It boggles my mind as to why a sales pitch is called a pitch, especially when it is less of you throwing a proposal at someone and more of negotiation. Regardless of that, a sales pitch is the hardest yet most enthralling experience of a salesperson’s life. From notebooks to smartphones and long-term business deals, here’s a few things never to do at a sales pitch.
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- Make stuff up: If your prospective customer has been reading our opinions on the matter, we’re sure they’ll know just how to spot manipulation during a sales pitch. Which is why you’d be better off just being real. After all, you want your product to do all that you say it does, right? Why then would you exaggerate what it does? Stick to the facts and present them in as concise a manner as possible.
- Deliver the wrong goods: There are different kinds of sales pitches, and each of them has a special significance. An elevator pitch is crafted for the time-constrained investor, while a sit-down pitch asks more from you in terms of preparation and content. Don’t mistake one for the other. Don’t spend the few minutes of an elevator pitch talking about yourself, your background, why you started, etc. Likewise, if you are in a sit-down meet, remember to highlight some of these aspects once in a while.
- Use past meetings as a reference point: Remember that each client and every investor is different. Just because you were treated badly at the last meet doesn’t mean you have to take your grumpy self to the next meeting. The ability to drop things in the here and now is something every salesperson must have. If you’re too hungover about the last meet, the next one is going to be just as bad. Rejection and hearing a ‘no’ is the nature of sales.
- Nod to everything a client says: Sounds counterintuitive, doesn’t it? One may think that by agreeing with every single one of the client’s opinions, you’re doing yourself a favour - client likes you, so client will pay you. Often, agreeing to everything, even to the more outrageous or radical statement can come across as docility, or being a doormat. How will anyone take a product seriously when their seller doesn’t have a real point of view? Expressing your viewpoint isn’t being impolite. You just have to use the right words to disagree.
- Be relieved the client said yes: Not in front of them at least. You’ve killed your pitch, negotiated well, and made that difficult close, so don’t ruin it by telling the client how lucky you feel! This just robs them of the trust you worked so hard to build all along. Celebrate with your team and in the privacy of your office by all means, just not in front of a client. They can still withdraw.
Ever been on the receiving end of a sales pitch? What is the worst pitch you heard someone make to you?
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