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STOP Freezing at the Door (or Kitchen Table)

How do you get over freezing at the door?

You know the moment. It’s when:

  1. You knock on the door, and it opens.
  2. You’ve been anxiously waiting.
  3. The minute you lock eyes with that homeowner, you absolutely FREEZE IN YOUR TRACKS, like someone just zapped you with a stun gun.
  4. Your muscles seized up, your brain goes blank, and no words come out of your mouth.

That microsecond of freezing up can feel like an absolute ETERNITY. And the longer it feels, the more afraid and anxious you get. And all of that anxiety just bubbles up inside.

So, by the time you speak, you FUMBLE, and the homeowner says, “No thanks. We’re not interested,” closing the door in your face. Then:

  • You tuck your tail between your legs.
  • You walk to the next door questioning whether you’re cut out for roofing sales.
  • You wonder whether to just get in your truck and call it a day.

Have you ever been there?

If you or someone you know has been there, this is for you. Actually, it was inspired by a YouTube comment (and thank you to everyone for their participation, engagement, and collaboration in building such an incredible community, so we can truly support each other, smash our income goals, and give every customer an amazing experience).

And that’s exactly what we do here. Welcome or welcome back, by the way. My name is Adam Bensman, The Roof Strategist. I’m so excited to have you here because this is a topic that people don’t like to talk about.

After all, sales can get bro-y and aggressive, with everyone focused on the ABCs — Always Be Closing. And it just does NOT work like that.

The reality of door-to-door sales — and sales in general — is that this industry is TOUGH and:

  • It beats us up.
  • It forces us to face our inner demons.
  • It challenges us in ways that NO other career does.

So, I want to highlight two things for you:

  1. What is causing you to freeze at the door
  2. A two-part solution to figure out how to fix this FOR GOOD

Now, let’s get to it.

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Why Do We FREEZE at the Door in D2D Roofing Sales?

I want to take you on a short journey for a moment.

Think about the last time you rented a car. Maybe you were at the airport or something, and you got into the rental car, and:

  • You sit down and find the key.
  • You buckle up and look for all the controls.
  • You think, Where’s that push button? Is it under the column? By the steering wheel? Where is it?

It’s in a different spot every time, and it’s a mess.

Now, I want you to think about the last time you started your car or your truck in a hurry. It probably went something like this:

  • You bust into the car, and you’re on the phone.
  • You get in, step on the brake, hit the button, and shift into gear.
  • You’re on the road in no time, without even thinking about it.

So, you’re multitasking, you’re distracted, and you’re in a panic. Yet, when you get in your vehicle, you don’t even have to think about it.


Because you have done it thousands and thousands and thousands of times. You know exactly where your start push button is because you’ve done it a million times before, and the neural pathways in your brain are running on autopilot.

With that rental car, on the other hand, you have to figure out where everything is. That’s what takes so long. When you get into a rental car, everything is new, so you have to pause and think about everything.

It’s that pausing and thinking that causes us to freeze. In other words, the root cause of freezing is having to pause and think.

Another Reason Why We Freeze Up in D2D Roofing Sales

Are you the primary breadwinner or sole income earner in your household?


Well, even if you’re new at this, you soon will be. And I ask roofing sales reps all across the country this question, and almost every single hand goes up when I do (I also joke that those who didn’t raise their hand have married well! 😉).

The point is that we can earn A TON of money roofing sales, and that comes with A LOT of responsibility.

It means that every single sales appointment — every door we knock on — is the highest stakes game of our life.

After all, our livelihood truly does depend on it. So do our loved ones, our significant others, our children, and our own pocket.

So, when we mess up in the real world, knocking on a door or doing a presentation, it’s like someone is reaching into your pocket and taking money out of it.

How to NEVER Freeze at the Door Again: A 2-Part Cure

There’s a two-part solution here. I’m going to introduce it first, breaking down each part after.

The first part of this solution is to simply learn what to say to get you started.

When we start speaking in sales, we don’t need to know where we’re going to be later. We just need to start talking.

In fact, as I’m talking, I’ve developed “Think Fast-Ability.” That lets me formulate my thoughts as I go and get the process started. But if I’m NOT able to start talking, I’ll never get to the end.

