A while ago I heard someone say that today’s generation is so savvy that they can smell a sales pitch from a mile away. I’ve found this to be true of my own self. As someone that spends a lot of her time online, running blogs and chatting on social media, I’ve come to a point where I pretty much run away from anything that reeks of a sales pitch. And I don’t think that I’m the only one.
Online I regularly see hard pitches, constant requests for votes/promotions, and a never-ending stream of people emailing me for free promotion. I will admit that these methods of selling and pitching do work. If you hard-pitch enough people, more than likely someone is going to buy or promote you. That’s just the way selling works.
But in a world of socially savvy people, I believe that it’s time to adapt. The days of the door-to-door vacuum cleaners, knives, encyclopedias, and hard sells are dwindling fast. If you don’t adapt, you’ll find yourself out of luck.
These days people can smell that pitch and see through things faster than you can bat an eye. Being salesy and inauthentic is a quick way to lose readership, and you guessed it – sales. Be open and honest about how you make money and what your motivations are. Allow your personality to shine and you will find that people will relate and connect with you.
Show Your Value
Your ability to articulate what you do and what your passions are is very powerful. If you aren’t showing your value, then why should people even follow you or buy from you? People don’t bond over statistics and data. They connect with you based on your personality and ability to show the world your value. Dan Morris said it best when he said “fans follow personalities, not headlines” (read more on how to Increase Your Page Views).
Your confidence in who you are and your value will have a tremendous effect on whether or not people want to follow you and/or purchase products from you. Finding that good balance between confidence and humility will be key. But again, stay authentic to who you are, and let your following see it.
Building relationships is key to your success. This is why social media is so powerful and something that brands and successful people everywhere so readily tap into. If you are just trying to sell and not really building relationships with people, you might be slightly successful – but not as much as you could if you were authentically connecting with people.
I recently came to a cross roads in my business ventures online. I met two great people that offered coaching and products that could help me with my business. I could see the value of both people. Both were extremely smart and successful. One person built a quality business relationship with me prior to me purchasing the product, while the other would not respond to a question I had unless I did purchase the product. You can bet that I chose to purchase from the person that was genuinely interested in connecting with me, and actually took the time to answer some questions.
Do Not Pitch
Your ability to articulate what you do is very powerful. Articulate what you do, be authentic and confident, connect with people, but then avoid “hard pitching”. The way I see it, if you have to beg people to buy your products, share your Facebook page, or pin your posts to Pinterest – then you’ve already lost. If you are doing the previous things well, there should be very little need for a pitch. People will be clamoring to follow your blog, and/or buy your products and ebooks. Note that I’m not saying to completely eliminate pitching, but I am proposing that “hard pitching” should be left behind in the ’90s where it belongs.
I realize not everyone will agree with what I’ve said here. I’m interested in hearing your thoughts on this whether you agree or not. Do you feel that it’s time to ditch the pitch?
Photo courtesy of Big West Conference.