My job is selling technology. Actually I'm more of a translator. I sell technology to other businesses and that's where things get weird. There is a bewildering array of tech out there and unfortunately many companies think technology sells itself and the value that the technology delivers should be obvious. Wrong. That's where I come in. I said I was a translator. My job is to translate techno babble into value that customers understand. This blog share my adventures with high tech sales. Selling high tech is fun so come join me on my sales journey!

Tuesday 30 October 2012

I'm not selling anything

Have you ever had someone ring you or knock on your door and one of the first things they say is "I'm not selling anything to you".  This has got to be the most stupid things to say.  I can only think of a couple of scenarios  where this might work:

1/ the person  has been living in a cave all there life and never ever been sold to and so believes you
2/ the person is totally thick and believes you
3/ the person is too polite to tell you to f*#$ off.

As I enjoy studying people's sales techniques I  recently let the sales process run it's course when I was  cold called in this way.  The technique usually switches to some no obligation survey or promotion. To me it is clear that the survey will find something wrong giving them the opportunity to sell something.  On this particular occasion I let them feel secure and then started asking questions about once the survey is completed would anyone try and sell to me. OK the face told me the answer was yes even if the words had switched to "there is no obligation to buy".

My logic is it's hard to buy something unless someone is selling some thing....

Conversation terminated.

I was tempted to confuse him by start selling my book to him given that he had inadvertently given me permission to have a face to dialogue.

Clearly "I'm not selling anything" is a lie or at best a half truth "I am not selling anything to you right this second, but I will very soon".

Lying is never a good technique in sales.  Why would I trust a company when their opening line is "I'm  lying to you so you don't slam the door in my face".

A far better approach for this particular door-to-door salesman that cold called me. "Hi,  I noticed you have a few broken tiles on your roof and lots of moss that could cause damage to your roof in a cold winter.  We have a team of roof surveyors in the area next week. I wanted to just let you know they will be putting an estimate card through your door and if I hadn't knocked you might wonder what it is. They will survey your roof from the outside and put the card through your door with an  estimate of how much we would charge to fix these issues. There is no obligation to buy - you decide. Thank you for your time"

No lying
No pressure
You outline a problem and some risks if the problem is ignored
Result - I trust these guys a bit more.

Lying gives sales a bad name and doesn't establish trust - why do it!

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