How To Do Sales Without Being Pushy
In order to survive in business one needs to learn how to do sales. However, many people are extremely resistant to it because everyone thinks of the “used car salesman.”
No one wants to feel like they are coercing someone else into purchasing from them. They also tend to feel uncomfortable asking other people for money and they have a real fear of coming off as pushy and alienating other people.
The reasoning behind this phenomenon is because everyone, at some point in their lives, has had a bad sales experience. Meaning, they were in a situation where they felt incredibly uncomfortable making a transaction.
The part people tend to forget is that sales in and of themselves are not uncomfortable. It’s people who make sales uncomfortable—and often times that’s because people don’t know how to properly sell. Or, perhaps they are a part of a company where their sales training is extremely aggressive and that’s all they know.
Tips on how to do sales without feeling like you’re coercing people
The good news is there is a way to do sales without feeling like a pushy used-car salesman. At the end of the day, sales is ultimately about building relationships, and while it may require moving out of your own comfort zone, it doesn’t have to be so terrifying.
1. Get comfortable with other people being uncomfortable when you ask them for money
This is a lesson I learned at a conference for women entrepreneurs. The presenter had a background in fundraising and was so successful that Prince William wanted her to run an event in the U.S. for his foundation.
Her secret? She got comfortable with other people being uncomfortable when she asked them for money.
She had to accept that other people’s issues with making financial decisions wasn’t her fault. Instead of assuming that she was the cause of their discomfort, she learned how to be compassionate and understanding of it.
All you have to do is take a look at your own life and you’ll come up with examples of when you had to think about a financial decision. It’s no different when you’re the one asking people for money.
2. “No” doesn’t mean “Never”
One issue I often see is people putting too much pressure on others to immediately close a deal. This is often times because they don’t understand how sales actually work.
You will rarely close a deal the first time you encounter someone. In fact, more than half of sales are made after seven points of contact. That means that sales aren’t usually meant to be immediate, but rather you need to build a relationship and follow up with your prospects before you get a “yes.”
3. The fortune is in the follow up
The other astonishing thing I see is that people don’t follow up with their prospects! Again, they feel like they are being pushy. Fortunately for me, this was a fear I had to overcome when I worked in recruiting.
In recruiting, my boss taught me that follow ups are imperative because sometimes people get busy and life gets in the way. In fact, in most cases it’s not that people are ignoring you, it’s that they have other things going on that they need to deal with. Or, it could just be a matter of bad timing and the other person not being ready to move forward.
In my own business I’ve noticed this to be true. I sometimes close deals months after making the first initial contact. On the flip side, I’ve had instances in my life where I reach out to service providers to gather information and don’t end up hiring them until much later when I’m financially ready.
This is just the nature of sales. Therefore, it’s important that you consistently follow up with prospects to see how they are doing and if there is any way you can serve them.
4. Learn how to handle objections
The two main objections you’ll have to deal with in sales are:
- “I need to think about it” and;
- “I can’t afford it”
Both are usually knee-jerk reactions to sales transactions (remember, everyone has had a bad experience at some point and is afraid) so it’s up to you to know how to handle it.
One of my favorite ways to keep the conversation going is to ask questions.
For example, if someone says they can’t afford it, I typically say “I completely understand. I know what it’s like to feel like there is a solution available to my problem and believe it’s just out of reach. Out of curiosity, what results would you need to see in order for coaching to be worth the investment?”
This does two things.
- First, I am respectful of their financial concern which is where a lot of people drop the ball.
- Second, I ask them to tell me what they would need in order to pay. This gives me a lot of insight I can use to continue selling and also helps me craft better solutions for them.
Learning how to handle objections may require you to seek the help of a coach or mentor in order to do it in a way that feels most authentic to your business. I did this for my own business and believe me, it’s worth the price tag.
5. Realize that you are being of service
If you have a solution to someone’s problem it is your duty to tell them about it, otherwise they are going to continue suffering. At the end of the day that’s all sales really is: letting people know there are solutions available to their problems.
It’s not coercing anyone into anything. It’s not being pushy. It’s being assertive.
While you may need to be a bit more assertive in asking for what you want and learn how to deal with objections, this doesn’t take away from the fact that you are doing so in order to help someone with their problem.
I hope these tips will help you better understand the area of how to do sales and dominate it!