Is there a difference between effective selling and sleazy selling? Heck yeah!!
Have you ever attended a learning workshop where you thought you were going to learn one thing and it turned out you were getting a sales pitch on a product you don’t understand? Even worse, it’s being offered at a price that makes your jaw drop? Do these sessions wow you with lingo and “smart talk”? Do you feel like your business is super small because you couldn’t possibly spend that much money on a single product?
I understand! I’ve been there and it doesn’t feel good. I’ve also worked for companies who encourage their sales people to throw distractions and sparkles at you in an attempt to make you buy what they’re selling.
You can effectively market and sell your services and offerings without leaving a bitter taste in people’s mouth. The following are a few warning signs to watch for so that you don’t fall victim to phoney sales tactics.
Sales is not a one-size–fits-all process.
All too often, we’ve been told by “experts” to follow a proven method to market and sell a service or product. It’s common as an entrepreneur to feel that everyone else has this business thing figured out other than you. This is simply not the truth. Business changes every day and technology is ever-evolving. We’re all navigating this same landscape as best we can.
So, if you’re hard on yourself for perhaps not being as “aggressive” in your sales techniques as others may advise, it’s time to stop beating yourself up. Your business and your audience are as unique as you are. What works for one is not guaranteed to work for you. And some audiences are more reactive than others.
If it feels uncomfortable or aggressive, pause and walk away. Ask more questions.
I refer to this feeling as “sleazy selling!”. Baffling you with so much BS, you think you’re going to lose the farm if you don’t sign up now.
Take a moment and consider how this sort of sales tactic makes YOU feel when someone markets to you in this way. Yeah, it’s pretty gross. This is not the example to follow. Why? Because if YOU are feeling this way, your audience is guaranteed to feel that same bitter taste in their mouths.
When you get this feeling during a sales pitch from someone else, it may be best to walk away. It’s probably best not to model what they’re doing. This is not the person you should be doing business with, nor the example to follow.
If an offer feels too good to be true, it probably is.
If you’re being promised something that sounds way too good – run!
My favourite, all time promise is: “I’ll put you on the first page of Google”. This one kills me. How anyone can claim they have mastered the landscape on Google is comical. Algorithms change constantly. If someone is promising this to you, that’s a huge red flag. The people who decide what ranks first on Google are NOT marketers, it’s the people who are searching on Google. It’s the audiences alone who make that decision.
A successful marketing strategy is client-focused
You can find the basic four key elements of marketing in any text book or you can Google it. The fact of the matter is, promoting your business is only one of the four “p’s” in marketing. All too often I see businesses so focused on promoting all the features of their products, they forget to include the other necessary elements in their marketing plan and overall sales process.
Get clear on your purpose and process.
There’s a reason you started your business and I can guess it’s because you sincerely believe that what you have to offer can help people and improve their quality of life in some way. Be sure to have clarity in why you are selling or marketing, and what value you are offering to your clients or customers.
When you truly believe in the value of what you have to offer, and have evidence of how it can improve the lives of who you’re pitching to, the right people will be attracted to your business and will become clients.
All too often, the secret ingredient to marketing your business is understanding your product or service value – believing in that value, and sincerely connecting with people who would benefit from it.
Sharing your story helps to sincerely and effectively sell.
We all have a unique story and a unique reason for why we are selling a service or product to begin with. Share your experiences and how it brought you here; don’t be clever with fancy phrases, be clear on what you bring to the table. People are tired of “sleazy sales pitches”. Cut the BS and get to the heart through human connection and sincere, transparent communication of what you’re offering and why it should matter to them.
Then you sell it!
Sell it with a storytelling approach! Meaning, make it relatable to your client. No sleazy selling!! Yuk! Get on the phone, get in front of people, and promote your offer and solutions through honest and sincere marketing.
No sparkles, distractions, or BS necessary.