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Pushy Salespeople

Discussion in 'Marketing' started by SiteFlight, Mar 26, 2009.

  1. SiteFlight

    SiteFlight New Member

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    Speaking from a customer point of view, I simply cannot stand salespeople that exert pressure on me to spend my money.

    This happened today, when I received a call from Truelocal. If you've signed up on their directory, you've most likely had a similar call.

    Basically the woman on the other end was so fast-talking that I didn't even catch a lot of what she said. It was a good 5 minutes into the call that I was finally given wind that what she was offering was going to cost me money. Not just a little; but $130 per month. What had started as a call asking me to confirm my listing had become a hard sales pitch for an upgraded listing.
    She was halfway through asking me to let her choose keywords to add to Google AdWords when I said, "wait, how much did you say it costs?".
    "One thirty a month" she said. I told her I couldn't afford it right now, so she said well, I can go with the $88 plan for now and upgrade once I see the results.

    I finally managed to tell her I wanted to think about it. Then I hung up, and burst into tears from the anxiety that had developed during my conversation with her.

    I am not going to go with this upgrade. I don't care how much exposure my business gets: nobody treats me like that and gets a sale from me. Not EVER.

    Some advice from a shy person. This sales technique is nasty and rude, and does not put you in a favourable light. Please do not do it.
  2. mexham

    mexham Member

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    Hi Natalie, sorry to hear about your experience. We had a similiar phone call also. I didn't take the call myself, but my partner did, and I guessed it was along similiar lines.


    I had a really annoying experience the other day also at a nationwide tyre store. They offer free punctures for life, all good, so I took in the car to get a flat fixed. Then just as I expected, as the guy was checking my tyres he got all serious.. "How new are your tyres, when was the last time you had them balanced, aligned etc etc." Then said something along the lines of 'don't worry we can do all that for you at the same time'. Said in a way of total assumption that I had agreed to it. Had to ask him a couple of times for a price, $130! Told him I didn't want it, hadn't budgeted on spending $130 today and to just fix the tyre. He wasn't so friendly after that.

    I see now how this place can offer free puncture repairs because they then pressure sell you into something else. Just the way he did it in such an assuming manner, not asking if I wanted it done.

    Anyway, last time I go back to that place. Makes you feel very awkward having to come up with excuses why you don't want what they are selling. Especially when you never wanted or enquired about it in the first place!
  3. peppie

    peppie Active Member

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    My very great sympathies Natalie, it is never nice to be pushed around like that.

    We have a policy in our household that ANY obvious sale calls get cut off quickly. Especially the ones that come at about dinnertime etc.! Also, never respond to the "just need to confirm your details" sort of call, you simply do not know if they are who they say they are. We get calls for example wanting to confirm who we currently have our phone service with, if they are who they say they are they should know.

    Personally, I know that this sort of sale technique does work on some, but I prefer to talk about the benefits and let the client make their own mind up. At least then you know you will not get a backlash/badmouthing later.
  4. linkartist

    linkartist Member

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    Personally, anyone who does the hard sell, or works off a script or whatever, does not get my respect, or my sale.

    I have found GE Financial to be like this - to the point where I now refuse to answer 'blocked' numbers that don't leave a message. I cannot stand being ambushed on the phone, because more often than not I end up being pressured into making commitments I can't make JUST to get them off the phone.

    One thing I find interesting is that they don't seem to have figured out that no-pressure, and being helpful gets you way further than the hard sell. Well, for me it does anyway.
  5. Burgo

    Burgo Well-Known Member

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    Yes I ve had the 'truelocal treatment'. Sounds as if they haven't learned a thing.

    Telstra got a bit pushy last night as well.

    So it appears thesec call centre people are now being pushed harder and harder to get sales. Closeur is now not in six weeks.
  6. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    I don't know ... this is the bit I don't understand.

    Why not just say "No." - why do you need an excuse?

    If I'm pushed on something I don't want I'll say "No" - if they keep going I'll say

    "Look - I know you're working on commission and I know how tough that is - I respect your hang-in-there attitude. But I'm not your client - you're not going to make comm off me ... you're better off moving on to the next call. Good luck!" And hang up.

    Done.

    No rudeness, no meanness, no feeling like crap or making up excuses.

    Just learn to say no.

