The Value of Relationships: Why I Quit the “Convincing” Business

If you are like me, you are passionate about what you do and you like to have others into it too. For me, I am quite an advocate. I like talking about investing, entrepreneurship, passive income, internet marketing, empowerment, female power, organic living…you name it. If it’s something I believe in, and it’s changed my life in a positive way, I like to spread the word.

But, this approach isn’t the way to go when you are working to acquire new business. Although it’s important to communicate the benefits of your products and services, if you’re having to convince the client, to push, to manipulate with fancy sales technique, you don’t have the sale. And, you probably don’t want it even if you do finally “win” it. Here’s why:

The people you have to convince are the hardest to sell, the most expensive to service, and are the most likely to want a refund. You’ll work your tail off for them and then they won’t refer you to their friends. Or, worst still, they will refer their friends. Since the old adage “Birds of a feather flock together” often rings true, their friends are going to be like them– a pain in your balance sheet! Convincing just doesn’t pay and it isn’t the way business is done anymore.

Advertising and marketing have changed a lot in the last decade. People’s buying behavior has changed too. They concentrate on relationships even more and they don’t buy things that they don’t already know. When was the last time you bought a book or went to a movie with little idea of what you’d be getting? It was a long time ago for me. More to the point, when was the last time you paid more for a product because you knew and trusted the vendor? I did that yesterday, was happy to do it, and I would do it again today.

It’s not that I don’t buy new inventive products. When I do, it’s because I was educated about them first. The business owner took the time to be in the market, teaching me what their product was and what it does and how it works. Even though their idea was brand new, when I finally bought, my relationship with them was not.

I’m not saying I am immune to great sales technique. None of us are. I tend to study it and admire it. But it’s not why I buy. I don’t buy because some slick salesperson knew the right “close”. Sales technique shouldn’t get in your way, but the quality of the product and the relationship drives the sale, not the sales technique.

So, what does this mean to you? Get yourself out in the market ahead of your sales pitch! Give people ample opportunity to know you and learn about your product. Educate, communicate, give people a way to learn about you prior to even contacting you (your website’s a great tool for this). Get involved in your community so your reputation preceeds you. And protect and enrich that reputation with great service and honest dealings.

If you do these things, people will come to you and they will be great clients. When you approach them, they will already know you and will be glad to see you. They’ll be a raving fan that insist their friends should deal with only you. They will buy more often, in larger amounts, and be a breeze to service. They might even become your friend. They will already be convinced from the start because they had the opportunity to be convinced by the person whose opinion they respect the most–themselves.

When you finally embrace the power of the relationship, you’ll be out of the convincing business too.

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2 Responses

  1. Wonderful blog! I would like to invite you to join an amazing social network for women in business, Divapreneur. It’s by invitation only and I need your e-mail to send the invitation. You can contact me through the link on my website:

    Parthena Black

    I am adding your blog to my blogroll and will link to it in my Divapreneur blog today.

    Have a dynamic day!

  2. You can send your invitation to vicki at smartwomanpublishing.com. It sounds great. I am sure any other women here can do the same to be involved also, right? Thanks for letting us know about the great site. I will explore it fully and then write it up as a recommended site.

    Vicki

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