So, even if you’re shaky on your pitch or it doesn’t feel quite as natural, you just need the cue or the trigger to:

  • Start your pitch at the door
  • Kick off your presentation at the kitchen table
  • Handle those objections

That’s the cure number one — knowing what to say.

Now, if you’re someone who has a loose guideline, my best recommendation is for you to sit down and literally write out a few different scenarios of what you’re going to say at the door.

If you want help with that, I teach what to say at the door for every single situation, making it stupidly easy to follow, in my canvassing strategy included in my Program (which also includes all-in-one training to get your team trained up). Just text the word DEMO to (303) 222-7133.

The point here is for you to show up at EVERY door with a formulaic approach to follow, regardless of whether you’re:

  • Opening up a new neighborhood
  • Knocking once you sign a new customer
  • Canvassing when the job is scheduled, on the day of install, or when the job is done

You HAVE to:

  • Know why you’re there
  • Have a strategy so you know what you’re going to say and so the cat NEVER gets your tongue!

In fact, I’ve had numerous people reach out, and one of the most common pieces of feedback that they share is saying:

Adam, I used to walk up to the door nervous, not knowing what to say.

Now, as I approach the door, I know EXACTLY what I’m going to say, so I approach with confidence.

I put my knuckles on that door, and I know the same starting track each and every time.

So, that is the first cure, and it’s just to know what you’re going to start saying. Don’t worry about where you’re going to go later. Just focus on those first words to get you out of that free zone and into the conversation.

How to NEVER Freeze in D2D Roofing Sales: Cure #2

The second part of the cure to NEVER freezing up again at the door is roleplay.

Now, I’m not referring to acting and bedroom stuff; I’m talking about a way of practicing and doing roleplay for sales.

Roleplay in sales is practice and repetition over and over and over and over again.

It’s one of the reasons that I do all my videos in one take (in fact, go through and look at how many edits are in my videos; spoiler alert — it’s none!).

The reason that I do my videos in one take is for transparency. And I know that if I’m learning sales from someone on the internet, on YouTube, or in a podcast, tons of edits raise questions and make be second guess that person. I wonder:

Do they REALLY know what they’re doing if they have to chop up their content with SO many edits?

They can’t sit there and present like it they would in the real world.

Sometimes, you see people like this in the real world, presenting on stages or speaking at conferences, and they’re not eloquent. There are a lot of “ums” and “ahs” and those types of filler words, and:

  • They FUMBLE on their words.
  • They can’t connect their thoughts.

That’s because they just don’t have enough practice speaking in those environments.

So, repetition is the end-all solution to becoming a sales rock star and to STOP freezing at the door.

Bringing Together Rental Cars, Roleplay & Repetition: 3 Roofing Sales Formulas

Now, let’s tie this back to the very beginning when I talked about getting into that rental car versus your own car or truck. You’ve done it over and over and over and over until it’s firing on autopilot

In sales, we are attempting to do the exact same thing with repetitions, repeating our pitch over and over and over again until we’re on autopilot with it. Then,

  1. When you hear an objection, you slide into the ARO Formula.
  2. When you’re at the kitchen table, you slide into the CARPARK Formula.
  3. When you knock on that door, you go right into the SLAP Formula.

You know how you’re going to start and how you’re going to respond. As a result, that competence brings confidence, and:

  • The only way to get confident is through competence.
  • The only way to get competent is through practice.

That’s one of the main reasons why my training center includes roleplay training. It’s so an entire team can train on the:

  1. ARO Formula, learning what to say at the door for every scenario
  2. SLAP Formula, learning how to present in the house and close deals.

Then, we get into roleplay to practice this and work out the kinks in the office because it is a no-stakes environment for learning.

Recap: How to STOP Freezing at the Door & Nail Your Pitch in D2D Roofing Sales

Summing this all up, we FREEZE at the door when:

  • We have to pause and think.
  • We don’t know what to say.
  • We haven’t practiced our pitch enough times for it to be on autopilot.

So, your FIX is to:

  1. Figure out exactly what you’re going to say whenever you’re freezing, whether that means starting the dialogue at the door, the kitchen table, or in an objection.
  2. Practice, practice, practice. Then, practice some more until everything runs on autopilot.

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Thanks for joining me, and I look forward to sharing more with you in the next blog.