    Nine times out of ten, the reason you find yourself in the pushy part of the conversation is because you haven't been honest with the sales person ... you've let them get through their speil, you've told them it all sounds good (because they'll ask ... "How does that sound?" - perfect opportunity to say "It's not for me.") - to get to the point where they ask for the order, they first have to have gone through a process where you've said "yes", "yes", "yes". (the other time is when you get someone who DOESN'T follow the script and just goes straight for the close without qualifying you first ...)

    The biggest problem here is normally with women who feel it's 'rude' to say no ... so they just keep saying yes and then wonder why they get harassed. Liken it to being in a bar and getting attention from a guy ... you talk to him for a while, you're friendly, you say yes whenever he asks you if you think he's a nice guy and if you like hanging out with him ... then he asks you on a date ... and you're horrified????

    Remember, the person on the other end of the phone is a PERSON ... probably on comm only ... and probably, in this economy, trying to sell advertising, going broke and unable to feed their wife and kids (I know a couple of guys like this) - and getting desperate. If you tell them yes they're going to go for the sale, because to them, it's not about the money - it's the difference between their kids eating and not. It's the difference between whether their mortgage payments are going to be made and whether they have a roof over their heads.

    That doesn't mean you should buy something you don't want - but it also means that you're doing them a favour by saying "I'm not going to buy - move on to your next call - good luck!".

    Personally, I admire tenacity on the phone. On occasion, I've taken the ones who were good tenacious (that is, who were polite but wouldn't give up) and gotten them jobs with friends ...

    Dude ... seriously ... you don't EVER have to agree to ANYTHING.

    "Don't worry, we can do all of that for you."
    "Great - but I'm going to get several quotes before I go ahead. How much are you?"

    Same with True Local ...

    "Great, thanks for the information. I'm going to look into several different advertising options, so I'll take that on board and have a look at it and decide if it's for me."

    "Push push push."

    "Sure, I hear you - but you're not the only advertising option out there and I'm not going to spend money with you without doing my due diligence."

    "push push push."

    "What I'm telling you is 'no sale' - not today. You're better off going on to your next call."

    Don't panic.

    Be honest.

    Most importantly - DON'T take it personally. They're just doing their jobs and trying to make a crust, like the rest of us.
  7. Dardee

    Dardee Active Member

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    If I want something I will enquire about it. If someone calls me up out of the blue they won't get the sale. Simple as that. If I have done the research and determined what I want I can make an educated decision. Cold calling me simply catches me off guard, unprepared which always results in me telling the person swiftly I am not interested and hang up.

    Even if I have made the call I will end a conversation with a pushy salesperson and call back hoping for someone more polite.

    I refuse to deal with rude, pushy people.

    Saying that, I had an interesting phone call today from a company that was reading this forum. I was somewhat surprised. You never know who is reading it. ;-) Fortunately for the person I spoke to he was very nice and not pushy.
  8. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    Interesting, Darren - you say you NEVER buy from a cold call and then you say that someone cold called you today and they were lovely ... so really, do you mean you won't buy from someone who calls you up and says:

    "Buy this now!"

    (typically, these tend to be O/S call centres)

    Or people who try to trick you?

    Because those people are NOT salespeople. They're con men. And despite what many people think - there IS a difference.

    The fact is - cold calling works. I've made a great deal of money both for myself and for clients using cold calling.

    And at the end of the transaction I have, more than once, had clients hug me and thank me for selling them.

    And just to be clear - I don't AGREE with salespeople being pushy - it's simply a fact of life (ESPECIALLY when you're in business), so you need to learn to deal with it and not freak out when it happens.

    More importantly, those people who get terribly upset and emotional about it need to learn a bit of self-confidence - it's just not emotionally healthy to fall into a heap because someone asked you to buy something you didn't want.
  9. Dardee

    Dardee Active Member

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    I never said I bought anything. ;-)

    I don't buy from cold calls and didn't in this case either. He may have got a little further than usual, but I never commit to ANYTHING over the phone from a cold call.
  10. peppie

    peppie Active Member

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    Point taken Leela, but not everyone does fight back and that is exactly why these people keep at what they do. Sooner or later they will find someone who will buy, maybe because they truly want the product, but mostly I suspect in this case simply because they are too shy, outpaced or embarrassed to do otherwise. They rely on bully tactics and that is just down right cruel.

