Striking the right tone with customers


When interacting with customers and prospects, it’s important to choose the right tone. For example, consider the following ways of closing out a sales conversation:

– “We’ll do anything possible to win this deal — even give you the product for free!”
– “We’re really busy with new orders, so I’m not going to waste a bunch of time trying to convince you to buy.”
– “We value your business and would be happy to have you as a customer.”

I’ve heard variations on all of these. In general, the first approach makes you seem desperate, the second one conveys that you don’t need the business, and the third strikes a good compromise between the two extremes. And when you think about it, this compromise makes sense from the buyer’s perspective. We all want to do business with companies who are motivated and passionate about their products. At the same time, we’re trained to put up a mental red flag when we encounter people who act desperate and pushy, or those who seem listless and unmotivated when it comes to the potential for new business.

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