The 51/49 Rule

Anyone that knows me well knows that I’m a big fan of Gary Vaynerchuk. I admire his passion, hustle and dedication to his craft. This week, I listened to Gary’s podcast with Lewis Howes on the School of Greatness podcast (highly recommended). When asked what he wanted to be remembered for, if only one thing, Gary simply said “51/49”. He further described that his goal is to give everyone that he interacts with at least 51% of the value in their relationship.

This is a great concept for anyone, especially if you’re in sales. To complete this requires a full, honest audit of your network and approach on a daily basis. In order to be successful with this tactic, you need every single interaction you have with a prospect or client to be a 51/49 engagement. What are some examples of this?

  • Provide value on every engagement — It’s been long said that just checking in is an outdated strategy. Get creative.
  • Social selling — This doesn’t mean replying to a prospect’s recent tweet and asking for a call. Join LinkedIn groups, make Twitter lists, share others’ content. Very important to play the long game.
  • Send thoughtful, relevant content — When’s the last time you sent something and (gasp) didn’t ask for anything in return? No “15 minute chat”, no “where’s my IO?”, nothing. Probably a lot less than you think.
  • Meeting follow-up — Did you just have a great meeting with clearly defined next steps? Good start, but make sure you follow through. Get them everything they asked for (or more) and deliver it when you say you will (or sooner).

I’m nowhere near perfect on this strategy, but it’s hard to imagine a scenario where this wouldn’t work. Tough account that you can’t crack? 51/49. Prospect is stalling on a deal? 51/49. Short on your quota? 51/49. I’m a strong believer that if you continue to provide value, things will turn.

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