Friday, December 27, 2013

Why You Need to Dump Your Sales Pitch

Estimates are that we get something like 5,000 marketing and sales messages a day, and with the holiday shopping season in full swing, that number probably has increased.
But many of the sales pitches we receive may not come from those trying to get us to buy a new toaster or vacation in an exotic locale. Some come from those we work with, whether a colleague or a vendor.
Do you pay attention when you feel a team member is trying to "sell" you something? Or do you tune that person out?
If you're not receptive to the message, you're not alone.
"People get defensive when they detect the pitch. They feel like something is being forced on them," says Steve Yastrow, author of the upcoming Ditch the Pitch: The Art of Improvised Persuasion
While we may ignore a sales pitch from our colleagues, the problem is that they're doing the same to us. If you're trying to sell an idea in a meeting to your team or boss, that means they may be unreceptive.
Or if you're trying to sell yourself to an employer during a job interview, that person automatically might reject what you're saying.
A better way to break down the resistance to a sales pitch is to use improvised conversations instead, Yastrow says.
Using this method, your sales pitch becomes a conversation that focuses on the needs of the other person. Unlike a sales pitch, the other person is doing most of the talking, which automatically puts that person more at ease and not on guard against a sales push, he says.
"Everybody feels like they need to be selling themselves and persuading people," Yastrow says. "But then we fall into the trap of thinking that our job is to explain, cajole and convince, and that's not how you get people to do what you want."
An Ipsos Public Affairs survey commissioned by Sandler Training finds that 62% of 1,000 working Americans say that they spend an hour or less a day selling (read more here)

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