How do you feel when you think about selling? Many small business people – and Americans in general – have bad impressions about selling and salespeople. Their immediate image is of pushy, hard sell salespeople who are going to push them into buying. They often feel that the salesperson is just trying to figure out how to get into their wallet whether it serves them or not.
First, think of some time when you actually enjoyed working with a sales person who helped you buy a product you actually wanted but lacked the expertise to make the right choice. Frank Robertson recalls when he was a new Air Force lieutenant. Because of his childhood in a lower working class family, he lacked the knowledge needed to dress for success on social occasions.
Frank drove into San Antonio to find a department store where he could get a sports suit. He lucked out and found a dedicated men’s clothing store instead where he met a professional salesman. The man greeted Frank warmly and asked what he could help him buy. When it became obvious that Frank wanted a sports suit but didn’t know how to start, this older salesman guided him through the whole process of selecting a sports coat – including recommending a cut that would look best on Frank, two pair of slacks, a couple ties and a couple dress shirts.
When Frank left that store, he felt much more comfortable about his appearance for social activities. And for over 40 years that memory of the clothing salesman has stood out as a delightful experience because he felt truly served and guided – without being controlled.
What was your most enjoyable experience of a sales person helping you to get a desired result or a problem fixed? Was it a travel agent, a real estate sales person, an insurance rep or a business to business sales person?
Often sales people you deal with have different titles so you might miss the fact that they are selling you: territory manager, product manager, customer service rep or sales engineer. They might also be the owner of a small business, a pastor or rabbi, restaurant server, a politician, coach or best friend because nothing happens in life without someone selling an idea, product or service.
Do you have a sales person you rely on for his or her technical expertise to guide your purchase decisions? Relationship selling is about becoming that trusted advisor and friend with your customers and clients.
If you are ready to take your small business to its next level by developing win-win relationships with your customers then relationship selling will get you there. It is all about connecting with your customers so that you can enjoy a partnership of helping them improve their lives and businesses with your guidance and with your products and services.
With heart centered selling, you delay “selling” to listen first. Then you help your customers buy what they want and feel they need – when they are ready.
Train your employees to use relationship selling. If your business is based on caring for and serving your customers, on building long term business, hard sell techniques can kill your chances. Customers make decisions about you and your business based on how your employees represent you. Relationship selling is sometimes also called soft sell to contrast it with hard sell, the more traditional way to train sales people.
Few types of work are as a potentially rewarding as sales, in income, job satisfaction and personal success or fulfillment, especially for sales people who excel at heart centered, relationship selling. There is more to success in life and business than just the money. Connecting with prospects, customers and clients adds a deeply satisfying dimension to life. Serving others by helping them buy makes selling fun, fulfilling and mutually rewarding. And the sales come because customers love buying from people they trust.
Invest in yourself, in your employees and in your business’ long term success by reading and applying How Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses.
When originally introduced at $.99 (99 cents), How Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses was going to increase to a permanent price of $5.97. This price increase never happened because the first version felt like it was missing something important. Now with version 2 available on Amazon, How Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses is ready and after an introductory period will go up in price.
Use the attitude, tips and techniques in How Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses to fine tune your approach to connecting with your customers. Help them come to know, like and trust you because your commitment to serve first and sell second wins them over for the long term, which naturally leads to higher lifetime customer values.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Stop Selling – Build Relationships April 29, 2012
By Tim Bennett
This is an incredible book and I am simply thrilled at the amount of incredible content within the pages.
The book is broken up into easy to read chapters and uses words and terms that we can all understand.
My take away from this great book is to stop selling and start build relationships.
Serve instead of sell.
Put the customers needs before your wants.
Know why you want to sell.
Fall in love with what you do.
Just some of the nuggets that I love in this book.
This is a great read and I am inspired to go out and serve my customers to the best of my ability.
Now that’s got to be win-win!
Thanks John for a fantastic book!
4.0 out of 5 stars Relationships are key in providing value to others April 29, 2012
By Chris Downs
John’s book is a wake up call on how important it is to have a relationship with the people that I am helping, rather than just working in my profession! His expertise on the subject shares the point that we as business owners are here to make a difference in our customer lives and to not just “Sell to” everyone that comes in to your business. Make a difference so that your client continues a long term relationship with you.
4.0 out of 5 stars Good relational selling sales training April 28, 2012
This short book is a good introduction to relationship marketing/relational selling. John Aberle shares his many years of sales training experience so that the customer does not feel “sold to.” This book will help anyone in a position of selling (offering products online, training courses, etc) to build long-term relationships with customers.
Ronda Del Boccio, the Story Lady
#1 bestselling author
5.0 out of 5 stars Informative and fun to read November 9, 2013
Relationship selling is what all salesman need to bring there selling to the next level. For anyone who has sold and thought “there must be something more to this” this book teaches the answer. To help your customers buy instead of pushing the hard close is a much more fulfilling way to pursue a sales career.
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart Centered Serving Sells May 4, 2012
This is a wonderful book filled with amazing content for anyone who’s ever felt the sales pitch way was not their way. Instructive, caring and lending full value to the customer, John Aberle’s expertise on the necessity of relationship in sales comes straight from the heart. Good job!