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Salespeople get a bad reputation for being pushy, and in many cases, rightfully so. Although it’s important to educate potential clients about your product or service, if you fall into the trap of just trying to sell your product at any cost, the relationship will suffer. This guide on how not to be salesy will help you avoid common mistakes that are off-putting to customers while still keeping them interested enough in your product or service to follow through with an actual purchase.
What Does Being Salesy Mean?
A person who is salesy is someone that uses fast-talking or long-winded pitches in a back-and-forth conversation with a client. This person may also try to establish rapport by talking about the commonalities between them and their customer, but this can be offputting.
The best way to avoid coming across as a salesperson is to stay focused on the conversation at hand, listen attentively and only provide information when it’s requested of you. Remember that experienced salespeople know how to create trust and rapport without relying on rehearsed dialogue or high-pressure tactics, so you don’t have to resort to those methods either.
How to Remove the Salesy Tone from Your Sales Pitch
Define Your Buyer Persona
There are two ways to sell. The first way is by establishing rapport with the client and learning about their needs through a conversation to get the sense that you are on their side. The second way is fast-talking the client into buying your product without taking any time to know about what they need. The first option wins.
One way to know the client’s needs is by defining your buyer persona. A buyer persona is a specific demographic of people who purchase products or services. It’s important that your business has a buyer persona because if you don’t, you will be marketing to everyone and no one, which means your conversion rates will be low. However, it is equally important that you tailor your message to each person when they contact you.
Be Honest and Establish Rapport
Truth is an important part of any customer/business relationship, and it’s important that you don’t come on too strong or make them feel like they’re being sold something. An experienced salesperson knows how to forge a solid rapport with clients and have a back-and-forth conversation without defaulting to their sales pitch.
It’s important to be honest and establish a rapport with clients. This will help them feel comfortable with you before they’re hit with a sales pitch. Sales can be really tough, and it’s best to lay the groundwork first before potentially becoming tangential and salesy.
You should always start with a conversation about their needs before diving into a long-winded pitch about why they should buy from you. Being honest about what you do and why it is important to them, and being authentic without giving half-truths is the way to go.
List Your Values to Your Customers
One of the questions customers ask is, “What is in it for me?” As a salesperson, you should be able to answer this question. Most people will buy from you if they understand how your product or service can benefit them. Start by telling them exactly how it will improve their life or work. Avoid long-winded pitches; just tell them what it is and why they should buy it.
For example, a sales manager may be more successful listing the value the customer gets when they buy their service, such as increased traffic to a website, then going on and on about why they are good at doing their day-to-day activities related to the same.
Pick Up on Social Cues
Rapport with clients is the key to a successful sales pitch. Experienced salespeople have a sixth sense of when they are losing a customer and know that it’s time to stop talking. Experienced salespeople will be able to tell when their customers want them to slow down or get off the phone, but some may need help reading social cues in order not to be pushy. One way to do this is by picking up on social cues, like sounding bored and even yawning.
The key is to ask questions and then listen. The easiest way not to be salesy is by figuring out what your client needs, so you can provide those solutions and stop when they want more information or to close a deal. Experienced salespeople who do that get repeat business and referrals from all of their clients and then some.
Know Your Offer and Be Confident
The more you know your offer, the better you will be able to answer questions and engage prospects in a conversation. The goal is establishing rapport with clients and being an experienced salesperson—not fast-talking salespeople or long-winded pitches that leave prospects dissatisfied.
Understanding your offer helps you understand more about how your product or service can meet the needs of your prospects. In addition, it will help you get more confident about what you are selling. Confidence is the key to selling. If you aren’t confident in your products or services, how will your prospect get confident in your product?
Don’t Try to Sell Them Everything
Be sure to establish rapport with clients, ask questions and work with them rather than trying to sell them everything. Remember that a client may be there on business, or they may just want an opinion. If you are an experienced salesperson, remember the back-and-forth conversation will be more effective in the long run. Use statements like “how does that sound?” Or, “I’m glad you said that,” to build rapport before diving into your pitch.
Give Your Prospect Time to Think
Your prospect needs time to think; give them that opportunity. People don’t like to feel like they are being pressured to make a decision. They are more likely to give their business to someone they can tell actually cares about what they do. Giving them time to think gives them an understanding of what they need and want before making a sale.
In addition, asking questions like “What do you hope to accomplish?” or “What do you think would work well for you?” will give the prospect time to think about how they feel about your company and products. Lastly, be consistent with follow-up without making your prospect feel pushed to the wall. Leave enough time for them to think about your company and the benefits of working with you.
The key to not being too salesy is developing a rapport with the prospect. Experienced salespeople know that this is achieved through a back-and-forth conversation, where the prospect asks questions and shares information about themselves, and you share information about your company.
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