Do you know when your competitors burp?

Mario Martinez shares advice on social selling- but students beware- it comes with a homework assignment.

Between founding a globally leading company and running a family (are there enough hours in the week?!), Mario Martinez found time to speak in my MBA class two weeks ago. Mario’s company, Vengreso, has already trained over 85,000 professionals on social selling. They’re globally acclaimed leaders of social selling for small and large businesses. And Vengreso is just getting started.

But before Mario considered venturing out on his own to form Vengreso, he called my class professor, sales expert Alice Heiman. She asked him two simple questions: “Do you have enough money saved up in the bank that you can support your lifestyle or a similar lifestyle for one year?” And secondly, “Are you willing to lose it all?

Mario Martinez
Mario Martinez telling his story to my entrepreneurship class at the University of Nevada, Reno. Photo courtesy of Kassidy Hardgrove.

Mario replied to the first question easily, with a yes. But the second- are you willing to lose it all- required a more difficult answer. He said, “Well, I don’t think my wife will be, but I will be.” Alice quipped, “Well do you want to stay married?” Mario replied, “Yes”, and she said “Well, maybe entrepreneurship is not for you.” But, he got off the phone and closed his first two deals anyway.

Since closing those first two deals, Mario’s learned quite a bit. So what advice does a global business executive have to share with business students who are just starting out? You don’t even have to come to class! Here’s advice on social selling, direct from Mario Martinez:

Mario Martinez

Mario Martinez: success comes from commitment

“You’re gonna be in binds and you’re gonna look at things, and be like, I have no idea how I’m going to get through the things that I’m supposed to get through. I promise you that.”

“But here’s what I also promise you. It is not just about putting in the time. It is about researching, making educated decisions, and making them quickly. It is about sticking to the principle that you made before. But be willing to change your decision for the impact that it will have on your business.”

“You’ve got to be willing to work harder than anyone you know, around you or your competitors. You need to know your competitors. You need to know when they sneeze, you need to know when they burp, you need to know when they fart. There isn’t anything you can’t ask me about my competitors. This is about understanding your market place, understanding your position and how you can grow.”

Mario and Alice 2
Mario and Alice took center stage at the Sales 3.0 conference last week. Photo courtesy of Alice Heiman.

But even if you didn’t come to class, Mario still has a homework assignment for you…

“Repeat after me: If you want to connect with somebody, you better send them a personalized connect request on LinkedIn. Say you’re a student at the entrepreneurs class at the university and say ‘I’d be honored to learn from you.’  That’s the golden ticket right there. I would use that all day long.”

“Your homework assignment, should you choose to accept it, is you go home and start creating your personal Why Board. So if you start mapping your goals to their timeline to money required, then you’re going to start working backwards to: how much do I need to sell to reach those goals?”

“What roles do you want to accomplish? What’s your business goal in terms of the number of clients you want to bring on, success rates, how to prove that you guys are the ones they should be working with? Map those professional goals out and map your personal goals out. I have been teaching the Why Board well before Simon Sinek came on the scene!”

“And finally, always look for how you can capitalize on something good.”

You heard Mario! Go connect with him on LinkedIn. And don’t forget your personalized message: “Hey Mario, I read about you on Lexi’s blog!”

Thanks Mario and Alice for the inspiration for this week’s blog post. Follow them on Twitter: @aliceheiman and @m_3jr

Until next time- Saludos Caminantes!

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