"Everyone lives by selling something."
--- Robert Louis Stevenson
You may have heard it said before, "Everyone sells." This is true even to those of us that believed in the past that selling is hard or that it takes a special person to sell something. Most of what we've learned from sales comes from the movie industry or stand-up comedians that bash salespeople and make them the brunt of jokes. It is the fast-talking, chain-smoking, conniving salesmen portrayed in Tin Men and other such movies that gave, and still gives selling a bad name.
Thankfully, selling doesn't have to be that way and typically fails when it is. Today, selling is all about building relationships with people and offering a product or service that provides solutions. It is learning where prospects feel pain and then alleviating that pain with what your company provides. Getting rid of the pain cannot happen though unless the person with the pain has trust in you. Along with, "Everyone sells," is the often repeated, "People buy from people they trust." This is so true.
"Obstacles are necessary for success because in selling, as in all careers of importance, victory comes only after many struggles and countless defeats."
--- Og Mandino
Countering the fears associated with selling is done by using the same approach people use when they have a fear of water--- just dive in. Of course, there are more steps involved, but in a nutshell, people who fear selling must sell in order to overcome the fear. That means that there will be some falling-down along the way. People may not buy what you are selling, but action is the best cure for getting over the fear, as well as, eventually making some sales.
"Use the same measure for selling that you use for purchasing."
--- Abu Bakr
When communicating with a prospect, always be yourself. Even if you pick up some books on selling, glean what good information the book has and apply it to your selling. Don't try to become like the author of the book. Only Zig Ziglar was Zig Ziglar and no one else can be him or any other great salesperson.
"Advertising is a valuable economic factor because it is the cheapest way of selling goods, particularly if the goods are worthless."
--- Sinclair Lewis
Marketing strategies and advertising techniques are useful for any businesses. But, if the business relies solely on the marketing campaign for closing sales, the business won't last long. Just like new technology that brings us texting and emailing is good, it doesn't, and should not replace a phone call or face-to-face interactions. Do not let your advertising, word-of-mouth, and other marketing plans take the place of building relationships in order to sell your products and services. People want to buy from people they trust and they cannot and will not trust you if they don't know you.
Begin building rapport this week with people you haven't met yet, but that you know will benefit from what your business has to offer. It is that simple. If for some reason they don't buy from you, you still won because you've built a relationship and increased your business network.
"Selling is our No. 1 job. Never get away from selling a lot of merchandise personally. The more you sell the more you learn."
--- James Cash Penney
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