Majority of sales talks you will go to will teach you that ‘people buy people’ and therefore you must work on your interactions with people and the way you represent yourself.
But it is not just how you present yourself just to potential customer but also how you interact with other business owners, competitor or not.
I recently commented on a public post requesting rough idea of prices for a website. For me web design is a secondary income and therefore I do not charge the full amount many other web designs do charge, and I do not include the additional services such as a custom-made theme, logo design or any other such additional services. I literally help business owners create a basic website presence for search engines at a price that many start-ups can afford. This however resulted in not just myself but other low priced offers being ‘told off’. There was another designer who felt we were insulting her, upsetting the designing community and making it hard for her to create a living. I politely retracted my offer and apologised to her, stressing that I offered my price for personal reasons and not to insult her or others.
At this point many people would have left it be or even just accepted my apology… not this lady. She continued to go on about how rubbish work is from those that offer low fees, how she would end up having to fix the mess made by subpar work and how even though it was not my intention it is what I was doing anyway. I was supported by others in that the prices we charge is our own personal choice and not to insult others, yet it did not satisfy this individual. For me as the consumer it would personally put me off to see someone, who is part of a supportive network of people, insulting other business owners and even after being apologised to continue ‘telling them off’ for their choice in pricing.
I would love to hear your opinions; would it leave a bad taste in your mouth if you saw someone insulting other business owners just because they have a different pricing structure to them?
I fully understand that for a working relationship to work you need to feel you can trust each other, that you get along and your personalities don’t ‘rub each other the wrong way’. This is why if, after an initial conversation, I feel I cannot comfortably and successfully assist someone I will suggest someone else I feel they will work with better. Some business owners, especially those starting out, cannot afford expensive outlay and will want a cheaper option. Others will have money to spare and happy to invest in more expensive services. For this purpose, there is a spread in cost for services it all depends on a business owner’s personal choice on what they charge, and to be insulting them over their choice is not good practise.
So remember it is not just your consumer audience that you need to sell yourself to but to other businesses too. If a business owner sees you being polite, helpful and just generally nice to other people, even if they haven’t experienced your services they are more likely to suggest you as a possible referral for a project then they are if you are sat insulting other business owners, and putting them down, no matter how great your services are.
I love referring business to other people and always keeping an eye out for new businesses to refer, either to my clients or to individuals in the groups I am a part of. So, I take note of interactions not just with possible consumers but with other business owners as well, something I am sure a lot of others do too.
Something I was taught as a kid was – If you have nothing nice to say don’t say anything – and to this day I do believe it. If you don’t like someone else has undercut your prices don’t insult them publicly, private message the original poster and expand on your price, make a personal connection with them and win business that way.
People buy People, so be a person someone wants to work with and can trust.