I HEARD something amazing today:
A business owner who asked me to prepare content for a landing page said “This sounds too much like I’m trying to sell something, and I don’t want to come across like that.”
This sentiment, mind you, is from a person who actually DOES want to sell something, but doesn’t want her website visitors to KNOW she wants to sell something.
If that makes sense to you, call me. We need to talk.
Because here’s the REAL kicker. My client’s desire is commonplace. I hear it ALL the time: Companies are in the business of selling, but owners and managers (even sales and marketing managers) often don’t want the website to APPEAR to be selling anything.
It’s absolute madness and a surefire way to create obstacles for yourself (both internally and externally).
What’s wrong with selling in the first place?
If nobody sold computers or sofas or dishwashers … you wouldn’t have one. You would need to do without your car, your books, and even the clothes you’re wearing too. Without sales, the economy would collapse and we’d all be hoeing our own beans (assuming we could somehow come up with the seed).
Champion the virtues of a different economic system, if you will, but we’re operating in a primarily free-market economy right now in the USA. To get your share of the goods you’ll have to pony up and sell something (or help somebody else sell something) in order to stay alive.
Yes, you could sign up for some sort of public assistance, but the government couldn’t contribute to your support without a whole lot of people out there doing the hard work of selling things.
Like it or not, them’s the apples.
I know. It’s an uncomfortable dilemma. I’m with you. I truly wish people could live peacefully, work together for the common good, and that nobody ever had to go hungry, go without medical care, or ever be sad and alone. I wish the thieves would stop stealing, the murderers would stop murdering, and all of us could sit around the campfire singing “Kum Ba Yah.”
That would suit me just fine, and as soon as everyone else agrees to those conditions, you can count me in. Meanwhile, I’m going to have to sell something, and I’m going to need to make a reasonable profit doing it. In other words, the bills don’t stop coming just because the thought of selling something makes me sick.
How To STOP Selling
Look, I’m human too, and I hate being pushed into a decision by a salesperson who seems determined to rope me into signing on the dotted line. I surely don’t want to be that kind of seller, but I know for certain that if I don’t sell something my kids are going to be really skinny.
So, what can I do? I’m like the guy with a dusty wallet at the supermarket. I don’t want to steal food, but I don’t want my family to go hungry either.
Here’s a suggestion: STOP Selling.
If you’re one of the zillion people trying to get business online — whether you’re a writer, an ecommerce store owner, an accountant, or no matter what your business is — STOP worrying about who is going to buy your goods or services … and begin looking for ways to serve.
The late great Zig Ziglar often reminded us that the way to get what you want is to help others get what they want. I’m convinced Zig hit the nail on the head.
“Stop selling and start serving,” that’s my mantra.
Will you join me on that path? How can we be of service to one another? Whether you do the job and I provide the cash, I do the work and you provide the cash, or we barter one service for another … neither “selling” nor “buying” are dirty words. They simply describe both ends of a mutually beneficial transaction.
I may hate trying to SELL you something, but I can get behind helping you with something you need. Same product. Same service. Different attitude.
Stop selling. Start serving. Look for ways to be helpful to others. Charge a fair price, pay a fair price, and deliver exceptional value. The difference between good and great is about ten percent more effort. Give it.