    Not everyone is as pushy back, like you and me, it's a fact of life!!!!! And BTW, there are many businesses that survive very well without having to resort to Cold Calling. Personally the whole idea gives me the shivers (heh heh).
  11. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    Yes, you're right Peppie ... not everyone does stand up for themselves. But it's entirely unreasonable to think that the world is going to change ... there will always be pushy people - sales or otherwise - who want you to do what they want you to do. You can't control them, so learn to stand up for yourself!

    "Resort".

    That's an interesting attitude. Especially from someone who is in business.

    You do realise that everything you do to promote your business is sales?

    So a cold email is JUST as bad (personally, I feel, worse) than a cold call.

    And GEE - you'd better not go and MEET people face to face if you don't KNOW them!!!

    I also find the word "survive" interesting. I don't like the idea of "surviving" - I want to thrive ... which is why I used cold calling recently to sell tickets to an event I'm doing on Saturday.

    No one got pressured - they were simply offered an opportunity. And a LOT of them took it up. That allowed me to fill a paid event with thirty people with only two weeks lead time (any one who has organised events before knows that's no mean feat!).

    I'm not at all afraid of doing those cold calls because I KNOW what I'm teaching at that event will benefit those people greatly. I KNOW that the money they've spent to come will come back to them in droves. Because I know what I offer is worth every cent (and then some!) that I charge for it.

    So perhaps I just have more congruency with my business and product than other people do ...

    I cold called for a business last year and made them more than $600,000 in a couple of weeks.

    THOSE are the kinds of numbers I want to see in my own business ... that's far better than merely "surviving" ...

    Yes, you can survive without cold calling - but there's a reason that pretty much ALL of the multi-million dollar companies use it in their strategies ...
  12. peppie

    peppie Active Member

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    Geee wilikas Leela, do you have to be picky about the words I use????

    OK, so I didn't explain myself precisely, after all we were talking more about something else, really.

    I understand the principle of cold calling and I also understand that it does work,,, for some and in certain situations. I don't really like (very) cold calling and by that I mean totally out of the blue, number from a list, never contacted them before type of calling.

    I would call someone if I knew they would likely need my service AND I have arrived at them because of some other contact with them or someone close by etc.. To me that is "warm" calling, I have a reason to call other than I picked them from some list.

    It's just my style and I have built my business and approach on that sort of friendly approachable "I see you need help, this is what I do and.....". Many of my clients are retirees or very near it and they do not appreciate being "pushed".
  13. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    Paul. I'm a writer.

    "I see you need help, this is what I do and....."

    That's EXACTLY what I do with cold calling.

    My lists are well researched - I know who my niche is. I know that if you're a speaker, a business coach or a life coach then my services will not only make you money, but free up your time and give you a better quality of life. So, I have no problems calling people.

    Some of them aren't interested. Some of them are. Either way, none of them would have known about me if I hadn't of called them.

    Funnily, as we've been having this conversation, one of the people I cold called on Monday just called me back ... she was like ...

    "Oh my god! I didn't KNOW there were people who did what you do! You're the answer to my prayers!" (word for word)

    So cold calling doesn't have to = evil, pushy people trying to get your money out of you ... it can = good, caring salespeople who have a service or product to offer you that could change your life and that you may never find out about any other way ...
  14. linkartist

    linkartist Member

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    I think I need Leela to sell my services. She has some rather large balls ;)

    I actually admire that quality in people, because I lack it. I don't hard sell AT ALL, and probably could do a million times better if I did... but whenever I try it just comes across weird, I dunno.

    I guess you need to be comfortable. For me, because I have been spoilt with mostly warm enquiries from the get-go, I am only reall ynow learning to do the "selling" stuff. I know I need it, I know I need to try and learn it, but I SUCK at it :)
  15. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    Ya know - I'll bet that once upon a time you SUCKED at designing stuff too ... but you stuck at it and now you're really good at what you do.

    Selling is no different to anything else ... when you first start, you WILL SUCK. You just need to stick with it ... push through the hard bits ... and then it gets easier.

    Before too long, it becomes a skill that you pretty much take for granted ... just like writing, designing, driving a car, riding a bike, etc.

    And THEN you start to enjoy it.

    I started martial arts four years ago. and BOY did I suck. I'd done no real exercise in years ... I had no coordination ... I kept falling over.

