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How NOT To Do Sales!

I am arguably the hardest person on the planet to sell to.  Like your prospect, I’m busy, self-focused, and skeptical.  And…most importantly I don’t want to be sold to.  I want what I want. 

There are all kinds of clever, new, and rehashed sales strategies out there.  But with all due respect, honestly, many don’t work.  Here’s a few of my “don’t’s” and why. 

Don’t use the “double tap” strategy of calling a prospect twice in a row if they don’t answer.  Sounds clever but it a) comes across as desperate and b) is extremely irritating and disrespectful if you are on the receiving end.  If I wanted to talk to you, I would have answered the first time.  Be respectful and follow up a different way (email or text…or best of all, video). 

Don’t use trickery to get someone on the phone.  IF by some miracle it works, the prospect is likely to be so irritated and insulted that you tricked them that they will not listen to your pitch – even if it was something they would otherwise have had an interest in.  If you want my trust, be honest and have integrity.  Now that will get my attention.

Don’t leave a vague voice mail asking me to call you back.  I’m not going to.  Give me a compelling reason to call you back.  (This is where you really need to dig deep to distill what that reason is.) 

Don’t send me a sales pitch the second after we connect on LinkedIn.  It’s impersonal and feels grimy…like you only wanted to connect with me to sell me something. Can’t we get to know each other first? 

Don’t send me a clearly generic email asking for 15 minutes of my time.  Why would I give it you?  You don’t even know anything about me or what I need.  Would you respond to that email? 

Don’t talk about yourself…blah, blah, blah.  Truth is no one (including your prospect) gives a rip about how wonderful you are or how long you’ve been in business.  They woke up this morning thinking about themselves and their problems…not about you.  So be real.  Genuinely care about them.  And talk about what they care about! 

I (your Prospect) want what I want.  Sorry to break the bad news, but I’m not on the planet to help you reach your quota.  I don’t like being disrespected or spoken down to.  I have my own issues, concerns, fears, and desires. So don’t try to be clever, sneaky or braggadocious.  Tell me what I want to hear.  Tell me about my problems and how to solve them.  Tell me how you will make my life better.  

You’ve heard the Golden Rule:  Treat others as you want to be treated.  Or in sales, consider following the Platinum Rule: Treat others as they want to be treated. 

Truth is, we are all prospects for something.  So sell the way you want to be sold to.  We all want to be treated with respect, honesty, and a focus on us.  It’s simple, really.