designed to help business owners be the hero of whatever they want to do. So most business owners when they start their business, that's what they want to do. Right. Dwayne's mechanic shop, I just, I want to work on cars. I want to help people, right? I love engines. But in today's world to be good at business, you also then have to learn about web design, payment processing telecommunication to meet right you have all of this that you have to learn about. And so you do one of three things. You either go online and try to become an expert very quickly. You do whatever the person down the street is doing right. So you call the mechanic down street say Hey, what are you using for a ride? Or you hold auditions for salespeople to have them come in and put on their show and you pick the one that you like the best? Yeah, none of those are as effective as actually having an expert in your corner. And so what sidekick does is just like in the comic books, heroes use sidekicks to kind of do the the back end work. So they can go out and fight crime. It's the same thing, you'd be the hero of your business, you reach out to us and say, Hey, I'm an auto mechanic, what are you seeing that could help my business? And we'll go through 15 different areas and say, well, based on our experience, based on what we've seen, what have you, you probably want to do this, this, this, this and this, and we'll get you set up. And because of our buying leverage, we may be able to get, you know, contract where a company normally does, and we'll get you two months per year or whatever. And it's free to the business owner. So they go through that it's free to them, and then we work out the deal with the companies presented to them. And if they don't like it, they come back to us and we can find another suitable carrier to them. And so that's the idea of sidekick is really helping business owners, franchises, that sort of thing. Be able to just focus on what they want to do and outsource the rest of that to us. We'd like to joke that we're personal shoppers for businesses, right? We draw your file, we figure out what works, what's in season. And and then we go and do the shopping for you and bring you the examples. The only difference is you don't have to pay me to do that. So that's what sidekick is.
That sounds pretty cool. I could see that. And what is the investment for the business owner?
Yeah, so the business owner doesn't have the investment to us. They just paid for the service, right? So they come to us and say, Hey, we really heard about this Wi Fi marketing thing. Tell us about that. Well, we have expertise in Wi Fi marketing, we can tell you all about it. They go great. What company do you recommend we go we asked a few questions. And then we'd send you up to recommendation. You sign up with the recommendation you pay whatever the price point is that we recommend. The coolest part about sidekick is that it's it's an AI right so there's a front facing AI to while at first when we're first launching it was individual one on one very similar to what you and I are doing. Now. Which transitioned to Where you can get this done through AI? Because we found that most of the questions that we were asking were very repetitive. And it's, you know, some in some areas like CRM, there's over 300 providers, so sorry, those right became very labor intensive, while in AI, even on the back end, can sort through them very quickly. And so, sidekick is now able to be done. from the comfort of your own home, instead of having a half hour 45 minute interview, or you know, fail, you know, you can get it done in five to 10 minutes. And then if you need the extra assistance, feel free to reach out we'll we'll reach out to you.
That's very cool. I like that. Thank you for inventing that. So, so Dwayne, so you by the way you visit SideKyk at Side K Y K.com. And then, of course, Dwayne your other website is at DwayneVera.com. And it is oh also SalesLegendAcademy.com and what would you recommend kind of people start with you got a lot to offer?
Yeah. So it Well, I mean, it really depends on what you're looking to do. So if you if you have a business and you're looking to, you know, figure out how to get the most for your money, or if you're just wanting to start a business, you're like, Hey, I'm going to open up a restaurant, what should I do? Reach out to SideKyk? You know, it's the best way to reach out and kind of get what you're looking for. If you're looking for me personally. Go to DwayneVera.com you can read about me in the about me section, you can see some of the places that have been in media, and then you can reach out to me directly. Matter of fact, the little chat guy in the bottom right hand side goes directly to my cell phone. It's scary because I've but I think it's important to be able to reach me very quickly. And obviously if it goes to my pocket, I will get back to you very quickly. And if I don't get back to you quickly, you know a lot going on, as you said, but yeah, wave your calm is a very good place to reach to me. Reach out to me personally and obviously LinkedIn, a great channel to make connections. But I like the one on one cell phone thing better. I think it works to my personality,
for sure. Awesome. Well, Dwayne Vera, you are the founder of SideKyk and the founder of the Sales Legend Academy. Thank you so much for joining us. Thanks, Josh. I really appreciate it.
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