5. Don’t hard sell – educate
Remember the really good teachers you had in school? The ones that actually inspired you to learn more – to want to learn more? To me, a sales person should be in the same position. Who should know more about the product or service your selling than you? If you don't know it inside and out you will definitely be at a disadvantage.
Educate your client on the value of your services and how it benefits them and they will become champions of your service. Get their interest and then get them interested in more.
There are several ways in which you can create buzz and get people's attention without a hard sell approach.
- Promote the various benefits of your product/service through marketing materials, blogs, influential customers, and websites.
- Speak at conferences or put on workshops or user groups.
- Give as many interviews as you can and write articles if you have the opportunity.
These efforts are a much better approach than a direct hard sell.
6. Don’t communicate "your way"
I'll admit it. I'm guilty of breaking this rule all the time and I have to constantly remind myself to avoid this trap. What I'm talking about is the need to communicate in the way (email, phone, face to face, fax?) your client prefers – not the way you prefer.
I'm a huge fan of email. Email forces people to be concise, I can answer it late at night or in a meeting and I have a searchable record of the communication. From there, I actually prefer text messages, then phone calls, then meetings. Because of this, I find that I often respond to people in this same manner. I have even noticed voice mails that have sat for days while I fired off responses to emails in 10 minutes. However well this might work for getting my attention – I've found it can also be a detriment if I assume everyone else wants to communicate the same way I do.
I've actually been in situations where I emailed someone for days and
after being frustrated with no response I finally picked up the phone and called them. What happened? They answered on
the 2nd ring. I have to constantly remind myself that a lot of people prefer the phone and face to face meetings. Summary – the communication medium you choose will only be successful if it meets the preference of the recipient.