The old way of selling

Paul Orangetree

Paul Orangetree on The old way of selling

Whenever you start talking about selling, emotions run high.

Two extremes emerge. All selling is evil. And on the other side, if I follow the process I have a right to your business.

Of course all selling is not evil. But equally, I am not up for being bullied.

Let me quote an example. It is not fair to pick on one thing, but I am going to do it just to illustrate the point.

Like you, I get phone calls. This one, not for the first time, was a company wishing me to buy a funeral plan. They had a series of questions and assertions that were very expertly designed to talk me into a cul de sac where all I could say was 'yes, sign me up'.

But along the way, they had some assumptions. They seemed to believe that I was unaware of my mortality, unaware that funerals cost more than bailing out the Treasury, unaware that funeral plans were one way of addressing the issue, and mostly, unable to seek out a provider of this service and set up some arrangements.

These people have a legitimate product. A useful product. And I don't know how best to sell it. But I know that the worst possible way to sell it to me is to phone me and expect me to sit on the train setting up my funeral arrangements. Out loud.

Politely saying 'I have all this covered already, thank you', does not bring the call to an end. Actually, the only way to end that call is to hang up, or to buy. And that is my main point, I guess.

I had no options. I felt trapped and tricked. I was being told I potentially hate my children, because if I loved them I would buy this plan.

And another thing. Across the nation there will be people potentially wanting this service. How would they get hold of this seller? I have no idea.

There are potentially people calling out, wanting your product, and you don't hear them because you are off forcing your pitch on someone who is being really polite but actually wants to say rude words at you.

Because businesses don't always listen. Because people don't always listen.

In the old days, we sold stuff like this. Time shares. Double glazing. Life insurance.

It is not the old days.

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