Each one of us decides how we want to behave in business. What ends justify the means, so to speak.
- Do we bend the truth to make the story sound better?
- Do we exaggerate the results to seem more impressive?
- Do we make promises that we know can’t be achieved?
I find these easy questions to answer; others might not.
No, the things that I am conflicted about are the types of sales tactics that are used to get customers to take action. You know what I’m talking about: time sensitive offers like, “Buy now or you’ll never have the opportunity again,” or “Only the first 10 people can have this special bonus,” etc.
They work. They always have and they likely always will.
Often good people waffle about whether to buy something or join something but when it’s about to be taken away from them, they’ll take action. So, in a way, at least in the coaching/consulting field, you could argue that these tactics serve the client because it gets them to do the things they need to do.
I do put enrollment deadlines on some of my programs. For example, admissions are only open a few times a year for the Book Yourself Solid School of Coaching. This way, I can run the school the way a university would. But, there is always opportunity to join when a new term starts. I’ve also done time related discount offers on other products over the years.
On the other hand, I’ve never felt completely comfortable with these tactics in general—even when it’s a true deadline or there really are only X number of spots, etc. Maybe it’s because I hate pressuring people or making people feel obligated (not when I’m your coach though—I’ll push you relentlessly once you give me permission to do so—that’s different). Historically, I’ve found that when I had to push someone or “convince” them to join one of my programs, they often turned out to be a less than ideal client.
I guess I just want people to see the value in something and take advantage of it because they know it will be great for them. Maybe that’s naive and it’s likely I’ve missed making lots of sales as a result. I know I leave lots of money on the table because I don’t do aggressive up-selling but I just can’t get myself to push my agenda onto others. Maybe I’m a pussycat and should act more like a tiger. I don’t know.
I do know, however, that I’m conflicted about this as I don’t see it in a black and white frame. To be clear, I’m not saying these kinds of sales tactics are wrong. I’m just saying that I’m conflicted.
I’m really keen on your take. What do you think about this issue? How do you behave when marketing and selling?
Your thoughts below please… BUT… if you don’t write a comment in the next 10 seconds, this offer will be rescinded and your chance to share your opinion will be gone for ever. But, if you do post, you’ll also be given a never-before-released bonus opportunity to comment on previous posts. You must act now!