If you want customers, stop selling. Hard sells exhaust. Aggressive pitches scream, “Do this for ME.” Every day, I close down down to parades of hard sells.
Last week I re-opened my mind to a sales exec who caught my interest by offering consultation to a real business problem. Two years ago, his predecesoor pushed with a hard sell in the wrong context. I didn’t take the time to learn what the product was about. It took a long time to recover. This time it felt helpful and I’m listening.
Whether your’re selling a product or yourself. Approach matters. If you want customers or employers to listen, approach gently and solve problems.
From Hard Sell to Easy Relationships
Hard to Buy
“ There are more fakers in business than in jail. ”— Malcolm Forbes
- Bringing the sales guy to the service meeting with a surprise agenda
- Asking to expand the relationship, when performance is lagging
- LinkedIn Spam emails
- Follow-up Linkedin in Spam emails acting flabergasted that the first email was ignored
- Sales pitches disguised as “Training,” “Workshops,” or “Webinars”
- Sales people who don’t know the business or haven’t done their homework
- Exagerated claims and manipulated data
- Cold calls with creative tactics to get past the gatekeeper (burn those books)
- Name dropping in interviews or sales pitches
Easy to Buy
“Stop Selling, Start Helping” -Zig Ziglar
- A track record of success in the current relationship
- Networking through trusted relationships
- Well researched analysis of problems, with creative solutions
- Establishing non-sales professional connections in Linked and Social media
- Helping without expectations
- Showcasing what you can do
- Sharing expertise
- Intelligent questions
Executives turn down parades of hard sell approaches every day. We also tune into amazing networks of helpful people. How will you show up?