When Did Sales Become a Four Letter Word?

This is the first of a two part blog about the changes in sales.

Every day I read new articles that proclaim that sales is dead. People don’t want to be sold any more. With the rise of social media, people are talking with each other, so the power of the sales process is now in the hands of the consumer. I don’t disagree that the consumer now takes a much more active role in the selling process, but sales is not dead. From my point of view, sales is becoming more important than ever. As a matter of fact, I think everyone of us is in sales. If you don’t think you are, think again.

Everyone who has to convince another person of the soundness of an idea, introduce a new concept, or lead others in a new direction is selling. You may be selling ideas, a vision, or a new ways of doing things, but you’re still selling.

Sales gets a bad rap from the stereotypical, gold chains and big watch sales person, the one who could sell ice cubes to Eskimos. But real sales isn’t about selling people something they don’t need. It’s about asking questions to find out about needs, wants, and desires. It’s about providing a solution to a particular problem or challenge you’re facing.

If you’re trying to sell a product or service, you could call your prospects and tell them all the features and benefits of your service or product, you could tell them why they need your product or service. You may firmly believe your product or service can make the difference between success and failure for your prospects. You can go through your entire sales script and still get a polite, “No, we really don’t need that.” How is this possible? You KNOW people need the service or product you’re offering. Why can’t your prospects see that?
Check back for the second half of this blog on changes in sales on Monday.

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