Kevin Hogan

International Speaker

Latest Articles:  Stopping the Black Swan Can You Become a New Person?

Zig Ziglar once said, “They’ll buy if your big stack of benefits is bigger than their little stack of money.”

That was one of the 20 great “aha” moments in my life. I took it as gospel, real life fact. I’ve never attempted to disprove the notion.

I confess that I have dealt with some people who, for varying reasons, were offered the Empire State Building in return for a few hundred dollars but were unable to say, “Yes.” Such is their loss. In the old days those moments got under my skin. Today they are like butter on a hot pan. They run right off and they happen less and less as time goes on.

Generally speaking, when presented with the Empire State Building (less property taxes) in return for a few hundred dollars the person NEEDS to say, “Yes” and if they don’t they are losing a painfully large opportunity.

Self-sabotage is a big problem and it infects most of your clients and customers. They will literally turn golden opportunities away and pursue those things which will cause their demise.

So…How Can You Overcome Your Client’s Self-Sabotaging Behavior?

How do you cause your client with a wife and a newborn baby to buy $200,000 of life insurance?

Answer. It doesn’t matter. He MUST own that policy.

My stepdad died when I was 13. That was a million years ago. We were left with over one million dollars of medical bills that needed to be paid (this is 1975 dollars by the way) and we had no significant income …my Mom worked…and was a Mom…and everything else… and then he died. He had been out of work for some time. We had nothing and now we had worse than nothing. There was no life insurance. None. Zip. Nada. All we had were bills. Lots of ’em. Guess what life was like when you are 13, have four brothers and sisters, no income and better than a million dollars of bills…

That’s right. You guessed it….and if I sold life insurance I’d tell all the stories about Thanksgiving when the Boy Scouts brought turkey and used clothes. Plaid pants that had been out of style for years. We wore them. It’s what there was. Humiliating and yet we so appreciated it. There weren’t other options. And there are more stories but all that for another day.

You don’t want your kids growing up in that environment and you can prevent it with $200 per YEAR. I don’t care how much you earn or don’t earn you can secure your family for a few years in case of your death. You CAUSE your future client to buy $250,000 of term insurance because he MUST. This isn’t a choice. It is a must. It’s like breathing. It’s like drinking water. No exceptions you simply do it. You can’t pressure a person too much to drink water and breathe oxygen. The VALUE of the security is far greater than the pittance it costs.

How Do You Paint the Picture?

You paint the picture vividly and clearly. You can cause your kids to have at least a secure childhood or you can be responsible for some pretty terrible things. Few people think like this. It’s your job to not just show the value but demand that people FEEL the value.

How else can you show value? Why work with you? Why be YOUR customer instead of someone else who sells the same thing. Like insurance, like mutual funds, like automobiles, houses, like everything else that is replicable?

You offer additional value…real value. Two of the brightest and most valuable real estate agents on the planet are Jim Bailey here in Minnesota and Gary Kent in San Diego. These two guys both have two of the most incredible E-zines related to real estate, buying a house, selling a house, moving, financing options, you name it. Making the right or wrong decision in ANY of these areas can cost you tens of thousands of dollars. I am not in the market and I read them both. Every issue. I KNOW what I will do when I go to sell and buy a house…and I know WHO will represent me. They don’t need to tell me they sell real estate…I’m smart enough to figure that out.

Anyone can put out a piece of propaganda that advertises their services. Big deal. I want to do business with the person who let’s me figure that out but gives ME a REASON and CAUSE to trust them ahead of time so they don’t have to sell me later. That’s Jim and Gary.

Establishing value and giving cause to trust you long before you ASK THEM to TRUST you is meeting my value of psychological and financial security.

Do What No One Else is Doing

What if you have a lawn service? How can you create value? The lawn guy can’t have an Ezine right?

Really? Why not?

Instead of just knocking on my door and asking me if I want to buy your service, “no,” ask me if i would like to receive monthly tips on lawn and garden care absolutely free with a promise of no call ever. All it takes is your email address. No name, no phone, no nothing. That’s it. Knock on 2000 doors, get 1000 email addresses then six months later you ask the person if they like the ezine and if they would like help with their lawn and garden.

Who does this?

No one.

I don’t have a green thumb, I have a red thumb from the blood drawn trying to have a green thumb. If someone offered to give me free tips on everything I need to know to have the most beautiful yard in the neighborhood….

Now, this isn’t an advertisement for having an Ezine.

What about someone who doesn’t provide a service? Say that you have a UPS Store. My buddy Steve in Eagan, MN has a UPS Store. My six year old son LOVES to go to the UPS Store EVERYDAY.

Retail is a tough business because it is so competitive. Every inch of space has to be profitable…

Why does my son love for me to take him to the UPS Store?

Because Steve has a fishbowl of Tootsie Rolls that he buys at the grocery store for one purpose. For his customers…yes…but mostly for my son. He spends about $10 per month on Tootsie Rolls and I’ve been his customer since 1992…. when the Tootsie Rolls were for my daughter (and anyone else who wanted a bite!)


But it just wasn’t a piece of candy. When we walk in the door, Steve says, “Hey man, (talking to my son) how are you today?”

“Great! Can I have a toosie roll please?”

(Everyone in store now has attention on child and grown man…and no one frets over the seconds being “wasted” in their day….)

“You bet you can. Did you have a good day at school?” (He continues to wait on his customer. Winks his eye at the customer. Tells the customer how great this kid is…)

When they’re done chatting, every one of Steve’s customers knows one thing. Steve not only has a great store but he is a great PERSON. That means people want to do business with him.

I went in last week, asked how business was. He was exhausted. Sweating. (And it’s September in Minnesota)

“Kevin, I can’t handle any more business.”


How Do You Tip the Scales?

When everything is equal it only takes something small to tip the scales.

What about when everything is NOT equal. What about when apples are compared to the oranges. Then what do you do?

You can be hired for a service as a speaker!, a sales rep, a therapist, a doctor, an expert about…body language….

I walked into the Fox studio last week with a heavy bag. I was ready to evaluate the Presidential debate for Fox. The News Anchor looked at my bag, and said, “moving in?”

“Only if you guys treat me right.”

We sat. Talked and then watched Kerry and Bush. Then we did our spot on the News. I was on for four minutes. Four minutes on Fox is about $50,000 for a Prime Time local series of spots.

Immediately after the spot was over, I told Jeff I had to go.

“Oh, you should stay, don’t bolt.” He wanted to have Coffee afterward. I had kids at home. I thanked him and simply asked him to check his desk before he headed home for the night. In 30 seconds he was back on camera. I was looking around at the Security Guard who was nice enough to let me keep the Security Necklace for my son, the Producer who was VERY kind… I looked for everyone who was nice enough to smile as I walked by.

I sat at Jeff’s desk and signed a bunch of my books…and then personalized them.

Who does that?

Yep. No one.

Is it a TOOL or technique?

No. It is a way of life.

Creating value is a way of life. It is how you live your life whether you are working or walking. When you constantly are trying to figure out how to make other people’s days or lives better…your day and your life… is always on someone else’s mind as well.

That’s how you create value and it’s how you create a community of value.


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Author of The Psychology of Persuasion, Irresistible Attraction, and The Science of Influence, Dr. Kevin Hogan is trusted by organizations, both large and small, to help them help their people reach their personal peak performance and maximize influence in selling and marketing. Kevin is an internationally admired keynote speaker and corporate thought leader. In Coffee with Kevin Hogan, he shares his research, observations, and how you can apply them in your life – both in business and at home.

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