    But I stuck at it. I learned my forms. I practiced outside of class. When I was stuck, I asked the instructor for help.

    And last year I got my black belt.

    Now, people tell me how "lucky" I am to be so "talented" at martial arts - because they only see the result, not the years of hard work that went into it. As my instructor says:

    "A perfect sidekick is NOT a perfect sidekick. It's 9,456 imperfect sidekicks."

    Same goes for selling and having 'balls' about it ... I sucked when I first started. I hated it. Then I got better. Then I grew to love it ... and now people tell me how "lucky" I am to be so "talented" at selling ...

    But now that I have that skill it's one I know I couldn't live without ... because EVERYTHING in business comes down to selling ... especially as the economy starts to slide ... if you can't sell, you're going to struggle ... but the good news is that it's a LEARNED skill ... which means if you start now, you have time to get skilled enough to get good ... which a LOT of your competitors WON'T be doing - especially in the arts industries. I'm yet to come across another writer who has the same sales skills and successes as I do ... which is a shame ...
  16. linkartist

    linkartist Member

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    I guess the next question is... how or where do you learn these skills? Its not like you can just get them from a book or course :)
  17. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    You can do SOME from courses ... I highly recommend anything by Brian Tracey and Tony Robbins 'Mastering Influence' (while expensive) was one of the best investments I ever made in a CD program. ROI was about 2 weeks. That was is particularly good for people who don't like being 'pushy' as it helps with the mindset side of things ...

    The way I learned was to take 6 months off from my business and go and work in commission only sales.

    Not everyone can do that, of course - but I do know a guy who is a 'sales coach' - that is, he works with people, shows them how to make sales calls and put together scripts and then will sit with you (on Skype or in person) while you make calls and help you, so you can learn ... I won't blatantly advertise his details here, in line with forum policies, but if anyone wants his details, pop me a message and I'll forward them on.

    Really, the ONLY way to learn sales is to DO sales. The problem is, if you're doing it without anyone to tell you what you're doing right and what you're doing wrong, it's really difficult to get good ...

    I was lucky to go and work for a total hard ... urrr ... guy - who pushed me pretty much to my limits. It was exhausting and hard - but it also set me up to be able to explode my business on the backend of it ... I wouldn't be having the success I'm having now if I hadn't of done what I did ...
  18. linkartist

    linkartist Member

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    I guess the problem I have with that is that between staying current in my skillset, admin & funnily enough, actually designing :))), its very hard to then sit & take courses. I literally have 18 books on my desk waiting to be read that are directly related to web development alone! Its nuts, the amount of stuff we need to do to keep up, let alone innovate in this business!

    I'll check out the courses, but really, the end goal for me is to not be doing any selling and to have a sales person!
  19. Renee Barber

    Renee Barber Member

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    Ah ... that would be perfect to have a business development officer so I could do what I actually enjoy doing: the work.

    I'll get there!
  20. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    The problem is - until you PROVE the sales can be done, no sales person is going to want to take the job on.

    I hear from SMEs all the time ... "Oh, I'll just get a sales person to do it" ... and from sales people "Sheesh, all of these people with products that aren't even proven want me to work for them!".

    It's like anything in business - outsourcing is fine, but you need to understand what's going on before you can do it effectively. And this is particularly true of sales - because NO sales person wants to end up trying to sell a product that no one wants (no matter how much you're paying them ... salespeople want to SELL not to NOT sell!). That's why the first question that any good sales person will ask you when you interview them is ...

    "What's your sales process?"
    "What were the gross sales last year?"
    "How many sales people did you have working on it?"
    "And what' s your sales background?"

    If you've sold reasonably well, with no sales background, they'll probably look at it ... but if you're trying to bring in someone when you have no sales script, no sales process, no sales funnel ... I haven't met a sales person who would touch that job - unless you were willing to pay them VERY big money (as a salary ... don't even THINK about commission only only you have all of these things in place and they are working well) - even then, they'll normally tell you to go and get a consultant to do that part for you ...

    Again, big money ... at which point you're better off learning how to do it yourself so that you can at least use the skill set and have it in house for the future, rather than having to employ someone every time you need to do something ...

    I now have someone who does a lot of selling for me ...

    But that's only after 9 months of selling myself and proving that the product had legs and the comms would be worth it.
    regal likes this.

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