Do you want more customers, but don’t want to come across as pushy or “salesy”?
Like many entrepreneurs and business owners, you want your business to grow. You believe in your product and the transformation it offers your customers. So why does “sell” have to feel like such a dirty 4-letter word?
Well my friend, I have good news for you. You can increase sales AND sleep well at night. You can even have customers tell you “thank you” after they hand you their money! (I’ve seen it many times.)
Read on and you’ll discover 5 ways that you can serve, not sell, your customers and generously grow your business.
Why “Sell” Became A Dirty 4-Letter Word With Customers
A couple years ago a new shirt store was opening in the mall near my home. It’s called “UntuckIt”, and it’s whole brand was about wearing button-up shirts that are specifically designed to be worn untucked, combined with a Nantucket vibe.
Okay, I’ll bite.
For months they spent thousands of dollars showing me targeted Facebook ads about their shirts, before the store even opened. I WANTED to wear their shirts before Day 1.
I couldn’t wait for the doors of the store in the mall to open so I could try some on and walk out with a bag of them.
Think about that. Before the store even opens I want to hand them money. Essentially, after seeing a few ads, I had sold myself on their shirts. They did almost nothing.
The Fatal Flaw
However, UntuckIt made a fatal flaw the week they opened their store. And frankly, I haven’t even thought about walking in there since.
Instead of serving their customers, their store experience seemed to be based around selling to customers.
Literally the second I walked into the store a sales rep asked me my size (which I didn’t know yet because this was a new store… and, fat guy problems). I said I was just browsing at the moment. I like to find styles I like first, then see if it’s in my size.
The sales rep continued to follow about 5 feet behind me, pointing out what shirts are the “hot items” and which shirts she thought I would look good in.
Honestly, lady, we just met. I don’t care what shirts you think I look good in. And you have expensive taste, apparently.
I wanted to buy a shirt so I picked up a couple and went into the fitting room to try them on.
Within a minute the sales rep handed over a couple more shirts into my fitting room.
The line was crossed.
I put my own shirt back on and walked out of the fitting room. I (mostly) kindly told the sales rep I wasn’t interested and walked out of the store.
Learn From This Mistake
UntuckIt was “selling” to me extremely hard. And I hated it.
That is tragic because when I walked into their store I had already decided to buy a shirt. It was their pushiness and over-eager selling that led me to NOT BUY.
Instead of serving their customers by letting them browse casually and try on shirts, UntuckIt pushed their shirts onto me and pushed me right out of their store.
Nobody wants to feel like they’re being sold to. However, if you’re going to stay in business then you must have sales.
Sales are the lifeblood of your business, so what do you do?
How To Get Customers Without Selling
You should serve, not sell, your customers.
Is it possible to grow your sales without being “salesy”? Absolutely. Let’s look at 5 ways to do this so that your business can grow again.
1. Connect with your ideal customers
Discover who your dream customers are, and what they want. The better you know who your ideal customer is, the easier it will be to connect with them quickly, and without annoying them along the way.
- Who is my ideal customer?
- Where do they hang out?
- What is their mindset and demographics?
2. Listen for their problems and desires
Once you know who your ideal customer is, DO NOT SELL TO THEM. Instead, learn more about them so you can be better able to help them.
- What your ideal customer wants
- The problem or pain does your customer suffers with
- What keeps your customer up at night
3. Build Trust through empathy & education
Now that you’ve connected with your ideal customer, it’s time to build a strong relationship with them.
- Showing empathy for their problem to connect deeply
- Educate them with a “quick win” to show credibility
- DO NOT SELL them anything. Simply serve them where they’re at now
4. Invite customer to transform with your solution
Okay, here’s the fun part! Now that we’ve connected with our customers about their desires and challenges, it’s time to help them overcome!
You’re not pushing your product on them, but you are trying to serve them by helping them solve their problems. Up until now you’ve been listening, and serving them in smaller ways to help their lives. This is no different, except there’s a price tag attached.
- Telling your customer what a successful outcome can look like
- Sharing the specific benefits of your solution relevant to overcoming their pain
- Tell your customer exactly what they need to do next to get your solution (schedule a call, buy now, submit an application, etc.)
- Focus on their transformation more than your product
5. Respect them enough to move on
Some people will say “yes!” Others will say “no…” And both are okay. The goal isn’t to force somebody to buy. Remember, we’re here to serve, not sell.
If someone rejects your offer today you want to respect that because they may still want to buy from you in the future.
- Including a deadline to encourage a thoughtful answer
- Sharing stories of the success other have gotten
- Receiving a “no” with understanding, not shame
- Having a plan in place to continue serving that person, at scale, through other free content
More Love From Customers
Making this shift may take some time in the beginning. However, once you and your business fully embrace the “serve, not sell” mindset your business will rapidly attract more of the right customers.
Your new customers will love your company more than you can imagine. In addition, you can expect your business to enjoy these benefits:
- Connect with more of the right customers faster
- Become more in tune with what your customers want
- Create products that serve your customers better
- Build a business that people love to tell their friends about
Sounds pretty great, huh? Well what are you waiting for? Let’s start serving customers, building those relationships, and increasing sales along the way to build a business you and your customers love.
Here’s a quick recap of the 5 steps to serve, not sell, your customers:
- Connect with your ideal customers
- Listen for their problems and desires
- Build Trust through empathy & education
- Invite them to transform with your solution
- Respect them enough to move on
Let’s Do This
Take action now. Start getting more customers without being salesy.
- Leave a comment below about how this post helped you today.
- Follow the steps in this post to help you get more customers.
- Get our free training below to accelerate your business even more.