Can you feel your flesh crawl? Yes, that person over there is a salesman! Run!
This might seem ridiculous, but our society has a certain aversion to selling and rather than fight it, many people are going to need to roll with it. They can’t get over the negative stereotype and can’t get to grips with the idea of selling at all.
Fortunately, if we take a step back… you can sell without becoming a “salesperson”! At least, in the traditional sense.
Let’s Go Online!
If you’re not going to be a salesperson, then you need to look at ways that you can sell without selling. One of the easiest ways to do that in 2018 is to make effective use of your website.
Lead Generation With The Customer In Mind
If you want to woo your potential customers online; you’re going to need to know what it is your customers like and don’t like.
The best group of people to find this out from is… yup, you guessed it, your current customers. Talk to them and find out:
- Why they buy from you
- What they see as your key advantage compared to the competition
- What websites they currently use and what they like about them
- What would help them use your website in future
And so on…
You want to get a clear picture of what your customers do online so that you can, where possible, tailor your online offering to their needs.
Lead Generation Is Not Selling
There are two types of business online. Those that can sell their products or services online and those that cannot but can start a relationship with a customer online which can be carried over into the real world to secure their business.
You probably know by now which of these categories your business falls into. A company supplying lenses for cameras, for example, will normally be happy to sell their products online whereas an architect is going to have to find out more about the project, typically, before they can even begin to quote for their service.
This matters because the first type of business can sell their products on their websites. They can truly sell without customer contact.
This business will build a website to:
- Engage with the client and try to close a sale immediately
- Lead capture will be a secondary requirement (note: not non-existent, if you can’t make a sale you might want to retarget the prospect again later)
Whereas the other business will build a website to:
- Capture an e-mail address or telephone number to lead to a conversation
Leads are best captured through the use of the correct language – this should be the customer’s language and spell out the reasons they would want to buy your services or products and the benefits of doing so.
This is far removed from the dodgy second hand car salesman’s pitch of yesteryear. Here, you explain in plain English why your current customers value what you do and how it works for them.
This is also the process you would use to sell a product directly online. So, whichever type of online presence you run, you don’t need to become some sort of “salesperson” to serve your customers.
The Offline Elements
There will always be some small element of “sales” in offline interactions with customers but, the service provider that ask questions and listens to their client will always be streets ahead of the dodgy secondhand car salesman type.
You see, clients are quite capable of selling to themselves if you ask insightful open questions which explore their problems and seek to address those problems. An honest business person is unafraid to admit when they cannot help because they know that this honesty will be paid back in future.
You do not need to be a “salesperson” in the classic sense to close business in the modern era. Instead, you need to provide a consultative, customer focused experience which enables the customer to choose to place their business with you.